J.A. McConnell crew 30.09.42 †

05/10/1942 – Operations. Attack Against Targets At Aachen
Fifteen aircraft were detailed to attack the above target. Bomb load of 30lb. and 4lb. incendiaries were dropped in the target area, large fires were seen in built up area, which appeared to spread between MAASTRICH and AACHEN. Heavy and Light A.A. fire was moderate, with a few scattered searchlights. A few enemy aircraft were seen but no attacks were made. The weather over target was good with slight ground haze. Navigation was by D.R. T.R. and visual.

Wellington Mk.III X.3747 AA-?

P/O Gerald Howard Jacobson, RNZAF NZ41333 – Pilot.
Sgt. James Allison McConnell, RNZAF NZ414646 – 2nd Pilot.
Sgt. Selwyn Clarence Smith, RNZAF NZ41952 – Observer.
Sgt. Douglas Noel Tonkin , RNZAF NZ413285 – Wireless Operator.
Sgt. Arthur Quinn, RCAF 1095594 – Front Gunner.
Sgt. Vallance Albert Oliver Dimock , RNZAF NZ412317 – Rear Gunner.

Take Off 19:20 – Landed 01:40
Flight Time 06:20

30/09/1942 – Operations. Gardening off Terschelling
Four aircraft were detailed to carry out the above operation, 1500lb vegetables were successfully planted. A convoy was seen at the garden which was machine gunned. Light A.A. fire was encountered, no enemy aircraft were seen. The weather was fine with patches of thick haze. Navigation was good.

Wellington Mk.III X.3747 AA-?

Sgt. James Allison McConnell, RNZAF NZ414646 – Pilot.
Sgt. Selwyn Clarence Smith, RNZAF NZ41952 – Navigator.
Sgt. Douglas Noel Tonkin , RNZAF NZ413285 – Wireless Operator .
Sgt. Arthur Quinn , RAFVR 1095594 – Front Gunner .
Sgt. Vallance Albert Oliver Dimock , RNZAF NZ412317 – Rear Gunner.

Take Off 19:35 – Landed 23:10
Flight Time 03:35

06/10/1942 – Operations. Attack Against Targets At Osnabruck
Fourteen aircraft were detailed to attack the above target. Bomb load of 4,000 lb. and incendiaries were dropped in the target area. Scattered fires were seen, flares were lighting up the whole area. Considerable light and heavy A.A. fire was encountered. Searchlights were numerous and operating mainly in cones. The weather was good with low cloud and slight haze at target area. Navigation was good by D.R. , T.R. visual, pinpoints, loop and fixes. Wellington DF639 captained by Sgt. Rhodes G.W. failed to return.

Wellington Mk.III X.3747 AA-?

Sgt. James Allison McConnell, RNZAF NZ414646 – Pilot.
Sgt. Selwyn Clarence Smith, RNZAF NZ41952 – Navigator.
Sgt. Douglas Noel Tonkin , RNZAF NZ413285 – Wireless Operator .
Sgt. Arthur Quinn , RAFVR 1095594 – Front Gunner .
Sgt. Vallance Albert Oliver Dimock , RNZAF NZ412317 – Rear Gunner.

Take Off 19:05 – Landed 00:45
Flight Time 05:40

08/10/1942 – Operations. Gardening off Ile De Groix
Two aircraft were detailed to carry out the above operation. 1500lb. mines were successfully planted in the allotted area by one of our aircraft – the other aircraft returned early owing to failure of electrical equipment. No A.A. fire, searchlights or enemy aircraft were seen. The weather was fine, navigation was good.

Wellington Mk.III X.3747 RE AA-?

Sgt. James Allison McConnell, RNZAF NZ414646 – Pilot.
Sgt. Selwyn Clarence Smith, RNZAF NZ41952 – Navigator.
Sgt. Douglas Noel Tonkin , RNZAF NZ413285 – Wireless Operator .
Sgt. Arthur Quinn , RNZAF 1095594 – Front Gunner .
Sgt. Vallance Albert Oliver Dimock , RNZAF NZ412317 – Rear Gunner.

