P.L. McCartin crew 26.8.44 †

The crew of ND911 JN-V. Back row L to R; P/O John Miles (Nav), F/O Patrick ‘Leo’ McCartin (Pilot), F/O Leonard Martin (A/B), F/Sgt. Phillip Smith (WOP). Front row L to R; Sgt. John Gray (R/Gnr), Sgt. Dennis Bryer (Mug), Sgt. John Warlow (FE)

F/O Patrick Leo McCartin RAAF 419328. Pilot
Born 7th December 1915, Geelong, Victoria, Australia.

1 ITS 18th July 1942
11 EFTS 12th November 1942
2ED 11th February 1943
1ED 28th February 1943
15SFTS 4th April 1943
RAF TP 25th August 1943
Embark Canada 26th August 1943
Disembark UK 11PDRC 2nd September 1943
3 (P) AFU 12th October 1943
12OTU 21st March 1944
31Base 9th June 1944
75(NZ) Squadron RAF 14th August 1944

Killed on the 20th November 1944 on Raid to Meerbeck synthetic oil Refinery, Homberg.
Buried grave 4, Plot 25, Row G, Reichswald Forest  War Cemetery.

P/O John Miles RAFVR 187426. Navigator
Born 13th September 1908, Forest Gate, Essex, United Kingdom.
Killed on the 20th November 1944 on Raid to Meerbeck synthetic oil Refinery, Homberg.
Collective grave 5,6 &7, Plot 7, Row B Rheinberg War Cemetery

F/O Leonard Arthur Martin RAFVR 153528. Air Bomber
Killed on the 20th November 1944 on Raid to Meerbeck synthetic oil Refinery, Homberg.
Grave 10, Plot 25, Row G, Reichswald Forest  War Cemetery

F/Sgt. Philip Francis Smith RAAF 427108. Wireless Operator
Born 21st March 1924, Subiaco, Perth, Western Australia.
25th May1942 – enlisted, posted to 4RD, RAAF Pearce, Western Australia.
14th June 1942 – posted to HQ RAAF Pearce, Western Australia
11th October 1942 – posted to 5ITS, RAAF Pearce, Western Australia
10th December 1942 – posted to 1WAGS, Ballarat, Victoria
28th June 1943 – posted to 3BAGS, RAAF West Sale, Victoria
22nd July 1943 – remustered WO/AG, promoted to Sgt.
23rd July 1943 – posted to 5ED, Subiaco, Western Australia
18th August 1943 – posted to 1ED, Ascot Vale, Victoria
30th August 1943 – posted to OSHQ (attached to RAF)
31st August 1943 – embarked Melbourne, Australia
9th October 1943 – disembarked UK, 11PDRC, Padgate, Warrington
14th December 1943 – posted to 9 (O) AFU, RAF Llandwrog, Wales
21st March 1944 – posted to 12 OTU, RAF Chipping Wardon, Oxford
21st March 1944 – remustered Wop/Air
9th June 1944 – posted to 31 Base, RAF Methwold
16th June 1944 – attached to 1657 HCU, RAF Shepherd’s Grove, Suffolk
2nd August 1944 – attached to 3LFS, RAF Feltwell, Norfolk
14th August 1944 – posted to 75(NZ) Squadron, RAF Mepal

Killed on the 20th November 1944 on Raid to Meerbeck synthetic oil Refinery, Homberg.
Collective grave 5,6 &7, Plot 7, Row B Rheinberg War Cemetery.

Sgt. William John Warlow RAFVR 1653307. Flight Engineer
Killed on the 20th November 1944 on Raid to Meerbeck synthetic oil Refinery, Homberg.
Collective grave 5,6 &7, Plot 7, Row B Rheinberg War Cemetery.

Sgt. Dennis George Albert Bryer RAFVR 1874880. Mid Upper Gunner
Killed on the 20th November 1944 on Raid to Meerbeck synthetic oil Refinery, Homberg.
Collective grave 5,6 &7, Plot 7, Row B Rheinberg War Cemetery.

Sgt. John N. Gray RAFVR. Rear Gunner.
Shot down on the night of 20th November 1944 on raid to Meerbeck synthetic oil Refinery, Homberg. Sgt. Gray was temporarily knocked unconscious when the force of the blast that destroyed ND911 JN-V, ripped the rear tail off with John in it. Coming round he baled out and landed safely.

