J.F.K. Sandys crew 24.10.41 †

26/08/1942 – Bombing Attacks Against Cologne and Boulogne
Fourteen Wellington aircraft of this Unit were detailed to carry out the above attacks. SWU.567 failed to identify the target and bombs were jettisoned over the sea when petrol gauges had been showing zero for approximately one hour. Another aircraft, captained by Sgt Curlewis, failed to identify the target owing to 10/10 cloud and bombs were returned. All other aircraft dropped their bombs, but heavy cloud in the target area prevented observation of results. A.A. fire was moderate and predicted. Searchlights were ineffective owing to cloud. A few enemy aircraft were seen, but no attacks made

Wellington Mk.Ic W.5618 AA-F

Sgt. James Reginald Fairfax Brookes, RAF 923693/ 115176 – Pilot.
P/O John Frederick Kelly Sandys, RCAF J.4814 – 2nd Pilot.
Sgt. Norman Harrison, RAFVR 759028/ 116554 – Observer.
Sgt. Welby, RAFVR – Wireless Operator.
Sgt. Clements, RAFVR   – Front Gunner.
Sgt. Bourne, RAFVR – Rear Gunner.

Take Off 23:45 – Landed 05:50
Flight Time 06:05

29/08/1941 – Bombing Attacks Against Targets at Mannheim
Nine Wellington aircraft were detailed to carry out individual bombing attacks against the above targets. One of these aircraft, BRO.345 failed to identify the target owing to 10/10 cloud and bombs were brought back. All bombs were dropped by the remaining aircraft, but heavy cloud made observations of results difficult. A.A. fire was heavy and accurate. No enemy aircraft were seen.

Wellington Mk.Ic W.5618 AA-F

Sgt. James Reginald Fairfax Brookes, RAF 923693/ 115176 – Pilot.
P/O John Frederick Kelly Sandys, RCAF J.4814 – 2nd Pilot.
Sgt. Norman Harrison, RAFVR 759028/ 116554 – Observer.
Sgt. Welby, RAFVR – Wireless Operator.
Sgt. Clements, RAFVR   – Front Gunner.
Sgt. Bourne, RAFVR – Rear Gunner.

Take Off 22:10 – Landed 04:25
Flight Time 06:15

02/09/1941 – Bombing Attacks Against Targets at Frankfurt
Ten Wellington Aircraft of this Unit were detailed to carry out the above attacks. One of these aircraft, GYM.475 failed to reach the target owing to failure of the rear gunners oxygen  supply. Bombs were dropped by the remaining aircraft, and large fires were started. A.A. fire was slight but accurate in target area. Several cones of searchlights were reported near the target but these were not very accurate. Three enemy aircraft were seen, but no attacks  developed. The weather was clear over the target area, but hazy on the return journey.

Wellington Mk.Ic T.2747 AA-J

Sgt. James Reginald Fairfax Brookes, RAF 923693/ 115176 – Pilot.
P/O John Frederick Kelly Sandys, RCAF J.4814 – 2nd Pilot.
Sgt. Norman Harrison, RAFVR 759028/ 116554 – Observer.
Sgt. Welby, RAFVR – Wireless Operator.
Sgt. Clements, RAFVR   – Front Gunner.
Sgt. Bourne, RAFVR – Rear Gunner.

Take Off 20:25 – Landed 03:15
Flight Time 06:50

06/09/1941 – Bombing Attacks Against Targets at Huls
Thirteen Wellington aircraft were detailed to carry out the above attacks. One of these aircraft, X9767 captained by P/O Johnson, failed to return to base. A mixed bomb load was carried and consisted of 1,000 lb GP, 500 lb GP, 250 lb GP, and SBC’s of 4lb incendiaries. One aircraft was seen under attack on the Dutch-German frontier. Another aircraft was observed possibly being shot down by dual AA fire/searchlight action about 15 miles west or south-west of the target. An enemy aircraft was seen taking off from Schipol, but no attacks occurred Bombs were dropped in the target area and numerous fires were started. A.A. fire was light over the target area, but heavy en route, while searchlights were working in cones around target. Three enemy  aircraft seen but no attacks made. The weather was good over the whole journey.