Take Off 18:50 – Landed 20:05
Flight Time 01:15

Aircraft returned early owing to failure of electrical equipment
09/10/1942 – Operations. Gardening off East Frisian Islands
Seven aircraft were detailed to carry out the above operation. 1500lb. vegetables were planted in the allotted area. No A.A. fire was encountered, one searchlight was seen to be sweeping the sea in the area. 10/10th. Cloud was over the allotted area, visibility was poor. Navigation was by D.R., T.R. loops, fixes and map reading.

Wellington Mk.III X.3747 AA-?

Sgt. James Allison McConnell, RNZAF NZ414646 – Pilot.
Sgt. Selwyn Clarence Smith, RNZAF NZ41952 – Navigator.
Sgt. Douglas Noel Tonkin , RNZAF NZ413285 – Wireless Operator .
Sgt. Arthur Quinn , RNZAF 1095594 – Front Gunner .
Sgt. Vallance Albert Oliver Dimock , RNZAF NZ412317 – Rear Gunner.

Take Off 18:05 – Landed 22:30
Flight Time 04:25

13/10/1942 – Operations. Attack Against Targets At Kiel
Thirteen aircraft were detailed to attack the above target. Bomb load of 4,000 lb and incendiaries were dropped in the target area. Large fires were seen particularly on West side of Fiord. Light, medium and heavy A.A. fire was encountered over a large area, searchlights were also seen on the way to the target. No enemy aircraft were seen. The weather was clear, with no cloud over the target, visibility was good by the light of flares. Navigation was D.R, T.R. visual and pin-points. Wellington X3954 captained by Sergt. Watters failed to return. Wellington BJ837 captained by Sergt. Davey crashed at R.A.F. Station Lakenheath on return owing to shortage of petrol, four of the crew were injured. All taking part considered this to be a very successful raid.

Wellington Mk.III BK.725 AA-?

Sgt. James Allison McConnell, RNZAF NZ414646 – Pilot.
Sgt. Selwyn Clarence Smith, RNZAF NZ41952 – Navigator.
Sgt. Douglas Noel Tonkin , RNZAF NZ413285 – Wireless Operator .
Sgt. Arthur Quinn , RAFVR 1095594 – Front Gunner .
Sgt. Vallance Albert Oliver Dimock , RNZAF NZ412317 – Rear Gunner.

Take Off 18:20 – Landed 01:00
Flight Time 06:40

15/10/1942 – Activities of “A” Flight at Mildenhall. Operations. Attacks Against Targets at Cologne
Seven aircraft were detailed to attack the above target. Bomb loads of 4lb. incendiaries were dropped in the target area. Large files were seen, which clearly lit up the town on both sides of the river. Several dummy fires were seen, light and heavy A.A. fire was encountered, searchlights were numerous but poorly predicted. A few enemy aircraft were seen, but no combats took place. There was no cloud and visibility was good, except for slight ground haze. Navigation was good.

Wellington Mk.III BK.725 AA-?

Sgt. James Allison McConnell, RNZAF NZ414646 – Pilot.
Sgt. Selwyn Clarence Smith, RNZAF NZ41952 – Navigator.
Sgt. Douglas Noel Tonkin , RNZAF NZ413285 – Wireless Operator .
Sgt. Arthur Quinn , RNZAF 1095594 – Front Gunner .
Sgt. Vallance Albert Oliver Dimock , RNZAF NZ412317 – Rear Gunner.

Take Off 19:20 – Landed 00:05
Flight Time 04:45

23/10/1942 – Operations. Attack Against Targets At Genoa
Eight aircraft were detailed to attack the above target. Bomb load of 1,000 lb. 500lb. and 250lb. and incendiaries were dropped in the target area, some aircraft claimed to have also bombed Savona. A few light A.A guns and one or two searchlights were encountered. No combats took place. The cloud base at target was down to 3 to 4,000 feet. The aircraft came below this cloud to bomb. Navigation was good by D.R., T.R., loops and fixes.

