S

SACHTLER, Euan Wilfred

S/Ldr. Euan Wilfred Sachtler, RNZAF NZ41362 – Pilot.
Killed age 24 on the 2nd of May 1944.
Son of Wilfred Sachtler, and of Janet Louisa Sachtler (Nee Brown), of Dunedin, Otago, New Zealand.
Buried Poix-de-Picardie Churchyard, France..
Grave location – Row A. Coll. grave 15-17.

01/05/1944 – Attack Against Chambly
Sixteen aircraft were detailed to attack the marshalling yards at Chambly. Fifteen of these successfully attacked in clear weather, bombing being accurate. Two brief encounters with enemy aircraft took place and resulted in one being possibly damaged. One of our aircraft (Captain NZ41362 F/L. A/S/L. E.W. Sachtler) failed to return.

Lancaster Mk.I ME689 AA-Y

F/L Euan Wilfred Sachtler, RNZAF NZ41362 – Pilot.
F/O Allan Cleave Heron, RAFVR 133094 – Navigator.
P/O Michael Ferdinand Lombard, RAFVR 171913 – Air Bomber.
F/S Douglas John Mckenzie, RAAF AUS.417211 – Wireless Operator .
Sgt. Piers Trevor Stevens, RAFVR 1813627 – Flight Engineer.
F/S Thomas Alexander Peevers, RNZAF NZ417232 – Mid Upper Gunner.
Sgt. John Gilbert Pettifer, RAFVR 1247027 – Rear Gunner.

ME689 was shot down over France, crashing at St Arnault, 12 miles South West of Poix-de-la- Somme. There were no survivors and all seven crew were buried in a collective grave.


SAFFILL, Frederick Henry

Sgt. Frederick Henry Saffill, RAFVR 1882066 – Mid Upper Gunner.
Killed age 29 on the 26th of February 1945.
Son of Henry and Alice May Saffill, of Maldon; Husband of Eva Joan Saffill, of Maldon.
Buried Maldon Cemetery, Essex, England..
Grave location – Row 62. Grave 95.
‘So young, so active
So full of life;
He gave his life
That we might live’

26/02/1945 – Attack Against Dortmund
Eighteen aircraft attacked Dortmund as detailed. Cloud was ten tenths over the target with tops 5-6,000 ft. No results were seen but bombing is thought to be concentrated. NZ428168 F/O N.H. Thorpe crashed in this country after passing over base in formation. Four members of the crew were killed.

Lancaster Mk.I ME450 AA-W

F/O Noel Humphrey Thorpe, RNZAF NZ428168 – Pilot.
Sgt. George William Mcmanus, RAFVR 1806217 – Navigator.
F/S Joseph McKenzie Alfred, RAFVR 1810280 – Air Bomber.
F/S Allen Francis, RNZAF NZ427272 – Wireless Operator.
Sgt. John Lawrence Duke, RAFVR 2210530 – Flight Engineer.
F/S Frederick Henry Saffill, RAFVR 1882066 – Mid Upper Gunner.
Sgt. H. Hark, RAFVR – Rear Gunner.

The return from Dortmund
Official reports indicate that ME450 returned in formation and flew with other aircraft of the Squadron over the Station. As was customary, the aircraft would turn, separate and then format before approach and landing. For some reason unknown, whilst executing a gentle turn, ME450 appears to have suffered either an engine failure or catastrophic failure that resulted in it crashing into the ground North West of Mepal, near the village of Chatteris.


ST.LEDGER, Peter Sylvestor Anthony

F/O LEDGER, Peter Sylvester Anthony St. Ledger, RAAF AUS.425375 – Mid Upper Gunner.
Lost without trace age 21 on the 30th of July 1943.
Son of Dr. Anthony Waddington St. Ledger and Kathleen Josephine St. Ledger, of Hawthorne, Queensland, Australia.
Commemorated Runnymede Memorial, Surrey, England..
Grave location – Panel 189.

30/07/1943 – Attack Against Targets at Remscheld
Thirteen aircraft were detailed to attack the above targets with incendiary bombs of 30lb. And 4lb..One aircraft returned early as rear turret was unserviceable and two failed to return. The remainder successfully dropped their bombs in the target area, large concentrated fires and some explosions were seen. Moderate heavy and light A.A fire co-operating with searchlight belts were encountered, and one aircraft was slightly damaged in the mid- upper turret. Some enemy aircraft were seen, the aircraft captained by F/S. O. WHITE sighted an unidentified aircraft which attacked three times. Each time the mid upper and rear gunners fired a burst, and strikes were seen on the enemy aircraft which then fell away and claimed to be damaged. The weather was good with clear visibility except for haze caused by fires. Navigation was very good. On return, one aircraft landed at HARDWICK, due to shortage of petrol. The missing aircraft were Stirling Mk.III BF458 captained by Sgt. A.J. THOMAS and Stirling Mk.III EE915 captained by F/Sgt. J. DARNEY.

Stirling Mk.III EH905 AA-R
ORB says EE905 

F/S Jack Neville Darney, RNZAF NZ42376 – Pilot.
F/S Robert James Stone, RNZAF NZ415383 – Navigator.
Sgt. Ronald Charles George Evans, RAFVR 1390444 – Air Bomber.
Sgt. George Chamberlain Davies, RAFVR 1027862 – Wireless Operator.
P/O Leonard Charles Dive-Robinson, RAFVR 143800 – Flight Engineer.
P/O Peter Sylvester Anthony St. Ledger, RAAF AUS.425375 – Mid Upper Gunner.
Sgt. Terrance James Vercoe, RNZAF NZ415566 – Rear Gunner.

Stirling Mk.III EH905 AA-R was lost without trace. All seven crew are commemorated on the Runnymede Memorial.


ST.LOUIS, Michael Bertram

F/S Michael Bertram St.Louis, RCAF 69204 – Wireless Operator.
Lost without trace age 27 on the 10th of September 1942.
Buried Runnymede Memorial, Surrey, England.
Grave location – Panel 106.

10/09/1942 – Operations. Attack Against Targets At Dusseldorf
Thirteen aircraft were detailed to attack the above target. Bomb load of 4,000 lb. and incendiaries were dropped in target area, Wellington X.3747 captained by Sgt. Rousseau and Wellington BJ.837 captained by P/O Jacobson were forced to return to base before reaching target area. owing to aircraft failures. Large fires were seen, a few dummy fires were also seen near target. Light and heavy A.A. fire was encountered, particularly in searchlight cones, which covered a large area. The weather was good, slight haze at target area. Navigation was by D.R. and T.R. Wellington BJ.828 captained by Sergt. Lees, Wellington BJ.968 captained by Sgt. Burrill and Wellington BJ.974 captained by Sergt. Metcalf, failed to return.

Wellington Mk.III BJ.968 AA-W

Sgt. Frank Burrill, RCAF R.97521 – Pilot.
P/O Randolph Cruickshank Smart, RNZAF NZ411006 – Observer.
Sgt. Michael Bertram St. Louis, RCAF R.69204 – Wireless Operator.
Sgt. William Wilfred Henry Lavers, RAFVR R.83468 – Front Gunner.
Sgt. Ralph Ernest Gorman, RCAF R.93025 – Rear Gunner.

Wellington Mk.III BJ.968 AA-W was lost without trace. All five crew are commemorated on the Runnymede Memorial.

MB StLouis


SALT, Ian Charles

F/S Ian Charles Salt, RNZAF NZ404046 – Rear Gunner.
Killed age 20 on the 21st of April 1943.
Son of Charles Henry Salt and of Margaret Crawford Salt (Nee Boa), of Christchurch, Canterbury, New Zealand.
Buried Esbjerg (Fourfelt) Cemetery, Denmark..
Grave location – Coll. grave A. 11. 11-14.

20/04/1943 – Attack Against Targets at Rostock
Nine aircraft were detailed to attack the above targets with bombs of 1000 lb and incendiaries of 30 lb and 4 lb. Eight of the aircraft successfully attacked the target area. Some very large scale fires were seen but the attack was spoilt by a smoke screen which partly obscured the target. A.A. Fire was mainly confined to light tracer which was ineffective. Stirling Mk.III BF.518 captained by Sgt. Dalzell, collided with a Lancaster aircraft after leaving the target, and fortunately only slight damage was caused to the rudder and fin. After this hazardous experience he returned to base and made a perfect landing. Some enemy aircraft were seen in the target area, but no combats took place. The weather was very good and visibility was excellent. Navigation was very good. Stirling Mk.III, captained by P/O A.G. Tolley, failed to return.

Stirling Mk.III BF506 AA-P

P/O Alan Gray Tolley, RNZAF NZ411954 – Pilot.
F/S William Henry Ellis, RAFVR 1021328 – Navigator.
Sgt. Frank Wakefield Upton, RNZAF NZ404430 – Air Bomber.
Sgt. Cyril Thomas Cobb, RNZAF NZ412315 – Wireless Operator.
Sgt. Gerald Albert Raymond Town, RAFVR 1217965 – Flight Engineer.
Sgt. Frederick Joseph Earle, RAFVR 1332585 – Mid Upper Gunner.
Sgt. Ian Charles Salt, RNZAF NZ404046 – Rear Gunner.

Stirling Mk.III BF506 AA-P took off at 22:05 from Newmarket. It was last heard on W/T at 03:00 signalling ‘starboard inner on fire’. Nothing further was heard, and the Stirling crashed at 03:26 at Boegballe, 15km North of Vejle, Denmark.

It’s demise is reported as having been caused by a night-fighter attack. All rest in Esbjerg (Fourfelt) Cemetery.

nzwargraves.org.nz/casualties/ian-charles-salt © New Zealand War Graves Project

nzwargraves.org.nz/casualties/ian-charles-salt © New Zealand War Graves Project


SAMSON, George King

F/S George King Samson, RNZAF NZ402563 – Navigator.
Killed age 27 on the 23rd of June 1943.
Son of Walter and Margaret Samson, of Wellington City, New Zealand.
Buried Reichswald Forest War Cemetery, Germany..
Grave location – Coll. grave 19. G. 4-6.

22/06/1943 – Attack Against Targets at Mannheim (actually Mülheim)
Fifteen aircraft were detailed to attack the above targets with incendiary bombs of 30lbs and 4lbs. Four aircraft failed to return and the remainder successfully dropped their bombs in the target area. Large concentrated fires and some explosions were seen the whole RUHR area was smoke palled. A very heavy A.A. barrage co-operating with searchlights was encountered and five aircraft were slightly hit by A.A.fire, some enemy aircraft were seen and three short combats took place, but no damage was sustained by our aircraft. There was 3/10ths cloud on the target area but visibility was fairly good, except for smoke haze. Navigation was very good. The missing aircraft were Stirling Mk.I EF399 captained by F/S Burbidge, Mk.III EF408 captained by Sgt. Wood, MK.III BK810 captained by W/O McKenzie and Mk.III EH889 captained by F/O McCrorie.

Stirling Mk.III EF408 AA-P

Sgt. Benjamin Brinley Wood, RAFVR 656588 – Pilot.
F/S George King Samson, RNZAF NZ402563 – Navigator.
Sgt. Stuart Richard Bisset, RNZAF NZ415738 – Air Bomber.
Sgt. Edgar Henry Reader, RAFVR 1331432 – Wireless Operator.
Sgt. Stanley Lawrence Webb, 1266998 – Flight Engineer.
Sgt. Frederick Johns Hobbs, RAFVR 1609558 – Mid Upper Gunner.
Sgt. Cyril Benjamin Hemmings, RAFVR 1235070 – Rear Gunner.

Stirling Mk.III EF408 AA-P was hit by flak and crashed at Gelsenkirchen. There were no survivors. All were buried in the Bismarck Friedhof, but later reinterred in the Reichswald Forest War Cemetery.

George King Samson


SAMPSON, Louis David

P/O Louis David Sampson, RAFVR 186413 – Wireless Operator.
Killed age 28 on the 20th of November 1944.
Buried Reichswald Forest War Cemetery, Germany..
Grave location – 29. C. 2.

20/11/1944 – Attack Against Homberg
Twenty eight aircraft took off to attack the Oil Refinery Plant at Homberg. Twenty two aircraft in daylight attacked the target in ten tenths cloud with tops at 23,000 ft. which made formation flying very difficult. They carried 4,000 lb and 500 lb bombs. Results of bombing could not be observed, but it is considered that the raid was unsatisfactory. One aircraft AA/J returned early owing to icing trouble and two aircraft bombed last resort targets at Duisburg and Hamborn. Three aircraft failed to return. These were captained by 185116 F/O R. Gordon, AUS419328 F/O P. McCartin and 152402 F/O H. Rees.

Lancaster Mk.I PB689 AA-X
Missing – Heavy Flak

F/O Ronald Gordon, RAFVR 1580245/ 185116 – Pilot.
P/O John Robson Bell, RAFVR 173943 – Navigator.
F/S Albert John ‘Mick’ Weston, RAFVR 1115103 – Air Bomber.
F/O Louis David Sampson, RAFVR 186413 – Wireless Operator .
Sgt. Carl Robert Freeman, RAFVR 189608 – Flight Engineer.
Sgt. Sidney George Hone, RAFVR 2221190 – Mid Upper Gunner.
Sgt. James Leonard Forrester, RAFVR 3010665 – Rear Gunner.

PB609 encountered heavy flak after bombing, when approximately 8mls NE of Moers and the aircraft was seen to explode and crash. There were no survivors. All the crew were buried in the Reichswald Forest Cemetery

L D Sampson


SANDERSON, Rex Martyn

P/O Rex Martyn Sanderson, RAF 42727 – Pilot.
Lost without trace age 24 on the 24th of October 1940.
Son of Alexander and Adelaide Ida Sanderson, of Auckland, New Zealand.
Commemorated Runnymede Memorial, Surrey, England..
Grave location – Panel 10.

23/10/1940 – Bombing Attacks on Berlin, Potsdam Station, D.148.
Five Wellington aircraft were detailed to carry out the above attacks. One, CB.362, captained by P/O Sanderson, failed to return. A mixed bomb load was carried and consisted of 1000lbs. Bomb, delayed action, 500lbs. Bombs delayed action, 500lbs. Nombs fused N.D.T., 250lbs delayed action, 250lbs. bombs fused N.D.T., containers of incendiaries, while CB.359 carried one flash bomb.
CB.358 reports results were not observed owing to two layers of cloud.
CB.359 attacked flarepath probably east of Berlin, bursts unobserved, but incendiaries observed burning 300 yards short of flarepath.
CB361 reports bombs seen to burst in vicinity of NEURUPPIN Aerodrome. No fires started.
NO results were observed by CB.368 due to intensity of searchlights.
EELDE Aerodrome lit with electric flare path and boundary lights. Red beacon at decoy aerodrome. Beacon flashing C.F. 530 3N 0450E. White beacon flashing 5 secs. approximately AMELAND.
A.A. fire was heavy and accurate.
Searchlights were few, and not very accurate owing to cloud. No enemy aircraft were seen. Heavy cloud was experienced in all areas. Navigation was by D/R, Astro and Q.D.M’s.

Wellington Mk.1c P.9292 AA-C

P/O Rex Martyn Sanderson, RAF 42727 – Pilot.
P/O William John Finlayson, RNZAF NZ39911 – 2nd Pilot.
Sgt. White, RAF – Observer.
Sgt. Jack Gibbs, RAFVR 625697 – Wireless Operator.
Sgt. William Grice Hitchmough, RAFVR 653978 – Front Gunner.
P/O Frederick Bernard Cleak, RAF 77961 – Rear Gunner .

Wellington Mk.Ic P.9292 AA-C is known to have crashed into the North Sea off the Danish Coast. Returning from Berlin, it appears that the aircraft might have fallen prey to a number of German night-fighters that were known to be operating in this airspace. All of the crew, with the exception of P/O Frederick Cleak, were lost without trace and are remembered on the Runneymede Memorial. P/O Cleak, whose body was recovered was buried in Esbjerg (Fourfelt) Cemetery in Denmark.

RM Sanderson


SANDS, Hugh Powell

F/O Hugh Powell Sands, RNZAF NZ403287 – Navigator.
Killed age 26 on the 23rd of September 1943.
Son of Ernest Frederick James Sands, and of Kathleen Mary Sands (Nee Powell), of Auckland City, New Zealand; Husband of Doris Sands, of Christchurch, Canterbury, New Zealand.
Buried Rheinberg War Cemetery, Germany..
Grave location – 18. B. 5.

23/09/1943 – Attack Against Targets at Mannheim
Eighteen aircraft were detailed to carry the above operation with incendiary bombs of 30lb. and 4lb.. Three aircraft failed to return, but the remainder successfully dropped their bombs in the target area. This was, undoubtedly, a good attack, concentrated fires which were spreading to the West, and large heavy explosions were seen. Moderate heavy A.A. fire and a large curtain of searchlights were encountered, but caused no trouble. Enemy aircraft were very active and several combats took place. The aircraft captained by W/O. P. MOSELEY had a combat with a JU88 which was claimed as a probably destroyed. In the action our aircraft received damage the Pilot W/O. P. MOSELEY and the Mid Upper Sgt. C(?) MIDDLETON were slightly injured. The aircraft captained by P/O A. BURLEY had three combats with enemy aircraft, one of which was claimed as destroyed, the two as  damaged. The weather was good with clear visibility. Navigation was excellent. The missing aircraft were Stirlings Mk.111 EF459 captained by P/O C.C. LOGAN, EH946 captained by F/Lt. G. TURNER , and EH935 captained by F/O L. KIRKPATRICK.

