J. Pryse crew 20.12.43

22/12/1943 – Attack against a Special Target
Six aircraft were detailed to attack the above target with bombs of 500lbs. All of the aircraft successfully dropped their bombs in the target area. Bombing was very concentrated and some large explosions were observed. Very little opposition was met and it proved negligible. It was clear over the target except for scattered cloud. Navigation was excellent.

Stirling Mk.III LJ462 AA-O

F/O Eric Francis Witting, RNZAF NZ415212 – Pilot.
Sgt. J. Pryse, RAFVR 1317042 – 2nd Pilot.
F/O William Edwin Anderson, RNZAF NZ416073 – Navigator.
Sgt. Jack Thomas, RAFVR 138463 – Air Bomber.
F/S Glen Osmond Marshall, RNZAF NZ416011 – Wireless Operator.
Sgt. A.R. Gunn , RAFVR 1583849 – Flight Engineer.
F/S R.E. Morfett, RAFVR 1388316 – Mid Upper Gunner.
F/L William Edward McAlpine, RAFVR 115790 – Rear Gunner (Gunnery Leader).

Take Off 21:00 – Landed 00:00
Flight Time 03:00

20/12/1943 – Mining off the Frisian Islands
Five aircraft were detailed to carry out the above operation with mines of 1500lbs, which were all successfully dropped in the allotted area and the parachutes were seen to open. The trip was uneventful, no opposition of any kind being encountered. There was no cloud but visibility was poor. Navigation was very good.

Stirling Mk.III EF152 ??-?

Sgt. J. Pryse, RAFVR 1317042 – Pilot.
P/O Gordon Wilfred Leslie Fairhall, RNZAF NZ416204 – Navigator.
Sgt. A. Evans, RAFVR 1316222 – Air Bomber.
Sgt. R. Butler, RAFVR 1213405 – Wireless Operator.
Sgt. H. Morgan, RAFVR 992422 – Flight Engineer.
Sgt. Francis Patrick Breen, RAAF AUS.419288 – Mid Upper Gunner.
Sgt. J. Gordon , RAFVR 1348378 – Rear Gunner.

Take Off 17:25 – Landed 20:25
Flight Time 03:00

30/12/1943 – Mining in the Gironde Estuary
Two aircraft were detailed to carry out the above operation with mines of 1500lbs, which were dropped in the allotted area. This trip was uneventful and successful., no opposition being encountered. There was patchy cloud in the mining area, but visibility was good. Navigation was excellent.

Stirling Mk.III LK396 ??-?

Sgt. J. Pryse, RAFVR 1317042 – Pilot.
P/O Gordon Wilfred Leslie Fairhall, RNZAF NZ416204 – Navigator.
Sgt. A. Evans, RAFVR 1316222 – Air Bomber.
Sgt. R. Butler, RAFVR 1213405 – Wireless Operator.
Sgt. H. Morgan, RAFVR 992422 – Flight Engineer.
Sgt. Francis Patrick Breen, RAAF AUS.419288 – Mid Upper Gunner.
Sgt. J. Gordon , RAFVR 1348378 – Rear Gunner.

Take Off 02:35 – Landed 08:35
Flight Time 06:00

04/01/1944 – Attack against a Special Target
Ten aircraft were detailed to attack the above target with bombs of 500 lbs. All of the aircraft successfully dropped their bombs in the target area. The attack was very concentrated and appeared to be a success. Some slight heavy A.A. Fire and a few enemy aircraft were encountered but proved negligible. In spite of 3-4 10ths. cloud at the target, visibility was good. Navigation was very good.

Stirling Mk.III LK378 ??- ?

F/S J. Pryse, RAFVR 1317042 – Pilot.
F/O Gordon Wilfred Leslie Fairhall, RNZAF NZ416204 – Navigator.
Sgt. A. Allen, RAF – Air Bomber.
P/O William John Lake, RNZAF NZ416121 – Wireless Operator .
Sgt. H. Morgan, RAFVR 992422 – Flight Engineer.
Sgt. Francis Patrick Breen, RAAF AUS.419288 – Mid Upper Gunner.
Sgt. J. Gordon, RAFVR 1348378 – Rear Gunner.

Take Off 02:10 – Landed 05:10
Flight Time 03:00

06/01/1944 – Mining in the Gironde Estuary
Eight aircraft were detailed to carry out the above operation with mines of 1,500 lbs., which were dropped in the allotted area. This was a successful and uneventful operation, some A.A. Fire was encountered but no aircraft received any damage. A few enemy aircraft were seen, and one short combat took place and the enemy aircraft was claimed as damaged. The weather was good with no cloud and visibility was perfect. Navigation was excellent.

Stirling Mk.III LK378 ??-?

F/S J. Pryse, RAFVR 1317042 – Pilot.
F/O Gordon Wilfred Leslie Fairhall, RNZAF NZ416204 – Navigator.
Sgt. A. Evans, RAFVR 1316222 – Air Bomber.
Sgt. R. Butler, RAFVR – Wireless Operator .
Sgt. H. Morgan, RAFVR 992422 – Flight Engineer.
Sgt. Francis Patrick Breen, RAAF AUS.419288 – Mid Upper Gunner.
Sgt. J. Gordon, RAFVR 1348378 – Rear Gunner.