Wellington Mk.III BK.725 AA-?

Sgt. James Allison McConnell, RNZAF NZ414646 – Pilot.
Sgt. Selwyn Clarence Smith, RNZAF NZ41952 – Navigator.
Sgt. Douglas Noel Tonkin , RNZAF NZ413285 – Wireless Operator .
Sgt. Arthur Quinn , RNZAF 1095594 – Front Gunner .
Sgt. Vallance Albert Oliver Dimock , RNZAF NZ412317 – Rear Gunner.

Take Off 18:15 – Landed 03:25
Flight Time 09:10

24/10/1942 – Operations. Attack Against Targets At Milan
Five aircraft were detailed to attack the above target. Bomb load of 1,000lb. 500lb. 250lb and incendiaries were dropped in the target area. Some slight A.A. fire was encountered, cloud stopped searchlight activity. No combats with enemy aircraft took place. 10/10ths cloud from the French Coast to the target made identification of the target difficult. Navigation was difficult owing to cloud preventing the use of Astro. Wellington Z1652 captained by Sergt. Hugill and Wellington BK725 captained by Sergt. McConnell failed to return.

Wellington Mk.III BK.725 AA-?

Sgt. James Allison McConnell, RNZAF NZ414646 – Pilot.
Sgt. Selwyn Clarence Smith, RNZAF NZ41952 – Navigator.
Sgt. Douglas Noel Tonkin , RNZAF NZ413285 – Wireless Operator .
Sgt. Arthur Quinn , RNZAF 1095594 – Front Gunner .
Sgt. Vallance Albert Oliver Dimock , RNZAF NZ412317 – Rear Gunner.

Take Off – – Landed –
Flight Time – Missing

Wellington Mk.III BK.725 was brought down by enemy action over France, crashing near Valencienns, 25 miles North East of Cambrai. All five crew were killed. They were buried at Valenciennes.

Sgt. James Allison Mcconnell, RNZAF NZ414646 – Pilot.
Killed age 21.
Son of James Allison Mcconnell and Jessie Campbell Mcconnell, of Dunedin, Otago, New Zealand.
Buried Valenciennes (St Roch) Communal Cemetery, France..
Grave location – Plot 4. Row A. Coll. Grave 15.

Sgt. Selwyn Clarence Smith, RNZAF NZ41952 – Observer.
Killed age 29.
Son of E. T. and Sarah Elizabeth Smith, of Winton, Southland, New Zealand.
Buried Valenciennes (St Roch) Communal Cemetery, France..
Grave location – Plot 4. Row A. Coll. Grave 15.

Sgt. Douglas Noel Tonkin, RNZAF NZ413285 – Front Gunner.
Killed age 22.
Son of Daniel and Annie Frances Tonkin, of Hastings, Hawke’S Bay, New Zealand.
Buried Valenciennes (St Roch) Communal Cemetery, France..
Grave location – Plot 4. Row A. Joint grave 16.

Sgt. Arthur Quinn, RAFVR 1095594 – Wireless Operator.
Killed age 21.
Son of Arthur and Margaret Quinn, of Seaham, Co. Durham.
Buried Valenciennes (St Roch) Communal Cemetery, France..
Grave location – Plot 4. Row A. Coll. Grave 15.
‘He giveth
His beloved sleep
At rest’

Sgt. Vallance Albert Oliver Dimock, RNZAF NZ412317 – Rear Gunner.
Killed age 22.
Son of Albert William and Rosy Dimock, of Wellington City New Zealand.
Buried Valenciennes (St Roch) Communal Cemetery, France..
Grave location – Plot 4. Row A. Joint grave 16.