P.J. Buck crew 30.09.42 †

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.3959 AA-L/R

Sgt. Peter John Oswald Buck, RNZAF NZ413377 – Pilot.
P/O Alexander Fielding Minnis, RAFVR 126499 – Observer.
Sgt. John Henry Symons, RCAF R.77568/ J.16507 – Wireless Operator.
Sgt. A.P. Sadler, RAFVR 1379771 – Front Gunner.
Sgt. Brian Arthur Rogers, RAFVR 1384352 – Rear Gunner.

Take Off 19:30 – Landed 22:45
Flight Time 03:15

15/10/1942 – Activities of “A” Flight at Mildenhall. Operations. Attacks Against Targets at Cologne

Wellington Mk.III BK.206 AA-?

Sgt. Peter John Oswald Buck, RNZAF NZ413377 – Pilot.
P/O Alexander Fielding Minnis, RAFVR 126499 – Observer.
Sgt. John Henry Symons, RCAF R.77568/ J.16507 – Wireless Operator.
Sgt. A.P. Sadler, RNZAF 1379771 – Front Gunner.
Sgt. Brian Arthur Rogers, RAFVR 1384352 – Rear Gunner.

Take Off 19:15 – Landed 00:30
Flight Time 05:15

22/10/1942 – Operations. Daylight Attack on Targets At Essen
Two aircraft were detailed to attack the above target with bombs of 500lb. 250lb. And 30lb. Incendiaries. The bombs were successfully dropped in the target area from a low altitude. One of the aircraft claimed successful hits on a railroad station. No. A.A. fire was encountered and no enemy aircraft were seen. The cloud cover was good having a ceiling of 700ft. Navigation was good.

Wellington Mk.III BK.206 AA-?

Sgt. Peter John Oswald Buck, RNZAF NZ413377 – Pilot.
S/L John Anthony Crompton, RAF 74668 – 2nd Pilot.
P/O Alexander Fielding Minnis, RAFVR 126499 – Observer.
Sgt. John Henry Symons, RCAF R.77568/ J.16507 – Wireless Operator.
Sgt. A.P. Sadler, RNZAF 1379771 – Front Gunner.
Sgt. Brian Arthur Rogers, RAFVR 1384352 – Rear Gunner.

Take Off 12:45 – Landed 16:15
Flight Time 03:30

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.206 AA-?

Sgt. Peter John Oswald Buck, RNZAF NZ413377 – Pilot.
S/L John Anthony Crompton, RAF 74668 – 2nd Pilot.
P/O Alexander Fielding Minnis, RAFVR 126499 – Observer.
Sgt. John Henry Symons, RCAF R.77568/ J.16507 – Wireless Operator.
Sgt. A.P. Sadler, RNZAF 1379771 – Front Gunner.
Sgt. Brian Arthur Rogers, RAFVR 1384352 – Rear Gunner.

Take Off 18:20 – Landed 03:10
Flight Time 08:50

25/10/1942 – Operations. Gardening of Frisian Islands
Two aircraft were detailed to carry out the above operation. 1500lb. Vegetables were successfully planted by one of the aircraft, the other aircraft returned early owing to the Wireless being unserviceable. No. A.A. fire searchlights or aircraft were seen. It was cloudy over the Gardening area, although visibility was fairly good. Navigation was good by D.R. and T.R.

Wellington Mk.III BJ.584 AA-C

Sgt. Peter John Oswald Buck, RNZAF NZ413377 – Pilot.
S/L Robert Stanway Crawford, RAF 39717 – 2nd Pilot.
P/O Alexander Fielding Minnis, RAFVR 126499 – Observer.
Sgt. John Henry Symons, RCAF R.77568/ J.16507 – Wireless Operator.
Sgt. A.P. Sadler, RAFVR 1379771 – Front Gunner.
Sgt. Brian Arthur Rogers, RAFVR 1384352 – Rear Gunner.

Take Off 03:15 – Landed 04:30
Flight Time 01:15

16/05/1943 – Mining off the Frisian Islands
Four aircraft were detailed to carry out the above operation. All of the aircraft successfully dropped their Mines in the allotted area and the parachutes were seen to open. No A.A.Fire or searchlights were encountered. A few enemy aircraft were seen but no combats took place. The weather was clear and visibility was good in the mining area. Navigation was excellent.

Stirling Mk.III BF465 AA-K

Sgt. Norman Bradford Bluck, RNZAF NZ40364 – Pilot.
Sgt. James Brett Cooksey, RNZAF NZ416460 – Navigator.
Sgt. Geoffrey Walter Strong, RNZAF NZ413905 – Air Bomber.
Sgt. Michael Kendlan, RAFVR 1072258 – Wireless Operator.
Sgt. John William Gillard, RAFVR 938834 – Flight Engineer.
Sgt. Leslie Ronald Cant, RAFVR 1397680 – Mid Upper Gunner.
Sgt. Douglas Armitage, RAFVR 1434609 – Rear Gunner.

Take Off 01:03 – Landed 05:35
Flight Time 04:32

14/01/1943 – Attack Against Targets at Lorient
Three aircraft were detailed to attack the above target with bomb loads of 1,000lb. and 4 lb. incendiaries. This attack was very successful, crews bombing from 10,000 feet from large gaps in the cloud. All bombs were seen to explode in the target area and fires were seen to start. Some light and heavy A.A. fire was encountered, which was inaccurate, a few searchlights were also operating. No enemy aircraft were encountered . The weather was very good, with little cloud. Navigation was excellent and was mainly visual.