Wellington Mk.Ic T.2805 AA-E “D for Donald”

Sgt. Cyril Taylor, RAFVR 110661 – Pilot.
P/O John Frederick Kelly Sandys, RCAF J.4814 – 2nd Pilot.
Sgt. Harrington, RAFVR – Observer.
Sgt. James Roberts, RAAF AUS.400310 – Wireless Operator.
Sgt. J.B. Hopkinson, RAFVR – Front Gunner.
Sgt. Monk, RAFVR – Rear Gunner.

Take Off 20:22 – Landed 02:15
Flight Time 05:53

08/09/1941 – Bombing Attacks Against Targets at Kassel
Ten Wellington aircraft from this Unit were detailed to make individual bombing attacks against the above target. A mixed bomb load was carried and consisted of 1,000 lb, 500 lb, (including delay), 250 lb (including delay fuses), and containers of incendiaries. AA fire was very light and searchlight activity was also light and ineffective. No enemy aircraft seen. The weather conditions were excellent in the target area and en route. Navigation includes:- D.R., Q.D.M., Astro., Pinpoint., Loop and Lorenz.

Wellington Mk.Ic Z.8834 AA-P

Sgt. James Reginald Fairfax Brookes, RAF 923693/ 115176 – Pilot.
P/O John Frederick Kelly Sandys, RCAF J.4814 – 2nd Pilot.
Sgt. Norman Harrison, RAFVR 759028/ 116554 – Observer.
Sgt. Welby, RAFVR – Wireless Operator.
Sgt. Clements, RAFVR   – Front Gunner.
Sgt. Bourne, RAFVR – Rear Gunner.

Take Off 20:50 – Landed 04:50
Flight Time 08:00

13/09/1941 – Bombing Attacks Against Targets at Brest
Twelve Wellington aircraft were detailed to carry out individual bombing attacks against the above targets. One aircraft, GYM.833 was unable to identify target and returned to base with bomb load. The remaining aircraft bombed the target and bursts were seen A smoke screen covered the target area. A.A. fire was heavy, and searchlights were working in cones. The weather was clear over the target.

Wellington Mk.Ic R.1177 AA-C

P/O P.F. Wilson, RAAF/ RCAF? – Pilot.
P/O John Frederick Kelly Sandys, RCAF J.4814 – 2nd Pilot.
Sgt. Richard Dundas, RAFVR 986084 – Observer.
Sgt. Jeffrey Walter Reid, RAFVR 920054 – Wireless Operator.
Sgt. Thomas Edison Elliot, RCAF R.52050 – Front Gunner.
Sgt. William Massey, RAFVR 1365268 – Rear Gunner.

Take Off 21:50 – Landed 02:35
Flight Time 04:45

15/09/1941 – Bombing Attacks Against Targets at Hamburg
Twelve Wellington aircraft of this Unit were detailed to carry out the above attacks. Two of these aircraft failed to return, one being captained by Sgt J. A. Ward who was awarded the Victoria Cross on 4 August 1941. There was clear weather over the target, and bursts were seen in many parts of the target area. A.A. fire was heavy over and near target area. Searchlights were numerous, working in cones, and co-operating with A.A. fire and night fighters.

Wellington Mk.Ic X.9757 AA-S

P/O P.F. Wilson, RAAF/ RCAF? – Pilot.
P/O John Frederick Kelly Sandys, RCAF J.4814 – 2nd Pilot.
Sgt. Richard Dundas, RAFVR 986084 – Observer.
Sgt. Jeffrey Walter Reid, RAFVR 920054 – Wireless Operator.
Sgt. Thomas Edison Elliot, RCAF R.52050 – Front Gunner.
Sgt. William Massey, RAFVR 1365268 – Rear Gunner.

