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Remembering our local ‘Dam Busters’ hero this Anzac Day

The City of Boroondara is home to several important memorials commemorating residents who have served in conflicts.

A new one will be added in the lead up to Anzac Day at Bowen Gardens in Camberwell. The new plaque honours Flight Lieutenant RAAF Officer Les Knight DSO, one of Boroondara’s local World War II heroes.

Les Knight lived in Camberwell until he enlisted as a pilot with the Royal Australian Air Force in 1941. Knight was awarded the Distinguished Service Order for his role in the ‘Dambusters Raid’ on the night of 16 May 1943.

This daring bombing raid resulted in the destruction of two hydroelectric dams and was immortalised in a 1955 movie, The Dam Busters. 

Knight died on 16 September 1943, aged just 22, when his stricken plane crashed after another bombing raid. Refusing to bail out with his crew, Knight instead continued to pilot the aircraft so that it wouldn’t crash
into the Dutch village of Den Ham. 

Set in landscaped gardens, there are few more pleasant places to contemplate the sacrifice of those who have served in our armed forces.