C.A. Rothschild crew 16.2.43

16/02/1943 – Attack Against Targets at Lorient
Seven aircraft were detailed to carry out the above attacks with bombs of 2,000 lb. 500 lb. and 4 lb. incendiaries. All the aircraft successfully bombed in the target area, large fires were seen in the whole area. Both heavy and light A.A. fire was encountered, which was very intense during the early part of the attack, but was dying down when later aircraft arrived. Searchlights were very accurate and coned several aircraft, one aircraft being held for 8 minutes, the pilot took very violent evasive action but eventually got clear after great difficulty. Several enemy aircraft were seen but no attacks were made. Over the target area there was very dispersed low cloud, although visibility was very good. Navigation was excellent.

Stirling Mk.I W7469 AA-T/C/O?

F/S Charles Arnold Rothschild, RCAF R.66347/ J.18852 – Pilot.
Sgt. George King Samson, RNZAF NZ402563 – Navigator.
S/L George Eric Fowler, RAF 86427 – Air Bomber.
Sgt. Richard DouglasTod, RCAF R.91741 – Wireless Operator.
Sgt. Eric Grainger, RAFVR 625045 – Flight Engineer.
Sgt. J.L. Moss, RAFVR 1312565 – Mid Upper Gunner.
F/L Guy Lionel Roy Heywood, RNZAF NZ40622 – Rear Gunner (Gunnery Leader).

Take Off 19:00 – Landed 00:15
Flight Time 05:15

26/02/1943 – Mining off the Frisian Islands
Four aircraft were detailed to carry out this operation with mines of 1500lb. All of the aircraft successfully dropped their mines in the allotted area and the parachutes were seen to open. No enemy aircraft, A.A. fire or searchlights were encountered. The weather was clear but hazy, visibility was fairly good. Navigation was excellent.

Stirling Mk.I BF398 AA-F

F/S Charles Arnold Rothschild, RCAF R.66347/ J.18852 – Pilot.
Sgt. George King Samson, RNZAF NZ402563 – Navigator.
S/L George Eric Fowler, RAF 86427 – Air Bomber.
Sgt. Richard DouglasTod, R.91741 – Wireless Operator.
Sgt. Eric Grainger, RAFVR 625045 – Flight Engineer.
Sgt. J.L. Moss, RAFVR 1312565 – Mid Upper Gunner.
ORB records H. Moss, which could be Harold Ernest Moss of the French crew, but inclined to think this is a typo in the records, even though date range is correct.
Sgt. William Joffre Reid, RNZAF NZ411779 – Rear Gunner.

Take Off 18:25 – Landed 22:25
Flight Time 04:00

28/02/1943 – Attack Against Targets at St. Nazaire
Seven aircraft were detailed to attack the above targets with bombs of 1,000 lb. and incendiaries of 30 lb. and 4 lb. One of the aircraft failed to take off however, owing to extractor trouble. The remaining six aircraft successfully attacked the target, their bombs being seen to explode in the target area (which was well alight) and very well concentrated, the fires being seen forty miles away. There was moderate and heavy A.A, fire co-operation with searchlights. This was accurate. One aircraft was hit by flak and landed at Castle Camps. A few enemy aircraft were seen but no attacks were made. The weather was clear, although visibility was only fair, owing to haze. Navigation was very good.

Stirling Mk.I R9290 AA-Y

F/S Charles Arnold Rothschild, RCAF R.66347/ J.18852 – Pilot.
Sgt. George King Samson, RNZAF NZ402563 – Navigator.
S/L George Eric Fowler, RAF 86427 – Air Bomber.
Sgt. Robert Ernest Tod, R.91742 – Wireless Operator.
Sgt. Eric Grainger, RAFVR 625045 – Flight Engineer.
Sgt. J.L. Moss, RAFVR 1312565 – Mid Upper Gunner.
ORB records H. Moss, which could be Harold Ernest Moss of the French crew, but inclined to think this is a typo in the records, even though date range is correct.
Sgt. Eric Clifford Viccars, RAFVR 649196 – Rear Gunner.

Take Off 18:34 – Landed 23:35
Flight Time 05:01

01/03/1943 – Attack Against Targets at Berlin
Eight aircraft were detailed to carry out the above attacks with bombs of 1,000 lb. 500 lb. and incendiaries of 30 lb. and 4 lb. Two aircraft, however, were forced to return early owing to inter-comm,, and rear turret trouble, their bombs being jettisoned. The remaining six aircraft successfully attacked the target. This is considered to be a first class effort, colossal fires were seen, which were well concentrated and were seen up to 150 miles away as the aircraft were returning. Three aircraft were hit by A.A. fire in the Ruhr area but they returned safely. The defenses in the target area were very poor, little A.A. fire and few searchlights being encountered. Some enemy aircraft were seen but no combats took place. There was slight cloud in the target area, although visibility was very good and ground detail could be seen very clearly. Navigation was excellent.

