D.A.S. King crew 11.8.44 †

09/08/1944 – Attack Against Fort D’Anglos
Seventeen aircraft took off as detailed to attack the Army Fuel Depot at Fort D’Anglos. All were successful in bombing with the aid of markers. The raid appeared to be scattered but there was indication of a large conflagration. Opposition from A.A. fire was very slight and no enemy fighters were seen.

Lancaster Mk.III ND904 AA-B “Target for Tomorrow Night”

F/O Gordon Lindsay Kennedy, RNZAF NZ411411 – Pilot.
F/S Douglas Arthur Severn King, RAFVR 1323677/ 183954) – 2nd Pilot.
F/S Thomas Patrick Monaghan, RNZAF NZ428976 – Navigator.
F/O Ian Douglas Ward, RNZAF NZ429226 – Air Bomber.
Sgt. Alan ‘Tex’ Teverson, RAFVR – Wireless Operator .
Sgt. Adam ‘Scotty’ Scott, RAFVR – Flight Engineer.
Sgt. Alfred ‘Alfie’ Williams, RAFVR – Mid Upper Gunner.
F/S David Rayner Fox, RNZAF NZ426065 – Rear Gunner.

Take Off 22:10 – Landed 00:45
Flight Time 02:35

11/08/1944 – Attack Against Lens
Twenty two aircraft set out as detailed to attack the Marshalling Yard at Lens. All aircraft attacked in good weather and an accurate and concentrated raid resulted. No opposition was encountered.

Lancaster Mk.I HK573 AA-H

F/S Douglas Arthur Severn King, RAFVR 1323677/ 183954 – Pilot.
F/S Walter Davis Watson, RNZAF NZ428918 – Navigator.
Sgt. John Fitzgerald, RNZAF NZ424777 – Air Bomber.
Sgt. Charles Burton Hill, RAFVR 1372387 – Wireless Operator .
Sgt. John Patrick Callan, RAFVR 1777282 – Flight Engineer.
Sgt. Derrick Leonard Desmond Moon, RAFVR 1626105 – Mid Upper Gunner.
Sgt. Herbert William Causley, RAFVR 1199994 – Rear Gunner.

Take Off 14:15 – Landed 17:50
Flight Time 03:35

12/08/1944 – Attack Against Russelsheim
Ten aircraft set out to attack Factories at Russelsheim which are engaged in Flying Bomb production. Nine aircraft bombed the target with the aid of markers and good results were reported. A.A. defences were light, but enemy fighters were active on the homeward route, one aircraft having an inconclusive combat with a JU 88. The aircraft captained by NZ428793 .F/S. Mulcahy, C., failed to return.

Lancaster Mk.I HK573 AA-H

F/S Douglas Arthur Severn King, RAFVR 1323677/ 183954 – Pilot.
F/S Walter Davis Watson, RNZAF NZ428918 – Navigator.
F/S John Fitzgerald, RNZAF NZ424777 – Air Bomber.
Sgt. Charles Burton Hill, RAFVR 1372387 – Wireless Operator .
Sgt. John Patrick Callan, RAFVR 1777282 – Flight Engineer.
Sgt. Derrick Leonard Desmond Moon, RAFVR 1626105 – Mid Upper Gunner.
Sgt. Herbert William Causley, RAFVR 1199994 – Rear Gunner.

Take Off 21:50 – Landed 02:45
Flight Time 04:55

15/08/1944 – Attack Against The Aerodrome at St. Trond
Nineteen aircraft took off as detailed to attack the Aerodrome at St. Trond. All aircraft made a successful attack and bombing results were confirmed visually, the bomb bursts being well concentrated on the runways. Opposition was almost negligible both over the target and en route.

Lancaster Mk.III PB132 AA-Y

F/S Douglas Arthur Severn King, RAFVR 1323677/ 183954 – Pilot.
F/S Walter Davis Watson, RNZAF NZ428918 – Navigator.
Sgt. John Fitzgerald, RNZAF NZ424777 – Air Bomber.
Sgt. Charles Burton Hill, RAFVR 1372387 – Wireless Operator .
Sgt. John Patrick Callan, RAFVR 1777282 – Flight Engineer.
Sgt. Derrick Leonard Desmond Moon, RAFVR 1626105 – Mid Upper Gunner.
Sgt. Herbert William Causley, RAFVR 1199994 – Rear Gunner.