His report of events in the back of his log book read as follows;
20-11-44. Was on a daylight  bombing mission detailed to attack the oil refinery at Mors Homberg nr Duisberg .At 15. 00 hrs the starboard outer motor packed up and was forced to leave the GH formation ,at 15.15 hrs we bombed the target, two minutes later  we got a direct hit by flak and burst inti flames ,the tanks exploded and the aircraft broke up in mid air. I baled out at about 17000 ft on reaching the ground I was captured by a German soldier who as a small blessing could speak English, who ordered me to come with him to his HQ. After a long and painful journey . The HQ which turned out to be the flak battery which claimed to have shot us down, here i was brought before a German officer .I was interrogated for about two hours and was finally taken to guardhouse which I spent half the night the other in a dugout . 

21-11-44. At about 06.30 hrs a G.A.F airman came for me and I was taken to a G.A.F fighter airfield near Orsoy, I was again interrogated and again sent to the guardhouse, here treatment was better than I expected. I remained there for seven days, most of the time in the shelters, the USAAF were always bombing and strafing the airfield by day and night our own boys  were also  up to their tricks in the Ruhr, so I lacked no exercise during my stay.

John ended up in Prisoner of War camp Dulag Luft, Stalag Luft VII, PoW no.1241. In a strange twist of fate, he was flown back to the UK in ‘The Captain’s Fancy’ from 75(NZ) Squadron – the same aircraft that the crew had made their first op in on the 26th August to Kiel.

The McCartin crew arrived at Mepal on the 14th of August 1944 from No.3 Lancaster Finishing School Feltwell, after Conversion Unit training at 1657 H.C.U., Stradishall.

As was standard practice. Leo undertook a 2nd Dickie of with Raul Wisker’s crew on the 16th of August to Stettin. Interestingly this Op for Leo is not recorded in the Form 541 for August 1944 and has been obtained from his logbook.

16/08/1944 – Attack Against Stettin
Twenty three aircraft took off as detailed to attack Stettin. Twenty two were successful in attacking the target with the aid of markers, but the raid appeared scattered and no great concentration of fires was achieved. Slight A.A. fire was encountered in the target area and a few fighters were met en route, two aircraft having inconclusive combats. One aircraft returned early with icing trouble.

Lancaster Mk.I HK554 JN-F

F/O Raoul John Wisker, RNZAF NZ415255 – Pilot.
F/S Patrick Leo McCartin, RAAF AUS.419328 – 2nd Pilot.
Sgt. N. Wilkinson, RAFVR – Navigator.
Sgt. Norman William Strathearn, RAFVR 1585657 – Air Bomber.
Sgt. R. Hasler, RAFVR – Wireless Operator .
Sgt. J. Searle, RAFVR – Flight Engineer.
Sgt. F. Horne, RAFVR – Mid Upper Gunner.
Sgt. B. Mitchell, RAFVR – Rear Gunner.

Take Off 21:07 – Landed 05:05
Flight Time 07:58

26/08/1944 – Attack Against Kiel
Twenty out of the twenty one aircraft detailed, took off and participated in a very concentrated raid against Kiel. Several crews were able to identify the target visually and confirm the accuracy of the bombing. Heavy A.A. fire was moderate and a few of our aircraft suffered slight damage. The aircraft captained by NZ421343 .A/F/L. V. Andrew, was hit by A.A. fire over the target causing serious leg injuries to the MU/Gnr. 1862898 .Sgt. Molony, M. and damage to the Mid upper turret and fuselage.

Lancaster Mk.III NE181 JN-M “The Captains Fancy”

F/S Patrick Leo McCartin, RAAF AUS.419328 – Pilot.
Sgt. John Miles, RAFVR 845847/ 187426 – Navigator.
F/O Leonard ‘Len’ Arthur Martin, RAFVR 153528 – Air Bomber.
Sgt. Phillip Francis Smith, RAAF AUS. 427206 – Wireless Operator .
Sgt. William John ‘Bill’ Warlow, RAFVR 1653307 – Flight Engineer.
Sgt. Dennis George Albert Bryer, RAFVR 1874880 – Mid Upper Gunner.
Sgt. John Gray, RAFVR – Rear Gunner.

Take Off 20:05 – Landed 01:55
Flight Time 05:50

29/08/1944 – Attack Against Stettin
Fourteen aircraft took off as detailed to attack Stettin and thirteen of these successfully bombed the target with the aid of markers. A good concentration of fires developed and all crews reported a successful raid. A.A. opposition was moderate and enemy fighters were active on the outward route. Three of our aircraft had combats, two being inconclusive but the third (Captain NZ428797 .P/O. J. Scott) claimed one enemy aircraft as probably destroyed. The aircraft captained by 1323677 .F/S. King, D., failed to return.