Stirling Mk.I BK602 AA-R

F/S Charles Arnold Rothschild, RCAF R.66347/ J.18852 – Pilot.
Sgt. George King Samson, RNZAF NZ402563 – Navigator.
S/L George Eric Fowler, RAF 86427 – Air Bomber.
Sgt. Richard Douglas Tod, R.91741 – Wireless Operator.
Sgt. Eric Grainger, RAFVR 625045 – Flight Engineer.
Sgt. J.L. Moss, RAFVR 1312565 – Mid Upper Gunner.
F/L Guy Lionel Roy Heywood, RNZAF NZ40622 – Rear Gunner (Gunnery Leader).

Take Off 18:35 – Landed 02:35
Flight Time 08:00

05/03/1943 – Attack Against Targets at Essen
Nine aircraft were detailed to attack the above target with bombs of 2,000 lb. 1,00lb. and incendiaries of 30 lb. and 4 lb. Unfortunately, one aircraft crashed one minute after take-off as one of the engines seized, the pilot however, made a good crash landing and he and the crew escaped unhurt. Another aircraft was forced to return early owing to engine trouble. The remaining seven aircraft successfully dropped their bombs in the target area. A very large concentration of fires were seen with huge buildings in their midst, leaving no doubt as to the success of the operation. The glow from the fires was seen at the Dutch coast as our aircraft were homeward bound. Both light and heavy intense A.A. fire co-operating with searchlights, were encountered. A few enemy aircraft were seen but no combats took place, There was slight ground haze at the target, although visibility was very good. Navigation was very good. For the success of the operation a message of congratulations was received from the Air Officer Commanding-in-Chief.

Stirling Mk.I BF455 AA-Y

F/S Charles Arnold Rothschild, RCAF R.66347/ J.18852 – Pilot.
F/S George King Samson, RNZAF NZ402563 – Navigator.
S/L George Eric Fowler, RAF 86427 – Air Bomber.
Sgt. Robert Ernest Tod, R.91742 – Wireless Operator.
Sgt. Eric Grainger, RAFVR 625045 – Flight Engineer.
Sgt. J.L. Moss, RAFVR 1312565 – Mid Upper Gunner.
F/L Guy Lionel Roy Heywood, RNZAF NZ40622 – Rear Gunner (Gunnery Leader).
Sgt. Richard Douglas Tod, R.91741 – Front Gunner.

Take Off 19:30 – Landed 00:00
Flight Time 04:30

09/03/1943 – Attack Against Targets at Munich
Five aircraft were detailed to carry out the above attack, with bombs of 1,000 lb. 500lb. and incendiaries of 30 lb. and 4 lb. One aircraft however, got too far off track on the way to the target; after futile attempts to get back on correct course, the mission had to be abandoned. The remaining four aircraft successfully dropped their bombs in the target area, intense fires being seen, black smoke was rising from these fires up to a height of 10,000 feet. One large explosion was also seen from the center of the target. Both light and heavy A.A. fire was encountered which was intense at first but was dying down as the attack developed. Visibility was very good and ground detail could be seen clearly. Navigation was very good.

Stirling Mk.I BF455 AA-Y

F/S Charles Arnold Rothschild, RCAF R.66347/ J.18852 – Pilot.
F/S George King Samson, RNZAF NZ402563 – Navigator.
S/L George Eric Fowler, RAF 86427 – Air Bomber.
Sgt. Robert Ernest Tod, R.91742 – Wireless Operator.
Sgt. Eric Grainger, RAFVR 625045 – Flight Engineer.
Sgt. J.L. Moss, RAFVR 1312565 – Mid Upper Gunner.
F/L G. Heywood, RNZAF NZ40622 – Rear Gunner (Gunnery Leader).
Sgt. Richard Douglas Tod, R.91741 – Front Gunner.

Take Off 20:30 – Landed 04:30
Flight Time 08:00

22/03/1943 – Attack Against Targets at St. Nazaire
Nine aircraft were detailed to carry out the above attack with 30 lb. 4 lb. incendiary bombs. One aircraft however, failed to take off as it was found to be unserviceable. A general recall, however, was broadcast when the aircraft were about twenty minutes from the target. They all brought their bombs back with the exception of one, which was forced to jettison them.

