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Narrative:Spitfire FR.XIV RM977. Built by Vickers Armstrongs (Supermarine) at Keevil, Trowbridge, Wiltshire with Griffon G65 engine. To 6MU RAF Brize Norton, Oxfordshire 26-12-44. To 82MU RAF Lichfield, Fradley, Staffordshire 19-1-45 for packing and crating for shipment overseas. Shipped on the ss 'Empire Paragon' 12-2-45, arriving India 11-4-45. To 9 Squadron RIAF by 1-5-45
|Date:||Wednesday 9 January 1946|
Supermarine Spitfire FR Mk XIV
|Owner/operator:||9 Sqn RIAF|
|Fatalities:||Fatalities: 1 / Occupants: 1|
|Aircraft damage:|| Written off (damaged beyond repair)|
|Location:||Arabian Sea, off Juhu beach, Mumbai, Maharashtra -
|Phase:|| En route|
|Departure airport:||RIAF Santacruz, Maharashtra, Mumbai, India|
Written off (damaged beyond repair) 9-1-46: Crashed into the Arabian Sea during pull-up from a dive and sank off Juhu beach, Mumbai, Maharashtra. Pilot drowned and body not found.
Crew of Spitfire RM977
F/O (IND/2359) Sukumar Krishna Mukerjee (pilot, aged 25) RIAF - killed on active service 9-1-46; as stated above, pilot's body not found/not recovered. Commemorated on the Delhi-Karachi 1939-1945 Memorial, New Delhi, Delhi Capital Territory, India
Formally Struck off Charge 31-12-46 as Cat. E (FA). Not 100% confirmed that the Spitfire involved was RM977 - but it is the only 9 Squadron RIAF Spitfire XIV in service in 1945-46 that is unaccounted for.
The accident location of Juhu Beach is located on the shores of the Arabian Sea. It stretches for six kilometres up to Versova.
1. The Indian Express 10 January 1946, p3
2, The Indian Express 11 January 1946, p3
5. 9 Sqn RIAF ORB for the period 1-5-1945 to 30-6-1947: National Archives (PRO Kew) File AIR27/139/25: https://discovery.nationalarchives.gov.uk/details/r/D8407802
11. CWGC: https://www.cwgc.org/find-records/find-war-dead/casualty-details/2595763/sukumar-krishna-mukerjee/
||Updated [Source, Narrative]|