Stirling Mk.III EH935 JN-K

F/O Laurence John Kirkpatrick, RNZAF NZ414990 – Pilot.
F/O Hugh Powell Sands, RNZAF NZ403287 – Navigator.
F/O William Richard Allan Mason, RNZAF NZ416865 – Air Bomber.
Sgt. Joseph Edwards Hoey, RAFVR 656134 – Wireless Operator.
Sgt. Charles Percival Ellins, RAFVR 1509658 – Flight Engineer.
Sgt. J. Elliot, RAFVR 1515956 – Mid Upper Gunner.
F/S William Louis Jarvis, RAAF AUS.414691 – Rear Gunner.

Stirling Mk.III EH935 JN-K was brought down between Edesheim and Knoringen, just south of Neustadt. The only two to survive the crash were the Mid Upper Gunner and the Air Bomber, who were captured as P.o.W’s. Those who died were buried at Knoringen, and later reinterred at Rheinberg, south of Wesel.

nzwargraves.org.nz/casualties/hugh-powell-sands © New Zealand War Graves Project

nzwargraves.org.nz/casualties/hugh-powell-sands © New Zealand War Graves Project


SANDYS, John Frederick Kelly

F/O John Frederick Kelly Sandys, RCAF 4814 – Pilot.
Lost without trace age 25 on the 12th of March 1942.
Son of Frederick Robert Kelly Sandys and Beatrice Louisa Sandys, of Bellozanne, Jersey, Channel Islands.
Buried Runnymede Memorial, Surrey, England.
Grave location – Panel 99.

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.

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

JFK Sandys


SANSOME, Harry

Sgt. Harry Sansome, RAFVR 1583772 – Navigator.
Lost without trace age 21 on the 1st of January 1945.
Son of William and Alice Sansome, of Nottingham.
Commemorated Runnymede Memorial, Surrey, England..
Grave location – Panel 276.

01/01/1945 – Attack Against Vohwinkel
Twenty one aircraft were detailed to attack Vohwinkel, in daylight. Nineteen aircraft took off, seventeen of which attacked the primary target. F/O McMillan attacked a last resort target. NZ40984 W/Cdr. R.J. Newton and NZ429286 P/O R. Aitchison as second pilot, failed to return. There was very little opposition in the target area.

Lancaster Mk.III ME321 AA-N

W/C Raymond John Newton, RNZAF NZ40984 – Pilot.
P/O Richard Justin Aitchison, RNZAF NZ429286 – 2nd Pilot.
Sgt. Harry Sansome, RAFVR 1583772 – Navigator.
F/S Arthur Lee, RAFVR 1622893 – Air Bomber.
F/S Victor James Clark, RAFVR 1811271 – Wireless Operator.
F/S John Stanley Hoskins, RAFVR 652139 – Flight Engineer.
F/S Martin Brennan, RAFVR 1596812 – Mid Upper Gunner.
Sgt. Leonard James Cooke, RAFVR 3011677 – Rear Gunner.

Lancaster Mk.III ME321 AA-N crashed near the Dutch town of Maastricht, probably through contact with enemy fighters. There were no survivors. Sgt Martin Brennan was buried in the Jonkerbos War Cemetery, the other seven crew are all commemorated on the Runnymede Memorial. It was thought that this was W/C Newton’s 50th operational sortie.


SAUL, Norman Priestley

Sgt. Norman Priestley Saul, RNZAF NZ411730 – Observer.
Killed age 30 on the 7th of September 1942.
Son of Walter Saul, and of Eleanor Louisa Saul (Nee Holton), of Pretoria, Transvaal, South Africa.
Buried Reichswald Forest War Cemetery, Germany..
Grave location – Coll. grave 16. F. 8-10.

06/09/1942 – Operations. Attack Against Targets At Duisburg
Fifteen aircraft were detailed to carry out the above attacks. Bomb load of 4,000lb. 1,00lb. 500lb. 250lb. and incendiaries were dropped in the target area, large fires were seen to be growing in intensity. A.A. fire was heavy and intense but was bursting high above aircraft, searchlights were intense, particularly at target area.
Wellington BJ772 captained by F/Lt. Womersley was attacked from rear on return by an enemy aircraft, one bursts was fired by the rear gunner and the enemy aircraft was driven off. No other enemy aircraft was seen. The weather was good, clear over target with slight ground haze. Navigation was good. Wellington BJ.765 captained by Sergt. Sharman G.W and Wellington X.3867 captained by F/Sgt.Parkes W.R. failed to return.

Wellington Mk.III BJ.765 AA-L

Sgt. George William Sharman, RNZAF NZ412746 – Pilot.
Sgt. Norman Priestly Saul, RNZAF NZ411730 – Observer.
Sgt. Claude Joseph Frederick Jarvis, RNZAF NZ411722 – Wireless Operator.
P/O George William Alfred Mills, RNZAF NZ411769 – Front Gunner.
Sgt. Thomas Edward Coles, RNZAF NZ40161 – Rear Gunner.

Wellington Mk.III BJ.765 AA-L was brought down over Germany, crashing near Krefeld, 11 miles South West of the target, Duisburg. There were no survivors.

All five crew were initially buried in the military Cemetery, Krefeld, but later reinterred at Reischwald Forest Cemetery, South West of Kleve.

nzwargraves.org.nz/casualties/norman-priestley-saul © New Zealand War Graves Project

nzwargraves.org.nz/casualties/norman-priestley-saul © New Zealand War Graves Project


SAUNDERS, Anthony Francis

Sgt. Anthony Francis Saunders, RAFVR 1394719 – Rear Gunner .
Killed age 20 on the 31st of August 1943.
Son of William Howard Saunders and Lucy Saunders, of Putney Hill, London.
Buried Heverlee War Cemetery, Belgium..
Grave location – 4. A. 11.
‘Of your charity
Pray for the repose
Of his soul R.I.P.’

30/08/1943 – Attack Against Targets at Munchen-Gladbach
18 Aircraft were detailed to attack the above targets with incendiary bombs of 30lbs. and 4lbs. All aircraft with the exception of one which failed to return, successfully dropped their bombs in the target area. Very large fires which were well concentrated and spreading, were seen. All crews were of the opinion that this was a good attack. Moderate heavy A.A. fire and a few searchlights were encountered, which were ineffective. A great number of enemy aircraft were seen and some short combats took place. The aircraft captained by F/Sgt. Batger, H. sighted an enemy aircraft 600 yards away, ahead and the front gunner fired a long and short burst, the enemy aircraft then disappeared and was claimed as possibly destroyed. . The aircraft captained by F/S McGregor,K. sighted an Me110 astern, the rear gunner fired a long burst. The enemy aircraft replied and dived away with smoke pouring from its engines. It is claimed as a possible destroyed. There was 8/10ths cloud at the target approaches although it was clear in the target area. Navigation was very good. The missing aircraft was  Stirling MK.III EH938 captained by Sgt. Parkin, T.

Stirling Mk.III EH938 AA-F

F/S Victor Trevor Parkin, RNZAF NZ421090 – Pilot.
F/S Terrence Watters, RNZAF NZ417299 – Navigator.
Sgt. Ralph Valentine Clingan Johnson, RAFVR 1545885 – Air Bomber.
Sgt. William Hadley Horrigan, RAFVR 1176649 – Wireless Operator.
Sgt. Trevor Silcock, RAFVR 1582836 – Flight Engineer.
Sgt. Richard Frederick Grove, RAFVR 1581242 – Mid Upper Gunner.
Sgt. Anthony Francis Saunders, RAFVR 1394719 – Rear Gunner.

Based on Val Johnson’s debrief with MI.9, it would appear that that EH938 possibly fell prey to a German night fighter, within a nachtjagd ‘box’. Val was the only survivor of the crew, the rest of the crew being killed when the aircraft crashed at Lommel (Limburg), in Belgium. The airmen were all buried in St-Truiden before being moved to Heverlee War Cemetery.


SAUNDERS, Eric

Sgt. Eric Saunders, RAFVR 1605321 – Flight Engineer.
Killed age 20 on the 31st of August 1943.
Son of Geoffrey Charles and Violet May Saunders, of Wokingham, Berkshire.
Buried Hanover War Cemetery, Germany..
Grave location – 16. C. 12.
‘We shall always remember,
So deep is the night’

31/08/1943 – Attack Against Targets at Berlin
Eighteen aircraft were detailed to attack the above targets with bombs of 1,000lb., 500lb. and incendiaries of 30lb. and 4lb. Two aircraft failed to take-off and four did not return, the remainder successfully dropped their bombs in the target area. Large fires were seen, although rather scattered they appeared to be progressing very well. Moderate heavy A.A. fire co-operating with searchlights were encountered and one air craft received slight damage. Enemy night-fighters were in great prominence, the aircraft piloted by F/Sgt. Wilkinson, G encountered a JU88 approaching from astern 500yds away. The rear gunner fired a long burst, the enemy aircraft replied and stalled. The mid-upper gunner then fired three long bursts. The enemy aircraft was seen to fall away and is claimed as probably destroyed. Our aircraft received damage to the rear of the fuselage and had part of the tailplane and fin badly damaged. The aircraft captained by F/O Alexander sighted two Me109’s, the first opened fire from the starboard quarter and the rear gunner replied with a short burst. The enemy aircraft stalled and the mid-upper gunner fired a short burst. The enemy aircraft then dived to the ground and exploded, it was claimed to be destroyed. The second Me109 opened fire with a short burst from the port bow to the port quarter. The rear gunner then fired a short burst and tracer was seen to enter the enemy aircraft, which dived. It was claimed as possible destroyed. The aircraft captained by W/O Moseley, P. sighted a Me110 on the port quarter, the mid upper and rear gunner fired a long burst and the enemy aircraft turned over and dived with smoke pouring from its starboard side. It was claimed as probably destroyed. The aircraft captained by P/O C.Logan sighted a Me109 sixty yards astern, the mid-upper and rear gunner  fired and tracer from the rear gunner was seen to hit the aircraft. The Stirling then corkscrewed and the Me109 disappeared. It was claimed to be damaged. Two other aircraft crash landed away from base due to damage caused by enemy fighters, none of the crews were injured however. 8/10ths cloud was encountered on the outward journey and 9’10ths at the target, visibility, nevertheless, was good. Navigation was very good. The missing aircraft were Stirlings MK.III EE918 captained by F/Sgt. Roberts,E, EE878 captained by F/Sgt. Henley, D, EE905 captained by F/Sgt. Helm,G. and EF501 captained by F/S McGregor, K.

Stirling Mk.III EE918 AA-D

F/S Eric John Roberts, RNZAF NZ417107 – Pilot.
P/O Robert Gorman Rainford, RAFVR 134553 – Navigator.
P/O John Cecil Giles, RAFVR 138329 – Air Bomber.
F/S Kensington Campbell Jackson, RNZAF NZ42330 – Wireless Operator.
Sgt. Eric Saunders, RAFVR 1605321 – Flight Engineer.
P/O Jack Henry Haydon, RAAF AUS.408400 – Mid Upper Gunner.
F/S Darcy Leslie Conrad Haub, RNZAF NZ42326 – Rear Gunner.

Stirling Mk.111 EE918 AA-D and was returning home, having dropped bombs on Berlin, when the aircraft was hit by enemy fire. The aircraft sustained damage but continued to fly for possibly 10 – 15 minutes. Eric, the pilot radioed Jack (as mid upper gunner he was the closest to the rear gun turret) and requested that he go back and check on Darcy (rear gunner) because he had heard nothing from him since the attack. Jack discovered that he was dead and was returning to his position when there was an explosion which broke the plane into two pieces, crashing at Derental, 5 miles South South East of Höxter.

Jack, the only member of the crew not in his position, was not in his harness and therefore fell out of the plane which went down with the rest of the crew all still harnessed in. Upon landing, Jack only suffered a badly injured foot, which caused him trouble for the rest of his life. He began walking to habitation, where he was captured.


SAVAGE, John Henry

Sgt. John Henry Savage, RNZAF NZ404620 – Rear Gunner.
Killed age 33 on the 29th of July 1942.
Son of Herbert John Savage, and of Margaret Savage (Nee Robinson), of Christchurch, Canterbury, New Zealand.
Buried Becklingen War Cemetery, Germany.
Grave location – 12. G. 3.

28/07/1942 – Attack Against Targets at Hamburg
Seventeen a/c were detailed to carry out an attack on the above target. Bomb load of 4000lbs, 30lb and 4lb incendiaries was dropped in target area and bursts were seen in dock area. A.A. fire was very accurate, light and heavy predicted. There were many accurate searchlight cones in parts but clear over target. Navigation was good by TR and DR. Six a/c failed to return to base

Wellington Mk.III BJ.599 AA-U

Sgt. George Alister Hutt, RNZAF NZ41914 – Pilot.
P/O Murray Ellis Carncross, RNZAF NZ411718 – Observer.
Sgt. James Gordon McMurchy, RNZAF NZ405539 – Wireless Operator.
Sgt. William Clerken O’Shea, RAFVR NZ411096 – Front Gunner.
Sgt. John Henry Savage, RNZAF NZ404620 – Rear Gunner.

Following a bombing attack on Hamburg, where intense anti-aircraft defence measures were encountered, Wellington Mk.III BJ.599 AA-U crashed at Steinbeck, near Stade, about 20 miles to the North West of the target. There were no survivors. All were buried at Stade, but after the war they were reinterred at Becklingen.

nzwargraves.org.nz/casualties/john-henry-savage © New Zealand War Graves Project

nzwargraves.org.nz/casualties/john-henry-savage © New Zealand War Graves Project


SAVAGE, Kenneth Edward Algar

P/O Kenneth Edward Algar Savage, RAFVR 106545 – Observer.
Killed age 20 on the 18th of September 1941.
Son of Edward E. Savage and May G. Savage, of Watford, Hertfordshire.
Buried Rheinberg War Cemetery, Germany..
Grave location – 8. G. 15.
‘Rest in peace’

17/09/1941 – Bombing Attacks Against Targets at Karlsruhe
Eight Wellington aircraft of this Unit were detailed to carry out individual bombing attacks on the above targets. One of these aircraft failed to return. A mixed bomb load was carried and consisted of 1,000 lb, 500 lb, 250 lb and containers of incendiaries. A.A. fire and searchlights were slight in the target area. Weather was hazy over the target.

Wellington Mk.Ic X.9834 AA-?

Sgt. William Bennett Megarry Smyth, RAFVR 1053919 – Pilot.
P/O Walter John Smith, RAFVR 1058110/ 67704 – 2nd Pilot.
P/O Kenneth Edward Algar Savage, RAFVR 106545 – Observer.
Sgt. James Henry Reid, RAFVR 997006 – Wireless Operator.
Sgt. Howard Clive McLeish Haselden, RNZAF NZ403003 – Front Gunner.
Sgt. A.H. Heard, RAFVR 960717 – Rear Gunner.

X9834 was not heard from and thus it must be assumed it was either hit by flak or by a night fighter. It would appear that the Pilot was forced to crash-land the aircraft, on fire, at Holsthum on the river Prüm, seven miles South South West of Bitburg, Germany.

Sgt. Smyth, P/O Savage and Sgt. McL Hazelden died in the crash and were buried in the Rheinberg War Cemetery. P/O Smith, Sgt. Reid and Sgt. Heard escaped unhurt from the plane and were taken prisoners of war. When under confinement at Lamsdorf POW camp, Sgt Reid was shot by  a prison guard and killed on 29 Dec 41. It was reported that Sgt. Reid was shot whilst trying to remove fence panels for heating, other reports indicate that he was trying to escape. He is buried in the Cracow Military Cemetery.


SAVAGE, Willis Arthur

Sgt. Willis Arthur Savage, RAFVR 1503913 – Wireless Operator.
Killed age 20 on the 16th of December 1943.
Son of Richard Willis Savage and Edith Annie Savage, of Swinton.
Buried Pendelbury (St.John) Churchyard, Lancashire, England..
Grave location – Plot C. Grave 84.

16/12/1943 – Mining off the Frisian Islands
Four aircraft were detailed to carry out the above operation with mines of 1500lbs. One aircraft returned early and one crashed on return. The remaining two aircraft successfully dropped their mines in the allotted area, but the parachutes were not seen to open. No opposition was met. The weather was very poor, low cloud and fog impairing visibility. Navigation was good. The aircraft which crashed wa captained by F/SGT.KINROSS C.J. The pilot F/SGT KINROSS C.J, Nav.F/O R.F.JENKIN, A/B. SGT. EMMERSON R.H., WO/AIR SGT. SAVAGE W.A, F/ENG. SGT. ASKEW R. and R.GUNNER SGT. WARNER J.A. were killed. The Mid Upper Gunner SGT. NEWMAN S.T. was slightly injured.