Stirling Mk.I BF455 dnc AA-Y

F/S Charles Arnold Rothschild, RCAF R.66347/ J.18852 – Pilot.
F/S George King Samson, RNZAF NZ402563 – Navigator.
S/L George Eric Fowler, RAF 86427 – Air Bomber.
Sgt. Richard Douglas Tod, R.91741 – Wireless Operator.
Sgt. Eric Grainger, RAFVR 625045 – Flight Engineer.
Sgt. J.L. Moss, RAFVR 1312565 – Mid Upper Gunner.
Sgt. Ian Charles Salt, RNZAF NZ404046 – Rear Gunner.
Sgt. Robert Ernest Tod, R.91742 – Front Gunner.

Take Off 19:10 – Landed 23:10
Flight Time 04:00

04/04/1943 – Attack Against Targets at Kiel
Ten aircraft were detailed to attack the above targets, with incendiaries of 30 lb. and 4 lb. Four of the aircraft however returned early owing to engine trouble and one of the aircraft failed to take-off. The remaining five aircraft successfully bombed the target, although it was impossible to accurately assess results owing to heavy cloud, but nevertheless red glows were seen silhouetted against the clouds. Both light and heavy A.A. Fire was encountered, with searchlights co-operating. Some enemy aircraft were seen, but no combats took place. There was ten tenths cloud in the target area and visibility was not very good. Navigation was very good.

Stirling Mk.III BF412 AA-Y

F/S Charles Arnold Rothschild, RCAF R.66347/ J.18852 – Pilot.
F/S George King Samson, RNZAF NZ402563 – Navigator.
S/L George Eric Fowler, RAF 86427 – Air Bomber.
Sgt. Richard DouglasTod, R.91741 – Wireless Operator.
Sgt. Eric Grainger, RAFVR 625045 – Flight Engineer.
Sgt. J.L. Moss, RAFVR 1312565 – Mid Upper Gunner.
Sgt. Guy Lionel Roy Heywood, RNZAF NZ40622 – Rear Gunner (Gunnery Leader).
Sgt. Robert Douglas Tod, R.91742 – Front Gunner.

Take Off 20:40 – Landed 02:30
Flight Time 05:50

10/04/1943 – Attack Against Targets at Frankfurt
Twelve aircraft were detailed to attack the above targets with bombs of 1000lb and incendiaries of 30lb and 4lb. Three aircraft were forced to return early as they failed to maintain height. Eight of the remaining aircraft successfully dropped their bombs in the target area. It was not possible to see the target owing to thick cloud, a large red glow was nevertheless seen. Both light and heavy A.Afire co-operating with searchlights was encountered, although they were ineffective. Several enemy aircraft were seen and two short combats took place. There was 10/10ths cloud in the target area, but it was clear and dark above our aircraft. Navigation was excellent. Stirling III, BF455 captained by F/Sgt. Rothschild was hit over the target by A.A.Fire and also chased by enemy Fighters. This caused him to run short of Petrol over the English Channel on the way home, and he eventually crash landed in the sea, 3 miles off Shoreham. The wireless procedure had been perfect, and Spitfires escorted it over the French coast, and a Walrus Flying Boat was waiting for it to crash land. Dingy drill was perfect and all the crew got in safely after an immaculate landing – the Stirling floating for 25 minutes. The final scene was enacted in the Channel as the Walrus collided with the Dinghy and dropped all the crew in the sea. No Ill-effects except for Sgt. Grainger, the Flight Engineer, who suffered from shock. Stirling III BF456 captained by Sgt. Webb failed to return.

Stirling Mk.III BF455 AA-Y

F/S Charles Arnold Rothschild, RCAF R.66347/ J.18852 – Pilot.
F/S George King Samson, RNZAF NZ402563 – Navigator.
Sgt. James Leonard Richards, RNZAF NZ404946 – Air Bomber.
Sgt. Robert Ernest Tod, R.91742 – Wireless Operator.
Sgt. Eric Grainger, RAFVR 625045 – Flight Engineer.
Sgt. J.L. Moss, RAFVR 1312565 – Mid Upper Gunner.
Sgt. William Alfred Maxwell Hardy , RNZAF NZ401226 – Rear Gunner.
Sgt. Richard Douglas Tod, R.91741 – Front Gunner.

t/o 2335 Newmarket. Damaged by flak over the target and later engaged in a running battle with night-fighters. Low on fuel, the bomber was ditched in the Channel, some 3 miles off Shoreham-by-Sea, Sussex. All were picked up by an air sea rescue Walrus amphibian. Unusually, the crew included 2 brothers, Robert Ernest and Richard Douglas Tod. Both were destined to die later that year.

