3/10/43 Attack Against Targets at Kassel

F/S Allan Johnson Mayfield RNZAF. Pilot
P/O Jack Francis David Jarmy. Navigator
Sgt. Robert Douglas  Sommerville. Air Bomber
F/S William Lake. Wireless Operator
Sgt. A. Warburton. Flight Engineer
Sgt. Thomas Darbyshire. Mid Upper Gunner
F/S John Sebastian Hulena RNZAF. Rear Gunner

Striling Mk.III EH939 ‘J’ for Johnny

Up 19.00 3rd October
Down 00.30 4th October
Total Flight Time 5 hours 30 minutes

75 (NZ) Sqn RAF Operations Record Book (ORB)
Fifteen aircraft were detailed to attack the above targets with incendiary bombs of 30lbs. and 4lbs. One aircraft returned early as the Navigator was ill, but the remainder successfully dropped their bombs in the target area. This was a good concentrated attack, large fires and heavy explosions being seen. Moderate A.A. Fire was encountered, which was ineffective except for one aircraft which received damage. This aircraft was captained by F/Sgt. N. PARKER, damage was received to the starboard elevator , starboard tail plane and the rear turret war partly shot away. The rear gunner Sgt. S.W. RIDDLER was lost over the target when the rear turret was damaged. It is considered that he may have baled out as the escape hatch was found to be open. The aircraft successfully landed at WING. Very few enemy aircraft were seen. It was clear at the target, but slight haze was encountered on the return journey. Navigation was very good.
Page 609, 1943. Form 540/ 541 AIR27/ 646  75(NZ) Squadron RAF, Mepal. National Archives.

Sergeant Stanley Winston Riddler RNZAF NZ424999. Air Gunner. 10th September to 3rd October 1943. Died 3rd October 1943 age 22 during raid on Kassel. Buried Hanover war Cemetery, Germany.

Bomber Command War Diary
3 October 1943
Kassel: 547 aircraft – 223 Halifaxes, 204 Lancasters, 113 Stirlings, 7 Mosquitos. The H2S ‘blind marker’ aircraft overshot the aiming point badly and the ‘visual markers’ could not correct this because their view of the ground was restricted by thick haze. German decoy markers may also have been present. The main weight of the attack thus fell on the western suburbs and outlying towns and villages. 24 aircraft – 14 Halifaxes, 6 Stirlings, 4 Lancasters – lost, 4.4 per cent of the force.

A number of Mosquito operations took place; 10 aircraft on a diversion to Hannover, 12 Oboe aircraft to Knapsack power-station near Cologne and 4 on Mark II Oboe trials to Aachen. No losses.

7 Stirlings minelaying in the Frisians, 7 OTU sorties. No losses.
Page 436, The Bomber Command War Diaries. 2011. Everitt Middlebrook. Midland publishing.

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