Stirling Mk.III EF163 JN-L

F/S Colin John Kinross, RNZAF NZ417069 – Pilot.
F/O Ralph Francis Jenkin, RNZAF NZ416119 – Navigator.
Sgt. Ronald Harry Emmerson, RAAF AUS.410330 – Air Bomber.
Sgt. Willis Arthur Savage, RAFVR 1503913 – Wireless Operator.
Sgt. Raymond Askew, RAFVR 1477972 – Flight Engineer.
Sgt. S. Newman, RAFVR 928207 – Mid Upper Gunner.
Sgt. John Albert Warner, RAFVR 2209337 – Rear Gunner.

Stirling Mk.III EF163 JN-L was attempting to land in poor weather conditions when the pilot lost visual reference at low level and crashed at Biddington Farm, Sutton. The aircraft burst into flames. All crew members, except an injured mid-upper gunner, died.

The cause of the crash may have been due to the aircraft’s centre of gravity being effected by a mine that had failed to release.

This was one of 41 other crashes occurring that night by aircraft returning to England in extremely poor weather conditions. This scale of losses by aircraft in these circumstances was the heaviest ever experienced by Bomber Command in a single night.


SAWREY-COOKSON, Reginald   DSO DFC

W/C Reginald Sawrey-Cookson, RAF 39574 – Pilot.
Killed age 27 on the 6th of April 1942.
Son of Clement Sawrey-Cookson, and of Myra Sawrey-Cookson (Nee Neilson); Husband of Joan Wynne Sawrey-Cookson (Nee Jeudwine), of Bourton-On-The-Water, Gloucestershire.
Buried Rheinberg War Cemetery, Germany..
Grave location – 1. D. 19.
‘The dawn was theirs
And the sunset,
And the colours of the earth’

05/04/1942 – Operations – Attack Against Targets Cologne
Nine Wellington Aircraft from this unit were detailed to attack the above target. Bomb load of 4000lbs, 500lbs, and 250lbs and 4lb incendiaries was dropped but results were not observed. There was intense heavy flak and many searchlights were active but ineffective owing to the bright moonlight. One Ju.88 aircraft was seen near the target and Wellington III X3705 was attacked by a Me.110 near Liege without result. Weather was good and navigation by TR1335 and D.R was also good. One aircraft did not carry out it’s mission and two are missing. Wellington III X3489, captained by W/Cdr Sawrey Cookson the C.O. of the squadron, and Wellington III X3661 captained by F/S Thomas.

Wellington Mk.III X.3489 AA-P

W/C Reginald Sawrey-Cookson, RAFVR 39574 – Pilot.
P/O William Finlay Budge, RNZAF NZ41977 – 2nd Pilot.
Sgt. Ronald Harry Emery, RAFVR 922974 – Observer.
Sgt. Edwin Hainsworth, RAFVR 1360695 – Wireless Operator.
Sgt. Donald Percival Stock, RNZAF 1157823 – Front Gunner.
F/O George Eric Mitchell, RCAF R.74313/ J.15022 – Rear Gunner.

The aircraft was brought down by flak over the target, crashing into the city center where its bomb load exploded (see excerpt of the raid above). The bodies of all crew members were recovered and initially buried in the English Military Cemetery, south Cologne, then later reinterred in the Rheinberg War Cemetery.

Further casualties occurred among a crowd of people watching a burning bomber (probably a Wellington) crashing in the middle of Cologne as its bomb load exploded, killing 16 people and injuring 30 more.


SAWTELL, Arthur Hartley

F/S Arthur Hartley Sawtell, RAAF AUS.417521 – Mid Upper Gunner.
Killed age 19 on the 24th of February 1944.
Son of John Hartley Sawtell and Ida Marie Sawtell, of Unley, South Australia.
Buried Aabenraa Cemetery, Denmark.     .
Grave location – Allied Mil. Plot.
Row 5. 10.
‘His duty fearlessly
And nobly done.
Ever remembered’

24/02/1944 – Mining in Kiel Bay
Fifteen aircraft were detailed with a large force to lay mines of 1500 lbs in Kiel Bay, and fourteen returned after completing their mission successfully. One aircraft (Captain NZ42367 F/S. Bruhns H.) is missing, and no news was heard after take-off.

Stirling Mk.III EH948 AA-Q

F/S Harold Henry Bruhns, RNZAF NZ42367 – Pilot.
F/S Eric Arthur Wilkes, RAFVR 1575513 – Navigator.
Sgt. Laurie Licence Butler, RNZAF NZ421672 – Air Bomber.
Sgt. Woolf Jack Summers, RAFVR 1395702 – Wireless Operator .
Sgt. James William Harry, RAFVR 1601839 – Flight Engineer.
F/S Arthur Hertley Sawtell, RAAF AUS.417521 – Mid Upper Gunner.
Sgt. Robert Ewen Hall, RAFVR 1392121 – Rear Gunner.

Little is known of the circumstances causing the loss of Stirling Mk.III EH948 AA-Q, although the body of the RAAF Air-Bomber was found washed ashore near Sønderborg, on the south coast of ALS Island, in the NW area of Kiel Bay. It thus seems likely the aircraft was brought down by AA fire from one or more Flak ships known to patrol Kiel Bay. The remaining six crew are commemorated on the Runnymede Memorial.

SAWTELL, Arthur Hartley


SCARFE, Leslie Thomas

Sgt. Leslie Thomas Scarfe, RAFVR 1261331 – Air Bomber.
Lost without trace age 21 on the 28th of April 1943.
Son of Edward Tevelin Scarfe and Sarah Grace Scarfe, of Hornsey, Middlesex.
Commemorated Runnymede Memorial, Surrey, England..
Grave location – Panel 164.

28/04/1943 – Mining in Kiel Bay
Eight aircraft were detailed to carry out the above operation with mines of 1500 lbs. One of these aircraft returned early owing to its compass being faulty and four failed to return. The remaining three aircraft successfully dropped their mines in the allotted area and the parachutes were seen to open. A.A. fire co-operating with searchlights was encountered which is believed to have come from an A.A. ship in the mining area. No enemy aircraft were seen. Visibility was fairly good, with scattered cloud in the mining area. Navigation was very good. Stirlings Mk.1 R9290, Sgt. A. Lewis, W.7513 – Sgt. K. Halliburton, BF.467 – P/O D. Thompson, Mk.III BK664 – P/O. D.V. Hamer, failed to return.

Stirling Mk.I W7513 AA-G

Sgt. Keith Haliburton, RNZAF NZ415411 – Pilot.
Sgt. Patrick Torre Hunter, RNZAF NZ42297 – Navigator.
Sgt. Leslie Thomas Scarfe, 1261331 – Air Bomber.
Sgt. David Church, RAFVR 1196564 – Wireless Operator.
Sgt. Devinder Singh Sidhu, RAFVR 946455 – Flight Engineer.
Sgt. Charles Henry George Boxall, RAFVR 1393248 – Mid Upper Gunner.
Sgt. Alexander Clunie Howell, RNZAF NZ392104 – Rear Gunner.

Took off at 20.42 hrs from R.A.F. Newmarket in Suffolk. Part of a huge 207 aircraft force on a “Gardening” (Mine laying) operation. A total of 593 mines were laid off Heligoland, in the river Elbe and in the Great and Little Belts. Low cloud base forced the aircraft to fly very low over the German and Danish coasts. Because of this they took very heavy flak and also attacks from Luftwaffe night fighters.
Although this was the largest mine laying operation in one night of the whole war it came at a price. A total of 22 aircraft were lost (75 (NZ) Squadron RAF lost 4 aircraft alone, with a total of 28 crew members killed) – 9 aircraft were lost by the night fighters and the remainder from the flak.

There are no known details regarding the loss of W7513 and her crew, all being lost without trace. Stirling W7513 is not on the Luftwaffe claims list for this raid so it is thought that it had been taken down by flak All crew are commemorated on the Runnymede Memorial.


SCHOFIELD, James William

Sgt. James William Schofield, RAFVR 1088089 – Navigator.
Killed age 33 on the 23rd of January 1943.
Husband of Ethel Dorothy Schofield, of Rock Ferry, Cheshire.
Buried St.Thegonnec Communal Cemetery, France..
Grave location – Plot 2. Row 1. Joint grave 5-6.
‘Darling husband of Ethel
“At rest, duty done”‘

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 R9248 AA-H

Sgt. Robert Miln Kidd, RNZAF NZ412700 – Pilot.
Sgt. James William Schofield, RAFVR 1088089 – Navigator.
Sgt. Bernard Torrance, RAFVR 1319178 – Air Bomber.
Sgt. Eric Berry, RAFVR 1380078 – Wireless Operator.
Sgt. Gilbert Frank Mitchell, RAFVR 1479975 – Flight Engineer.
Sgt. James Edward Brewster, RAFVR 1035972 – Mid Upper Gunner.
Sgt. Peter Douglas Fowler, RAFVR 1320278 – Rear Gunner.

Stirling Mk.I R9248 AA-H was hit by AA fire shortly after bombing, causing catastrophic damage. The captain attempted a crash landing at St Thégonnec (Finistère), about 8 miles South East of Morlaix, France. All but one of the crew died in the crash and were laid to rest in St Thegonnec Communal Cemetery. Sgt Kidd escaped slightly injured from the wreck and managed to evade capture.


SCOTT, Alexander

Sgt. Alexander Scott, RNZAF NZ413484 – Pilot.
Killed age 20 on the 3rd of December 1942.
Son of Alexander and Alice Hannah Scott, of Wellington City, New Zealand.
Buried Rheinberg War Cemetery, Germany.
Grave location – 18. D. 2.

02/12/1942 – Operations. Attack Against Targets At Frankfurt
Five aircraft were detailed to attack the above target with bomb load of 4lb. Incendiaries, but a series of misfortunes left only two to get away successfully. One of these, Stirling I, BK618 captained by Sergeant Scott, failed to return, so the night was an unhappy one. One aircraft failed to take off, one swung so badly on take-off that after two attempts the sortie was abandoned, and the third unsuccessful aircraft returned early with the port outer engine dead, this being due to hitting the top of a drem pole shortly after take-off. The one successful aircraft, Stirling I, R.9243 captained by F/O Trott, dropped its bombs in the target area from 10,000 feet and fires were seen to start. Slight heavy A.A. fire was encountered, some searchlights were also seen operating in cones. No enemy aircraft were seen. The weather was hazy to the target, but clear with good visibility in the target area. Navigation was good, the town being identified by the bend in the river.

Stirling Mk.I BK.618 AA-Q

Sgt. Alexander Scott, RNZAF NZ413484 – Pilot.
Sgt. Robert William Sharpe, RAFVR 1496472 – 2nd Pilot.
Sgt. Albert Edward Rey, RCAF R.93319/ J.96501 – Observer.
Sgt. Walter Keith Wright, RNZAF NZ413310 – Air Bomber.
Sgt. John Robert Smith, RNZAF NZ412907 – Wireless Operator.
Sgt. D.C. Baker, RAFVR 574826 – Flight Engineer.
Sgt. Robert Edward Preston, RAFVR 1080471 – Mid Upper Gunner.
Sgt. Alexander Watson McMorrine, RAF 551156 – Rear Gunner.

BK.618 was shot down by two enemy night-fighters 10 minutes after bombing the target, Frankfurt. The aircraft crashed in flames at Ida Oberstein, approximately 55 miles South West of the target. Five crew members parachuted to safety and were taken as prisoners. The Pilot and Mid Upper Gunner died in the crash and are buried at Rheinberg, 10 miles south of Wesel.

nzwargraves.org.nz/casualties/alexander-scott © New Zealand War Graves Project

nzwargraves.org.nz/casualties/alexander-scott © New Zealand War Graves Project


SCOTT, Alister Henry

F/S Alister Henry Scott, RNZAF NZ428259 – Navigator.
Killed age 27 on the 4th of November 1944.
Son of A. W. Scott and Ella Scott, of Glenorchy, Otago, New Zealand.
Buried Rheinberg War Cemetery, Germany..
Grave location – 5. B. 25.

04/11/1944 – Attack Against Solingen
Twenty one aircraft took off to attack Solingen in daylight, carrying 8,000 lb, 4,000 lb, 1,000 lb, 500 lb, 4 lb incendiaries and No.17 Clusters. All crews dropped their bombs in the target area, but the raid appeared to be scattered. Flak opposition was moderate. One aircraft captained by NZ428797 F/O J. Scott, failed to return.

Lancaster Mk.III ND917 JN-O

F/O John Harold Scott, RNZAF NZ428797 – Pilot.
F/S Alister Henry Scott, RNZAF NZ428259 – Navigator.
F/S Kenneth Peder Christian Andersen, RNZAF NZ429128 – Air Bomber.
F/S Edward John Francis Howard, RNZAF NZ424469 – Wireless Operator .
Sgt. Howard Mansel Thomas, RAFVR 1895708 – Flight Engineer.
Sgt. John Thomas Beardmore, RAFVR 1818755 – Mid Upper Gunner.
Sgt. Joseph Thomas Bayes, RAFVR 1595589, 185783 – Rear Gunner.

Lancaster Mk.III ND917 JN-O was brought down by flak about 9mls SE of the target, crashing near Werrmelskirchen. None of the crew survived and they were buried at that small township, but later reinterred at Rheinberg War Cemetery, south of Wessel.

nzwargraves.org.nz/casualties/alister-henry-scott © New Zealand War Graves Project

nzwargraves.org.nz/casualties/alister-henry-scott © New Zealand War Graves Project


SCOTT, Andrew James Newell

P/O Andrew James Newell Scott, RNZAF NZ414685 – 2nd Pilot.
Killed age 21 on the 3rd of February 1943.
Son of William Lorimer Scott and Marian Phebe Scott, of Mataura, Southland, New Zealand.
Buried Amersfoort (Oud Leusden) General Cemetery, Holland..
Grave location – Plot 13. Row 5. Grave 91.

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 R9250 AA-C

P/O Kenneth Howard Blincoe, RNZAF NZ412194 – Pilot.
Sgt. Andrew James Newell ‘Dougal’ Scott RNZAF NZ414685 – 2nd Pilot.
Sgt. Frank Arthur Boese, RAFVR 1293282 – Navigator.
Sgt. George Wood Cook, RNZAF NZ412514 – Air Bomber.
P/O Harold Lowe, RAFVR 905609/ 115129 – Wireless Operator.
Sgt. Desmond David Hayward, RAFVR 651764 – Flight Engineer.
Sgt. Edward. McDermott, RCAF R.96960 – Mid Upper Gunner.
Sgt. Desmond Clearwater, RNZAF NZ412314 – Rear Gunner.

R.9280 was attacked by a German night-fighter over the Netherlands, while returning to base. The aircraft crashed at 20.00hrs in the vicinity of Ingen, 6miles NNE of Tiel, Hollnd. All on board were killed. They were buried in Amersfoort (Oud Leusden) General Cemetery.

nzwargraves.org.nz/casualties/andrew-james-newell-scott © New Zealand War Graves Project

nzwargraves.org.nz/casualties/andrew-james-newell-scott © New Zealand War Graves Project


SCOTT, Francis Alexander Jack

Sgt. Francis Alexander Jack Scott, RNZAF NZ421105 – Pilot.
Killed age 28 on the 28th of May 1944.
Son of Alexander Anderson Scott and Margaret Grace Scott, of Christchurch, Canterbury, New Zealand.
Buried Gilze-En-Rijen (Gilze) Roman Catholic Cemetery, Holland.     .
Grave location – Grave 3.

27/05/1944 – Attack Against Aachen
Eighteen aircraft were detailed to attack Aachen, one of which returned early and two failed to return (Captains NZ414971 F/L. S. Fauvel and NZ421105 Sgt. Scott, F.). The remaining fifteen successfully bombed the target in clear weather, one aircraft (Captain NZ40750 F/L. R. Berney) had five successive inconclusive combats with an ME 410 in the Courtrai area.

Lancaster Mk.III ND802 JN-D “The Flying Scotsman’

Sgt. Francis Alexander Jack Scott, RNZAF NZ421105 – Pilot.
W/O Ronald Thomas Clark, RNZAF NZ422369 – 2nd Pilot.
F/S Leslie George Hill, RNZAF NZ426997 – Navigator.
F/S Steven Astley Cook, RNZAF NZ421142 – Air Bomber.
Sgt. Ronald Edward Howson, RAFVR 1437112 – Wireless Operator .
Sgt. F. Max Harris, RAFVR 1850150 – Flight Engineer.
Sgt. Alan Mantle, RAFVR 925315 – Mid Upper Gunner.
Sgt. Reginald Dale, RAFVR 1818763 – Rear Gunner.

Lancaster Mk.III ND802 JN-D “The Flying Scotsman’ was attacked by a night-fighter 25 miles North West of Eindhoven, Netherlands, causing the aircraft to break up in flight then crashing near Gilze, 6 miles West of Tilsburg. The Captain, Air-bomber and W/Op did not survive the crash and were buried at Gilze.