Take Off 10:00 – Landed 13:40
Flight Time 03:40

25/08/1944 – Attack Against Russelsheim
Twenty eight aircraft took off as detailed to attack Russelsheim. Of these twenty five attacked the primary target and reported a good concentrated raid. A.A. opposition was slight, but enemy aircraft were active and one of our aircraft had two inconclusive combats. Another was unable to identify the target and jettisoned its load. A further one was caught in searchlights over the target and during evasive action lost both ailerons. This aircraft was captained by NZ424504 .F/S. O’Callaghan, E. The navigator 958564 .F/S. Hartley, R., kept the aircraft on track on the return journey even though his instruments were unserviceable and his chart lost. Two aircraft failed to return, they were captained by NZ422382 .F/O. J. Fleming and NZ421345 .F/S. Barker, R.

Lancaster Mk.I HK600 AA-T

F/S Douglas Arthur Severn King, RAFVR 1323677/ 183954 – Pilot.
F/S Walter Davis Watson, RNZAF NZ428918 – Navigator.
F/S John Fitzgerald, RNZAF NZ424777 – Air Bomber.
Sgt. Charles Burton Hill, RAFVR 1372387 – Wireless Operator .
Sgt. John Patrick Callan, RAFVR 1777282 – Flight Engineer.
Sgt. Derrick Leonard Desmond Moon, RAFVR 1626105 – Mid Upper Gunner.
Sgt. Herbert William Causley, RAFVR 1199994 – Rear Gunner.

Take Off 20:38 – Landed 04:53
Flight Time 08:15

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.I HK600 AA-T

F/S Douglas Arthur Severn King, RAFVR 1323677/ 183954 – Pilot.
F/S Walter Davis Watson, RNZAF NZ428918 – Navigator.
F/S John Fitzgerald, RNZAF NZ424777 – Air Bomber.
Sgt. Charles Burton Hill, RAFVR 1372387 – Wireless Operator .
Sgt. John Patrick Callan, RAFVR 1777282 – Flight Engineer.
Sgt. Derrick Leonard Desmond Moon, RAFVR 1626105 – Mid Upper Gunner.
Sgt. Herbert William Causley, RAFVR 1199994 – Rear Gunner.

Take Off 20:30 – Landed 01:53
Flight Time 05:23

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 HK594 AA-G

F/S Douglas Arthur Severn King, RAFVR 1323677/ 183954 – Pilot.
F/S Walter Davis Watson, RNZAF NZ428918 – Navigator.
F/S John Fitzgerald, RNZAF NZ424777 – Air Bomber.
Sgt. Charles Burton Hill, RAFVR 1372387 – Wireless Operator .
Sgt. John Patrick Callan, RAFVR 1777282 – Flight Engineer.
Sgt. Derrick Leonard Desmond Moon, RAFVR 1626105 – Mid Upper Gunner.
Sgt. Herbert William Causley, RAFVR 1199994 – Rear Gunner.

Take Off 21:15 – Landed missing
Flight Time Missing

Lancaster Mk.I HK594 AA-G was attacked by a night-fighter at 6,500ft while flying on a South East heading over the Swedish coastline, tracking toward Stettin. Cannon shells shattered the tail and rear turret, killing the gunner instantly. The pilot ordered the crew to bale out when the aircraft became uncontrollable and five of them came down in the Baltic but failed to survive. King left the aircraft shortly after and parachuted down not far from Tollarp Village, while the Lancaster plunged into the ground near Svenskop Village, all its bombs exploding on impact causing substantial damage throughout the neighbourhood. A badly injured F/S King was interrogated by the Swedish Military and later interned at Koranas until being repatriated on 10 October 44. Two bodies from the crew were later found in the water and the rear gunner was still in the aircraft wreckage. They were buried at the Hälsingborg (Palsjo) Municipal Cemetery. The remaining crew members were never found and are commemorated on the Runnymede Memorial

