O.J. Cook crew 5.3.45

04/03/1945 – Attack Against Wanne Eickel
Eighteen aircraft were detailed to attack Wanne Eickel. JN”O” F/O D. Barr returned early through engine failiure. Crews bombed with the aid of special equipment in 10/10ths cloud. No results were seen but crews were satisfied that it was a good attack. Slight to moderate H/F was experienced.

Lancaster Mk.I RF127 AA-W

F/O Valentine Richard Egglestone, RNZAF NZC429998 – Pilot.
P/O Owen Joseph Cook, RAAF AUS.428456 – 2nd Pilot.
F/S Gordon McDonald Mitchell, RNZAF NZ4211764 – Navigator.
F/S James Frederick ‘Charlie’ Freestone, RNZAF NZ4213370 – Air Bomber.
F/S Roy Akehurst, RAFVR – Wireless Operator.
Sgt. P. Hill, RAFVR – Flight Engineer.
Sgt. Jack Truman, RAFVR – Mid Upper Gunner.
Sgt. P. Goldie, RAFVR – Rear Gunner.

Take Off 09:46 – Landed 14:38
Flight Time 04:52

05/03/1945 – Attack Against Gelsenkirchen
Twenty one aircraft were detailed to attack Gelsenkirchen. AA”E” F/S Lukins was withdrawn. AA”W” F/L Parker and JN”X” P/O Cleminson returned early through engine trouble. The remainder found the target obscured by 10/10ths cloud tops 15,000 ft. Aircraft bombed on special special equipment. Leaders had a good run in and there was a good concentration at this time. Aircraft were met by slight H/F on outward route. No fighters were seen.

Lancaster Mk.I LM276 AA-S

F/O Owen Joseph ‘Cookie’ Cook, RAAF AUS.428456 – Pilot.
F/S John ‘Jock’ Gray, RAFVR – Navigator.
F/S R. ‘Fishpond’ Fisher, RAFVR – Air Bomber.
F/S Jack ‘Mitch’ Mitcherson, RAAF AUS.432532 – Wireless Operator.
F/S Duncan Walker, RAFVR – Flight Engineer.
Sgt. Kenneth Saunders, RAFVR – Mid Upper Gunner.
Sgt. Peter ‘Butch’ Fletcher, RAFVR – Rear Gunner.

Take Off 10:47 – Landed 16:11
Flight Time 05:24

06/03/1945 – Attack Against Salzbergen
Sixteen aircraft attacked Salzbergen in 10/10ths cloud up to 11,000ft. with nil clouds below. The formation was well packed over the target and released simultaneously. A slight upheaval of the cloud a minute later was all that could be seen. Slight H/F was the only opposition.

Lancaster Mk.I HK562 AA-L

F/O Owen Joseph ‘Cookie’ Cook, RAAF AUS.428456 – Pilot.
F/S John ‘Jock’ Gray, RAFVR – Navigator.
F/S R. ‘Fishpond’ Fisher, RAFVR – Air Bomber.
F/S Jack ‘Mitch’ Mitcherson, RAAF AUS.432532 – Wireless Operator.
F/S Duncan Walker, RAFVR – Flight Engineer.
Sgt. Kenneth Saunders, RAFVR – Mid Upper Gunner.
Sgt. Peter ‘Butch’ Fletcher, RAFVR – Rear Gunner.

Take Off 08:43 – Landed 14:14
Flight Time 05:31

07/03/1945 – Attack Against Dessau
Thirteen aircraft attacked Dessau as ordered. Aircraft bombed in 10/10ths haze and thin cloud. Crews were given instructions by M/B to bomb on Skymarkers but some were able to make out T.I’s and in two cases identify the street. Fires were burning over a wide area when aircraft left the target. Flak practically nil in target area. Some E/A were seen and AA”S” F/L Spilman had a short inconclusive encounter. A satisfactory operation.