SONY DSC


SCOTT, John Harold

F/O John Harold Scott, RNZAF NZ428797 – Pilot.
Killed age 29 on the 4th of November 1944.
Son of Hedley Scott and of Eileen Scott (Nee Tod), of Merton, Otago, New Zealand.
Buried Rheinberg War Cemetery, Germany..
Grave location – 5. C. 3.

04/11/1944 – Attack Against Solingen
Twenty one aircraft took off to attack Solingen in daylight, carrying 8,000 lb, 4,000 lb, 1,000 lb, 500 lb, 4 lb incendiaries and No.17 Clusters. All crews dropped their bombs in the target area, but the raid appeared to be scattered. Flak opposition was moderate. One aircraft captained by NZ428797 F/O J. Scott, failed to return.

Lancaster Mk.III ND917 JN-O

F/O John Harold Scott, RNZAF NZ428797 – Pilot.
F/S Alister Henry Scott, RNZAF NZ428259 – Navigator.
F/S Kenneth Peder Christian Andersen, RNZAF NZ429128 – Air Bomber.
F/S Edward John Francis Howard, RNZAF NZ424469 – Wireless Operator .
Sgt. Howard Mansel Thomas, RAFVR 1895708 – Flight Engineer.
Sgt. John Thomas Beardmore, RAFVR 1818755 – Mid Upper Gunner.
Sgt. Joseph Thomas Bayes, RAFVR 1595589, 185783 – Rear Gunner.

Lancaster Mk.III ND917 JN-O was brought down by flak about 9mls SE of the target, crashing near Werrmelskirchen. None of the crew survived and they were buried at that small township, but later reinterred at Rheinberg War Cemetery, south of Wessel.

nzwargraves.org.nz/casualties/john-harold-scott © New Zealand War Graves Project

nzwargraves.org.nz/casualties/john-harold-scott © New Zealand War Graves Project


SCOTT, Roy Harold

Sgt. Roy Harold Scott, RCAF 137578 – Rear Gunner.
Killed age 20 on the 11th of October 1942.
Son of Daniel R. and Annie B. Scott, of Cobalt, Ontario, Canada.
Buried Esbjerg (Fourfelt) Cemetery, Denmark..
Grave location – AIII. 9. 14.
‘His cheery smile
And heart of gold
No dearer son this world
Could hold.
Mum & dad’

11/10/1942 – Operations. Gardening in the Kattegat and Little Belt
Nine aircraft were detailed to carry out the above operation. 1500lb. vegetables were successfully planted in the allotted area. Wellington X.3597 captained by F/Sgt. Curr bombed a bridge near Middlefort with three 500lb. G.P. bombs, the first bomb was just short, others very close and might have hit the edge of the bridge. Light A.A. fire was encountered at Middlefort Bridge. No searchlights or enemy aircraft were seen.
There was no cloud, visibility was good. Navigation was good by D.R. T.R., and visual pin point. Wellington BK341 captained by Sergt. Shalfoon failed to return.

Wellington Mk.III BK.341 AA-?

Sgt. Charles John Shalfoon, RNZAF NZ413897 – Pilot.
Sgt Henry Wolfenden, RAFVR 1237318 – Observer.
Sgt. Algernon Parsons, RAFVR 1196149 – Wireless Operator.
Sgt. Sydney Posner, RAFVR 1078313 – Front Gunner.
Sgt. Roy Harold Scott, RCAF R.137578 – Rear Gunner.

BK341 was brought down at 23.30hrs between the island of Langli and the Skallengen, near the entrance to Esbjerg Harbour on the Danish coast. All five crew of BK341 were killed, three of whom were buried at Fourfelt, near Esbjerg. Two others are commemorated on the Runnymede Memorial.


SCOTT, Russell James

F/O Russell James Scott, RNZAF NZ428984 – Mid Upper Gunner.
Killed age 23 on the 21st of March 1945.
Son of Edward Russell Scott and of Gladys Victoria Scott (Nee Mcdowell), of Morington, Dunedin, Otago, New Zealand.
Buried Reichswald Forest War Cemetery, Germany..
Grave location – 12. G. 11.

21/03/1945 – Attack Against Munster Viaduct
Twenty one aircraft were detailed to attack the Muster Viaduct. There was hardly any cloud over the target. It is thought that the concentration was good although the formation was broken up just prior to bombing. Three aircraft failed to return from this operation – AA”T”, NZ42451 F/L J. Plummer, AA”R” NZ429139 P/O A. Brown and JN”P” 190947 P/O D.S. Barr. All three aircraft were seen to be hit in the target area. Considerable H/F was encountered.

Lancaster Mk.I NG449 AA-T

F/L Jack Plummer, RNZAF NZ42451 – Pilot.
P/O Arthur Leonard ‘Tiny’ Humphries, RNZAF NZ428244 – Navigator.
P/O Edgar John Holloway, RNZAF NZ429923 – Air Bomber.
F/O Joseph James ‘Joe’ Wakerley, RAFVR 1325219/169159 – Wireless Operator.
Sgt. Maurice O. Fell, RAFVR – Flight Engineer.
F/O Russell James Scott, RNZAF NZ428984 – Mid Upper Gunner.
F/S Alexander Malcolm McDonald, RNZAF NZ426070 – Rear Gunner.

Lancaster Mk.I NG449 AA-T came under heavy AA fire over the target area and received hits in two engines, then began breaking up. Four of the crew were virtually thrown from the disintegrating aircraft and parachuted to safety, however all were captured as prisoners of war. Both Sgt Fell and F/S McDonald were badly injured. P/O Humphries implored the Germans to arrange medical treatment for them. They were sent to a semi-medical centre where they remained for a short period until the arrival of allied forces.

nzwargraves.org.nz/casualties/russell-james-scott © New Zealand War Graves Project

nzwargraves.org.nz/casualties/russell-james-scott © New Zealand War Graves Project


SCUDDER, John William

Sgt. John William Scudder, RAFVR 1291875 – Wireless Operator.
Killed age 22 on the 9th of April 1943.
Son of John and Louise Scudder, of Brixton, London.
Buried Streatham Park Cemetery, Mitcham, Surrey, England..
Grave location – Square 24. Grave 31609.

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.III BK770 AA-L

W/O John Arthur Ernest Walsh, RNZAF NZ401294 – Pilot.
F/S Bertram Augustus Moffatt, RCAF R.802237 – Navigator.
Sgt. Francis Henry Reddicliffe, RAFVR 1030797 – Air Bomber.
Sgt. John William Scudder, RAFVR 1291875 – Wireless Operator.
Sgt. Jack Herbert Worthington, RAFVR 574819 – Flight Engineer.
Sgt. Stanley Arthur Curtis, RAFVR 1386838 – Mid Upper Gunner.
Sgt. Phillip Gordon Stuart, RCAF R.93568 – Rear Gunner.

Stirling Mk.III BK770 AA-L was returning to base when at 01:10hrs, a brief W/T distress signal was received from the aircraft but nothing more. A ground report was later received advising an aircraft had crashed at Valley Farm, Bressingham, Norfolk. Soon after impact an explosion was observed and the aircraft burst into flames. None of the crew survived. The three Commonwealth airmen, along with Sgt’s Reddicliffe and Curtis, are buried in the Newmarket cemetery.

This was the first Mk III Stirling written off in 75(NZ) Squadron.


SEDUNARY, Alan Joseph Lyall   DFC

P/O Alan Joseph Lyall Sedunary, RAAF AUS.416619 – Pilot.
Killed age 20 on the 24th of August 1943.
Son of Alfred Lyall Sedunary and Caroline Agnes Sedunary, of Victor Harbour, South Australia.
Buried Berlin 1939-1945 War Cemetery, Germany..
Grave location – Coll. grave 6. E. 12-19.
‘Duty nobly done’

23/08/1943 – Attack Against Targets at Berlin
Twenty three aircraft were detailed to attack the above targets with bombs of 1,000lb., 500lb., and incendiaries of 30lb and 4lb.. Five aircraft returned early owing to failure and three aircraft failed to return. The remainder of the aircraft successfully dropped their bombs in the target area and all of the crews agreed that it had been well and truly hit. The fires were all concentrated and huge columns of smoke together with heavy explosions could be seen. A moderate heavy A.A. barrage co-operating with searchlights were encountered, but only one aircraft received damage. A great number of enemy aircraft were seen and several combats took place. The aircraft captained by F/Sgt. WILKINSON sighted a JU88 passing above, the Mid-upper and Rear Gunners fired and strikes were seen on the enemy aircraft which was then lost sight of and is claimed to have been damaged. The aircraft captained by F/Sgt. WHITEHEAD whilst over BERLIN sighted an enemy aircraft on the starboard quarter, 300yds away. The Rear Gunner fired a five second burst and the enemy aircraft was seen in flames diving to earth, and was claimed as probably destroyed. The same aircraft encountered another unidentified aircraft 300yds away on the starboard quarter. The Rear Gunner fired another five seconds burst and the enemy aircraft exploded and disintegrated. It was claimed to be destroyed. The aircraft captained by F/O. A. Alexander, whilst over the target sighted a ME110 approaching from the starboard quarter above and firing at his aircraft. The Mid-upper and Rear Gunners replied with long bursts and the enemy aircraft was seen to be in flames. A fire was later seen on the ground and the enemy aircraft was claimed as probably destroyed. Scattered cloud was met on the outward route, but it was clear over the target. The missing aircraft were Stirlings Mk.III BF465 captained by P/O A. RANKIN, BF564 captained by P/O A. Sedunary and EE938 captained by W/O T. Fear.

The aircraft captained by F/Sgt. WHITE, O.H. whilst approaching the target area was coned by searchlights and repeatedly hit by heavy A.A. fire, sustaining considerable damage to port mainplane. He continued towards the target though still coned by searchlights and was then attacked by a JU88 sustaining hits in the rear of the fuselage which shattered the rear turret and killed Rear Gunner Sgt. Poole, J.. The aircraft was forced into an uncontrollable dive and the captain warned his crew ‘Prepare to abandon the aircraft’. Unfortunately, in the middle of this order the inter-communication failed, and the Navigator, Air Bomber and Wireless Operator abandoned the aircraft, due to the fact that they were unable to contact their Captain. F/Sgt. WHITE jettisoned his bomb load whilst in the dive directly over the target area, managed to regain control of the aircraft when height had been lost down to 6,000ft. The captain and two remaining members of the crew after taking stock of the damage decided to attempt the long and hazardous return journey to base. This they did successfully and made a perfect crash landing at base without lights, flaps or under carriage, as the electrical leads were shot away.

Stirling Mk.III BF564 JN-W

P/O Alan Joseph Lyall Sedunary, RAAF AUS.416619 – Pilot.
F/S Francis Patrick Lundon, RNZAF NZ404718 – 2nd Pilot.
Sgt. Aubrey Lens, RAFVR 149672 – Navigator.
Sgt. Cecil Reginald Parish, RAFVR 1332576 – Air Bomber.
P/O Douglas Hamilton Moss, RNZAF NZ404653 – Wireless Operator.
Sgt. Frank Kitchener Alcock, RAFVR 532245 – Flight Engineer.
Sgt. Jack Ernest Nicholson, RAFVR 1800467 – Mid Upper Gunner.
Sgt. John James Gratton, RAFVR 1351568 – Rear Gunner.

Stirling Mk.III BF564 JN-W was brought down at Martensmuhle, one mile South South West of Trebbin (13 miles South East of Potsdam).

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SERVICE, Arthur    Age 22

Sgt. Arthur Service, RAFVR 749347 – Front Gunner.
Killed age 22 on the  15th of October 1941.
Son of Oswald Bead Service and Elsie Service; Husband of Vera Monica Service, of Shirley, Southampton.
Buried Rheinberg War Cemetery, Germany..
Grave location – 1. C. 1.
‘Worthy of everlasting memory’

15/10/1941 – Bombing Attacks Against Targets at Cologne and Boulogne
Ten Wellington aircraft from this Unit were detailed to carry out the above attacks. A mixed bomb load was carried consisting of 1,000 lb, 500 lb, 250 lb GP’s and containers of incendiaries. Captains report that bombs were dropped on the target by estimation, but owing to slight haze over the target results were not seen. A considerable amount of heavy AA fire was experienced in and around the target area. Fire was accurate over Aachen. Searchlight activity was intense throughout the route but ineffective in the target area because of the cloud. Weather was fair en route but thick ground haze over all target area. Navigation was by Astro, D/R, QDM. Pinpointing and Lorenz check. Two of these aircraft, Z8945, captained by Sgt Barker, and X9916, captained by Sgt Matetich failed to return to base.

Wellington Mk.Ic X.9916 AA-

Sgt. John Anthony Matetich, RAFVR 778235 – Pilot.
Sgt. Frederick Lionel Roy Wood, RNZAF NZ404439 – 2nd Pilot.
F/S Neville Henry Welsh, RNZAF NZ391334 – Navigator.
Sgt. Frederick Harry Worledge, RAFVR 755764 – Wireless Operator.
Sgt. Arthur Service, RAFVR 749347 – Front Gunner.
Sgt. Donald Frederick Barkhouse, RCAF R.65416 – Rear Gunner.

Wellington Mk.Ic X.9916 was lost over Cologne.The circumstances are unclear as to what caused the aircraft to crash. All the crew were killed and later buried in the Rheinberg War Cemetery.


SHALFOON, Charles John

Sgt. Charles John Shalfoon, RNZAF NZ413897 – Pilot.
Lost without trace age 22 on the 11th of October 1942.
Son of Anthony and Amine Shalfoon, of Opotiki, Auckland, New Zealand.
Buried Runnymede Memorial, Surrey, England..
Grave location – Panel 118.

11/10/1942 – Operations. Gardening in the Kattegat and Little Belt
Nine aircraft were detailed to carry out the above operation. 1500lb. vegetables were successfully planted in the allotted area. Wellington X.3597 captained by F/Sgt. Curr bombed a bridge near Middlefort with three 500lb. G.P. bombs, the first bomb was just short, others very close and might have hit the edge of the bridge. Light A.A. fire was encountered at Middlefort Bridge. No searchlights or enemy aircraft were seen.
There was no cloud, visibility was good. Navigation was good by D.R. T.R., and visual pin point. Wellington BK341 captained by Sergt. Shalfoon failed to return.

Wellington Mk.III BK.341 AA-?

Sgt. Charles John Shalfoon, RNZAF NZ413897 – Pilot.
Sgt Henry Wolfenden, RAFVR 1237318 – Observer.
Sgt. Algernon Parsons, RAFVR 1196149 – Wireless Operator.
Sgt. Sydney Posner, RAFVR 1078313 – Front Gunner.
Sgt. Roy Harold Scott, RCAF R.137578 – Rear Gunner.

BK341 was brought down at 23.30hrs between the island of Langli and the Skallengen, near the entrance to Esbjerg Harbour on the Danish coast. All five crew of BK341 were killed, three of whom were buried at Fourfelt, near Esbjerg. Two others are commemorated on the Runnymede Memorial.

CJ Shalfoon


SHARMAN, George William

Sgt. George William Sharman, RNZAF NZ412746 – Pilot.
Killed age 27 on the 7th of September 1942.
Son of George Edward Sharman, and of Ada Helen Sharman (Nee Carseldine), of Whangarei, Auckland, New Zealand.
Buried Reichswald Forest War Cemetery, Germany..
Grave location – 16. F. 12.

06/09/1942 – Operations. Attack Against Targets At Duisburg
Fifteen aircraft were detailed to carry out the above attacks. Bomb load of 4,000lb. 1,00lb. 500lb. 250lb. and incendiaries were dropped in the target area, large fires were seen to be growing in intensity. A.A. fire was heavy and intense but was bursting high above aircraft, searchlights were intense, particularly at target area.
Wellington BJ772 captained by F/Lt. Womersley was attacked from rear on return by an enemy aircraft, one bursts was fired by the rear gunner and the enemy aircraft was driven off. No other enemy aircraft was seen. The weather was good, clear over target with slight ground haze. Navigation was good. Wellington BJ.765 captained by Sergt. Sharman G.W and Wellington X.3867 captained by F/Sgt.Parkes W.R. failed to return.

Wellington Mk.III BJ.765 AA-L

Sgt. George William Sharman, RNZAF NZ412746 – Pilot.
Sgt. Norman Priestly Saul, RNZAF NZ411730 – Observer.
Sgt. Claude Joseph Frederick Jarvis, RNZAF NZ411722 – Wireless Operator.
P/O George William Alfred Mills, RNZAF NZ411769 – Front Gunner.
Sgt. Thomas Edward Coles, RNZAF NZ40161 – Rear Gunner.

Wellington Mk.III BJ.765 AA-L was brought down over Germany, crashing near Krefeld, 11 miles South West of the target, Duisburg. There were no survivors.

All five crew were initially buried in the military Cemetery, Krefeld, but later reinterred at Reischwald Forest Cemetery, South West of Kleve.

nzwargraves.org.nz/casualties/george-william-sharman © New Zealand War Graves Project

nzwargraves.org.nz/casualties/george-william-sharman © New Zealand War Graves Project


SHARP, Richard Edwin

Sgt. Richard Edwin Sharp, RNZAF NZ405513 – Wireless Operator.
Killed age 23 on the 11th of July 1942.
Son of W. and Annie Sharp, of Matakana, Auckland, New Zealand.
Buried Sage War Cemetery, Germany..
Grave location – 7. D. 1.