Lancaster Mk.I HK563 JN-W “The Paper Doll”

F/S Patrick Leo McCartin, RAAF AUS.419328 – Pilot.
Sgt. John Miles, RAFVR 845847/ 187426 – Navigator.
P/O Leonard ‘Len’ Arthur Martin, RAFVR 153528 – Air Bomber.
F/S Phillip Francis Smith, RAAF AUS. 427206 – Wireless Operator .
Sgt. William John ‘Bill’ Warlow, RAFVR 1653307 – Flight Engineer.
Sgt. Dennis George Albert Bryer, RAFVR 1874880 – Mid Upper Gunner.
Sgt. John Gray, RAFVR – Rear Gunner.

Take Off 21:10 – Landed 07:09
Flight Time 09:59

31/08/1944 – Attack Against Pont Reny
Eighteen aircraft took off as detailed to attack the Flying Bomb Supply Dump at Pont Reny. All were successful in bombing the target, although cloud obscured it to some extent, which caused part of the bombing to be scattered. No enemy fighters were encountered and A.A. opposition was slight, but one aircraft (Captain NZ421488 .F/O. J. Aitken) was damaged and the Air Bomber, NZ429967 .F/O. R. Mayhill received slight injuries.

Lancaster Mk.I HK601 JN-D
Hit by flak 4 times

F/S Patrick Leo McCartin, RAAF AUS.419328 – Pilot.
Sgt. John Miles, RAFVR 845847/ 187426 – Navigator.
F/O Leonard ‘Len’ Arthur Martin, RAFVR 153528 – Air Bomber.
F/S Phillip Francis Smith, RAAF AUS. 427206 – Wireless Operator .
Sgt. William John ‘Bill’ Warlow, RAFVR 1653307 – Flight Engineer.
Sgt. Dennis George Albert Bryer, RAFVR 1874880 – Mid Upper Gunner.
Sgt. John Gray, RAFVR – Rear Gunner.

Take Off 16:18 – Landed 19:47
Flight Time 03:29

03/09/1944 – Attack Against The Aerodrom At Eindhoven
Ten aircraft took off as detailed to attack the airfield at Eindhoven. All were successful in bombing visually and a good concentration of bombing was achieved. A.A. opposition was slight, but accurate, and three of our aircraft suffered minor damage. No fighter opposition was encountered.

Lancaster Mk.I LM104 JN-K
Hit by flak 18 times (AC)

F/S Patrick Leo McCartin, RAAF AUS.419328 – Pilot.
Sgt. John Miles, RAFVR 845847/ 187426 – Navigator.
F/O Leonard ‘Len’ Arthur Martin, RAFVR 153528 – Air Bomber.
F/S Phillip Francis Smith, RAAF AUS. 427206 – Wireless Operator .
Sgt. William John ‘Bill’ Warlow, RAFVR 1653307 – Flight Engineer.
Sgt. Dennis George Albert Bryer, RAFVR 1874880 – Mid Upper Gunner.
Sgt. John Gray, RAFVR – Rear Gunner.

Take Off 15:43 – Landed 19:13
Flight Time 03:30

05/09/1944 – Attack Against Le Havre
Eighteen aircraft were standing by to attack Dortmund, but this operation was postponed and twenty five aircraft took off to attack Le Havre in favourable weather. Opposition was negligible and a very successful raid was carried out, without loss. Most of the bombing was done visually. Reports indicate that the target was well saturated.

Lancaster Mk.III NE181 JN-M “The Captains Fancy”

F/S Patrick Leo McCartin, RAAF AUS.419328 – Pilot.
Sgt. John Miles, RAFVR 845847/ 187426 – Navigator.
P/O Leonard ‘Len’ Arthur Martin, RAFVR 153528 – Air Bomber.
F/S Phillip Francis Smith, RAAF AUS. 427206 – Wireless Operator .
Sgt. William John ‘Bill’ Warlow, RAFVR 1653307 – Flight Engineer.
Sgt. Dennis George Albert Bryer, RAFVR 1874880 – Mid Upper Gunner.
Sgt. John Gray, RAFVR – Rear Gunner.

Take Off 17:39 – Landed 21:18
Flight Time 03:39

08/09/1944 – Attack Against Doudenville
Twenty three aircraft took off at dawn to attack enemy defence positions at Doudeneville on the outskirts of Le Havre. Weather conditions were very unfavourable over the target and crews had great difficulty in seeing the markers. Only ten dropped their bombs before the Master Bomber gave instructions to abandon the mission. The remaining thirteen aircraft brought their bombs back to base. Considerable light A.A. fire and machine gun fire was encountered in the target area.

