Kyeema Memorial – Mount Dandenong, Australia - Atlas Obscura

Kyeema Memorial

Mount Dandenong, Australia

A poignant monument dedicated to a tragic 1930s plane crash.  


The Kyeema Airplane Crash Memorial is a poignant site of commemoration for the 18 lives that were lost on October 1938 when an airplane tragically crashed into the slopes of Mount Dandenong. The mountain makes up part of the Great Dividing Range in Central Victoria, Australia. The Kyeema was a Douglas DC-2, twin-engined airliner operated by Australian National Airways and was part of a group of similar airplanes that flew between Adelaide and Melbourne. 

It was on one such journey from Adelaide to Melbourne that a pilot came into great difficulty after his navigation was obscured by a thick fog that descended above Melbourne on that day. A tragic series of events then followed when the descending aircraft collided with the hillside, leading to the death of all 18 passengers. Charles Hawker, an Australian member of parliament at the time, was one of the passengers on board. 

The tragedy ultimately led to regulations being passed that made it mandatory for airplanes to be monitored on the ground. It was also recommended that 33 MHz radio systems be implemented, which allowed pilots to better navigate challenging weather conditions. 

In 1978, on the 40th anniversary of the crash, this memorial was unveiled by the Mount Dandenong Historical Society. It lists the names of both crew and passengers aboard Kyeema’s last flight.  

Know Before You Go

The Kyeema Airplane Crash Memorial is a short walk from Burke's Lookout, a viewpoint which gives remarkable views over Melbourne. There are many longer walking tracks in the area which allow visitors to explore the Dandenong Ranges. 

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March 22, 2023

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