10/07/1942 – Daylight Sortie Against Dusseldorf
Four a/c set out to attack the above target. Bomb load of 500lbs was bought back as m/c returned owing to lack of cloud cover. Well.III, X3720(Sgt. Wilmhurst) failed to return. There was no A.A. fire or fighters. Weather was cloudy and navigation was good.

Wellington Mk.III X.3720 AA-U

F/S John Charles Wilmshurst, RNZAF NZ411962 – Pilot.
Sgt. James Douglas Gould, RNZAF NZ411233 – Observer.
Sgt. Richard Edwin Sharp, RNZAF NZ405513 – Wireless Operator.
Sgt. Peter Desmond Lowther, RNZAF NZ403583 – Front Gunner.
Sgt. Raymond John Finlay ‘Browny’ Hirst, RNZAF NZ404067 – Rear Gunner.

X3720, AA-U was the first of the four 75 (NZ) Sqdn aircraft detailed to carry out the attack to take off from Feltwell. They left at around 2.30 in the afternoon,  followed by the Jarman, McLachlan and Kearns crews. The four were recalled on the way to the target, near the Dutch coast, due to lack of cloud cover over the target. All but X3720 were safely back on the ground at Feltwell by 5.37pm.

The Wilmshurst Wellington came down into the sea off the German-Netherlands coast, well north of their expected route back to base. Three of the crew are commemorated on the Runnymede Memorial. The bodies of the wireless operator and front gunner washed ashore a few days later onto the German island of Borkum. They were buried there in the Lutheran Cemetery on the 15th, but later re-interred at Sage, 24km south of Oldenburg.

nzwargraves.org.nz/casualties/richard-edwin-sharp © New Zealand War Graves Project

nzwargraves.org.nz/casualties/richard-edwin-sharp © New Zealand War Graves Project


SHAW, Kenneth Fazackerley

Sgt. Kenneth Fazackerley Shaw, RAFVR 1132866 – Rear Gunner.
Killed age 22 on the 23rd of June 1943.
Son of Mr. and Mrs. W. R. Shaw, of Prestwich, Lancashire.
Buried Markelo General Cemetery, Holland.     .
Grave location – Plot 4. Row C. Joint grave 11-12.
‘In everlasting memory
Of our dear son Kenneth.
Till we meet again’

22/06/1943 – Attack Against Targets at Mannheim (actually Mülheim)
Fifteen aircraft were detailed to attack the above targets with incendiary bombs of 30lbs and 4lbs. Four aircraft failed to return and the remainder successfully dropped their bombs in the target area. Large concentrated fires and some explosions were seen the whole RUHR area was smoke palled. A very heavy A.A. barrage co-operating with searchlights was encountered and five aircraft were slightly hit by A.A. fire, some enemy aircraft were seen and three short combats took place, but no damage was sustained by our aircraft. There was 3/10ths cloud on the target area but visibility was fairly good, except for smoke haze. Navigation was very good. The missing aircraft were Stirling Mk.I EF399 captained by F/S Burbidge, Mk.III EF408 captained by Sgt. Wood, MK.III BK810 captained by W/O McKenzie and Mk.III EH889 captained by F/O McCrorie.

Stirling Mk.I EF399 AA-O

F/S Kenneth Alfred Burbidge, RNZAF NZ412200 – Pilot.
Sgt. Walter Frederick Wilcockson, RNZAF NZ42314 – Navigator.
Sgt. Andrew James McEwen, RNZAF NZ417077 – Air Bomber.
Sgt. Donald Ernest Martin, RNZAF NZ413872 – Wireless Operator.
Sgt. George Lockey, RAFVR 1142645 – Flight Engineer.
Sgt. Gibson Cameron, RAFVR 1304742 – Mid Upper Gunner.
Sgt. Kenneth Fazackerley Shaw, RAFVR 1132866 – Rear Gunner.

Stirling Mk.I EF399 AA-O was last heard from at 02:25hrs on a W/T message indicating the aircraft had been badly damaged by AA fire. Soon after, the Stirling was engaged by a night-fighter (Hptm Egmont Prinz zur LippeWeissendfeld, III./NJG1) and shot down at 02:47hrs near Markelo (Overjissel) 12 miles South West of Hengelo, Holland. All the deceased crew were buried in Markelo General Cemetery.

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SHAW, Stanley Alfred George

Sgt. Stanley Alfred George Shaw, RAFVR 1166184 – Front Gunner.
Killed age 21 on the 16th of May 1942.
Son of Percy Stanley and Kate Ellen Shaw, of Stanford-Le-Hope, Essex.
Buried Kiel War Cemetery, Germany..
Grave location – Joint grave 3. B. 11.
‘So dearly loved
So sadly missed’

13/05/1942 – Gardening – Kiel Bay
Eight Wellington aircraft were detailed from this Unit to carry out the above operations. One aircraft, X.3482, captained by F/S. Fraser, failed to return to base. Vegetables were sown successfully and bombs were dropped on shipping in the vicinity. In accurate flak from flak ships was encountered. The weather was fine throughout the whole operation. Navigation was by D/R. Astro, TR, loop.

Wellington Mk.III X.3482 AA-J

F/S Myles Frederick Gordon Fraser, RNZAF NZ403437 – Pilot.
F/S Albert Ivan Smith, RNZAF NZ402221 – Observer.
Sgt. John Owen Henry Nichols, RAFVR 1257377 – Wireless Operator.
Sgt. Stanley Alfred George Shaw, RNZAF 1166184 – Front Gunner.
Sgt. Norman Edward Whiting, RNZAF NZ404107 – Rear Gunner.

The presence of enemy ‘flak’ shipping in Kiel Bay was a clear indication that Wellington Mk.III X.3482 AA-J probably received AA fire of sufficient intensity to cause serious handling difficulties for the pilot and crew. The aircraft subsequently came down in the sea off the North Frisian Islands, near the Island of Sylt. All the crew perished.

Their bodies were later recovered and laid to rest in Westerland Friedhof. After the war their bodies were taken to the Kiel War Cemetery.


SHELNUTT, Barney Walker

Sgt. Barney Walker Shelnutt, RCAF 67759 – Front Gunner.
Lost without trace age 23 on the 26th of October 1941.
Son of Barney Walker Shelnutt and Idell Smith Shelnutt, of Statesboro, Georgia, U.S.A.
Buried Runnymede Memorial, Surrey, England..
Grave location – Panel 61.

26/10/1941 – Bombing Attacks Against Targets at Hamburgh and Cherbourgh
Five Wellington aircraft from this Unit were detailed to carry out the above attacks. One of these aircraft, Z1168, captained by Sgt Isherwood, failed to return to base. A mixed bomb load was carried, consisting of 1,000 lbs, 500 lbs, 250 lbs, and containers of incendiaries. Bombs were dropped on target, but owing to intense cloud, bursts were not observed. One large fire was started which was visible for 35 miles. An enemy aerodrome was in use to the North of the target, and a large fire was observed burning N.E. of Auster Altern. There was a heavy flak of A.A. fire over the target and from the direction of Cuxhaven and Bremerhaven. One enemy aircraft observed landing on aerodrome bombed. Approximately 150 searchlights were coned over the target area. Cloud was 10/10th over sea, but very good visibility in breaks over target. Searchlights were observed to be operating in conjunction with night fighter aircraft over the target.

Wellington Mk.Ic Z.1168 AA-H

Sgt. S. J. G. Isherwood, RAFVR 776066 – Pilot.
Sgt. Desmond Joseph Pyman, RNZAF NZ403473 – 2nd Pilot.
P/O Edward Miller Sangster, RCAF J.5079 – Navigator.
Sgt. Barney Walker Shelnutt, RCAF R.67559 – Wireless Operator.
Sgt. Harold Arthur Dagwell Stanley, RCAF R.69657/ J.96212 – Front Gunner.
Sgt. H. Bell, RAFVR 1159189 – Rear Gunner.

Wellington Mk.Ic Z.1168 AA-H failed to return to base. The aircraft suffered catastrophic damage from heavy AA fire over Hamburg but all but one of the crew successfully baled out and were subsequently taken prisoners of war. The Front Air Gunner, Sgt B W Shelnutt, went down with the aircraft and was killed.

BW Shelnut


SHEPHERD, Ian James

P/O Ian James Shepherd, RNZAF NZ404414 – Pilot.
Killed age 26 on the 27th of July 1942.
Son of John George and Katie Shepherd, of Timaru, Canterbury, New Zealand; Husband of Muriel Allan Shepherd, of Timaru.
Buried Sage War Cemetery, Germany..
Grave location – 13. C. 9.

26/07/1942 – Attack Against Targets at Hamburg
Fifteen a/c were detailed to carry out an attack against the above target. Bomb load of 34000lbs, 1000lbs, 500lbs and incendiaries was dropped on target area. Numerous fires and bomb bursts were seen. A.A. fire was accurate. Seven searchlights destroyed and others damaged and one m/c gun post silenced by Well.III, X3396, captained by Sgt. Kearns. Searchlights were ineffective owing to moon. One JU88 was seen 30 miles from enemy coast but did not attack. Weather was clear over target but cloudy on route. Navigation was very good by TR and DR

Wellington Mk.III Z.1596 AA-K

P/O Ian James Shepherd, RNZAF NZ404414 – Pilot.
P/O Reginald Sidney Lees, RNZAF NZ404907 – Observer.
P/O Norman Bruce Robertson, RNZAF NZ411101 – Wireless Operator.
Sgt. James Francis Winstanley, RNZAF NZ412373 – Front Gunner.
Sgt. Dixon J, RAFVR 613966 – Rear Gunner.

Wellington Mk.III Z.1596 AA-K was shot down by AA fire when flying away from the target at low altitude. After dropping its bombs the aircraft was ‘coned’ by searchlights and the pilot carried out a steep dive to escape the beams, leveling out at approximately 500ft  but still in the midst of heavy light flak. The aircraft crashed near the village of Dose and all but the Rear Gunner, Sgt Dixon, who survived the crash relatively uninjured, were killed. Dixon was taken as a prisoner of war.

nzwargraves.org.nz/casualties/ian-james-shepherd © New Zealand War Graves Project

nzwargraves.org.nz/casualties/ian-james-shepherd © New Zealand War Graves Project


SHERGOLD, Tom Graham

Sgt. Tom Graham Shergold, RAFVR 1149715 – Navigator.
Killed age 21 on the 17th of April 1943.
Son of Frederick William and Eleanor Annie Shergold, of Heaton, Newcastle-On-Tyne.
Buried Choloy War Cemetery, France..
Grave location – 2. A. 6.
‘In memory’s garden
We meet every day’

16/04/1943 – Ludwigshaven
Eleven aircraft were detailed to carry out the above attack, with bombs of 2000 lb, 1000 lb and incendiaries of 30 lb and 4 lb. Seven of the aircraft successfully attacked the target. Large fires and one big explosion were seen. Two aircraft returned early owing to engine trouble. Both heavy and light A.A. Fire was encountered co-operation with searchlights. Two of our aircraft were hit and the Navigator of one was hit in the leg. Several enemy aircraft were seen, but no combats took place. The weather was good on the route, but considerable haze was experienced at the target. Navigations was very good. Stirling Mark III BK.664 captained by F/Lt. D.C.Lowe, which experienced some very accurate A.A. Fire whilst overt the target, found on landing, that this throttle controls were jammed open, he was lucky enough to be able to land, but unfortunately he crashed into a semi built hanger on the aerodrome. The aircraft was an absolute wreck, but all the crew got away safely, although not without injuries. Stirling Mark III W 7469 captained by F/Sgt. K.F. Debenham and Stirling Mark I BF451 captained by P/O K.H.G. Groves failed to return.

Stirling Mk.I BF451 AA-Z

P/O Kelvin Havelock Green Groves, RNZAF NZ415819 – Pilot.
Sgt. James Oscar Way, RCAF R.102353 – 2nd Pilot
Sgt. Tom Graham Shergold, RAFVR 1149715 – Navigator.
Sgt. Richard Fleury Wanstall, RAFVR 656462 – Air Bomber.
Sgt. Rodney Leslie Pierson, RAFVR 1376120 – Wireless Operator.
Sgt. Leslie Charles Cameron, RAFVR 971743 – Flight Engineer.
Sgt. Ronald Charles Stone, RNZAF NZ413281 – Mid Upper Gunner.
Sgt. Leslie Leonard Everden, RAFVR 1187983 – Rear Gunner.

Stirling Mk.I BF451 AA-Z was considered to have been shot down by a night-fighter between Rilly-la- Montange and Chigny-les-Roses (Marne), 6 miles South of Rheims. None of the crew survived. They were laid to rest in Reims, then after the city became liberated by U S Forces in 1944, their bodies were taken to Antilly. After September 1944, their remains were exhumed and transferred to the Choloy War Cemetery, 145 miles south of Rheims.


SHOGREN, Malcolm Edward John

Sgt. Malcolm Edward John Shogren, RNZAF NZ415375 – Rear Gunner.
Killed age 29 on the 28th of April 1943.
Son of Norman and Alice Shogren, of Glen Eden, Auckland, New Zealand.
Buried Svino Churchyard, Denmark.
Grave location – Grave 27.

28/04/1943 – Mining in Kiel Bay
Eight aircraft were detailed to carry out the above operation with mines of 1500 lbs. One of these aircraft returned early owing to its compass being faulty and four failed to return. The remaining three aircraft successfully dropped their mines in the allotted area and the parachutes were seen to open. A.A. fire co-operating with searchlights was encountered which is believed to have come from an A.A. ship in the mining area. No enemy aircraft were seen. Visibility was fairly good, with scattered cloud in the mining area. Navigation was very good. Stirlings Mk.1 R9290, Sgt. A. Lewis, W.7513 – Sgt. K. Halliburton, BF.467 – P/O D. Thompson, Mk.III BK664 – P/O. D.V. Hamer, failed to return.

Stirling Mk.III BK664 AA-M

P/O Douglas Vincent Hamer, RAFVR 963403/ 141713 – Pilot.
Sgt. Desmond Ray Ross, RNZAF NZ42341 – Navigator.
Sgt. Ross Cameron Buckley, RNZAF NZ411206 – Air Bomber.
Sgt. William Leslie Fred Brian, RNZAF NZ411737 – Wireless Operator.
Sgt. George Len Lennox, RAFVR 950013 – Flight Engineer.
Sgt. Harry Pears Holme, RAFVR 1301281 – Mid Upper Gunner.
Sgt. Malcolm Edward John Shogren, RNZAF NZ415375 – Rear Gunner.

Stirling Mk.III BK664 AA-M was brought down by A/A fire from a Kreigsmarine (flak ship), battery MAA508, positioned between the Fehmarn-Belt and Lolland Island, in the Baltic. It crashed at 00:23hrs on the western side of Lolland Island and the crew all perished.

The bodies of both air gunners were recovered and are buried in the Svino Churchyard. All other crew are commemorated on the Runnymede Memorial.

nzwargraves.org.nz/casualties/malcolm-edward-john-shogren © New Zealand War Graves Project

nzwargraves.org.nz/casualties/malcolm-edward-john-shogren © New Zealand War Graves Project


SHONE, George Ernest

W/O George Ernest Shone, RAF 564432 – Observer.
Killed age 29 on the 29th of July 1942.
Son of George and Edith Olivia Gwladys Shone; Husband of Nellie Florence Shone, of Hoole, Chester.
Buried Becklingen War Cemetery, Germany.
Grave location – 27. A. 13.
‘Love’s last gift,
Remembrance’

28/07/1942 – Attack Against Targets at Hamburg
Seventeen a/c were detailed to carry out an attack on the above target. Bomb load of 4000lbs, 30lb and 4lb incendiaries was dropped in target area and bursts were seen in dock area. A.A. fire was very accurate, light and heavy predicted. There were many accurate searchlight cones in parts but clear over target. Navigation was good by TR and DR. Six a/c failed to return to base

Wellington Mk.III X.3558 AA-Z

Sgt. Alexander George Sutherland, RNZAF NZ405340 – Pilot.
W/O George Ernest Shones, RAFVR 564432 – Observer.
Sgt. Adrian Oscar Tabor, RNZAF NZ411104 – Wireless Operator.
P/O Charles Harkness, RNZAF 121958 – Front Gunner.
Sgt. Ian Gordon Stewart, RNZAF NZ404623 – Rear Gunner.

The Wellington was probably hit by AA fire over or near the target city and crashed near Cuxhaven, northern Germany. All the crew perished. They were buried in the Central Cemetery Brackeswalde, but later reinterred at Becklingen War Cemetery.


SIDHU, Devinder Singh

Sgt. Devinder Singh Sidhu, RAFVR 946455 – Flight Engineer.
Lost without trace age 24 on the 28th of April 1943.
Commemorated Runnymede Memorial, Surrey, England..
Grave location – Panel 147.