Lancaster Mk.III NE181 JN-M “The Captains Fancy”

F/S Patrick Leo McCartin, RAAF AUS.419328 – Pilot.
Sgt. John Miles, RAFVR 845847/ 187426 – Navigator.
F/O Leonard ‘Len’ Arthur Martin, RAFVR 153528 – Air Bomber.
F/S Phillip Francis Smith, RAAF AUS. 427206 – Wireless Operator .
Sgt. William John ‘Bill’ Warlow, RAFVR 1653307 – Flight Engineer.
Sgt. Dennis George Albert Bryer, RAFVR 1874880 – Mid Upper Gunner.
Sgt. John Gray, RAFVR – Rear Gunner.

Take Off 06:21 – Landed 10:46
Flight Time 04:25

17/09/1944 – Attack Against Emmerich
In the evening ten aircraft took off and attacked Emmerich. All of these dropped their bombs as ordered. Much accurate Light A A Fire was encountered. All aircraft returned safely to Base.

Lancaster Mk.I HK601 JN-D

F/S Patrick Leo McCartin, RAAF AUS.419328 – Pilot.
Sgt. John Miles, RAFVR 845847/ 187426 – Navigator.
F/O Leonard ‘Len’ Arthur Martin, RAFVR 153528 – Air Bomber.
F/S Phillip Francis Smith, RAAF AUS. 427206 – Wireless Operator .
Sgt. William John ‘Bill’ Warlow, RAFVR 1653307 – Flight Engineer.
Sgt. Dennis George Albert Bryer, RAFVR 1874880 – Mid Upper Gunner.
Sgt. John Gray, RAFVR – Rear Gunner.

Take Off 19:37 – Landed 22:46
Flight Time 03:09

26/09/1944 – Attack Against Cap Gris Nez
Eighteen aircraft took off as detailed to attack a defended locality near Cap Gris Nez. They all attacked the target from a low level and an accurate and concentrated raid was reported. Opposition was negligible.

Lancaster Mk.I NF981 JN-Y

F/S Patrick Leo McCartin, RAAF AUS.419328 – Pilot.
Sgt. John Miles, RAFVR 845847/ 187426 – Navigator.
F/O Leonard ‘Len’ Arthur Martin, RAFVR 153528 – Air Bomber.
F/S Phillip Francis Smith, RAAF AUS. 427206 – Wireless Operator .
Sgt. William John ‘Bill’ Warlow, RAFVR 1653307 – Flight Engineer.
Sgt. Dennis George Albert Bryer, RAFVR 1874880 – Mid Upper Gunner.
Sgt. John Gray, RAFVR – Rear Gunner.

Take Off 11:49 – Landed 14:10
Flight Time 02:21

05/10/1944 – Attack Against Saarbrucken
Thirty one aircraft took off as detailed to attack the railway centre at Saarbrucken. They all reached the target area but only fourteen bombed before the Master Bomber issued instructions to abandon the mission. Bombing appeared scattered, and the raid was unsatisfactory. The aircraft captained by NZ 427481 F/Sgt Galletly, A. failed to return.

Lancaster Mk.I LM104 JN-Z

F/S Patrick Leo McCartin, RAAF AUS.419328 – Pilot.
Sgt. John Miles, RAFVR 845847/ 187426 – Navigator.
F/O Leonard ‘Len’ Arthur Martin, RAFVR 153528 – Air Bomber.
F/S Phillip Francis Smith, RAAF AUS. 427206 – Wireless Operator .
Sgt. William John ‘Bill’ Warlow, RAFVR 1653307 – Flight Engineer.
Sgt. Dennis George Albert Bryer, RAFVR 1874880 – Mid Upper Gunner.
Sgt. John Gray, RAFVR – Rear Gunner.

Take Off 17:37 – Landed 23:40
Flight Time 06:03

07/10/1944 – Attack Against Emmerich
Twenty six aircraft took off as detailed to attack Emmerich in support of the advancing Allied armies. They all bombed the target successfully and a concentrated and accurate raid was reported, the target area being entirely covered with smoke. Moderate heavy A A fire was encountered and a few of our aircraft suffered minor damage.

Lancaster Mk.I NF980 JN-K

F/S Patrick Leo McCartin, RAAF AUS.419328 – Pilot.
Sgt. John Miles, RAFVR 845847/ 187426 – Navigator.
F/O Leonard ‘Len’ Arthur Martin, RAFVR 153528 – Air Bomber.
F/S Phillip Francis Smith, RAAF AUS. 427206 – Wireless Operator .
Sgt. William John ‘Bill’ Warlow, RAFVR 1653307 – Flight Engineer.
Sgt. Dennis George Albert Bryer, RAFVR 1874880 – Mid Upper Gunner.
Sgt. John Gray, RAFVR – Rear Gunner.