Take Off 19:45 – Landed 03:25
Flight Time 07:40

20/09/1941 – Bombing Attacks Against Targets at Berlin and Ostend
Twelve Wellington aircraft of this Unit were detailed to carry out individual bombing attacks on the above targets. One of these aircraft is missing. A mixed bomb load was carried and consisted of 1,000 lbs, 500 lbs, 250 lbs and containers of incendiaries.
Worsening weather resulted in a general recall to all aircraft. Three crews carried on to Berlin and reported AA fire was heavy and fairly intense, and accurate. The aircraft Captained by Sgt Curlewis was attacked by a Ju.88 night fighter after being caught in a cone of searchlights. It was only a single attack, which gave the air gunners little chance of countering before it made off.

Wellington Mk.Ic Z.8858 AA-G

P/O P.F. Wilson, RAAF/ RCAF? – Pilot.
P/O John Frederick Kelly Sandys, RCAF J.4814 – 2nd Pilot.
Sgt. Richard Dundas, RAFVR 986084 – Observer.
Sgt. Alfred Hubert Harrison, RNZAF NZ403000 – Wireless Operator.
Sgt. Thomas Edison Elliot, RCAF R.52050 – Front Gunner.
Sgt. William Massey, RAFVR 1365268 – Rear Gunner.

Take Off 19:25 – Landed 03:35
Flight Time 08:10

24/10/1941 – Bombing Attacks Against Targets at Emden
Two Wellington aircraft from this Unit were detailed to carry out the above attack. A mixed bomb load was carried and consisted of 50llbs, 250lbs. And containers of incendiaries. Captains were unable to find target owing to ground haze, but bombed large cones of searchlights in target area. A.A. fire was heavy. No enemy aircraft was met and weather was fair. Navigation was good.

Wellington Mk.Ic Z.1068 AA-R

P/O John Frederick Kelly Sandys, RCAF J.4814 – Pilot.
Sgt. John Cuthbert McKechnie Gibson, RNZAF NZ404352 – 2nd Pilot.
Sgt. Geoffrey Arnold Bere, RAFVR 63084 – Observer.
Sgt. Henry Charles Hill, 912778, 117845 – Wireless Operator.
Sgt. Verdun Cecil ‘Mick’ Strickland, RAFVR 956811 – Front Gunner.
Sgt. S.V. Hardman, RAFVR – Rear Gunner.

Take Off 18:10 – Landed 23:30
Flight Time 05:20

01/11/1941 – Bombing Attacks Against Targets at Kiel
Eleven Wellington Ic Aircraft from this Unit were detailed to attack the above targets. The whole Operation was marred by bad weather there being 10/10th. Cloud throughout the trip and no results were observed. Bomb load consisting of 1000lbs, 50lbs, 250lbs and incendiaries was dropped on un-identified town, and on area to the West of the target. Very heavy predicted A.A. fire was encountered over target area together with 75m.m. tracers. Searchlights were isolated and ineffective owing to cloud. One M.E. 110 enemy aircraft was seen but no attack was made. Navigation was good, Astro and D.R. loop being used. A convoy fifteen miles off the Wash fired at the aircraft until the colours were fired. There was a surprising lack of enemy fighters.

Wellington Mk.Ic Z.1099 AA-S

P/O John Frederick Kelly Sandys, RCAF J.4814 – Pilot.
Sgt. Godfrey John Evan Thomas, RNZAF NZ404967 – 2nd Pilot.
P/O Geoffrey Arnold Bere, RAFVR 63084 – Observer.
Sgt. Henry Charles Hill, 912778, 117845 – Wireless Operator.
Sgt. Verdun Cecil ‘Mick’ Strickland, RAFVR 956811 – Front Gunner.
Sgt. S.V. Hardman, RAFVR – Rear Gunner.

Take Off 17:45 – Landed 01:00
Flight Time 07:15

04/11/1941 – Bombing Attacks Against Targets at Essen
Nine Wellington IC aircraft from this Unit were detailed to carry out the above attacks. Heavy cloud was experienced throughout the whole trip and although bombs were dropped in target area no results were observed. Accurate Heavy Flak was met over the target area and searchlights were active, but ineffective owing to cloud. No enemy aircraft were met. Weather was very poor with 10/10th cloud which completely marred the whole operation.