Stirling Mk.I BF398 AA-F

Sgt. Peter John Oswald Buck, RNZAF NZ413377 – Pilot.
P/O Alexander Fielding Minnis, RAFVR 126499 – Navigator.
Sgt. A.P. Sadler, RAFVR 1379771 – Air Bomber.
P/O John Henry Symons, RCAF R.77568/ J.16507 – Wireless Operator.
Sgt. J.W. Jones, RAFVR 1068491 – Flight Engineer.
Sgt. J. Watson, RAFVR 1021021 – Mid Upper Gunner.
Sgt. Brian Arthur Rogers, RAFVR 1384352 – Rear Gunner.

Take Off 22:35 – Landed 03:55
Flight Time 05:20

15/01/1943 – Attack Against Targets at Lorient
Three aircraft were detailed to attack the above target with bomb loads of 1,000lb. and 4 lb. incendiaries. This attack was very successful, crews bombing from 10,000 feet from large gaps in the cloud. All bombs were seen to explode in the target area and fires were seen to start. Some light and heavy A.A. fire was encountered, which was inaccurate, a few searchlights were also operating. No enemy aircraft were encountered . The weather was very good, with little cloud. Navigation was excellent and was mainly visual.

Stirling Mk.I BF398 AA-F

Sgt. Peter John Oswald Buck, RNZAF NZ413377 – Pilot.
P/O Alexander Fielding Minnis, RAFVR 126499 – Navigator.
Sgt. A.P. Sadler, RAFVR 1379771 – Air Bomber.
P/O John Henry Symons, RCAF R.77568/ J.16507 – Wireless Operator.
Sgt. J.W. Jones, RAFVR 1068491 – Flight Engineer.
Sgt. J. Watson, RAFVR 1021021 – Mid Upper Gunner.
Sgt. Brian Arthur Rogers, RAFVR 1384352 – Rear Gunner.

Take Off 18:30 – Landed 20:00
Flight Time 01:30

23/01/1943 – Attack Against Targets at Lorient
Nine aircraft were detailed to attack the above target with bombs of 1,000 lb. 500 lb. and 4 lb. incendiaries. This was a very successful and concentrated attack. All aircraft reported that their bombs were seen to fall in the target area. Large fires were seen to be lighting up the whole area. A fair amount of heavy, medium and light flak was encountered, only a few searchlights were seen. A few enemy aircraft were seen, but no combats took place. The weather was very clear at the target and good visibility. Navigation was by D.R., T.R., pinpoints and visual. Stirling I R9248 captained by Sergt. R.M.Kidd failed to return.

Stirling Mk.I BK619 AA-X

Sgt. Peter John Oswald Buck, RNZAF NZ413377 – Pilot.
P/O Alexander Fielding Minnis, RAFVR 126499 – Navigator.
Sgt. A.P. Sadler, RAFVR 1379771 – Air Bomber.
P/O John Henry Symons, RCAF R.77568/ J.16507 – Wireless Operator.
Sgt. J.W. Jones, RAFVR 1068491 – Flight Engineer.
Sgt. J. Watson, RAFVR 1021021 – Mid Upper Gunner.
Sgt. Brian Arthur Rogers, RAFVR 1384352 – Rear Gunner.

Take Off 17:30 – Landed 22:30
Flight Time 05:00

03/02/1943 – Attack Against Targets at Hamburg
Nine aircraft were detailed to attack the above target with 4 lb. incendiaries. The crews were instructed to return if they hit bad weather, which unfortunately they did. Heavy cloud and icing were experienced forcing five aircraft to return early. Two aircraft attacked the target but they were unable to observe results owing to 10/10ths. cloud. Some A.A. fire and a few searchlights were encountered although low cloud prevented accuracy. No enemy aircraft were seen. Navigation was good. Two aircraft failed to return, they were Stirling 1 BK604 captained by P/O J McCullough and Stirling 1 R9280 captained by P/O K.H. Blincoe. This was a sad loss as they were two of the oldest captains in the Squadron, with them was also lost Sergt. Scott and P/O Henderson, two new captains gaining experience as second pilot. This leaving us with two headless crews.

Stirling Mk.I BK619 AA-X

Sgt. Peter John Oswald Buck, RNZAF NZ413377 – Pilot.
P/O Alexander Fielding Minnis, RAFVR 126499 – Navigator.
Sgt. A.P. Sadler, RAFVR 1379771 – Air Bomber.
P/O John Henry Symons, RCAF R.77568/ J.16507 – Wireless Operator.
Sgt. J.W. Jones, RAFVR 1068491 – Flight Engineer.
Sgt. J. Watson, RAFVR 1021021 – Mid Upper Gunner.
Sgt. Brian Arthur Rogers, RAFVR 1384352 – Rear Gunner.