Take Off 23:55 – Landed 07:15
Flight Time 07:20

12/05/1943 – Attack Against Targets at Duisburg
Nine aircraft were detailed to attack the above targets with bombs of 2000lb, 1000lb and incendiaries of 30lb and 4lb. Stirling Mk.III. BK.721 captained by F/Lt. E.R.M. Appleton, whilst taking off failed to clear an obstruction at the end of the runway and crashed almost immediately afterwards, all the crew with the exception of the captain and the wireless operator, F/Sgt. Cocks, S.G. were killed. The captain received severe injuries and the wireless was also injured, both were admitted to hospital. As a result of this crash two aircraft were unable to take-off. One aircraft returned early owing to the Captain being sick. The remaining five aircraft successfully dropped their bombs in the target area, and large concentrated fires and some explosions were seen. Some heavy A.A.Fire, co-operating with searchlights was encountered, but it was ineffective. A few enemy aircraft were seen but no combats took place. The weather was very clear in the target area with good visibility except for ground haze which prevented identification. Navigation was very good.

Stirling Mk.III BK809 AA-T

F/S Charles Arnold Rothschild, RCAF R.66347/ J.18852 – Pilot.
F/S George King Samson, RNZAF NZ402563 – Navigator.
P/O Arthur Wilfred Lane, RAFVR 383885/ 139406 – Air Bomber.
Sgt. Robert Ernest Tod, R.91742 – Wireless Operator.
Sgt. Eric Grainger, RAFVR 625045 – Flight Engineer.
Sgt. Richard Douglas Tod, RCAF R.91741 – Mid Upper Gunner.
Sgt. J.L. Moss, RAFVR 1312565 – Rear Gunner.

Take Off 00:34 – Landed 02:12
Flight Time 01:38

25/05/1943 – Attack Against Targets at Dusseldorf
Sixteen aircraft were detailed to carry out the above attack with bombs of 1000lb and incendiaries of 30lb and 4lb. Four aircraft returned early owing to engine trouble, and one failed to return. The remaining eleven aircraft successfully dropped their bombs in the target area, and some large explosions were also seen. Both heavy and light A.A.Fire was encountered, co-operating with searchlights, which were ineffective. Some enemy aircraft were seen and two short combats took place, but no damage was sustained by our aircraft. Ten tenths cloud was prevalent in the target area, but visibility was fairly good. Navigation was very good. This missing aircraft was Stirling Mk.I. BK602, captained by Sergeant T.W. Darton.

Stirling Mk.III BK809 AA-T

F/S Charles Arnold Rothschild, RCAF R.66347/ J.18852 – Pilot.
Sgt. Benjamin Brimley Wood, RAFVR 656588 – 2nd Pilot.
F/S George King Samson, RNZAF NZ402563 – Navigator.
P/O Arthur Wilfred Lane, RAFVR 383885/ 139406 – Air Bomber.
Sgt. Robert Ernest Tod, RCAF R.91742 – Wireless Operator.
Sgt. Eric Grainger, RAFVR 625045 – Flight Engineer.
Sgt. Richard Douglas Tod, RCAF R.91741 – Mid Upper Gunner.
Sgt. J.L. Moss, RAFVR 1312565 – Rear Gunner.

Take Off 23:59 – Landed 01:08
Flight Time 01:09

29/05/1943 – Attack Against Targets at Wuppertal
Twenty aircraft were detailed to carry out the above operation with bombs of 2000lb, 1000lb, and incendiaries of 30lb and 4lb. One aircraft failed to take-off owing to the rear turret being unserviceable, and two returned early. Four aircraft failed to return. The remaining thirteen aircraft successfully dropped their bombs in the target area. Very large fires were seen and also some big explosions. Some heavy A.A.Fire was encountered, but it was ineffective. No searchlights were seen. A few enemy aircraft were seen and one short combat took place, but no damage was sustained by our aircraft. The weather was good in the target area, but visibility was impaired by smoke from the fires. Navigation was very good. The missing aircraft were Stirlings Mk.III BK776 Captained by P/O. R.F.Bennett, Mk.I EF398, captained by F/O. R.B. Vernazoni, MK.III EH881 captained by Sgt. J.H. Carey and Mk.III Bf561 captained by Sgt. S.R. Thornley.

Stirling Mk.III BK809 AA-T

F/S Charles Arnold Rothschild, RCAF R.66347/ J.18852 – Pilot.
F/O George King Samson, RNZAF NZ402563 – Navigator.
P/O Arthur Wilfred Lane, RAFVR 383885/ 139406 – Air Bomber.
Sgt. Robert Ernest Tod, R.91742 – Wireless Operator.
Sgt. Eric Grainger, RAFVR 625045 – Flight Engineer.
Sgt. Richard Douglas Tod, RCAF R.91741 – Mid Upper Gunner.
Sgt. J.L. Moss, RAFVR 1312565 – Rear Gunner.

Take Off 23:08 – Landed 01:15
Flight Time 02:07

 

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