Ross Pearson's story
Ross Pearson enlisted in the Royal Australian Air Force (RAAF) in October 1942 at the age of 19. He was serving at the time as a member of the Australian Army, having been called up for full-time duty in May 1942.
After RAAF training in Australia, Ross was posted to the United Kingdom. He served as a Wireless Operator Air Gunner with No 102 Squadron RAF, at RAF Pocklington in Yorkshire. Ross flew 34 operations with No 102 Squadron.
One of Ross's strongest, but saddest, memories of his time in Bomber Command was the night his radio was tuned to that of the Master Bomber. When the Master Bomber's aircraft was hit by flak (anti-aircraft fire), Ross found himself listening to the transmissions from the doomed aircraft until it crashed, killing all aboard.
Perhaps coloured by this experience, Ross's strongest memory of his comrades in Bomber Command was their fatalistic acceptance of the high chance of becoming a casualty as being 'nothing to fret about'.
Ross was discharged from the RAAF in Australia with the rank of Flying Officer in September 1945.
After the war, Ross qualified as a lawyer, married, and worked for the ABC for many years as a legal advocate. Eventually, he was promoted to the position of Federal Controller Personnel and Establishment.