Take Off 18:18 – Landed 00:20
Flight Time 06:02

04/02/1943 – Attack Against Targets at Turin
Seven aircraft were detailed to attack the above target with bombs of 1,000 lb. 500 lb., and 4 lb. incendiaries. Only five aircraft attacked the target, two returning early, one due to turret and inter comm., trouble and the other as the aircraft failed to climb over the Alps, he therefore bombed and objective in occupied France. The five aircraft attacking the target successfully did so on P.F.F. markers, large fires were seen from their own and other incendiaries. Light and heavy A.A. fire was encountered, which was inaccurate. A few searchlights were also operating. Some enemy aircraft were seen, but no combat took please. Heavy cloud was hit in France but the weather was good with clear visibility at the target area. Navigation was very good, by D.R. T.H., and visual. This /is considered to be a very good and concentrated operation.

Stirling Mk.I BK619 AA-X

Sgt. Peter John Oswald Buck, RNZAF NZ413377 – Pilot.
P/O Alexander Fielding Minnis, RAFVR 126499 – Navigator.
Sgt. A.P. Sadler, RAFVR 1379771 – Air Bomber.
P/O John Henry Symons, RCAF R.77568/ J.16507 – Wireless Operator.
Sgt. J.W. Jones, RAFVR 1068491 – Flight Engineer.
Sgt. J. Watson, RAFVR 1021021 – Mid Upper Gunner.
Sgt. Brian Arthur Rogers, RAFVR 1384352 – Rear Gunner.

Take Off 18:05 – Landed 02:20
Flight Time 08:15

07/02/1943 – Attack Against Targets at Lorient
Nine aircraft were detailed to attack the above target with bombs of 1,000 lb. and 4 lb. incendiaries. Eight of the aircraft attacked the target, the other aircraft returning early as the inter comm. became u/s. All bombs were successfully dropped in the target area, large fires were seen which lit up the whole of the town. The smoke from these fires was rising to a height of 8,000 feet. This operation is considered to have been an exceedingly good show. Some A.A. fire and searchlights were encountered but they were very accurate. Enemy aircraft were also seen but none of them attacked. The weather was excellent with clear visibility. Navigation was very good.

Stirling Mk.I BK619 AA-X

Sgt. Peter John Oswald Buck, RNZAF NZ413377 – Pilot.
F/O Alexander Fielding Minnis, RAFVR 126499 – Navigator.
Sgt. A.P. Sadler, RAFVR 1379771 – Air Bomber.
F/S Frank Arthur Stevens, RAFVR 942319 – Wireless Operator.
Sgt. J.W. Jones, RAFVR 1068491 – Flight Engineer.
Sgt. J. Watson, RAFVR 1021021 – Mid Upper Gunner.
Sgt. Brian Arthur Rogers, RAFVR 1384352 – Rear Gunner.

Take Off 19:10 – Landed 00:20
Flight Time 05:10

13/02/1943 – Attack Against Targets at Lorient
Eleven aircraft were detailed to carry out the above operation with bombs of 1,000 lb. and 4 lb. incendiaries. Nine aircraft are known to have successfully attacked the target, of the other two, one returned early owing to the mid upper and front turrets being u/s and the other aircraft failed to return. Fires were burning fiercely in the target area, although they appeared to be scattered. F/Lt. Trott had his aircraft damaged by flak at the target, the number two tank on the port side was holed, the trimming tab was hit and his aerial was shot off. He preceded to Middle Wallop and landed safely. Both heavy and light flak was encountered which was intense at first but later spasmodic and appeared to be swamped. Searchlights were seen in the early part of the attack but later went out. Some enemy aircraft were seen but no attacks were made. The weather was very good with clear visibility and no cloud. Navigation was very good. The missing aircraft was Stirling 1 R9316 captained by Sgt. R.A. Williams.

Stirling Mk.I BK619 AA-X

Sgt. Peter John Oswald Buck, RNZAF NZ413377 – Pilot.
P/O Alexander Fielding Minnis, RAFVR 126499 – Navigator.
Sgt. A.P. Sadler, RAFVR 1379771 – Air Bomber.
P/O John Henry Symons, RCAF R.77568/ J.16507 – Wireless Operator.
Sgt. J.W. Jones, RAFVR 1068491 – Flight Engineer.
Sgt. J. Watson, RAFVR 1021021 – Mid Upper Gunner.
Sgt. Brian Arthur Rogers, RAFVR 1384352 – Rear Gunner.

Take Off 17:45 – Landed 23:05
Flight Time 05:20

14/02/1943 – Attack Against Targets at Cologne
Eight aircraft were detailed to attack the above target with bombs of 1,000 lb. and 4 lb. incendiaries. All of the aircraft, with the exception of one which returned early owing to engine trouble, successfully bombed the target in 10/10ths cloud by means of P.F.F. sky marker flares, so the success of the trip could not be judged, although a red glow was seen on the clouds as the aircraft left the target area. Heavy and light A.A. fire was encountered, mainly predicted. Several enemy aircraft were seen but no combats took place. There was broken cloud from base to enemy coast, which gradually built up to 10/10ths cloud at the target area. Navigation was very good. A stranger from 214 Squadron landed on our runway and made the aerodrome completely unserviceable. Three of our aircraft therefore, had to be diverted to Lakenheath and Waterbeach.

Stirling Mk.I BK619 AA-X

Sgt. Peter John Oswald Buck, RNZAF NZ413377 – Pilot.
P/O Alexander Fielding Minnis, RAFVR 126499 – Navigator.
Sgt. A.P. Sadler, RAFVR 1379771 – Air Bomber.
P/O John Henry Symons, RCAF R.77568/ J.16507 – Wireless Operator.
Sgt. J.W. Jones, RAFVR 1068491 – Flight Engineer.
Sgt. J. Watson, RAFVR 1021021 – Mid Upper Gunner.
Sgt. Brian Arthur Rogers, RAFVR 1384352 – Rear Gunner.