28/04/1943 – Mining in Kiel Bay
Eight aircraft were detailed to carry out the above operation with mines of 1500 lbs. One of these aircraft returned early owing to its compass being faulty and four failed to return. The remaining three aircraft successfully dropped their mines in the allotted area and the parachutes were seen to open. A.A. fire co-operating with searchlights was encountered which is believed to have come from an A.A. ship in the mining area. No enemy aircraft were seen. Visibility was fairly good, with scattered cloud in the mining area. Navigation was very good. Stirlings Mk.1 R9290, Sgt. A. Lewis, W.7513 – Sgt. K. Halliburton, BF.467 – P/O D. Thompson, <k.III BK664 – P/O. D.V. Hamer, failed to return.

Stirling Mk.I W7513 AA-G

Sgt. Keith Haliburton, RNZAF NZ415411 – Pilot.
Sgt. Patrick Torre Hunter, RNZAF NZ42297 – Navigator.
Sgt. Leslie Thomas Scarfe, 1261331 – Air Bomber.
Sgt. David Church, RAFVR 1196564 – Wireless Operator.
Sgt. Devinder Singh Sidhu, RAFVR 946455 – Flight Engineer.
Sgt. Charles Henry George Boxall, RAFVR 1393248 – Mid Upper Gunner.
Sgt. Alexander Clunie Howell, RNZAF NZ392104 – Rear Gunner.

Took off at 20.42 hrs from R.A.F. Newmarket in Suffolk. Part of a huge 207 aircraft force on a “Gardening” (Mine laying) operation. A total of 593 mines were laid off Heligoland, in the river Elbe and in the Great and Little Belts. Low cloud base forced the aircraft to fly very low over the German and Danish coasts. Because of this they took very heavy flak and also attacks from Luftwaffe night fighters.
Although this was the largest mine laying operation in one night of the whole war it came at a price. A total of 22 aircraft were lost (75 (NZ) Squadron RAF lost 4 aircraft alone, with a total of 28 crew members killed) – 9 aircraft were lost by the night fighters and the remainder from the flak.

There are no known details regarding the loss of W7513 and her crew, all being lost without trace. Stirling W7513 is not on the Luftwaffe claims list for this raid so it is thought that it had been taken down by flak All crew are commemorated on the Runnymede Memorial.

DV Sidhu


SILCOCK, Trevor

Sgt. Trevor Silcock, RAFVR 1582936 – Flight Engineer.
Killed age 20 on the 31st of August 1943.
Son of Trevor and Jessie Silcock, of Stoke-On-Trent.
Buried Heverlee War Cemetery, Belgium.
Grave location – 4. A. 10.
‘Till we meet again’

30/08/1943 – Attack Against Targets at Munchen-Gladbach
18 Aircraft were detailed to attack the above targets with incendiary bombs of 30lbs. and 4lbs. All aircraft with the exception of one which failed to return, successfully dropped their bombs in the target area. Very large fires which were well concentrated and spreading, were seen. All crews were of the opinion that this was a good attack. Moderate heavy A.A. fire and a few searchlights were encountered, which were ineffective. A great number of enemy aircraft were seen and some short combats took place. The aircraft captained by F/Sgt. Batger, H. sighted an enemy aircraft 600 yards away, ahead and the front gunner fired a long and short burst, the enemy aircraft then disappeared and was claimed as possibly destroyed. . The aircraft captained by F/S McGregor,K. sighted an Me110 astern, the rear gunner fired a long burst. The enemy aircraft replied and dived away with smoke pouring from its engines. It is claimed as a possible destroyed. There was 8/10ths cloud at the target approaches although it was clear in the target area. Navigation was very good. The missing aircraft was  Stirling MK.III EH938 captained by Sgt. Parkin, T.

Stirling Mk.III EH938 AA-F

F/S Victor Trevor Parkin, RNZAF NZ421090 – Pilot.
F/S Terrence Watters, RNZAF NZ417299 – Navigator.
Sgt. Ralph Valentine Clingan Johnson, RAFVR 1545885 – Air Bomber.
Sgt. William Hadley Horrigan, RAFVR 1176649 – Wireless Operator.
Sgt. Trevor Silcock, RAFVR 1582836 – Flight Engineer.
Sgt. Richard Frederick Grove, RAFVR 1581242 – Mid Upper Gunner.
Sgt. Anthony Francis Saunders, RAFVR 1394719 – Rear Gunner.

Based on Val Johnson’s debrief with MI.9, it would appear that that EH938 possibly fell prey to a German night fighter, within a nachtjagd ‘box’. Val was the only survivor of the crew, the rest of the crew being killed when the aircraft crashed at Lommel (Limburg), in Belgium. The airmen were all buried in St-Truiden before being moved to Heverlee War Cemetery.


SIMNETT, Brian

Sgt. Brian Simnett, RAFVR 1392577 – Air Bomber.
Lost without trace age 22 on the 14th of March 1944.
Son of Dudley V. and Norah K. Simnett, of Norwich.
Commemorated Runnymede Memorial, Surrey, England..
Grave location – Panel 237.

13/03/1944 – Mining off St. Nazaire
Sixteen aircraft were detailed for mine laying off St. Nazaire, Lorient, La Rochelle, and Brest. One aircraft (Captain NZ414567 F/Sgt. Rowberry T.) failed to return. Another aircraft (Captain NZ42999 P/O. C. Baker) returned early with aileron trouble and crashed at Castle Comb, without injury to the crew although the aircraft was burnt out. The remaining fourteen successfully laid their mines, one aircraft landing at Woodbridge on return.

Stirling Mk.III LJ462 AA-O

F/S Geoffrey Warren Rowberry, RNZAF NZ414567 – Pilot.
F/S Graham Stanley Hadfield, RNZAF NZ426239 – Navigator.
Sgt. Brian Simmett, RAFVR 1392577 – Air Bomber.
Sgt. Sidney Thomas Bishop, RAFVR 1322249 – Wireless Operator .
Sgt. Arthur William Horner, RAFVR 1641609 – Flight Engineer.
Sgt. Raymond David Davies, RAFVR 1317623 – Mid Upper Gunner.
Sgt Alfred Newnham, RAFVR 1172993 – Rear Gunner.

No official account of the loss of the crew exists, or is officially accepted and as such the Rowberry crew are recorded as lost without trace.


SIMONSEN, Horace Dean

LAC Horace Dean Simonsen, RNZAF NZ438024 – Air Gunner.
Killed during an air raid in London, age 32 on the 17th of April 1941.
Son of Rasmus Neil and Lily Martha Simonsen, of Blenheim, Marlborough, New Zealand.
Buried Brookwood Military Cemetery, Surrey, England.
Grave location – 25. A. 12.

Leading Aircraftsman Horace Dean Simonsen RNZAF NZ438024 – Wireless Operator, was killed at the age of 32, whilst on an Air Gunners course, during an air raid on the capital.

LAC Simonsen had arrived at Feltwell  on the 5th of February and was and does not appear to be recorded in the ORB documents I have, so we must summise that his presence on the Air Gunner course was leading to operational flying.

The night of the 16th/ 17th of April 1941 saw one of the heaviest attacks  made on London since the war began. Bombing commenced shortly after 9.00pm and lasted until nearly dawn.

Approximately 66 boroughs were affected, the main bombing being on Central and Southern London. In addition to high explosive and incendiary bombs, a large number of 1,000kg parachute mines were also dropped dropped causing massive damage through blast and fire.

SIMONSEN H D


SIMPSON, Alfred Alexander

F/S Alfred Alexander Simpson, RNZAF NZ425212 – Air Bomber.
Killed age 28 on the 21st of July 1944.
Son of Frederick John and Jessie Ann Simpson, of Gisborne, Auckland, New Zealand; husband of Gladys Simpson, of Lethbridge, Alberta, Canada.
Buried Uden War Cemetery, Holland.     .
Grave location – 3. I. 4. 205

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 ME691 AA-R

W/O Harold ‘Dick’ Whittington, RNZAF NZ42488 – Pilot.
F/O Joseph Stevens, RAFVR 125607 – Navigator.
Sgt. Alfred Alexander Simpson, RNZAF NZ425112 – Air Bomber.
P/O Phillip Edwin Tompkins, RAFVR 157922 – Wireless Operator .
Sgt. Donald W. Gore, RAFVR 1624691 – Flight Engineer.
Sgt. Ronald John Morton Batty*, RAFVR 548542 – Mid Upper Gunner.
* ORB for this Op lists Sgt. Leslie De’Lungo, RAFVR as Mid Upper Gunner, however the recorded loss of Sgt. Batty clearly identifies this as an error.
F/S Andrew Crawford Fletcher, RNZAF NZ42675 – Rear Gunner.

Lancaster Mk.I ME691 AA-R was brought down by an enemy aircraft at 01:33hrs beside a road near Veghel (Noord Brabant), 4 miles South West of Uden. All but the Flight Engineer perished in the crash and were buried in the local War Cemetery, Uden. Sgt Gore, survived but was taken as a P.o.W.

nzwargraves.org.nz/casualties/alfred-alexander-simpson © New Zealand War Graves Project

nzwargraves.org.nz/casualties/alfred-alexander-simpson © New Zealand War Graves Project


SINGLE, Alan Roy

F/S Alan Roy Single, RAAF AUS.413144 – Pilot.
Killed age 26 on the 22nd of November 1943.
missing from list
Buried Rheinberg War Cemetery, Germany..
Grave location – 9. A. 20

22/11/1943 – Attack Against Targets at Berlin
Four aircraft were detailed to attack the above targets with bombs of 1,000lbs and incendiaries of 30lb. and 4lb. One aircraft returned early owing to an Oxygen failure and two failed to return. The remaining aircraft successfully dropped its bombs in the Target Area. It was very difficult to assess the results as there was 10/10ths cloud over the target. Little opposition was encountered and no incidents were reported. Navigation was very good. The missing aircraft were Stirlings Mk.III LJ453 Captained by F/S A.Single and EF148 Captained by F/S. J. TURNER.

Stirling Mk.III LJ453 AA-K

F/S Alan Roy Single, RAAF AUS.413144 – Pilot.
F/O Jack Brothwell, RAFVR 135042 – Navigator.
F/S John Edward Stanley Margetts, RNZAF NZ422665 – Air Bomber.
Sgt. Eric Richmond Whittington, RNZAF NZ416030 – Wireless Operator.
Sgt. Ivor George Holbrook, RAFVR 937367 – Flight Engineer.
Sgt. Victor Stanley Hughes, RAFVR 1796312 – Mid Upper Gunner.
Sgt. Arthur George Bernard, RNZAF NZ424964 – Rear Gunner.

Stirling Mk.III LJ453 AA-K was brought down over Germany, crashing about a mile South South East of Arlen, between Gemmerich and Dolberg. The lack of AA fire in the target area suggested that a night fighter was probably responsible for the loss of the Stirling.

There were no survivors. The seven crew were buried at Achmer, and later reinterred at Reichswald Forest Cemetery.

Single AR


SIZMUR, Douglas Victor

Sgt. Douglas Victor Sizmur, RAFVR 934205 – 2nd Pilot.
Lost without trace age 19 on the 30th of November 1941.
Buried Runnymede Memorial, Surrey, England.
Grave location – Panel 52.

30/11/41 – Bombing Attacks Against Targets at Emden and Hamburg
Eleven Wellington Ic and two Wellington II aircraft were detailed from the Unit to attack the above targets. A mixed bomb load was carried consisting of 4000lbs, 1000lbs, 500lbs, 250lbs and containers of incendiaries. Weather was clear and visibility good. A few bombs were dropped in the target area the remaining were bought back to base. Heavy, medium and light flak was encountered and a large number of searchlights were active. (Sentence illegible). One unidentified aircraft was also seen off the Frisian Islands. A convoy off Cromer fired at aircraft until colours were fired. Navigation was good. Astro and D.R. loop being used. One Wellington Ic aircraft, 1099, captained by Sgt. Harrison-Smith failed to return to base.

Wellington Mk. Ic Z.1099 AA-S

F/S Francis Charles Harrison-Smith, RNZAF NZ403959 – Pilot.
Sgt. Douglas Victor Sizmur, RAFVR 934205 – 2nd Pilot.
Sgt. Daniel Mccready, RAFVR 1375023 – Observer.
Sgt. Eric Henry James Painter, RAFVR 1359501 – Front Gunner.
Sgt. Brian Dominic Meagher, RAFVR 1109620 – Wireless Operator.
Sgt. Peter Buckby, RAFVR 1156870 – Rear Gunner.

Wellington Z.1099 failed to return. It was shot down at 23:05hrs by a night fighter (Pilot; Ofw Paul Gildner, 4. /NJG1) and crashed into the Waddenzee. All members of the crew died.

DV Sizmur


SLATER, Colin Harry

Sgt. Colin Harry Slater, RAFVR 1815706 – Flight Engineer.
Killed age 20 on the 25th of June 1944.
Son of Harry and Ethel Slater, of Fenton, Stoke-on-Trent.
Buried Fruges Communal Cemetery, France..
Grave location – Coll. grave 7. 10
‘Treasured memories
Of our dear Colin.
Mother, dad and Marion’

24/06/1944 – Attack Against Rimeux
Twenty five aircraft took off as detailed to attack the constructional works at Rimeux. Twenty four crews bombed successfully with the aid of markers, and an accurate raid was reported.   There were numerous searchlights in action, but the A.A. opposition was not serious. The aircraft captained by NZ424788 F/S. Bateson, B. failed to return.

Lancaster Mk.III ND920 AA-P

F/S Benjamin William Bateson, RNZAF NZ424788 – Pilot.
Sgt. Geoffrey Leonard Startin, RAFVR 1600846 – Navigator.
Sgt. Maurice Frederick Morgan, RAFVR 1394772 – Air Bomber.
Sgt. Francis Cassidy McIntyre, RAFVR 1562888 – Wireless Operator .
Sgt. Colin Harry Slater, RAFVR 1815706 – Flight Engineer.
Sgt. Ernest Lewis Connett, RAFVR 1236363 – Mid Upper Gunner.
F/S Bruce Milne, RNZAF NZ428017 – Rear Gunner.

Lancaster Mk.III ND920 AA-P was shot down by a German night-fighter near Fruges (Pas-de-Calais), 27 mils South East of Boulogne, probably while en route to attack a V1 flying-bomb site at Rimeaux. According to local eye witnesses of the crash, the plane exploded on impact, and buried itself in a deep crater, all the members of the crew being instantly killed, such remains as were recovered were buried by French civillians in Grave No.7 in the Fruges Communal Cemetery.


SLATER, Edwin

Sgt. Edwin Slater, RAFVR 2210570 – Mid Upper Gunner.
Killed age 20 on the 25th of August 1944.
Son Of Margaret Alice Slater, Of Hollinwood, Oldham, Lancashire.
Buried Rheinberg War Cemetery, Germany..
Grave location – Joint grave 8. K. 6-7.
‘He did his duty,
His work is done.
Now I shal mourn
A loving son.’

25/08/1944 – Attack Against Russelsheim
Twenty eight aircraft took off as detailed to attack Russelsheim. Of these twenty five attacked the primary target and reported a good concentrated raid. A.A. opposition was slight, but enemy aircraft were active and one of our aircraft had two inconclusive combats. Another was unable to identify the target and jettisoned its load. A further one was caught in searchlights over the target and during evasive action lost both ailerons. This aircraft was captained by NZ424504 .F/S. O’Callaghan, E. The navigator 958564 .F/S. Hartley, R., kept the aircraft on track on the return journey even though his instruments were unserviceable and his chart lost. Two aircraft failed to return, they were captained by NZ422382 .F/O. J. Fleming and NZ421345 .F/S. Barker, R.

Lancaster Mk.I LM593 AA-N

F/O James Allan Fleming, RNZAF NZ422382 – Pilot.
F/O James Atkinson Dale, RNZAF NZ425562 – Navigator.
F/S Frank Arthur Vincent, RAFVR 1395910 – Air Bomber.
Sgt. Eric Garforth, RAFVR 2206796 – Wireless Operator .
Sgt. Kenneth Eric Croxon, RAFVR 1893473 – Flight Engineer.
Sgt. Edwin Slater, RAFVR 2210570 – Mid Upper Gunner.
Sgt. Alan Raymond Bryce Stewart, 1344346 – Rear Gunner.

Lancaster Mk.I LM593 AA-N was brought down over Germany, crashing near Neunkirchen; 38 miles North West of the target. There were no survivors. All seven crew are now buried in the Rheinberg War Cemetery.


SLATER, Geoffrey

Sgt. Geoffrey Slater, RAFVR 1287890 – Wireless Operator.
Killed age 22 on the 6th of October 1942
Son of Harold and Ivy Marie Slater, of Sheffield.
Buried Hardenberg Protestant Cemetery, Holland.
Grave location – Row A. Grave 15.
‘Tis sweet to remember
One so dear; Though absent from us
He is always near’

06/10/1942 – Operations. Attack Against Targets At Osnabruck
Fourteen aircraft were detailed to attack the above target. Bomb load of 4,000 lb. and incendiaries were dropped in the target area. Scattered fires were seen, flares were lighting up the whole area. Considerable light and heavy A.A. fire was encountered. Searchlights were numerous and operating mainly in cones. The weather was good with low cloud and slight haze at target area. Navigation was good bt D.R. , T.R. visual, pinpoints, loop and fixes. Wellington DF639 captained by Sgt. Rhodes G.W. failed to return.