Lancaster Mk.I RF157 AA-X

F/O Vernon John ‘Taffy’ Zinzan, RNZAF NZ425314 – Pilot.
P/O Owen Joseph Cook, RAAF AUS.428456 – 2nd Pilot.
W/O James Sydney George Coote, RAFVR 517881/ 56715 – Navigator.
F/O Robert Douglas ‘Jock’ Sommerville, RAFVR 1562617/ 161049 – Air Bomber.
Sgt. Miles ‘Joe’ Parr, RAFVR – Wireless Operator.
Sgt. A. Ackroyd, RAFVR – Flight Engineer.
Sgt. H. Hutchinson, RAFVR – Mid Upper Gunner.
Sgt. Herbert Steele, RAFVR – Rear Gunner.

Take Off 17:22 – Landed 02:30
Flight Time 09:08

17/03/1945 – Attack Against Auguste Viktoria
Nineteen aircraft took off to attack the Auguste Viktoria Benzol Oil plant. Cloud and vapour trails limited visibility to 50yds over the target, but the aircraft remained in light formation and bombs were released together. No results were seen. Opposition was slight H./F.

Lancaster Mk.III LM733 AA-R

P/O Owen Joseph ‘Cookie’ Cook, RAAF AUS.428456 – Pilot.
F/S John ‘Jock’ Gray, RAFVR – Navigator.
F/S R. ‘Fishpond’ Fisher, RAFVR – Air Bomber.
F/S Jack ‘Mitch’ Mitcherson, RAAF AUS.432532 – Wireless Operator.
F/S Duncan Walker, RAFVR – Flight Engineer.
Sgt. Kenneth Saunders, RAFVR – Mid Upper Gunner.
Sgt. Peter ‘Butch’ Fletcher, RAFVR – Rear Gunner.

Take Off 12:00 – Landed 17:15
Flight Time 05:15

18/04/1945 – Attack on Heligoland
25 aircraft were detailed to attack the target HELIGOLAND. Weather was good with good visibility. Crews were able to identify northern top of Island and also western edge. The rest of the Island was obliterated by smoke. Bomb bursts on fires. The crews bombed as ordered by the Master Bomber and bombing was thought to be well concentrated, but there was some overshooting as well as undershooting.

Lancaster Mk.I PB763 AA-M

F/O Owen Joseph ‘Cookie’ Cook, RAAF AUS.428456 – Pilot.
F/S John ‘Jock’ Gray, RAFVR – Navigator.
F/S R. ‘Fishpond’ Fisher, RAFVR – Air Bomber.
F/S Jack ‘Mitch’ Mitcherson, RAAF AUS.432532 – Wireless Operator.
F/S Duncan Walker, RAFVR – Flight Engineer.
Sgt. Kenneth Saunders, RAFVR – Mid Upper Gunner.
Sgt. Peter ‘Butch’ Fletcher, RAFVR – Rear Gunner.

Take Off 10:25 – Landed 15:23
Flight Time 04:58

01/05/1945 – Supply Dropping at Delft
21 Aircraft were detailed for Supply Dropping at Delft. The population were very excited. There was a great deal of flag waving and thanks messages were seen painted on roof tops.

Lancaster Mk.I HK562 AA-L

F/O Owen Joseph ‘Cookie’ Cook, RAAF AUS.428456 – Pilot.
F/S John ‘Jock’ Gray, RAFVR – Navigator.
F/S R. ‘Fishpond’ Fisher, RAFVR – Air Bomber.
F/S Jack ‘Mitch’ Mitcherson, RAAF AUS.432532 – Wireless Operator.
F/S Duncan Walker, RAFVR – Flight Engineer.
Sgt. Kenneth Saunders, RAFVR – Mid Upper Gunner.
Sgt. Peter ‘Butch’ Fletcher, RAFVR – Rear Gunner.

Take Off 13:57 – Landed 16:12
Flight Time 02:15

07/05/1945 – Supply Dropping at Delft
26 Aircraft were detailed for Supply Dropping at Delft. The mission was uneventful. Oil patches and yellow objects were seen in the sea near the Dutch coast.