Take Off 18:25 – Landed 23:05
Flight Time 04:40

16/02/1943 – Attack Against Targets at Lorient
Seven aircraft were detailed to carry out the above attacks with bombs of 2,000 lb. 500 lb. and 4 lb. incendiaries. All the aircraft successfully bombed in the target area, large fires were seen in the whole area. Both heavy and light A.A. fire was encountered, which was very intense during the early part of the attack, but was dying down when later aircraft arrived. Searchlights were very accurate and coned several aircraft, one aircraft being held for 8 minutes, the pilot took very violent evasive action but eventually got clear after great difficulty. Several enemy aircraft were seen but no attacks were made. Over the target area there was very dispersed low cloud, although visibility was very good. Navigation was excellent.

Stirling Mk.I BK619 AA-X

Sgt. Peter John Oswald Buck, RNZAF NZ413377 – Pilot.
P/O Alexander Fielding Minnis, RAFVR 126499 – Navigator.
Sgt. A.P. Sadler, RAFVR 1379771 – Air Bomber.
P/O John Henry Symons, RCAF R.77568/ J.16507 – Wireless Operator.
Sgt. J.W. Jones, RAFVR 1068491 – Flight Engineer.
Sgt. J. Watson, RAFVR 1021021 – Mid Upper Gunner.
Sgt. Brian Arthur Rogers, RAFVR 1384352 – Rear Gunner.

Take Off 19:06 – Landed 00:06
Flight Time 05:00

18/02/1943 – Mining in the Gironde Estuary
Seven aircraft were detailed to carry out the above operation, with mines of 1500 lb. six of the aircraft successfully dropped their mines in the allotted area and the majority of the parachutes were seen to open. One aircraft met flak at Cherbourg which proved to be quite accurate, but the aircraft was not hit. No searchlights were seen. Three enemy aircraft were seen but no attacks were made. The weather over the mining area was hazy, with visibility fair to good. Navigation was very good.

Mk.I BK619 AA-X

Sgt. Peter John Oswald Buck, RNZAF NZ413377 – Pilot.
P/O Alexander Fielding Minnis, RAFVR 126499 – Navigator.
Sgt. A.P. Sadler, RAFVR 1379771 – Air Bomber.
P/O John Henry Symons, RCAF R.77568/ J.16507 – Wireless Operator.
Sgt. J.W. Jones, RAFVR 1068491 – Flight Engineer.
Sgt. J. Watson, RAFVR 1021021 – Mid Upper Gunner.
Sgt. Brian Arthur Rogers, RAFVR 1384352 – Rear Gunner.

Take Off 18:40 – Landed 01:40
Flight Time 07:00

05/03/1943 – Attack Against Targets at Essen
Nine aircraft were detailed to attack the above target with bombs of 2,000 lb. 1,00lb. and incendiaries of 30 lb. and 4 lb. Unfortunately, one aircraft crashed one minute after take-off as one of the engines seized, the pilot however, made a good crash landing and he and the crew escaped unhurt. Another aircraft was forced to return early owing to engine trouble. The remaining seven aircraft successfully dropped their bombs in the target area. A very large concentration of fires were seen with huge buildings in their midst, leaving no doubt as to the success of the operation. The glow from the fires was seen at the Dutch coast as our aircraft were homeward bound. Both light and heavy intense A.A. fire co-operating with searchlights, were encountered. A few enemy aircraft were seen but no combats took place, There was slight ground haze at the target, although visibility was very good. Navigation was very good. For the success of the operation a message of congratulations was received from the Air Officer Commanding-in-Chief.

Stirling Mk.I BK619 AA-X

Sgt. Peter John Oswald Buck, RNZAF NZ413377 – Pilot.
P/O Alexander Fielding Minnis, RAFVR 126499 – Navigator.
Sgt. A.P. Sadler, RAFVR 1379771 – Air Bomber.
P/O John Henry Symons, RCAF R.77568/ J.16507 – Wireless Operator.
Sgt. J.W. Jones, RAFVR 1068491 – Flight Engineer.
Sgt. J. Watson, RAFVR 1021021 – Mid Upper Gunner.
Sgt. Brian Arthur Rogers, RAFVR 1384352 – Rear Gunner.

Take Off 19:10 – Landed 23:35
Flight Time 04:25

08/03/1943 – Attack Against Targets at Nurenburg
Nine aircraft were detailed to carry out the above attack with bombs of 2,000 lb. 1,000 lb. 500 lb and incendiaries of 30 lb. and 4 lb. One aircraft returned early owing to engine trouble and another failed to return. The remaining seven aircraft successfully dropped their bombs in the target area, large fires being seen, one large explosion from the centre of target, was seen one hundred miles away as the aircraft were returning. Both light and heavy A.A. fire was encountered co-operating with searchlights, they however, proved to be ineffective. Stirling 1 BK646 captained by P/O Lowe, was attacked by an enemy aircraft near Saarbrucken on the return journey. The enemy aircraft opened fire with cannon and a stream of tracer came into the cockpit, one exploding near the second pilot’s leg. Corkscrew tactics were adopted, but after seven minutes the enemy aircraft was lost. The only casualties were the second pilot, who was wounded in the leg and the Captain, who had slight face cuts. The aircraft successfully returned to base. There was a slight haze at the target, although visibility fairly good. Navigation was very good. The missing aircraft was Stirling 1 BF437, captained by Sergeant C.R. Davey.