Take Off 12:21 – Landed 16:12
Flight Time 03:51

14/10/1944 – Attack Against Duisburg
Thirty one aircraft took off at dawn to attack Duisburg. Except for one aircraft which returned early, they all dropped their bombs in the built up areas of the town, which was identified visually and with the aid of markers. A moderate heavy A A barrage was encountered from the target area and a few of our aircraft suffered minor damage. One aircraft was damaged in the bomb bay which necessitated it landing at Woodbridge on return

Lancaster Mk.III ND911 JN-V
Hit by flak 3 times (AC)
F/S Patrick Leo McCartin, RAAF AUS.419328 – Pilot.
Sgt. John Miles, RAFVR 845847/ 187426 – Navigator.
F/O Leonard ‘Len’ Arthur Martin, RAFVR 153528 – Air Bomber.
F/S Phillip Francis Smith, RAAF AUS. 427206 – Wireless Operator .
Sgt. William John ‘Bill’ Warlow, RAFVR 1653307 – Flight Engineer.
Sgt. Dennis George Albert Bryer, RAFVR 1874880 – Mid Upper Gunner.
Sgt. John Gray, RAFVR – Rear Gunner.

Take Off 06:56 – Landed 11:18
Flight Time 04:22

14/10/1944 – Attack Against Duisburg(2)
Twenty nine aircraft were detailed to make a further attack on Duisburg, unfortunately, however, three aircraft had to be withdrawn. One aircraft returned early owing to the rear turret being unserviceable. The remaining twenty five aircraft took part in a very successful attack in excellent visibility and large fires were seen to break out and add to those already burning from the morning attack. AA opposition was negligible and searchlight did not operate until late in the raid. One aircraft had an inconclusive combat with an enemy fighter.

Lancaster Mk.I HK563 JN-W “The Paper Doll”

F/S Patrick Leo McCartin, RAAF AUS.419328 – Pilot.
Sgt. John Miles, RAFVR 845847/ 187426 – Navigator.
F/O Leonard ‘Len’ Arthur Martin, RAFVR 153528 – Air Bomber.
F/S Phillip Francis Smith, RAAF AUS. 427206 – Wireless Operator .
Sgt. William John ‘Bill’ Warlow, RAFVR 1653307 – Flight Engineer.
Sgt. Dennis George Albert Bryer, RAFVR 1874880 – Mid Upper Gunner.
Sgt. John Gray, RAFVR – Rear Gunner.

Take Off 22:43 – Landed 03:34
Flight Time 04:51

19/10/1944 – Attack Against Stuttgart
Twenty eight aircraft were detailed to attack Stuttgart. The attack was in two waves. Thirteen aircraft took part in the first wave and successfully dropped their bombs with the aid of markers and flares, in weather conditions of 9/10ths cloud. A.A. opposition was moderate and a few enemy aircraft were active. Fifteen aircraft took part in the second wave five hours later and they all dropped their bombs with the aid of flares through ten tenths cloud. The glow of fires seen, indicated that the fires were concentrated around the aiming point. A A opposition was less than that encountered during the first wave, but more enemy fighters were active. Four of our aircraft had inconclusive combats.

Lancaster Mk.III ND917 JN-O

F/S Patrick Leo McCartin, RAAF AUS.419328 – Pilot.
Sgt. John Miles, RAFVR 845847/ 187426 – Navigator.
F/O Leonard ‘Len’ Arthur Martin, RAFVR 153528 – Air Bomber.
F/S Phillip Francis Smith, RAAF AUS. 427206 – Wireless Operator .
Sgt. William John ‘Bill’ Warlow, RAFVR 1653307 – Flight Engineer.
Sgt. Dennis George Albert Bryer, RAFVR 1874880 – Mid Upper Gunner.
Sgt. John Gray, RAFVR – Rear Gunner.

Take Off 17:40 – Landed 23:49
Flight Time 06:09

21/10/1944 – Attack Against Flushing
Twenty five aircraft took off to attack Flushing. All crews were able to identify the target visually and bombing was reported as being very accurate. A.A. opposition was moderate. One aircraft (Captain 176437 F/O J. Johnson) failed to return, but was seen to be shot down over the target by heavy A A fire.

Lancaster Mk.I HK600 JN-V

F/S Patrick Leo McCartin, RAAF AUS.419328 – Pilot.
Sgt. John Miles, RAFVR 845847/ 187426 – Navigator.
F/O Leonard ‘Len’ Arthur Martin, RAFVR 153528 – Air Bomber.
F/S Phillip Francis Smith, RAAF AUS. 427206 – Wireless Operator .
Sgt. William John ‘Bill’ Warlow, RAFVR 1653307 – Flight Engineer.
Sgt. Dennis George Albert Bryer, RAFVR 1874880 – Mid Upper Gunner.
Sgt. John Gray, RAFVR – Rear Gunner.