Lancaster Mk.I PB763 AA-M

P/0 Owen Joseph ‘Cookie’ Cook, RAAF AUS.428456 – Pilot.
F/S John ‘Jock’ Gray, RAFVR – Navigator.
F/S R. ‘Fishpond’ Fisher, RAFVR – Air Bomber.
F/S Jack ‘Mitch’ Mitcherson, RAAF AUS.432532 – Wireless Operator.
F/S Duncan Walker, RAFVR – Flight Engineer.
LAC Morris, RAF – Passenger.
Sgt. Kenneth Saunders, RAFVR – Rear Gunner.

Take Off 12:19 – Landed 14:43
Flight Time 02:24

10/05/1945 – Repatriation of Prisoners of War from Juvincourt
15 Aircraft were detailed for the evacuation of Prisoners of War from Juvincourt. The number of men brought back was 336. F/O J. McLernon (AA-G). Had engine trouble when taxying at Juvincourt. The crew returned in AA.M. F/Lt C. Stevens (AA.Y), could not take off at Ford because of tyre creeping. Crew were brought back tio Base by F/O G. Cleminson (JN.O).

Lancaster Mk.I PB763 AA-M

F/O Owen Joseph ‘Cookie’ Cook, RAAF AUS.428456 – Pilot.
F/S John ‘Jock’ Gray, RAFVR – Navigator.
P/O Maurice Edward Parker, RNZAF NZ414332 – Air Bomber.
F/S Jack ‘Mitch’ Mitcherson, RAAF AUS.432532 – Wireless Operator.
F/S Duncan Walker, RAFVR – Flight Engineer.
Sgt. Kenneth Saunders, RAFVR – Mid Upper Gunner.
Sgt. Peter ‘Butch’ Fletcher, RAFVR – Rear Gunner.

Take Off 10:29 – Landed 16:44
Flight Time 06:15

12/05/1945 – Evacuation of Prisoners of War from Juvincourt
15 Aircraft were detailed for the evacuation of Prisoners of War from Juvincourt. The total number returned for the day was 336. F/O G. Cleminson (JN.O) developed a hydraulic leak at Juvincourt. He had to stay overnight and on the return trip next day, brought another 24 men. The total number of men brought back to date is 1320.

Lancaster Mk.I PB763 AA-M

F/O Owen Joseph ‘Cookie’ Cook, RAAF AUS.428456 – Pilot.
F/S John ‘Jock’ Gray, RAFVR – Navigator.
P/O Maurice Edward Parker, RNZAF NZ414332 – Air Bomber.
F/S Jack ‘Mitch’ Mitcherson, RAAF AUS.432532 – Wireless Operator.
F/S Duncan Walker, RAFVR – Flight Engineer.
Sgt. Kenneth Saunders, RAFVR – Mid Upper Gunner.
Sgt. Peter ‘Butch’ Fletcher, RAFVR – Rear Gunner.

Take Off 07:58 – Landed 12:52
Flight Time 04:54

15/05/1945 – Repatriation of Prisoners of War from Juvincourt
8 Aircraft were detailed for the repatriation of Prisoners of war from Juvincourt. The total number of men brought back was 191.

Lancaster Mk.I PB763 AA-M

F/O Owen Joseph ‘Cookie’ Cook, RAAF AUS.428456 – Pilot.
F/S John ‘Jock’ Gray, RAFVR – Navigator.
F/S R. ‘Fishpond’ Fisher, RAFVR – Air Bomber.
F/S Jack ‘Mitch’ Mitcherson, RAAF AUS.432532 – Wireless Operator.
F/S Duncan Walker, RAFVR – Flight Engineer.
Sgt. Kenneth Saunders, RAFVR – Mid Upper Gunner.
Sgt. Peter ‘Butch’ Fletcher, RAFVR – Rear Gunner.

Take Off 11:39 – Landed 17:40
Flight Time 06:01