Stirling Mk.I BK619 AA-X

Sgt. Peter John Oswald Buck, RNZAF NZ413377 – Pilot.
F/S Kevin Frederick Debenham
P/O Alexander Fielding Minnis, RAFVR 126499 – Navigator.
Sgt. A.P. Sadler, RAFVR 1379771 – Air Bomber.
P/O John Henry Symons, RCAF R.77568/ J.16507 – Wireless Operator.
Sgt. J.W. Jones, RAFVR 1068491 – Flight Engineer.
Sgt. J. Watson, RAFVR 1021021 – Mid Upper Gunner.
Sgt. Brian Arthur Rogers, RAFVR 1384352 – Rear Gunner.

Take Off 19:40 – Landed 03:15
Flight Time 07:35

09/03/1943 – Attack Against Targets at Munich
Five aircraft were detailed to carry out the above attack, with bombs of 1,000 lb. 500lb. and incendiaries of 30 lb. and 4 lb. One aircraft however, got too far off track on the way to the target; after futile attempts to get back on correct course, the mission had to be abandoned. The remaining four aircraft successfully dropped their bombs in the target area, intense fires being seen, black smoke was rising from these fires up to a height of 10,000 feet. One large explosion was also seen from the centre of the target. Both light and heavy A.A. fire was encountered which was intense at first but was dying down as the attack developed. Visibility was very good and ground detail could be seen clearly. Navigation was very good.

Stirling Mk.I BK619 AA-X

Sgt. Peter John Oswald Buck, RNZAF NZ413377 – Pilot.
P/O Alexander Fielding Minnis, RAFVR 126499 – Navigator.
Sgt. A.P. Sadler, RAFVR 1379771 – Air Bomber.
P/O John Henry Symons, RCAF R.77568/ J.16507 – Wireless Operator.
Sgt. J.W. Jones, RAFVR 1068491 – Flight Engineer.
Sgt. J. Watson, RAFVR 1021021 – Mid Upper Gunner.
Sgt. Brian Arthur Rogers, RAFVR 1384352 – Rear Gunner.

Take Off 20:25 – Landed 03:55
Flight Time 07:30

11/03/1943 – Attack Against Targets at Stuttgart
Nine aircraft were detailed to carry out the above attacks with bombs of 30 lb. and 4 lb. incendiaries. One of the aircraft, however, failed to take off as it proved to be unserviceable. The remaining eight aircraft successfully dropped their incendiaries in the target area. There were heavy fires, which were well concentrated in the centre of the town. There was a moderate amount of heavy A.A. fire which was co-operating with searchlights, one aircraft being coned for two minutes but he escaped unscathed. Some enemy aircraft were seen but no combats took place. There was slight have over the target area although visibility was good and ground detail could be seen. Navigation was very good.

Stirling Mk.I BK619 AA-X

Sgt. Peter John Oswald Buck, RNZAF NZ413377 – Pilot.
P/O Alexander Fielding Minnis, RAFVR 126499 – Navigator.
Sgt. A.P. Sadler, RAFVR 1379771 – Air Bomber.
P/O John Henry Symons, RCAF R.77568/ J.16507 – Wireless Operator.
Sgt. J.W. Jones, RAFVR 1068491 – Flight Engineer.
Sgt. J. Watson, RAFVR 1021021 – Mid Upper Gunner.
Sgt. Brian Arthur Rogers, RAFVR 1384352 – Rear Gunner.

Take Off 20:00 – Landed 02:15
Flight Time 06:15

12/03/1943 – Attack Against Targets at Essen
Seven aircraft were detailed to carry out the above attack with bombs of 2,000 lb. 1,000 lb. and incendiaries of 30 lb. and 4 lb. One aircraft, however, returned early owing to the rear turret being unserviceable, the remaining six aircraft successfully dropped their bombs in the target area. Large fire were seen, which lit up the whole of the area, one crew reported that they saw two large explosions which appeared to come from the Krupps works. Both heavy and light A.A. fire was encountered. It was intense, although not too bad considering the target, the searchlights however, proved to be troublesome. Some enemy aircraft were seen, but no combats took place. There was smoke and haze over the target, although visibility was fairly good. Navigation was very good.

Stirling Mk.I BK619 AA-X

Sgt. Peter John Oswald Buck, RNZAF NZ413377 – Pilot.
P/O Alexander Fielding Minnis, RAFVR 126499 – Navigator.
Sgt. A.P. Sadler, RAFVR 1379771 – Air Bomber.
P/O John Henry Symons, RCAF R.77568/ J.16507 – Wireless Operator.
Sgt. J.W. Jones, RAFVR 1068491 – Flight Engineer.
Sgt. J. Watson, RAFVR 1021021 – Mid Upper Gunner.
Sgt. Brian Arthur Rogers, RAFVR 1384352 – Rear Gunner.