F/Sgt King and his crew had managed to survive the German air defence ordeal over Denmark, Kattegat and the crossing of Swedish defences They were flying at 6500 ft on a south-easterly dog-leg over Sweden down to Bornholm, which was the turning point en-route to Stettin.
When passing over the Swedish coastline the aircraft was suddenly hit by cannon- shells. The rear gunner was probably killed outright in this attack. The damage sustained by the aircraft was so serious that the pilot gave the order to bale out. Due to the damaged tail-plane the Lancaster was difficult to control. F/Sgt King tried to turn back so that the crew would be overland and therefore had a greater chance of survival when baling out. Witnesses on the ground, including military personnel saw the bomber being attacked by a night fighter and making a wide turn inland. During this turn five of the crew and drifted down into the Baltic. F/Sgt King left the Lancaster and came down not far from Tollarp village. The Lancaster took the final plunge between two farms north of Svenskop village not more than eighty yards from the nearest house. The crash caused a large explosion as its bomb load went off, which smashed all the windows in the neighbourhood. An adjacent house had all the doors and the roof torn off. F/S King was found by the local Home Guard and he told them that the crew had comprised seven men. A search was started which went on all through the next two days. Sgt. Moon and Hill were found dead in the water outside Ahüs in the morning of Thursday the 30th. The body of Sgt. Causley was found inside the wrecked bomber. No trace of the rest of the crew has ever been found. On being questioned by a Swedish Air Force officer F/S King told the officer that the aircraft must have flown over Sweden due to a navigational error. The Swedish officer commented in his report that F/S King, judging from other remarks he made, must have known that he was crossing Sweden. King gave the officer a few details concerning the attack, he mentioned that the control surfaces in the tail had been severely damaged. This made control of the aircraft very difficult and explained the wide separation of the crew members found. Subsequently a fire had broken had broken out. The crew did not see the German night-fighter. After a couple of nights rest King was sent north by train passing the British Embassy on his way to Falun. He was interned at Korsnas where he arrived on 6th September and stayed in internment until being repatriated on 10th October.

P/O Douglas Arthur Severn King, RAFVR 1323677/ 183954 – Pilot.
Survived, interred in Sweden before being repatriated on the 10th of October 1944 .

F/S Walter Davis Watson, RNZAF NZ428918 – Navigator.
Lost without trace age 30.
Son Of Eli And Elizabeth Watson; Husband Of Isabella Muirhead Watson, Of Mornington, Dunedin, New Zealand.
Buried Runnymede Memorial, Surrey, England..
Grave location – Panel 264.

F/S John Fitzgerald, RNZAF NZ424777 – Air Bomber.
Lost without trace age 23.
Son of James and Margaret Woodburn Fitzgerald, of Port Chalmers, Otago, New Zealand.
Buried Runnymede Memorial, Surrey, England..
Grave location – Panel 264.

Sgt. Charles Burton Hill, RAFVR 1372387 – Wireless Operator.
Killed age 26.
Son of James and Annie Hill, of Coaltown of Wemyss, Fife.
Buried Helsingborg (Palsjo) Municipal Cemetery, Sweden.     .
Grave location – Coll. grave
Sec. XV. 76-80.
‘God’s greatest gift,
Rembrance’

Sgt. John Patrick Callan, RAFVR 1777282 – Flight Engineer.
Lost without trace age 22.
Son of John and Annie Callan, of Gateshead, Co. Durham.
Buried Runnymede Memorial, Surrey, England..
Grave location – Panel 226.

Sgt. Derrick Leonard Desmond Moon, RAFVR 1626105 – Mid Upper Gunner.
Killed age 21.
Son Of Leonard Pantry Moon And Edith Emily Moon, Of West Norwood, London.
Buried Helsingborg (Palsjo) Municipal Cemetery, Sweden.     .
Grave location – Coll. grave
Sec. XV. 76-80.
‘To the world, he was only one
But to us
He was all the world.
Mum, dad and Elaine’

Sgt. Herbert William Causley, RAFVR 1199994 – Rear Gunner.
Killed age 22.
Son of Bertie and Daisy Elizabeth Causley, of Hele, Torquay, Devon.
Buried Helsingborg (Palsjo) Municipal Cemetery, Sweden.     .
Grave location – Sec. XV. 20.
‘We hardly guessed
The greatness of your soul
Fearless, yet so gentle
In your ways’