Take Off 16:25 – Landed 01:25
Flight Time 09:00

11/02/1944 – Mining off Mouth of River Ardour
Of the nine aircraft which were laying mines of 1500 lbs off the mouth of the river ADOUR, all but one did so though it meant flying down through very bad icing cloud and in these conditions one jettisoned to lighten the load.

Stirling Mk.III EF513 ??-E

F/S J. Pryse, RAFVR 1317042 – Pilot.
F/O Gordon Wilfred Leslie Fairhall, RNZAF NZ416204 – Navigator.
F/S Rhys Webb Jones, RAAF AUS.410064 – Air Bomber.
Sgt. R. Butler, RAFVR – Wireless Operator .
Sgt. Piers Trevor Stevens, RAFVR 1813627 – Flight Engineer.
F/S Francis Patrick Breen, RAAF AUS.419288 – Mid Upper Gunner.
Sgt. J. Gordon, RAFVR 1348378 – Rear Gunner.

Take Off 18:30 – Landed 02:10
Flight Time 07:40

15/02/1944 – Mining in the Kiel Bay
Fifteen aircraft were detailed to lay mines in Kiel Bay. Fourteen aircraft dropped 42 mines in 10 minutes. One aircraft returned early with a starboard engine failure. A very successful operation.

Stirling Mk.III LJ462 AA-O

F/S J. Pryse, RAFVR 1317042 – Pilot.
F/O Gordon Wilfred Leslie Fairhall, RNZAF NZ416204 – Navigator.
W/O Murray Donald Donovan, RCAF R.99243/ J.90716 – Air Bomber.
Sgt. R. Butler, RAFVR – Wireless Operator .
Sgt. Piers Trevor Stevens, RAFVR 1813627 – Flight Engineer.
F/S Francis Patrick Breen, RAAF AUS.419288 – Mid Upper Gunner.
Sgt. J. Gordon, RAFVR 1348378 – Rear Gunner.

Take Off 17:30 – Landed 23:45
Flight Time 06:15

20/02/1944 – Mining off Cherbourg
Two aircraft successfully laid mines of 1,500 lbs off Cherbourg Harbour.

Stirling Mk.III EF152 ??-?

F/S J. Pryse, RAFVR 1317042 – Pilot.
F/O Gordon Wilfred Leslie Fairhall, RNZAF NZ416204 – Navigator.
F/S Brian Simmett, RAFVR 1392577 – Air Bomber.
Sgt. R. Butler, RAFVR – Wireless Operator .
Sgt. Arthur William Horner, RAFVR 1641609 – Flight Engineer.
F/S Francis Patrick Breen, RAAF AUS.419288 – Mid Upper Gunner.
Sgt. J. Gordon, RAFVR 1348378 – Rear Gunner.

Take Off 19:05 – Landed 22:20
Flight Time 03:15

22/02/1944 – Mining in Kiel Bay
Fifteen aircraft were detailed to lay mines of 1,500 lbs in Kiel Bay. After being airborne for one hour all of the aircraft were recalled owing to unsuitable weather conditions.

Stirling Mk.III EF152 dnc ??-?

F/S J. Pryse, RAFVR 1317042 – Pilot.
F/O Gordon Wilfred Leslie Fairhall, RNZAF NZ416204 – Navigator.
F/S A. Evans, RAFVR 1316222 – Air Bomber.
Sgt. R. Butler, RAFVR – Wireless Operator .
Sgt. H. Morgan, RAFVR 992422 – Flight Engineer.
F/S Francis Patrick Breen, RAAF AUS.419288 – Mid Upper Gunner.
Sgt. J. Gordon, RAFVR 1348378 – Rear Gunner.

Take Off 16:50 – Landed 19:40
Flight Time 02:50

25/02/1944 – Mining in Baltic Sea
Fifteen aircraft were detailed to lay mines of 1500 lbs, south of Zealand, an island in the Baltic Sea. Thirteen aircraft completed their mission successfully. The weather was good with excellent visibility. One aircraft (Captain NZ421803 F/Sgt. Willis W.) encountered six JU.88s, four of which fired short bursts, our rear gunner and mid-upper gunner returning fire. Our aircraft was not damaged and no claims were made on the enemy aircraft. Two aircraft returned early with engine trouble.

Stirling Mk.III EF137 AA-E

F/S J. Pryse, RAFVR 1317042 – Pilot.
F/O Gordon Wilfred Leslie Fairhall, RNZAF NZ416204 – Navigator.
F/S A. Evans, RAFVR 1316222 – Air Bomber.
Sgt. R. Butler, RAFVR – Wireless Operator .
Sgt. C. W. Gibbs, RAFVR 1277052 – Flight Engineer.
F/S Francis Patrick Breen, RAAF AUS.419288 – Mid Upper Gunner.
Sgt. J. Gordon, RAFVR 1348378 – Rear Gunner.

Take Off 19:40 – Landed 02:45
Flight Time 07:05