Take Off 19:40 – Landed 23:45
Flight Time 04:05

18/03/1943 – Mining in the Gironde Estuary

Stirling Mk.I AA-

SGT. Peter John Oswald Buck, RNZAF NZ413377 – Pilot.
P/O Alexander Fielding Minnis, RAFVR 126499 – Navigator.
SGT. A.P. Sadler, RAFVR 1379771 – Air Bomber.
P/O John Henry Symons, RCAF R.77568/ J.16507 – Wireless Operator.
Sgt. J.W. Jones, RAFVR 1068491 – Flight Engineer.
Sgt. J. Watson, RAFVR 1021021 – Mid Upper Gunner.
Sgt. Brian Arthur Rogers, RAFVR 1384352 – Rear Gunner.

Take Off 18:40 – Landed 01:40
Flight Time 07:00

22/03/1943 – Attack Against Targets at St. Nazaire
Nine aircraft were detailed to carry out the above attack with 30 lb. 4 lb. incendiary bombs. One aircraft however, failed to take off as it was found to be unserviceable. A general recall, however, was broadcast when the aircraft were about twenty minutes from the target. They all brought their bombs back with the exception of one, which was forced to jettison them.

Stirling Mk.I BK619 AA-X

Sgt. Peter John Oswald Buck, RNZAF NZ413377 – Pilot.
Sgt. Alfred Edward Lewis
P/O Alexander Fielding Minnis, RAFVR 126499 – Navigator.
Sgt. A.P. Sadler, RAFVR 1379771 – Air Bomber.
P/O John Henry Symons, RCAF R.77568/ J.16507 – Wireless Operator.
Sgt. J.W. Jones, RAFVR 1068491 – Flight Engineer.
Sgt. J. Watson, RAFVR 1021021 – Mid Upper Gunner.
Sgt. Brian Arthur Rogers, RAFVR 1384352 – Rear Gunner.

Take Off 18:50 – Landed 23:05
Flight Time 04:15

27/03/1943 – Attack Against Targets at Berlin
Eleven aircraft were detailed to carry out the above attacks with bombs of 1,000lb. And incendiaries of 30lb. And 4lb. One of the aircraft returned early, as it failed to maintain height . The remaining ten aircraft successfully dropped their bombs in the target area. It was difficult to judge the effectiveness of our bombs, as there was thick ground haze. Two aircraft were hit by A.A. fire, which was intense. But not effective. Many searchlights were also seen, which were co-operating with the A.A. defences. A few enemy aircraft were seen, but no combats took place. The weather was not very good, although it was fairly clear over the target except for ground haze. Navigation was good.

Stirling Mk.I BK619 AA-X

Sgt. Peter John Oswald Buck, RNZAF NZ413377 – Pilot.
P/O Alexander Fielding Minnis, RAFVR 126499 – Navigator.
Sgt. A.P. Sadler, RAFVR 1379771 – Air Bomber.
P/O John Henry Symons, RCAF R.77568/ J.16507 – Wireless Operator.
Sgt. J.W. Jones, RAFVR 1068491 – Flight Engineer.
Sgt. J. Watson, RAFVR 1021021 – Mid Upper Gunner.
Sgt. Brian Arthur Rogers, RAFVR 1384352 – Rear Gunner.

Take Off 19:40 – Landed 03:50
Flight Time 08:10

29/03/1943 – Attack Against Targets at Berlin
Ten aircraft were detailed to carry out the above attacks, with bombs of 1000 lb. and incendiaries of 30 lb. and 4 lb. Two of the aircraft failed to take-off, as they were found to be unserviceable and three returned early. The remaining five aircraft successfully dropped their bombs in the target area. Very large fires were seen, which were well concentrated and spreading. The glow from these fires was seen 100 miles away on the homeward journey. Intense heavy and light A.A. fire was encountered, with many searchlights co-operation all round the city. One aircraft was slightly damaged by A.A. fire. Some enemy aircraft were seen but no combats took place. The weather was clear, although hazy. Visibility however, was fairly good. Navigation was good.

Stirling Mk.I BK619 AA-X

Sgt. Peter John Oswald Buck, RNZAF NZ413377 – Pilot.
P/O Alexander Fielding Minnis, RAFVR 126499 – Navigator.
Sgt. A.P. Sadler, RAFVR 1379771 – Air Bomber.
P/O John Henry Symons, RCAF R.77568/ J.16507 – Wireless Operator.
Sgt. J.W. Jones, RAFVR 1068491 – Flight Engineer.
Sgt. J. Watson, RAFVR 1021021 – Mid Upper Gunner.
P/O Brian Arthur Rogers, RAFVR 1384352 – Rear Gunner.

Take Off 21:45 – Landed 05:00
Flight Time 07:15

04/04/1943 – Attack Against Targets at Kiel
Ten aircraft were detailed to attack the above targets, with incendiaries of 30 lb. and 4 lb. Four of the aircraft however returned early owing to engine trouble and one of the aircraft failed to take-off. The remaining five aircraft successfully bombed the target, although it was impossible to accurately assess results owing to heavy cloud, but nevertheless red glows were seen silhouetted against the clouds. Both light and heavy A.A. Fire was encountered, with searchlights co-operating. Some enemy aircraft were seen, but no combats took place. There was ten tenths cloud in the target area and visibility was not very good. Navigation was very good.