Wellington Mk.III DF.639 AA-?

Sgt. George William Rhodes, RAFVR 1331658 – Pilot.
Sgt. Walter John Howes, RAFVR 1378338 – Observer.
Sgt. John Foreman, RCAF R.80334 – Wireless Operator.
Sgt. Geoffrey Slater, RNZAF 1287890 – Front Gunner.
Sgt. John Forbes, RAFVR 1314891 – Rear Gunner.

Wellington Mk.III DF.639 was shot down by an enemy night-fighter at 23:30hrs near the small town of Hardenberg (Overijssel), 70 miles East of Amsterdam, Holland, while returning to base following the raid on Osnabruck. The crew were all killed. They are buried in the Protestant Cemetery, at Hardenberg.

SLATER G


SLEIGHTHOLM, David

Sgt. David Sleightholm, RAFVR 1684309 – Flight Engineer.
Killed age 22 on the 23rd of May 1944.
Son of John W. and Gertrude Sleightholm, of Carlisle; Husband of Rosanna Sleightholm, of Carlisle.
Buried Reichswald Forest War Cemetery, Germany.
Grave location – 3. G. 13. 83

22/05/1944 – Attack Against Dortmund
Twenty three aircraft were detailed to attack Dortmund of which eighteen completed their mission successfully. Three aircraft returned early and two failed to return (Captains NZ417016 P/O. E. Burke and NZ42354 P/O. C. Armstrong). The raid was well concentrated and carried out in good weather with excellent visibility. One aircraft had an inconclusive combat with a JU 88. Otherwise the operation was uneventful.

Lancaster Mk.III ND768 AA-F “Freddie”

P/O Cecil Ernest ‘Snow’ Armstrong, RNZAF NZ42354 – Pilot.
F/S Douglas Beardsley Payne, RNZAF NZ426917 – Navigator.
F/S Eric William Elliott Marshall, RNZAF NZ415637 – Air Bomber.
Sgt. Carl Arthur Warburton, RAFVR 1484107 – Wireless Operator .
Sgt. David Sleightholm, RAFVR 1684309 – Flight Engineer.
Sgt. Roy Joseph Davies, RAFVR – Mid Upper Gunner.
Sgt. James Pepper, RAFVR 1682572 – Rear Gunner.

Reports indicate that ND768 was struck by flak on approach to target – with a full bomb load, the aircraft exploded killing all on board. The crew’s remains were buried intially at Hauptfriedhof, Dortmund, but were later reinterred at the Rheinberg War Cemetery.


SLIMAN, Allan Melrose

Sgt. Allan Melrose Sliman, RAFVR 1826936 – Flight Engineer.
Died from injuries age 39 on the 14th of April 1945.
Son of James andrew and Jane Sliman.; Husband of Gladys Rosina Sliman, of Tunbridge Wells, Kent.
Buried Chelmsford (Writtle Road) Cemetery, Essex, England..
Grave location – Grave 5828.
‘To live in the hearts
We leave behind Is not to die’

14/04/1945 – Attack on Potsdam
25 aircraft were detailed to attack POTSDAM. There was no cloud and visibility was good. A very concentrated attack developed and the target was well alight by the time the last aircraft were on their way home. Flak was slight and bursting well below stream. AA’T’ (F/O A.R. Baynes) was attacked by two enemy aircraft believed to be JU.88’s 20 miles S.W. of Potsdam on the homeward journey. The Flight Engineer (Sgt. Sliman) was killed by canon shell.

Lancaster Mk.III PB132 AA-T

F/O Allan Ralph Baynes, RNZAF NZ427453 – Pilot.
F/O Dawson Albert Cotton, RNZAF NZ421063 – Navigator.
F/O Leo Francis Joseph Farrelly, RNZAF NZ427268 – Air Bomber.
Sgt. G. Sword, RAFVR – Wireless Operator.
Sgt. Allan Melrose Sliman, RAFVR 1826936 – Flight Engineer.
Sgt. William ‘Bill’ Barnbrook, RAFVR – Mid Upper Gunner.
Sgt. G. Bentham, RAFVR – Rear Gunner.

The narrative from the Combat Report for this attack reads as follows.
On 14 – 15th April 1945, Lancaster I AA.T at 51deg 40 N 12deg 10E at 23.15 on a heading of 296 T, Mid Gunner sighted 2 JU.88s on Starboard down and gave the order to corkscrew starboard. No.1 JU.88 attacked killing the Engineer whilst the other remained out at 400 yards. The attacking aircraft broke away starboard quarter down and was given a long burst by the rear gunner. No hits observed.

At 23.26 at 51-45N 11.30E on a heading of 296T at a height of 9,000 feet Lancaster aircraft was again attacked by 2 JU.88s( not showing any lights) from dead astern down at 750 yards. The rear gunner ordered pilot to corkscrew starboard and this attacking aircraft firing at the same time. Very little damage was done to the rear turret. Direction of break away during the attack was not seen, and the rear gunner did not open fire owing to the hydraulics being shot away. The second JU.88 did not attack but acted as a decoy as in the first attack.

The damage to nose and cockpit suggests it suffered a blast of canon shells, one which would tragically hit and fatally wound Allan, who died in a Cambridgeshire hospital on 14th April 1945, close to his squadron’s base. He was 39 years old.

WG 057a


SLOMAN, Horace George

Sgt. Horace Gordon Sloman, RAFVR 929627 – 2nd Pilot.
Killed age 21 on the 15th of September 1941.
Buried Hamburg War Cemetery, Germany.
Grave location – 5A. H. 8.

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, ans co-operating with A.A. fire and night fighters.

Wellington Mk.Ic X.3205 AA-

Sgt. James AllenWard, RNZAF NZ401793 – Pilot.
Sgt. Horace Gordon Sloman, RAFVR 929627 – 2nd Pilot.
Sgt. L.E. Peterson, RAFVR – Navigator.
Sgt. Robert William Toller, RAFVR 1054292 – Wireless Operator.
Sgt. H.C. Watson, RAFVR 952162 – Front Gunner.
Sgt. Kenneth Hutley Toothill, RAFVR 1114337 – Rear Gunner.

Sgt Ward’s aircraft, Wellington X3205, was hit repeatedly by flak which resulted in catastrophic damage causing the aircraft to come down in flames in the target area. All but two of the crew (the Wireless Operator and Navigator who both baled out), perished.


SLOMAN, Robert Gerald

Sgt. Robert Gerald Sloman, RAFVR 914220 – Flight Engineer.
Lost without trace age 24 on the 21st of July 1944.
Son of Frederick George and Edith Emily Sloman, of Snodland, Kent.
Commemorated Runnymede Memorial, Surrey, England..
Grave location – Panel 237.

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 HK569 AA-Q

F/S Neil Douglas Davidson, RNZAF NZ422057 – Pilot.
Sgt. Arthur Ernest Goddard, RAFVR 1323147 – Navigator.
Sgt. Thomas Gilbert Little , RAFVR 1459875 – Air Bomber.
Sgt. Douglas Corris, RAFVR 1501099 – Wireless Operator .
Sgt. Robert Gerald Sloman, RAFVR 914220 – Flight Engineer.
Sgt. Raymond Stanley Lang, RAFVR 1896528 – Mid Upper Gunner.
F/S Henry John Hiscox, RAFVR 928092 – Rear Gunner.

Lancaster Mk.I HK569 AA-Q was attacked by a German night-fighter over Heibloem, Limburg, The Netherlands on its way to the target, the Fischer Tropsch oil refinery in Homberg, Germany

Pilot, F/S Neil Douglas Davidson RNZAF flew the badly damaged and blazing aircraft on over the River Maas towards Reuver, but turned and tried to land it in the river, he succeeded but it hit the river bank and exploded. The bomb aimer, Sgt. T.G. Little RAF, had managed to bail out, however his parachute failled to open fully and he was badly injured when he fell into the garden of a house in the village of Kessel. He was taken to a hospital, subsequently made a prisoner of war (POW No. 52469) in Muhlhausen POW camp and survived World War II, passing away in 1990.

The tail of the aircraft fell away from the fuselage into a field just before impact. F/S Hiscox, Rear Gunner, fell with the turret into a corn field. It is thought he died a day or two afterwards and was found two weeks later by a Dutch farmer’s labourer, Sef Willems, who was a member of the Dutch resistance. F/S Hiscox was buried in the Beesel grave yard. The grave digger had a bunch of flowers with him,but the German soldiers threatened to shoot him if he laid them on completion of the burial, He passed the flowers on to local people who in the dark of night threw them over the cemetery wall onto the grave.


SMART, Randolph Cruickshank

P/O Randolph Cruickshank Smart, RNZAF NZ411006 – Observer.
Lost without trace age 25 on the 10th of September 1942.
Son of George James Cruickshank Smart and Florence Jane Smart, of Martinborough, Wellington, New Zealand.
Buried Runnymede Memorial, Surrey, England.
Grave location – Panel 116.

10/09/1942 – Operations. Attack Against Targets At Dusseldorf
Thirteen aircraft were detailed to attack the above target. Bomb load of 4,000 lb. and incendiaries were dropped in target area, Wellington X.3747 captained by Sgt. Rousseau and Wellington BJ.837 captained by P/O Jacobson were forced to return to base before reaching target area. owing to aircraft failures. Large fires were seen, a few dummy fires were also seen near target. Light and heavy A.A. fire was encountered, particularly in searchlight cones, which covered a large area. The weather was good, slight haze at target area. Navigation was by D.R. and T.R. Wellington BJ.828 captained by Sergt. Lees, Wellington BJ.968 captained by Sgt. Burrill and Wellington BJ.974 captained by Sergt. Metcalf, failed to return.

Wellington Mk.III BJ.968 AA-W

Sgt. Frank Burrill, RCAF R.97521 – Pilot.
P/O Randolph Cruickshank Smart, RNZAF NZ411006 – Observer.
Sgt. Michael Bertram St. Louis, RCAF R.69204 – Wireless Operator.
Sgt. William Wilfred Henry Lavers, RAFVR R.83468 – Front Gunner.
Sgt. Ralph Ernest Gorman, RCAF R.93025 – Rear Gunner.

Wellington Mk.III BJ.968 AA-W was lost without trace. All five crew are commemorated on the Runnymede Memorial.

RC Smart


SMEATON, Wilfred Hubert

Sgt. Wilfred Herbert Smeaton, RNZAF NZ405331 – 2nd Pilot.
Killed age 28 on the 23rd of May 1942.
Son of Smith and Lucy Smeaton; Husband of Heather Hinemoa Smeaton, of Devonport, Auckland, New Zealand.
Buried Buxton Cemetery, Derbyshire, England..
Grave location – Grave 4179

22/05/1942 – Cross Country Night Flying Training
Wellington Mk III, Z.1566 AA-K, was undergoing a night cross-country training flight when the weather deteriorated. The Pilot-in-command elected to remain above the cloud layer for some time before he was able to descend through a gap in the cloud in the early morning hours so that the navigator could visually establish their position. At 03.40 hrs, the aircraft flew into a hillside at Grindon Farm, six miles East South East of Leek, Staffordshire. The sole survivor of the crash was the rear gunner, Sgt Chappell, who was injured. All remaining members of the crew were killed.

Wellington Mk III, Z.1566 AA-K

P/O Andrew Donald Mackay, RNZAF NZ411919 – Pilot.
Sgt. Wilfred Herbert Smeaton, RNZAF NZ405331 – 2nd Pilot.
Sgt. John William Bode, RAFVR 1185743 – Observer.
Sgt. Cyril Hayton, RAFVR 1113610 – Front Gunner.
Sgt. James Wilfred Beaven, RNZAF NZ403566 – Wireless Operator.
Sgt. Sidney John Chappell, RNZAF NZ41571 – Rear Gunner.

All are buried at Buxton, Derbyshire, except Sgt Hayton, RAF, who is buried in the Byker and Heaton Cemetery, Newcastle-on-Tyne, his hometown.

SONY DSC


SMITH, Albert Ivan

F/S Albert Ivan Smith, RNZAF NZ402221 – Observer.
Killed age 27 on the 16th of May 1942.
Husband of M. Smith.
Buried Kiel War Cemetery, Germany..
Grave location – 3. E. 9.

13/05/1942 – Gardening – Kiel Bay
Eight Wellington aircraft were detailed from this Unit to carry out the above operations. One aircraft, X.3482, captained by F/S. Fraser, failed to return to base. Vegetables were sown successfully and bombs were dropped on shipping in the vicinity. In accurate flak from flak ships was encountered. The weather was fine throughout the whole operation. Navigation was by D/R. Astro, TR, loop.

Wellington Mk.III X.3482 AA-J

F/S Myles Frederick Gordon Fraser, RNZAF NZ403437 – Pilot.
F/S Albert Ivan Smith, RNZAF NZ402221 – Observer.
Sgt. John Owen Henry Nichols, RAFVR 1257377 – Wireless Operator.
Sgt. Stanley Alfred George Shaw, RNZAF 1166184 – Front Gunner.
Sgt. Norman Edward Whiting, RNZAF NZ404107 – Rear Gunner.

The presence of enemy ‘flak’ shipping in Kiel Bay was a clear indication that Wellington Mk.III X.3482 AA-J probably received AA fire of sufficient intensity to cause serious handling difficulties for the pilot and crew. The aircraft subsequently came down in the sea off the North Frisian Islands, near the Island of Sylt. All the crew perished.

Their bodies were later recovered and laid to rest in Westerland Friedhof. After the war their bodies were taken to the Kiel War Cemetery.

nzwargraves.org.nz/casualties/albert-ivan-smith © New Zealand War Graves Project

nzwargraves.org.nz/casualties/albert-ivan-smith © New Zealand War Graves Project


SMITH, Charles Arthur

Sgt. Charles Arthur Smith, RAFVR 917722 – Flight Engineer.
P.o.W – died in captivity age 36 on the 8th of April 1944.
Son of Walter Guy and Sarah Louise Smith.
Buried Berlin 1939-1945 War Cemetery, Germany..
Grave location – 6. G. 11.
‘A well loved son
And brother,
Greatly missed.
He did his duty’

27/09/1943 – Attack Against Targets at Hanover
Sixteen aircraft were detailed to attack the above targets with incendiary bombs of 30lb. and 4 lb. Two aircraft failed to return and one returned early owing to its rear turret being unserviceable. The remainder dropped their bombs in the target area. This was an exceedingly successful and well concentrated attack, considered to be even better than the previous one. Numerous large fires and columns of smoke rising to 12,000ft., were seen and the fires were again visible at the DUTCH coast. Very moderate, ineffective heavy A.A. Fire numerous searchlights and flares were encountered. Many enemy aircraft were seen and several combats took place. The aircraft captained by F.Sgt. HORGAN, D. had a combat with a JU88 which was claimed to be destroyed. The aircraft captained by F/Sgt. BURTON, H., sighted a JU88 and the Rear Gunner fired, it was then seen to fall in flames and was claimed as destroyed. Two other short combats took place and one of our aircraft received slight damage. The weather was poor on the outward and return journeys, but good with clear visibility over the target. Navigation was very good. The missing aircraft were Stirlings Mk.III, EF515 captained by Sgt. Martin, R., and EH877 captained by F/Sgt. WHITMORE, R.

Stirling Mk.III EF515 AA-F

Sgt. Ralph Egerton Martin, RNZAF NZ416415 – Pilot.
Sgt. Harold Clarke Dwight, RNZAF NZ421930 – Navigator.
Sgt. Eric McKay, RNZAF NZ415230 – Air Bomber.
Sgt. W.V. Harries, RAFVR 1198898 – Wireless Operator.
Sgt. Charles Arthur Smith, RAFVR 917722 – Flight Engineer.
Sgt. Archibald Robert Bangs, RAFVR 1891699 – Mid Upper Gunner.
Sgt. Ronald Frederick Summerhays, RNZAF NZ425003 – Rear Gunner.

Stirling Mk.III EF515 AA-F was brought down, probably by enemy night-fighter action, in the vicinity of Haverbeck-Hamelin. The pilot succeeded in making a crash landing, allowing all but one of the crew to escape uninjured. The Mid-Upper Gunner, Sgt A R Bangs, did not survive the crash and was buried in Hannover War Cemetery. The remaining crew were captured as P.o.W’s.

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SMITH, Ian Hector Ross

F/S Ian Hector Ross Smith, RNZAF NZ421614 – Air Bomber.
Killed age 34 on the 1st of September 1943.
Son of Hector John and Gertrude Mary Smith, of Napier, Hawke’S Bay, New Zealand.
Buried Rheinberg War Cemetery, Germany..
Grave location – 10. E. 23.