Wellington Mk.Ic Z.1091 AA-V

P/O John Frederick Kelly Sandys, RCAF J.4814 – Pilot.
Sgt. Godfrey John Evan Thomas, RNZAF NZ404967 – 2nd Pilot.
P/O Geoffrey Arnold Bere, RAFVR 63084 – Observer.
Sgt. Henry Charles Hill, 912778, 117845 – Wireless Operator.
Sgt. Verdun Cecil ‘Mick’ Strickland, RAFVR 956811 – Front Gunner.
Sgt. S.V. Hardman, RAFVR – Rear Gunner.

Take Off 16:05 – Landed 20:10
Flight Time 04:05

07/11/1941 – Bombing Attacks Against Targets at Berlin and Ostend
Fourteen Wellington Ic aircraft were detailed from this Unit to attack the above targets. Two of these aircraft, X.9951, captained by F/O Methven and X.9976, captained by Sgt. Black, failed to return to base. A mixed bomb load was carried consisting of 1000lbs, 500lbs, 250lbs and containers of incendiaries. Bombs were dropped in target area and some large fires were started, but results were not clearly observed owing to heavy cloud over target area. A considerable amount of heavy flak was met over target area but searchlights, where seen, were ineffective. No enemy aircraft were met throughout the trip. Weather was poor with 10/10th cloud over target area. Navigation was good, Astro and D/R loops being used. Wellington Z.1091, captained by P/O Sandys returned to base owing to engine trouble. Wellington Z.1068, captained by Sgt. Parham returned to base owing to Navigator being sick.

Wellington Mk.Ic Z.1091 dnc AA-V

P/O John Frederick Kelly Sandys, RCAF J.4814 – Pilot.
returned to base owing to engine trouble
Take Off – – Landed Rtnd to Base
Flight Time –

08/11/1941 – Bombing Attacks Against Targets at Essen
Eleven Wellington Ic aircraft were detailed to carry out the above attacks from this Unit. Three aircraft, X.9628, captained by Sgt. Smith, X.9977, captained by Sgt. Nunn, and Z.8942 captained by Sgt. Wilson failed to return to base. Many large fires were started with resultant explosions and bursts were observed across a built up area. A railway junction south of target was also successfully attacked. Much heavy and light flak was experienced and heavy concentrations of searchlights were active in target area. Several enely aircraft were seen at target but no attacks were made. Weather was moderately clear to target but haze 5/10ths to 9/10ths over target area. Navigation was very good.

Wellington Mk.Ic Z.1091 AA-V

P/O John Frederick Kelly Sandys, RCAF J.4814 – Pilot.
Sgt. Godfrey John Evan Thomas, RNZAF NZ404967 – 2nd Pilot.
P/O Geoffrey Arnold Bere, RAFVR 63084 – Observer.
Sgt. Henry Charles Hill, 912778, 117845 – Wireless Operator.
Sgt. Verdun Cecil ‘Mick’ Strickland, RAFVR 956811 – Front Gunner.
Sgt. S.V. Hardman, RAFVR – Rear Gunner.

Take Off 17:55 – Landed 22:15
Flight Time 04:20

26/11/1941 – Bombing Attacks Against Targets at Emden and Ostend
Seventeen Wellington Ic aircraft were detailed from this Unit to attack the above targets. A mixed bomb load was carried consisting of 4000,lbs, 1000lbs, 500lbs. 250lbs and containers of incendiaries. Very bad weather prevented the target being identified and results were not observed. A few bombs were however dropped in target area and one flash was seen. The remainder were brought back to base. Heavy and light predicted A.A. fire was met over target area and cones of searchlights were active. One single engine aircraft and one Junkers 88 enemy aircraft were seen but were successfully evaded. Weather was extremely bad and marred the whole operation. 10/10th cloud was met throughout the journey to and from the target. Navigation was D.R. and Q.D. M.s. One of these aircraft, Z.1114, captained by Sgt. Evans, returned to base with engine trouble.