Stirling Mk.I BK619 AA-X

Sgt. Peter John Oswald Buck, RNZAF NZ413377 – Pilot.
F/O Alexander Fielding Minnis, RAFVR 126499 – Navigator.
Sgt. A.P. Sadler, RAFVR 1379771 – Air Bomber.
P/O John Henry Symons, RCAF R.77568/ J.16507 – Wireless Operator.
Sgt. J.W. Jones, RAFVR 1068491 – Flight Engineer.
Sgt. J. Watson, RAFVR 1021021 – Mid Upper Gunner.
Sgt. Brian Arthur Rogers, RAFVR 1384352 – Rear Gunner.

Take Off 20:30 – Landed 02:35
Flight Time 06:05

08/04/1943 – Attack Against Targets at Duisburg
Nine aircraft were detailed to carry out the above attacks, with bombs of 1000 lb. and incendiaries of 30 lb. and 4 lb. Four of the aircraft however were forced to return early owing to severe icing conditions, which prevented the aircraft from gaining height. Four of the remaining aircraft successfully bombed the target through cloud. Large fires were seen glowing below the clouds. A fair amount of heavy predicted A.A. Fire was encountered, some enemy aircraft were seen, but no combats took place. The weather was 10/10ths cloud, with electrical storms, rain and severe icing. Which prevented this operation from being a complete success. Navigation was very good. Stirling III, BK770, captained by W/O Walsh, was returning to base at 01.10 hours a message was received from him, but this was the last heard of the aircraft until it was reported to have crashed at Bressingham, Norfolk, soon after this time. The aircraft exploded on impact and burnt out, and unfortunately the whole of the crew were killed.

Stirling Mk.I BK619 DNC AA-X

Sgt. Peter John Oswald Buck, RNZAF NZ413377 – Pilot.
Sgt. Keith Halliburton, RNZAF NZ415411 – 2nd Pilot.
F/O Alexander Fielding Minnis, RAFVR 126499 – Navigator.
Sgt. A.P. Sadler, RAFVR 1379771 – Air Bomber.
Sgt. Arthur John Wilson Bodley, RNZAF NZ414538 – Wireless Operator.
Sgt. J.W. Jones, RAFVR 1068491 – Flight Engineer.
Sgt. J. Watson, RAFVR 1021021 – Mid Upper Gunner.
Sgt. Brian Arthur Rogers, RAFVR 1384352 – Rear Gunner.

Take Off 21:30 – Landed 23:15
Flight Time 01:45

10/04/1943 – Attack Against Targets at Frankfurt
Twelve aircraft were detailed to attack the above targets with bombs of 1000lb and incendiaries of 30lb and 4lb. Three aircraft were forced to return early as they failed to maintain height. Eight of the remaining aircraft successfully dropped their bombs in the target area. It was not possible to see the target owing to thick cloud, a large red glow was nevertheless seen. Both light and heavy A.A fire co-operating with searchlights was encountered, although they were ineffective. Several enemy aircraft were seen and two short combats took place. There was 10/10ths cloud in the target area, but it was clear and dark above our aircraft. Navigations was excellent. Stirling III, BF455 captained by F/Sgt. Rothschild was hit over the target by A.A. Fire and also chased by enemy Fighters. This caused him to run short of Petrol over the English Channel on the way home, and he eventually crash landed in the sea, 3 miles off Shoreham. The wireless procedure had been perfect, and Spitfires escorted it over the French coast, and a Walrus Flying Boat was waiting for it to crash land. Dingy drill was perfect and all the crew got in safely after an immaculate landing – the Stirling floating for 25 minutes. The final scene was enacted in the Channel as the Walrus collided with the Dinghy and dropped all the crew in the sea. No Ill-effects except for Sgt. Grainger, the Flight Engineer, who suffered from shock. Stirling III BF456 captained by Sgt. Webb failed to return.

Stirling Mk.I BK619 AA-X

Sgt. Peter John Oswald Buck, RNZAF NZ413377 – Pilot.
Sgt. Keith Halliburton, RNZAF NZ415411 – 2nd Pilot.
F/O Alexander Fielding Minnis, RAFVR 126499 – Navigator.
Sgt. A.P. Sadler, RAFVR 1379771 – Air Bomber.
P/O John Henry Symons, RCAF R.77568/ J.16507 – Wireless Operator.
Sgt. J.W. Jones, RAFVR 1068491 – Flight Engineer.
Sgt. J. Watson, RAFVR 1021021 – Mid Upper Gunner.
Sgt. Brian Arthur Rogers, RAFVR 1384352 – Rear Gunner.

Take Off 00:05 – Landed 05:50
Flight Time 05:45

22/04/1943 – Mining in the Gironde Estuary
Eight aircraft were detailed to carry out the above operation, with Mines of 1500 lbs. All of these aircraft successfully dropped their Mines in the allotted area, and the majority of the parachutes were seen to open. Two A.A. ships were in the mining area and light & heavy A.A. Fire co-operation with searchlights was encountered, but it was inaccurate. No enemy aircraft were seen. Eight tenths cloud was prevalent in the mining area, and patches of cloud provided cover for the aircraft. Navigation was excellent.

