ME752

 

Air Historical Branch: Air Movement Cards

Air Historical Branch: Air Movement Cards – ME752

 

Date Target Notes Code Pilot Duration
1 10/05/44 Courtrai AA-E P/O Gibson 03:10
2 11/05/44 Louvain AA-E F/S Whitehouse 03:30
3 21/05/44 Duisberg AA-E P/O Baker 04:30
4 27/05/44 Mining off La Rochelle AA-E F/S White 05:22
5 30/05/44 Boulogne AA-E F/S Gilmour 02:00
6 31/05/44 Trappes AA-E P/O Gibson 04:02
7 02/06/44 Wissant AA-E P/O Gibson 02:04
8 05/06/44 Ouistreham AA-E P/O Gibson 03:38
9 06/06/44 Lisieux AA-E P/O Gibson 03:16
10 08/06/44 Fougeres AA-E P/O Gibson 05:10
11 10/06/44 Dreux AA-E F/O Stokes 04:15
12 12/06/44 Gelsenkirchen AA-E F/O Stokes 03:40
13 14/06/44 Le Havre AA-E F/O Stokes 02:15
14 15/06/44 Valenciennes AA-E F/O Stokes 02:56
dnc 17/06/44 Montdidier AA-E P/O Gibson 03:44
15 21/06/44 Domleger AA-E P/O Gibson 02:44
16 23/06/44 L’Hey AA-E F/O Stokes 02:15
17 24/06/44 Rimeux AA-E P/O Gibson 02:26
18 27/06/44 Biennais AA-E P/O Gibson 02:48
19 07/07/44 Vaires AA-E P/O Gibson 04:22
20 09/07/44 Linzeux AA-E P/O Gibson 03:27
21 10/07/44 Nucourt AA-E P/O Kennedy 03:17
22 12/07/44 Vaires AA-E P/O Gibson 03:40
23 15/07/44 Chalons Sur Marne AA-E F/S Moriarty 05:36
dnc 17/07/44 Vaires  A/c recalled before setting course, however duplicate entry for this aircraft (see below also) AA-E F/S Moore 01:30
dnc 17/07/44 Vaires AA-E F/S Roche 02:05
24 18/07/44 Aulnoye  duplicate entry for this Op (see below)
Previous a/c history suggests this is possibly correct record
AA-E P/O Gibson 03:30
? 18/07/44 Aulnoye AA-E F/S Roche 04:07
26 18/07/44 Cagny  duplicate entry for this Op (see below)
Again, previous a/c history suggests this is the correct entry
AA-E F/S Roche 03:22
? 18/07/44 Cagny Hit by flak 3 times AA-E F/S Moore 02:50
? 20/07/44 Homberg  duplicate entry for this Op – loss of a/c below suggests this is the incorrect entry AA-E P/O Gibson 03:55
29 20/07/44 Homberg AA-E F/S Roche missing
? 24/07/44 Stuttgart  incorrect serial code AA-E P/O Hubbard 07:20
? 28/07/44 Stuttgart  incorrect serial code AA-E F/S Adolph 07:42
? 29/08/44 Stettin  incorrect serial code AA-E F/O Plummer 09:25
Total Op hours 93:41

 

20/07/1944 – Attack Against Homberg
Twenty six aircraft took off, as detailed, to attack the oil refinery at Homberg. Nineteen aircraft were successful in bombing the target, with the aid of markers, which seemed well concentrated. Two good explosions were seen and smoke came up from the target area. Heavy A.A. fire was moderate, but fighters were very active, eight combats taking place. Seven aircraft failed to return, the captains were AUS22776 W/O. Gilmour, H., NZ428819 F/S. Howell, E., NZ421829 F/S. Mackay, K., NZ422057 F/S. Davidson, N., NZ42488 W/O. Whittington, H., NZ413219 F/S. Roche, G. & NZ414560 P/O. Burtt, H.