Take Off 11:15 – Landed 14:07
Flight Time 02:52

23/10/1944 – Attack Against Essen
Twenty seven aircraft took off as detailed to attack Essen. Ten tenths cloud prevailed over the target but all aircraft were successful in attacking with the aid of marker flares. A A opposition was moderate but no enemy fighters were seen.

Lancaster Mk.I HK600 JN-V

F/S Patrick Leo McCartin, RAAF AUS.419328 – Pilot.
Sgt. John Miles, RAFVR 845847/ 187426 – Navigator.
F/O Leonard ‘Len’ Arthur Martin, RAFVR 153528 – Air Bomber.
F/S Phillip Francis Smith, RAAF AUS. 427206 – Wireless Operator .
Sgt. Charles Ronald Starkey, RAFVR 1863956 – Flight Engineer.
Sgt. Dennis George Albert Bryer, RAFVR 1874880 – Mid Upper Gunner.
Sgt. John Gray, RAFVR – Rear Gunner.

Take Off 16:54 – Landed 22:53
Flight Time 05:59

25/10/1944 – Attack Against Essen
Twenty six aircraft took off as detailed to attack Essen. Twenty three of these attacked the target and bombing was good, built up areas and factories being identified visually. One aircraft brought its bombs back owing to the failure of the bombing equipment when over the target and two other aircraft returned early owing to technical failures.

Lancaster Mk.I HK600 JN-V

F/S Patrick Leo McCartin, RAAF AUS.419328 – Pilot.
Sgt. John Miles, RAFVR 845847/ 187426 – Navigator.
F/O Leonard ‘Len’ Arthur Martin, RAFVR 153528 – Air Bomber.
F/S Phillip Francis Smith, RAAF AUS. 427206 – Wireless Operator .
Sgt. William John ‘Bill’ Warlow, RAFVR 1653307 – Flight Engineer.
Sgt. Dennis George Albert Bryer, RAFVR 1874880 – Mid Upper Gunner.
Sgt. John Gray, RAFVR – Rear Gunner.

Take Off 13:22 – Landed 17:18
Flight Time 03:56

04/11/1944 – Attack Against Solingen
Twenty one aircraft took off to attack Solingen in daylight, carrying 8,000 lb, 4,000 lb, 1,000 lb, 500 lb, 4 lb incendiaries and No.17 Clusters. All crews dropped their bombs in the target area, but the raid appeared to be scattered. Flak opposition was moderate. One aircraft captained by NZ428797 F/O J. Scott, failed to return.

Lancaster Mk.I HK600 JN-K?
Preceeding Designator letters are V, however this suggest change to K – which makes sense relative to next 5 Ops in ND911 as V. On the 30th September the McCartin crew fly 2 Fighter Affiliations in HK600 – listed as AA-T.

P/O Patrick Leo McCartin, RAAF AUS.419328 – Pilot.
Sgt. John Miles, RAFVR 845847/ 187426 – Navigator.
P/O Leonard ‘Len’ Arthur Martin, RAFVR 153528 – Air Bomber.
F/S Phillip Francis Smith, RAAF AUS. 427206 – Wireless Operator .
Sgt. William John Warlow, RAFVR 1653307 – Flight Engineer.
Sgt. Dennis George Albert Bryer, RAFVR 1874880 – Mid Upper Gunner.
Sgt. John Gray, RAFVR – Rear Gunner.

Take Off 11:34 – Landed 15:59
Flight Time 04:25

05/11/1944 – Attack Against Solingen
Eighteen aircraft detailed to make a second attack in daylight on Solingen carrying 8,000 lb, 4,000 lb, 1,000 lb, 500 lb, 4 lb inc. No.17 Clusters. All crews were successful in bombing in formation and reports indicate that bombing was more concentrated than in the previous raid.

Lancaster Mk.III ND911 JN-V

F/S Patrick Leo McCartin, RAAF AUS.419328 – Pilot.
Sgt. John Miles, RAFVR 845847/ 187426 – Navigator.
F/O Leonard ‘Len’ Arthur Martin, RAFVR 153528 – Air Bomber.
F/S Phillip Francis Smith, RAAF AUS. 427206 – Wireless Operator .
Sgt. William John Warlow, RAFVR 1653307 – Flight Engineer.
Sgt. Dennis George Albert Bryer, RAFVR 1874880 – Mid Upper Gunner.
Sgt. John Gray, RAFVR – Rear Gunner.