Wellington Mk.Ic Z.1091 AA-V

P/O John Frederick Kelly Sandys, RCAF J.4814 – Pilot.
Sgt. Godfrey John Evan Thomas, RNZAF NZ404967 – 2nd Pilot.
P/O Geoffrey Arnold Bere, RAFVR 63084 – Observer.
Sgt. Henry Charles Hill, 912778, 117845 – Wireless Operator.
Sgt. Verdun Cecil ‘Mick’ Strickland, RAFVR 956811 – Front Gunner.
P/O Charles William Street, RAFVR 82999 – Rear Gunner.

Take Off 18:40 – Landed 23:25
Flight Time 04:45

23/12/1941 – Bombing Attacks Against Targets at Brest
Seven wellington Ic aircraft from this Unit were detailed to carry out the above attacks. Bomb load consisted of 4000lbs, 500lbs, 250lbs and containers of incendiaries. Bomb bursts and fires were seen in the target area. Light, medium and heavy flak was met and searchlights were not very active. Weather was good over the target. Navigation was good. Wellington Z.8834, captained by Sgt. Bentley, crashed at Burner’s Heath on return and Sgt. Bentley was killed, the crew being injured.

Wellington Mk.II Z.8429 AA-V

P/O John Frederick Kelly Sandys, RCAF J.4814 – Pilot.
Sgt. Godfrey John Evan Thomas, RNZAF NZ404967 – 2nd Pilot.
P/O Geoffrey Arnold Bere, RAFVR 63084 – Observer.
Sgt. Henry Charles Hill, 912778, 117845 – Wireless Operator.
Sgt. Verdun Cecil ‘Mick’ Strickland, RAFVR 956811 – Front Gunner.
F/O Charles William Street, RAFVR 82999 – Rear Gunner.

Take Off 16:23 – Landed 22:15
Flight Time 05:52

15/01/1942 – Bombing Attacks Against Targets at Schipol
Two Wellington IC aircraft from this unit were detailed to carry out the above attack, but one machine, captained by S/Ldr Kitchin, blew a cylinder and returned to base soon after take-off. Wellington IC Z.1114, captained by P/O Sandys carried out the operation as ordered. Bomb load consisting of 12 x 250 lbs was dropped on Schipol and neighbouring aerodromes. Bursts were observed. Light flak was encountered in the target area and searchlights were seen near the coast. No enemy aircraft were encountered. There were low clouds near the enemy coast but these cleared on the return trip.
Navigation was good, Lorenz being used on return.

Wellington Mk.Ic Z.1114 AA-C

P/O John Frederick Kelly Sandys, RCAF J.4814 – Pilot.
P/O Peter John Wilson, RNZAF NZ402475 – 2nd Pilot.
P/O Nathaniel Edmund Hodson, RNZAF NZ403603 – Observer.
Sgt. Hill, RAFVR – Wireless Operator.
Sgt. Alexander John Lock, RAFVR 928209 – Front Gunner.
P/O Guy Lionel Roy Heyward, RNZAF NZ40622 – Rear Gunner.

Take Off 18:30 – Landed 21:55
Flight Time 03:25

08/03/1942 – Attack Against Targets at Essen
Eleven Wellington aircraft carried out an attack against the above target. Bomb load consisted of 500 lbs, 250 lbs and S.B.C’s which were dropped in the target area, fires were seen to be burning in the target area. Weather was clear except for haze over the target. There were many searchlights but these were ineffective. Accurate heavy flak was encountered over the target. No enemy aircraft were seen. Navigation was by D.R. and TR1335 and was good.

Wellington Mk.III X.3585 AA-V

F/O John Frederick Kelly Sandys, RCAF J.4814 – Pilot.
Sgt. Roy Desmond Joffre Woodcock, RNZAF NZ404985 – 2nd Pilot.
P/O John Earle, RNZAF NZ401756 – Observer.
Sgt. Verdun Cecil ‘Mick’ Strickland, RAFVR 956811 – Wireless Operator.
Sgt. Leslie Joseph Dunn, RAFVR 1001633 – Front Gunner.
F/S Buckley, RAFVR – Rear Gunner.