Stirling Mk.III BF517 AA-O

P/O Peter John Oswald Buck, RNZAF NZ413377 – Pilot.
F/O Alexander Fielding Minnis, RAFVR 126499 – Navigator.
Sgt. A.P. Sadler, RAFVR 1379771 – Air Bomber.
P/O John Henry Symons, RCAF R.77568/ J.16507 – Wireless Operator.
Sgt. J.W. Jones, RAFVR 1068491 – Flight Engineer.
Sgt. J. Watson, RAFVR 1021021 – Mid Upper Gunner.
Sgt. Brian Arthur Rogers, RAFVR 1384352 – Rear Gunner.

Take Off 21:05 – Landed 04:05
Flight Time 07:00

26/04/1943 – Attack Against Targets at Duisburg
Eight aircraft were detailed to attack the above targets with bombs of 1000 lb. and incendiaries of 30 lb. and 4 lb. One aircraft however failed to take-off as the pilot was sick. And two aircraft returned early. The remaining five aircraft successfully dropped their bombs in the target area, which was a mass of flames. Large concentrated fires being seen which were spreading. Very heavy A.A. Fire was experienced in the target area, which was mainly predicted and co-operation with cones of searchlights. Some enemy aircraft were seen and one combat took place. The weather was very good in the target area, but visibility was impaired by haze caused by the large fires. Navigation was very good. Stirling Mk.III BF517, captained by F/O P.J. Buck, was attacked by an unseen fighter when about 30 miles North of the target. The rudder and tail of the aircraft was damaged, and the rear gunner was mortally wounded. The fighter was evaded and by jettisoning all moveable objects height was maintained and the aircraft returned to base where a perfect crash landing was made. Besides the rear gunner who lost his like, minor injuries were also received by two other members of the crew.

Sgt. Brian Arthur Rogers, RAFVR 1384342 – Rear Gunner.
Killed age 22.
Son of Arthur John and Evelyn Laura Rogers, of Leyton.
Buried City of London Cemetery, Manor Park, East Ham, London, England..
Grave location – Screen Wall. Square 241. Coll. grave 108018.

AIR50/192/89 Combat Report Stirling Mk.I BK619 AA-X Pilot P/O Peter John Oswald Buck, RNZAF NZ413377/ Rear Gunner Sgt. Brian Arthur Rogers, RAFVR 1384352 (Killed in action)
51deg 50′ N., 06deg 42′ E. 15000 ft. 0233 hrs

Stirling III on run-up to the target when at a position 51deg 50′ N., 06deg 42′ E it was attacked by an unidentified E/A. Our A/C was flying at 15000 ft on a course of 197deg M with an I.A.S. of 155 m.p.h. visibility was poor being 200-300 yards with no moon.

Three minutes after our A/C had made an alteration of course of 120deg on to the last short leg into the target area, a burst of cannon fire was delivered from the star-board fine quarter level (position of attack ascertained by strikes on our aircraft). The R/G (Sgt. Rogers) was badly wounded, dying 30 minutes later, and the rear turret was put out of action. The Captain of our aircraft on hearing the cannon strike executed a diving turn to port followed by a climbing turn to starboard. Approximately20 secs later a second attack was delivered from starboard quarter the E/A opening fire with cannon and M/Gun. As the rudder cables of our A/C had been shot away during the first attack the  pilot could only dive and climb to evade the fire of the E/A.

During the second attack the starboard outer engine was hit, the flaps damaged and the M.W. aerial shot away. There were strikes in the bomb bay causing the incendiaries to ignite so the bomb load was jettisoned and our A/C turned a reciprocal course. at the time of the first attack our A/C was silhouetted against fires in the target area. The E/A was not seen by any member of our crew. Height lost by our A/C during the two attacks was approximately 3,000 feet.
There was no S/L or flak activity prior to or during the encounter and the I.F.F. was off.

The wireless operator sustained a bullet wound in his right hand and the M/U gunner had his face pitted with perspex splinters

Stirling Mk.I BK619 AA-X

P/O Peter John Oswald Buck, RNZAF NZ413377 – Pilot.
F/L Edward Robert Myddleton Appleton, RAF 42475 – 2nd Pilot.
F/O Alexander Fielding Minnis, RAFVR 126499 – Navigator.
Sgt. A.P. Sadler, RAFVR 1379771 – Air Bomber.
P/O John Henry Symons, RCAF R.77568/ J.16507 – Wireless Operator.
Sgt. J.W. Jones, RAFVR 1068491 – Flight Engineer.
Sgt. J. Watson, RAFVR 1021021 – Mid Upper Gunner.
Sgt. Brian Arthur Rogers, RAFVR 1384352 – Rear Gunner.

Take Off 00:15 – Landed 04:15
Flight Time 04:00

Citation DFC (Imm) (22 May 1943):
“One night in April 1943 Pilot Officers Buck and Symons [RCAF] were pilot and navigator repectively of an aircraft detailed to attack Duisburg. Whilst over the target area, the aircraft was attacked by an enemy fighter and sustained much damage. The rear gunner was mortally wounded, while Pilot Officer Symons was wounded in the hand. Pilot Officer Buck succeeded in evading the attacker and set course for base. On the return flight the damaged bomber became difficult to control and when one of the engines failed, the aircraft began to lose height. All moveable equipment was jettisoned and, height being maintained, Pilot Officer Buck flew the aircraft back to base where he effected a perfect crash-landing. During the return flight, Pilot Officer Symons, in spite of his injury, did all within his power to help his pilot, obtaining a number of fixes which proved of great assistance. In a most difficult situation these officers displayed courage. skill and determination of a high order”