Take Off 10:16 – Landed 15:17
Flight Time 05:01

06/10/1944 – Attack Against Coblenz
Sixteen aircraft were detailed for a night attack against Coblenz carrying 8,000 lb; 4,000 lb; No.14 clusters; No.17 clusters; 4lb inc. Fifteen aircraft were successful. The aircraft captained by F/O T. Winter (152351) returned early on account of engine trouble. Crews were able to identify the target visually in clear weather and a good concentrated raid developed, with smoke rising to 10,000 feet. NZ421919 F/O Kilpatrick, M had a short inconclusive encounter with a JU.88. Flak was moderate to slight.

Lancaster Mk.III ND911 JN-V

P/O Patrick Leo McCartin, RAAF AUS.419328 – Pilot.
Sgt. John Miles, RAFVR 845847/ 187426 – Navigator.
F/O Leonard ‘Len’ Arthur Martin, RAFVR 153528 – Air Bomber.
F/S Phillip Francis Smith, RAAF AUS. 427206 – Wireless Operator .
Sgt. William John Warlow, RAFVR 1653307 – Flight Engineer.
Sgt. Dennis George Albert Bryer, RAFVR 1874880 – Mid Upper Gunner.
Sgt. John Gray, RAFVR – Rear Gunner.

Take Off 17:02 – Landed 21:59
Flight Time 04:57

15/11/1944 – Attack Against Dortmund
Twenty five aircraft were detailed for an attack an the Soest Marshalling Yards, but this operation was cancelled and the same aircraft took off to attack an Oil Refinery at Dortmund in daylight, carrying 4,000 lbs and 500 lbs bombs. All aircraft were successful in bombing in formation through ten tenths cloud with tops 10,000 ft. and a concentrated raid was reported. Flak was reported as being fairly accurate by the leading aircraft, but none of our aircraft were hit.

Lancaster Mk.III ND911 JN-V

F/O Patrick Leo McCartin, RAAF AUS.419328 – Pilot.
Sgt. John Miles, RAFVR 845847/ 187426 – Navigator.
P/O Leonard ‘Len’ Arthur Martin, RAFVR 153528 – Air Bomber.
F/S Phillip Francis Smith, RAAF AUS. 427206 – Wireless Operator .
Sgt. William John Warlow, RAFVR 1653307 – Flight Engineer.
Sgt. Dennis George Albert Bryer, RAFVR 1874880 – Mid Upper Gunner.
Sgt. John Gray, RAFVR – Rear Gunner.

Take Off 12:34 – Landed 17:36
Flight Time 05:02

16/11/1944 – Attack Against Heinsberg
Twenty five aircraft were detailed to attack an Oil Refinery target at Sterkrade but this operation was cancelled, and the 25 aircraft later took off to attack Heinsberg in support of the advancing American Army, carrying 8,000 lb, 4,000 lb, 1,000 lb and 500 lb bombs. All crews were successful in bombing the town which was identified visually. On leaving, the whole town appeared to be covered in a thick pall of smoke. Flak was fairly intense but only two of our aircraft received minor damage.

Lancaster Mk.III ND911 JN-V

F/O Patrick Leo McCartin, RAAF AUS.419328 – Pilot.
Sgt. John Miles, RAFVR 845847/ 187426 – Navigator.
F/O Leonard ‘Len’ Arthur Martin, RAFVR 153528 – Air Bomber.
F/S Phillip Francis Smith, RAAF AUS. 427206 – Wireless Operator .
Sgt. William John Warlow, RAFVR 1653307 – Flight Engineer.
Sgt. Dennis George Albert Bryer, RAFVR 1874880 – Mid Upper Gunner.
Sgt. John Gray, RAFVR – Rear Gunner.

Take Off 13:37 – Landed 16:50
Flight Time 03:13

20/11/1944 – Attack Against Homberg
Twenty eight aircraft took off to attack the Oil Refinery Plant at Homberg. Twenty two aircraft in daylight attacked the target in ten tenths cloud with tops at 23,000 ft. which made formation flying very difficult. They carried 4,000 lb and 500 lb bombs. Results of bombing could not be observed, but it is considered that the raid was unsatisfactory. One aircraft AA/J returned early owing to icing trouble and two aircraft bombed last resort targets at Duisburg and Hamborn. Three aircraft failed to return. These were captained by 185116 F/O R. Gordon, AUS419328 F/O P. McCartin and 152402 F/O H. Rees.

Lancaster Mk.III ND911 JN-V

F/O Patrick Leo McCartin, RAAF AUS.419328 – Pilot.
Sgt. John Miles, RAFVR 845847/ 187426 – Navigator.
F/O Leonard ‘Len’ Arthur Martin, RAFVR 153528 – Air Bomber.
F/S Phillip Francis Smith, RAAF AUS. 427206 – Wireless Operator .
Sgt. William John Warlow, RAFVR 1653307 – Flight Engineer.
Sgt. Dennis George Albert Bryer, RAFVR 1874880 – Mid Upper Gunner.
Sgt. John Gray, RAFVR – Rear Gunner.