Take Off 00:45 – Landed 04:35
Flight Time 03:50

09/03/1942 – Attack Against Targets at Essen
Eleven Wellington III aircraft carried out an attack against the above target. Bomb load consisted of 500 lbs, 250 lbs and containers of incendiaries, and was dropped in the target area, fires and bomb bursts being seen. A strong flak defence was encountered over the target and searchlights were very active. One Me.110 was seen and one unidentified aircraft was seen to be shot down by an enemy fighter. Weather was good. Navigation was by D.R. and TR1335.

Wellington Mk.III X.3585 AA-V

F/O John Frederick Kelly Sandys, RCAF J.4814 – Pilot.
Sgt. Roy Desmond Joffre Woodcock, RNZAF NZ404985 – 2nd Pilot.
P/O John Earle, RNZAF NZ401756 – Observer.
Sgt. Verdun Cecil ‘Mick’ Strickland, RAFVR 956811 – Wireless Operator.
Sgt. Leslie Joseph Dunn, RNZAF 1001633 – Front Gunner.
F/S Buckley, RAFVR – Rear Gunner.

Take Off 20:10 – Landed 00:12
Flight Time 04:02

12/03/1942 – Attack Against Targets at Kiel
Eight Wellington aircraft carried out an attack against the above target, one aircraft, captained by Sgt Bell did not carry out an attack. Three aircraft captained by S/L Kitchin, F/O Sandys and Sgt Parnham failed to return to base. Bomb load consisted of 1,000 lbs, 500 lbs and 250 lbs was dropped in the target area, bomb bursts being observed. There was heavy and light predicted flak and large cones of searchlights in the target area and one twin engined enemy aircraft made one unsuccessful attack on Wellington III X3586 captained by S/L Newton. Weather was clear over the target with 5/10 cloud over North Sea. Navigation was by D.R. and TR1335.

Wellington Mk.III X.3585 AA-V

F/O John Frederick Kelly Sandys, RCAF J.4814 – Pilot.
Sgt. Roy Desmond Joffre Woodcock, RNZAF NZ404985 – 2nd Pilot.
P/O John Earle, RNZAF NZ401756 – Observer.
Sgt. Henry John Price, RNZAF NZ404095 – Wireless Operator.
Sgt. Leslie Joseph Dunn, British Army 1001633 – Front Gunner.
F/L Thomas James Desmond Baber, RNZAF NZ39857 – Rear Gunner.

Take Off – – Landed –
Flight Time  – Missing

There are no details regarding the fate of X.3585 and her crew, all being lost without trace.

F/O John Frederick Kelly Sandys, RCAF 4814 – Pilot.
Lost without trace age 25.
Son of Frederick Robert Kelly Sandys and Beatrice Louisa Sandys, of Bellozanne, Jersey, Channel Islands.
Buried Runnymede Memorial, Surrey, England.
Grave location – Panel 99.

Sgt. Roy Joffre Desmond Woodcock, RNZAF NZ404985 – 2nd Pilot.
Lost without trace age 26.
Son of Bernard and Florence Woodcock, of Wellington, New Zealand.
Buried Runnymede Memorial, Surrey, England.
Grave location – Panel 118.

P/O John Earle, RNZAF NZ401756 – Observer.
Lost without trace age 29.
Son of John Kilgour Earle and Mary Ann Earle, of Onehunga, Auckland, New Zealand.
Buried Runnymede Memorial, Surrey, England.
Grave location – Panel 115.

Sgt. Leslie Joseph Dunn, RAFVR 1001633 – Front Gunner.
Lost without trace age 19.
Son of Elizabeth Dunn and Stepson of George Buglass, of Heaton, Newcastle-On-Tyne.
Buried Runnymede Memorial, Surrey, England.
Grave location – Panel 82.

F/S Henry John Price, RNZAF NZ404095 – Wireless Operator.
Lost without trace age 25.
Son of Frederick Charles Price and of Alice Margaret Price (Nee Mattock), of Whangarei, Auckland, New Zealand.
Buried Runnymede Memorial, Surrey, England.
Grave location – Panel 117.

F/L Thomas James Desmond Baber, RNZAF NZ39857 – Rear Gunner .
Lost without trace age 23.
Buried Runnymede Memorial, Surrey, England.
Grave location – Panel 114.