It is with great sadness that I must report the passing of F/L Allan Mason Forbes Alexander at the age of 95, after a short illness.
Born in 1919, he volunteered to join the RNZAF the day that war was declared. Allan arrived at 75(NZ) Squadron RAF on the 13th of June 1943, flying 5 Ops (2 as 2nd Pilot) from Newmarket, before the Squadron moved to Mepal at the end of June 1943. Allan and his crew continued to complete a further 21 Ops at Mepal, before their final, on the 8th of October to Bremen. Of a final Op total of 25 for the Alexander crew, over half were completed in Stirling Mk.III BK777 AA-U ‘Allexander’s Ragtime Crew’ – one of the few Stirlings from the Squadron that we have artwork for.
Very early in my research journey I came across a website devoted to ‘The crew of AA-U’ and the information contained within it and the subsequent contact with 2 of Allan’s children let me learn about Allan and the boys he flew with and as I researched further, I realised that both Allan’s crew and my Father’s crew had flown on 14 of the same Ops in 1943, including Peenemünde on 17th August 1943. This early contact and a radio interview that Allan did with Radio New Zealand allowed me to begin to understand the story of my own Father.
My deepest and most heartfelt condolences to the Alexander family.
Ake Ake Kia Kaha
More reading on the Alexander crew:
Read a transcription of Allan’s interview with Radio New Zealand here.
Read about Allan and his crew here.See some more pictures of the Alexander crew, courtesy of the NZBCA archive here.