Take Off 12:43 – Landed Missing
Flight Time – Missing

Lancaster ND911 took off from Mepal, Cambridgeshire at 12:47 hrs, as part of 3 Group with a force of 183 Lancaster’s, to bomb Homberg (Oil Refinery Plant).   Weather was stormy and many of the bomber stream were not able to maintain formation with the G-H (Radar aided aircraft) on the bombing run and the bombing was believed to have been scattered.   The force met little resistance from Luftwaffe fighters, but suffered very heavy flak.

 On the bomb run at about 15:00 hrs, the pilot was forced to lose height as the starboard outer engine failed and he decided to feather it.   The aircraft was forced to leave the formation, however at 15:15 hrs they bombed the target.   At 15:17 hrs they then received a direct hit in the port wing area from flak and is thought that the fuel tanks exploded.   The Lancaster broke up in mid-air and a very violent spin developed.   Flt Sgt Gray, the rear gunner, was knocked unconscious. When he came to the entire tail unit had broken away during the mid-air explosion and he was able to rotate the turret to enable him to bail out at 10,000 ft.   He stated that he saw no other parachutes during his descent. During his parachute drop at around 2,000 ft. he was shot at by German ground troops but was not hit.

Recent information (Oct 2015) has come to light that in fact the aircraft might have in fact been hit form falling debris from the Gordon crew/ PB689 AA-X. This is only postulation but is based on discussions between the Grandson of Mick Weston, F/E with the Gordon crew and John Gray. John felt that it was not implausible, having learned that both aircraft crashed in the same spot, that what he initially took for flak might have indeed been the other aircraft. He recalled that there was no warning, simply a sudden and massive jolt. This might also explain the separation of the tail unit from the rest of the aircraft.

On landing he was captured and taken to the flak battery H.Q. near Orsna. (During this time, pieces of the aircraft were still falling giving him a strong indication that the aircraft did in fact explode in the air).   Later that night he was treated by a German doctor who informed him that two bodies had already been found in the wreckage and that he would be required to identify them the next day.

The following day he was then taken to a Night Fighter base also in Orsna (without seeing the bodies) and was kept there for 3 days. No other members of the crew arrived.   He was finally taken to Frankfurt-On-Main for final interrogation.   He was told again that two of the crew were found dead but that the other four were still at large. He was kept there for five days and then moved to a transit camp.

F/O Patrick Leo Mccartin, RAAF AUS.419328 – Pilot.
Killed age 28.
Son of Michael Albert James McCartin and Anastatia Clare McCartin, of Brunswick, Victoria, Australia.
Buried Reichswald Forest War Cemetery, Germany.
Grave location – 25. G. 4.
‘Born at Geelong,
Victoria December 7th 1916.
Requiescent in peace’

P/O John Miles, RAFVR 187426 – Navigator.
Killed age 35.
Son of William and Elizabeth Miles; Husband of Olive Manwell Miles, of Buckhurst Hill, Essex.
Buried Rheinberg War Cemetery, Germany.
Grave location – Coll. grave 7. B. 5-7.

F/O Leonard Arthur Martin, RAFVR 153528 – Air Bomber.
Killed age 31.
Buried Reichswald Forest War Cemetery, Germany.
Grave location – 25. G. 10.

F/S Phillip Francis Smith, RAAF AUS.427206 – Wireless Operator.
Killed age 20.
Son of Arthur Joseph and Ireen Elizabeth Smith, of Maylands, Western Australia.
Buried Rheinberg War Cemetery, Germany.
Grave location – Coll. grave 7. B. 5-7.

Sgt. William John Warlow, RAFVR 1653307 – Flight Engineer.
Killed age 30.
Son of William Charles and Elizabeth Warlow, of Llanelly, Carmarthenshire.
Buried Rheinberg War Cemetery, Germany..
Grave location – Coll. grave 7. B. 5-7.
‘Peace, perfect peace’

Sgt. Dennis George Albert Bryer, RAFVR 1874880 – Mid Upper Gunner.
Killed age 19.
Son of Albert Edward Bryer, and of Dorothy Beatrice Bryer, of Grays, Essex.
Buried Rheinberg War Cemetery, Germany.
Grave location – Coll. grave 7. B. 5-7.
‘As long as life
And memory last
We will remember thee’

Sgt. John Gray, RAFVR  – Rear Gunner.
P.o.W
Prisoner of War Number: 1241
Prison Camps: Dulag Luft, Stalag Luft VII
Date of return to United Kingdom: not known

 

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