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Sydney Ernest Clayton

Portrait, Sydney Ernest Clayton - This image may be subject to copyright

Portrait, Sydney Ernest Clayton - This image may be subject to copyright


  • Title
  • Forenames
    Sydney Ernest AWMM
  • Surname
    Clayton AWMM
  • Ingoa
  • Also known as
  • Service number
    • NZ426214 AWMM
    • WWII 426214 AWMM
  • Gender
    Male AWMM
  • Iwi / Hapū / Waka / Rohe
  • Religion

Civilian life

About birth

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  • Birth
    24 November 1913 AWMM EnglandUnited Kingdom AWMM
  • Date of birth
  • Place of birth
  • Birth notes
  • Address before enlistment
  • Post war occupation
  • Next of kin on embarkation
    • Mr Ernest Clayton (father), Waterhouse Street, Taradale, New Zealand AWMM
    • WW2 Father: Mr. E. Clayton, Waterhouse St. , Taradale, Hawkes Bay AWMM
    • WW2 Parents: Mr. & Mrs. E. Clayton, Waterhouse St. , Taradale, Hawkes Bay AWMM
  • Relationship status


Wars and conflicts

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Military decorations

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Training and Enlistment

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  • Military training
    • Air Defence Unit, Waipapakauri (May 1942) AWMM
    • Ground Training - New Plymouth & Masterton AWMM
    • Initial Training Wing : Rotorua -April 1942 AWMM
    • Pilot Training - Harewood AWMM
    • Air Observer Training 1.G.R. School, New Plymouth- AWMM
  • Branch Trade Proficiency
    Navigator RNZAF Biographies (R17845608)
  • Enlistment
    WW2 May 1942 AWMM
    Age 29 AWMM
    School teacher/Civilian AWMM
  • Occupation before enlistment
  • Age on enlistment

Prisoner of war

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  • Capture details
  • Days interned
  • Liberation date
  • Liberation Repatriation
  • POW liberation details
  • POW serial number

Medical history

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  • Medical notes
    Killed in Action, Cause of Death AWMM
    Killed on air operations AWMM

Biographical information

Biographical information

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  • Sydney Clayton was the son of Mr & Mrs Ernest Clayton of Taradale.

    Educated at Napier Boys and Christchurch Boys School.

    Trained as a teacher and in 1941 was a schoolmaster at Mata North School, Kohukohu.

    Although he initially trained as a pilot, it was decided that he was better suited to being an Air Observer.

    A post-war search by an Australian war graves unit located the aircraft and the bodies of the crew which they buried nearby. They were later exhumed and reburied at Bourail, New Caledonia. In 2001 an American military unit discovered the crash site and, believing it was an American Avenger with American bodies, they took the remains they found to Hawaii. Examination, including DNA testing, revealed the remains to be from the New Zealanders. Contact was made with two of the airmen's relatives and the remains were taken to New Zealand then to Bourail to be buried with the bodies.

    Remembered on the Takapuna War Memorial, The Strand, Takapuna.

    Next of kin listed in the Auckland Museum. Roll of Honour, Auckland Province, 1939 - 1945 as Mr E. Clayton, Takapuna. Next of kin details compiled from information in the Casualty lists published in the newspapers.

    Attended Napier Boys' High School, Christchurch Boys' High School (Source: RNZAF Biographies (R17845608)) AWMM
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About death

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  • Death
    5 June 1944 AWMM
    Age 30 AWMM
    RabaulNew Britain AWMM
  • Date of death
  • Age at death
  • Place of death
  • Cause of death
  • Death notes
  • Cemetery
    Bourail New Zealand War Cemetery, New Caledonia AWMM Joint grave 8. 34-35. AWMM
  • Cemetery name
  • Grave reference
  • Obituary
  • Memorial name
  • Memorial reference



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  • Memorial name
    • Auckland War Memorial Museum, World War 2 Hall of Memories AWMM
    • Takapuna War Memorial, The Strand, Takapuna, Auckland, New Zealand AWMM
    • Takapuna War Memorial, (ex RSA Roll, on a boulder), The Strand, Takapuna, Auckland, New Zealand AWMM

Roll of Honour

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Command item
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DateFirst namesLocationRelationshipContact
13 September 2023KelvinNorfolk, EnglandResearcher
29 March 2022IanIver, EnglandResearcher
14 January 2022LouiseHastingsOther relative

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