Lancaster Mk.I ME752 AA-E

F/S Gerald Brian Roche, RNZAF NZ413219 – Pilot.
F/O Horace Callow, RNZAF NZ427185 – Navigator.
F/S John Burgess, RNZAF NZ4211008 – Air Bomber.
Sgt. Jack Frank MacDonald Barson, RAFVR 1324529 – Wireless Operator .
Sgt. Joseph Armstrong, RAFVR 1684332 – Flight Engineer.
F/S William Edward McGee, RNZAF NZ427902 – Mid Upper Gunner.
F/S Keith Emmett Smith, RNZAF NZ425179 – Rear Gunner.

Take Off 21:08 – Landed –
Flight Time – Missing

Lancaster Mk.I ME752 AA-E was brought down by a night-fighter at 01:15hrs at Heythuysen in the Dutch province of Limburg, 7 miles East of Weert. All crew members, except the Air Bomber and Mid-Upper Gunner, died in the crash and were first buried in the Heythuysen cemetery but are now lying in Jonkerbos War Cemetery.

Sgt Armstrong, the RAF flight engineer, at 40 years of age was one of the oldest airmen killed on Bomber Command operations during 1944.

F/S Burgess survived and was captured as a POW. F/S McGee also survived and successfully evaded capture.

F/S Gerald Brian Roche, RNZAF NZ413219 – Pilot.
Killed age 21.
Son Of Michael And Mable Roche, Of Feilding, Wellington, New Zealand.
Buried Jonkerbos War Cemetery, Nijmegen, Holland.
Grave location – 12. J. 3.

F/O Horace Callow, RNZAF NZ427185 – Navigator.
Killed age 27.
Son of William Brideson Callow and Matilda Callow, of Brooklyn, Wellington, New Zealand.
Buried Jonkerbos War Cemetery, Nijmegen, Holland.
Grave location – 12. J. 2.

F/S John Burgess, RNZAF NZ4211008 – Air Bomber.
P.o.W
Prisoner of War Number: 442
Prison Camps: Dulag Luft, Stalag Luft VII. Promoted to W/O whislt interred
Date of return to United Kingdom: 26th of May 1945

Sgt. Jack Frank MacDonald Barson, RAFVR 1324529 – Wireless Operator.
Killed age 21.
Son of Louisa Ann Barson, of Ilford, Essex.
Buried Jonkerbos War Cemetery, Nijmegen, Holland.
Grave location – 12. J. 4.
‘He has outsoared
The shadow of our night;
Envy and calumny
And hate and pain’

Sgt. Joseph Armstrong, RAFVR 1684332 – Flight Engineer.
Killed age 40.
Son of John Joseph and Annie Armstrong, of Bradford, Yorkshire; Husband of Annie Armstrong, of Bradford.
Buried Jonkerbos War Cemetery, Nijmegen, Holland.
Grave location – 12. J. 1.
‘There’s some corner
Of a foreign field
That is for ever England’

F/S Keith Emmett Smith, RNZAF NZ425179 – Rear Gunner.
Killed age 21.
Son Of Robert Emmett Smith And Gertrude Smith, Of Auckland City, New Zealand.
Buried Jonkerbos War Cemetery, Nijmegen, Holland.
Grave location – 12. J. 5.

F/S William Edward Mcgee, RNZAF NZ427902 – Mid Upper Gunner.
Evader.
On return to the United Kingdom, F/S McGee was debriefed by MI.9:
” I left in a Lancaster at 23:50 hrs on the 21st of  July 1944. I baled out at Heizthuizen at 02:00 hrs on the 22nd of  July 1944, the aircraft having been shot down by a night-fighter. I buried my parachute, harness and and mae west. I came to some woods where I slept. Here I heard two more planes crash. The next morning I started walking and was right in the centre of the above-named village, which has a population of 3,000 when I was picked up by someone who was in contact with the organization. I was sheltered in various places until along with a party of 11 others we were taken to the Belgian border which we crossed at night and travelled to Masyack. I stayed here for a week with the three others and then moved to Liege where I lost touch with the organization. I was left in a church which was raided by the police but received notification in advance and so walked into the town where I was picked up by another member of the organization and taken to a village called Seraing where I stayed for 3 weeks until liberated”.