31/08/1943 – Attack Against Targets at Berlin
Eighteen aircraft were detailed to attack the above targets with bombs of 1,000lb., 500lb. and incendiaries of 30lb. and 4lb. Two aircraft failed to take-off and four did not return, the remainder successfully dropped their bombs in the target area. Large fires were seen, although rather scattered they appeared to be progressing very well. Moderate heavy A.A. fire co-operating with searchlights were encountered and one air craft received slight damage. Enemy night-fighters were in great prominence, the aircraft piloted by F/Sgt. Wilkinson, G encountered a JU88 approaching from astern 500yds away. The rear gunner fired a long burst, the enemy aircraft replied and stalled. The mid-upper gunner then fired three long bursts. The enemy aircraft was seen to fall away and is claimed as probably destroyed. Our aircraft received damage to the rear of the fuselage and had part of the tail plane and fin badly damaged. The aircraft captained by F/O Alexander sighted two Me109’s, the first opened fire from the starboard quarter and the rear gunner replied with a short burst. The enemy aircraft stalled and the mid-upper gunner fired a short burst. The enemy aircraft then dived to the ground and exploded, it was claimed to be destroyed. The second Me109 opened fire with a short burst from the port bow to the port quarter. The rear gunner then fired a short burst and tracer was seen to enter the enemy aircraft, which dived. It was claimed as possible destroyed. The aircraft captained by W/O Moseley, P. sighted a Me110 on the port quarter, the mid upper and rear gunner fired a long burst and the enemy aircraft turned over and dived with smoke pouring from its starboard side. It was claimed as probably destroyed. The aircraft captained by P/O C.Logan sighted a Me109 sixty yards astern, the mid-upper and rear gunner  fired and tracer from the rear gunner was seen to hit the aircraft. The Stirling then corkscrewed and the Me109 disappeared. It was claimed to be damaged. Two other aircraft crash landed away from base due to damage caused by enemy fighters, none of the crews were injured however. 8/10ths cloud was encountered on the outward journey and 9’10ths at the target, visibility, nevertheless, was good. Navigation was very good. The missing aircraft were Stirlings MK.III EE918 captained by F/Sgt. Roberts,E, EE878 captained by F/Sgt. Henley, D, EE905 captained by F/Sgt. Helm,G. and EF501 captained by F/S McGregor, K.

Stirling Mk.III EE878 AA-P

F/S Douglas Charles Henley, RNZAF NZ414622 – Pilot.
F/O Clifford Arnold Watson, RNZAF NZ421946 – Navigator.
F/S Ian Hector Ross Smith, RNZAF NZ421614 – Air Bomber.
Sgt. Robert N. Quelch, RAFVR 1319114 – Wireless Operator.
Sgt. Lewis Patrick ‘Lew’ Parsons, RAFVR 1455528 – Flight Engineer.
Sgt. Douglas C. Box, RAFVR 1578987 – Mid Upper Gunner.
Sgt. James Sutherland Grant, RNZAF NZ421274 – Rear Gunner.

Stirling Mk.III EE878 AA-P was badly damaged by flak and by night-fighter action near the target area. With the port inner engine out of action, and the port elevator only partially effective, considerable height was lost evading the fighter before control was regained. They were now almost out of fuel and at low level when the captain ordered the crew to bale out. Some of the crew succeeded in clearing the plane before it crash-landed at Ahrbruck, 7miles SW of Ahrweiler. The navigator and air bomber were killed when their parachutes failed to deploy in time. The pilot died at the controls. Those who died were buried at municipal cemetery at Mayschoss, but later re-interred in the Rheinberg War Cemetery, south of Wesel. The other four crew all survived but were captured as POW’s.

nzwargraves.org.nz/casualties/albert-ivan-smith © New Zealand War Graves Project

nzwargraves.org.nz/casualties/ian-hector-ross-smith © New Zealand War Graves Project


SMITH, James

Sgt. James Smith, RAFVR 1604615 – Wireless Operator.
Lost without trace age 21 on the 21st of October 1944.
Buried Runnymede Memorial, Surrey, England..
Grave location – Panel 238.

21/10/1944 – Attack Against Flushing
Twenty five aircraft took off to attack Flushing. All crews were able to identify the target visually and bombing was reported as being very accurate. A.A. opposition was moderate. One aircraft (Captain 176437 F/O J. Johnson) failed to return, but was seen to be shot down over the target by heavy A A fire.

Lancaster Mk.I HK596 AA-O Oboe

F/O James ‘Johnny’ Johnson, RAFVR 176437 – Pilot.
W/O Thomas Talbot ‘Tommy’ Murdoch, RAFVR 1345478 – Navigator.
F/O Alexander Mitchell ‘Mitch’ Penman, RNZAF NZ416154 – Air Bomber.
Sgt. James ‘Jimmy’ Smith, RAFVR 1604615 – Wireless Operator .
Sgt. Lorenzo ‘Larry’ Marfil, RAFVR 1893899 – Flight Engineer.
Sgt. Alexander ‘Jumbo’ Reid, RAFVR 2211424 – Mid Upper Gunner.
W/O Vincent John O’Loughlin, RAFVR 536970 – Rear Gunner.

Lancaster Mk.I HK596 AA-O was engaged in a visual bombing attack against an enemy gun battery near the Port of Vlissengen, Netherlands. At 12:32hrs other crews flying nearby reported seeing HK596 come under heavy AA fire, with at least one engine on fire. Within minutes the aircraft descended quickly near the target area. Five parachutes were seen to deploy before the aircraft hit the ground and broke up. None of the crew survived the late abandonment or the crash. Five were buried in the Bergen op Zoom War Cemetery and two are commemorated on the Runnymede Memorial.


SMITH, Keith Alfred

W/O Keith Alfred Smith, RNZAF NZ416022 – Mid Upper Gunner.
Killed age 23 on the 28th of April 1944.
Son of William James Smith and Elsie Mary Smith, of Pahiatua, Wellington, New Zealand.
Buried Durnbach War Cemetery, Germany..
Grave location – Coll. grave 4. C. 1-7.

27/04/1944 – Attack Against Friedrichshafen
Sixteen Lancasters were detailed to attack Friedrichshafen. Fourteen successfully carried out their mission, one aircraft bombed a decoy in error and another failed to return (Captain NZ42282 F/O. R. Herron).

Lancaster Mk.III ND796 AA-J

F/O Robert Weir Herron, RNZAF NZ425238 – Pilot.
F/S Matthew Roland Henderson, RNZAF NZ427204 – Navigator.
Sgt. Walter Reginald Percival, RAFVR 553063 – Air Bomber.
F/O Euan Wilfred McLachlan, RAFVR NZ415266 – Wireless Operator .
Sgt. John William Germing, RAFVR 1803074 – Flight Engineer.
W/O Keith Alfred Smith, RNZAF NZ416022 – Mid Upper Gunner.
P/O Peter Ernest Chilman, RAFVR 155992 – Rear Gunner.

There was no report of Anti Aircraft fire or searchlights. It was apparent, however, that German night-fighters had arrived in numbers, as witnessed by other aircraft coming under attack. One such aircraft was ND796, the Lancaster of F/O Bob Herron and his crew.
 The remaining fifteen unit aircraft returned to base safely, landing between 03.50 – 06.20hrs.

Lancaster Mk.III ND796 AA-J was shot down by a night-fighter just North West of the target, crashing 500 metres South East of Langenhart, about a mile North of Messkirch. There were no survivors. All seven crew were buried in a collective grave at Lagenhart. They were later reinterred at Durnbach War Cemetery.

This aircraft was the first 75(NZ) Squadron Lancaster reported missing..

nzwargraves.org.nz/casualties/keith-alfred-smith © New Zealand War Graves Project

nzwargraves.org.nz/casualties/keith-alfred-smith © New Zealand War Graves Project


SMITH, Keith Emmett

F/S Keith Emmett Smith, RNZAF NZ425179 – Rear Gunner.
Killed age 21 on the 21st of July 1944.
Son Of Robert Emmett Smith And Gertrude Smith, Of Auckland City, New Zealand.
Buried Jonkerbos War Cemetery, Nijmegen, Holland.
Grave location – 12. J. 5.

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.

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.

nzwargraves.org.nz/casualties/keith-emmett-smith © New Zealand War Graves Project

nzwargraves.org.nz/casualties/keith-emmett-smith © New Zealand War Graves Project


SMITH, Phillip Francis

F/S Phillip Francis Smith, RAAF AUS.427206 – Wireless Operator.
Killed age 20 on the 20th of November 1944.
Son of Arthur Joseph and Ireen Elizabeth Smith, of Maylands, Western Australia.
Buried Rheinberg War Cemetery, Germany.
Grave location – Coll. grave 7. B. 5-7.

20/11/1944 – Attack Against Homberg
Twenty eight aircraft took off to attack the Oil Refinery Plant at Homberg. Twenty two aircraft in daylight attacked the target in ten tenths cloud with tops at 23,000 ft. which made formation flying very difficult. They carried 4,000 lb and 500 lb bombs. Results of bombing could not be observed, but it is considered that the raid was unsatisfactory. One aircraft AA/J returned early owing to icing trouble and two aircraft bombed last resort targets at Duisburg and Hamborn. Three aircraft failed to return. These were captained by 185116 F/O R. Gordon, AUS419328 F/O P. McCartin and 152402 F/O H. Rees.

Lancaster Mk.III ND911 JN-V

F/O Patrick Leo McCartin, RAAF AUS.419328 – Pilot.
Sgt. John Miles, RAFVR 845847/ 187426 – Navigator.
F/O Leonard ‘Len’ Arthur Martin, RAFVR 153528 – Air Bomber.
F/S Phillip Francis Smith, RAAF AUS. 427206 – Wireless Operator .
Sgt. William John Warlow, RAFVR 1653307 – Flight Engineer.
Sgt. Dennis George Albert Bryer, RAFVR 1874880 – Mid Upper Gunner.
Sgt. John Gray, RAFVR – Rear Gunner.

Lancaster ND911 took off from Mepal, Cambridgeshire at 12:47 hrs, as part of 3 Group with a force of 183 Lancaster’s, to bomb Homberg (Oil Refinery Plant).   Weather was stormy and many of the bomber stream were not able to maintain formation with the G-H (Radar aided aircraft) on the bombing run and the bombing was believed to have been scattered.   The force met little resistance from Luftwaffe fighters, but suffered very heavy flak.

 On the bomb run at about 15:00 hrs, the pilot was forced to lose height as the starboard outer engine failed and he decided to feather it.   The aircraft was forced to leave the formation, however at 15:15 hrs they bombed the target.   At 15:17 hrs they then received a direct hit in the port wing area from flak and is thought that the fuel tanks exploded.   The Lancaster broke up in mid-air and a very violent spin developed.   Flt Sgt Gray, the rear gunner, was knocked unconscious. When he came to the entire tail unit had broken away during the mid-air explosion and he was able to rotate the turret to enable him to bail out at 10,000 ft.   He stated that he saw no other parachutes during his descent. During his parachute drop at around 2,000 ft. he was shot at by German ground troops but was not hit.

Smith PF


SMITH, Ronald

Sgt. Ronald Smith, RAFVR 1239376 – Air Bomber.
Killed age 20 on the 1st of December 1943.
Son of Basil and Sarah Ann Smith, of Leeds; Husband of Joan Smith, of Halton, Leeds.
Buried Leeds (Whitkirk) Cemetery, Yorkshire, England..
Grave location – Grave 38.

01/12/1943 – Mining off the East Coast of Denmark
Three aircraft were detailed to carry out the above operation with mines of 1,500lb. Two of the aircraft successfully dropped their mines in the allotted area, but the parachutes were not seen to open owing to ten tenths cloud. Some heavy A.A. Fire was encountered, but caused negligible opposition. Visibility was poor in the mining area. Navigation was very good. On returning the aircraft captained by SGT. F/SGT.G.J.KERR crashed whilst attempting to land at R.A.F. Station ACKLINGTON. The aircraft crashed into a house and all of the crew were killed, except for the Mid Upper Gunner SGT. K.G.HOOK who was seriously injured. In addition to the crew, five children who were in the house were killed and their parents were admitted to Hospital.

Stirling Mk.III EH880 AA-J

F/S George John Stewart Kerr, RAFVR 1558163 – Pilot.
Sgt. Donald Frank Wort, RAFVR 1585034 – Navigator.
Sgt. Ronald Smith, RAFVR 1239376 – Air Bomber.
Sgt. Derek Arthur Holt, RAFVR 1217087 – Wireless Operator.
Sgt. Leonard George Copsey, RAFVR 1691471 – Flight Engineer.
Sgt. Kenneth Gordon Hook, RAFVR 1335989 – Mid Upper Gunner.
Sgt. George William Thomas Lucas, RAFVR 1250557 – Rear Gunner.

Stirling Mk.III EH880 AA-J diverted to RAF Acklington on return from the above task and crashed into a house a short distance from the perimeter during a landing attempt at 22.40hrs. All of the crew were killed except the M/U gunner, Sgt K Hook, who was seriously injured. Five children in the family living in the house were killed. Their parents were pulled from the wreckage alive but badly injured.

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SMITH, Ronald Alexander

Sgt. Ronald Alexander Smith, RNZAF NZ415378 – Rear Gunner.
Killed age 21 on the 15th of April 1943.
Son of David Watson Smith and of Agnes Adelaide Smith (Nee Doyle), of Lauriston, Canterbury, New Zealand.
Buried Florennes Communal Cemetery, Belgium.
Grave location – Row 2. Coll. grave 22-26

14/04/1943 – Attack Against Targets at Stuttgart
Eleven aircraft were detailed to attack the above target with incendiary bombs of 30 lb and 4 lb. One aircraft returned early as the controls were faulty. None of the remaining aircraft successfully dropped their bombs in the target area. Large fires were seen, together with a great deal of black smoke. There was a moderate amount of heavy A.A. Fire encountered on the way to the target, but very little in the target area. A few searchlights were seen, but they were ineffective. Some enemy aircraft were seen and short combats took place, but our aircraft were not damaged. It was very clear over the target, as there was a bright moon, and visibility was good in spite of slight ground haze. Navigation was very good. Stirling Mark III BF513 captained by P/O. D.J. McCaskill failed to return.

Stirling Mk.III BF513 AA-E

P/O Donald Gordon McCaskill, RNZAF NZ413573 – Pilot.
P/O James Kennedy Grainger, RNZAF NZ42295 – Navigator.
Sgt. Bertram Elwell, RAFVR 519416 – Air Bomber.
Sgt. Reginald Thomas Charles Green, RAFVR 1211032 – Wireless Operator.
Sgt. Angus McVicar, RAFVR 1371651 – Flight Engineer.
Sgt. Ernest Desmond Cook, RAFVR 1609864 – Mid Upper Gunner.
Sgt. Ronald Alexander Smith, RNZAF NZ415378 – Rear Gunner.

BF513 was shot down by an enemy night-fighter (Lt Fritz Graef, I. /NJG4) over Belgium at 02.25hrs, crashing at Regniéssart, (Namur), 3 miles South East of Couvin. There were no survivors. All the crew are buried at Florennes’ Communal Cemetery.

Ron Smith cpd RoH


SMITH, Raymond Charles

Sgt. Raymond Charles Smith, RAFVR 1235250 – Flight Engineer.
Lost without trace age 22 on the 30th of July 1944.
Buried Runnymede Memorial, Surrey, England..
Grave location – Panel 238.

30/07/1944 – Attack Against Amaye Sur Seulles
Seventeen aircraft were detailed to take part in an early morning attack on enemy troops and armoured concentrations near Amaye-Sur-Seulles. All crews successfully attacked from a low level and reports indicate that the bombing was well concentrated and ably controlled with a gradual advance southwards as ordered. No results other than clouds of smoke were seen. One aircraft (Captain NZ42117 F/S. Nairne, C.) failed to return.

Lancaster Mk.I HK558 AA-D

F/S Colin George Nairne, RNZAF NZ42117 – Pilot.
P/O Lyndon Clifford Perry, RNZAF NZ428925 – Navigator.
W/O Denis Alfred Kidby, RAFVR 1391158 – Air Bomber.
Sgt. Alfred Richard Stannard, RAFVR 1338510 – Wireless Operator .
Sgt. Raymond Charles Smith, RAFVR 1235250 – Flight Engineer.
Sgt. Stanley Alfred George Woodford, RAFVR 922095 – Mid Upper Gunner.
F/S Philip Falkiner, RNZAF NZ425140 – Rear Gunner.

Although formally recorded as ‘lost without trace’, the circumstances of the disappearance of HK558 was more accurately explained in ‘For Your Tomorrow’ by author Errol Martyn. A Royal Navy minesweeper on patrol in the Channel observed two Lancasters collide in mid-air at approximately 08.00hrs while HK558 was flying northwards in the base of heavy low cloud. The other aircraft was a 514 Sqn Lancaster, LL733, probably from the same raid. The Minesweeper steamed to where the two aircraft crashed into the sea, a short distance away. After an hour’s search, only the body of an RAF Air Bomber was recovered, who was buried at sea. All seven crew of each aircraft are commemorated on the Runnymede Memorial.


SMITH, Rupert John

P/O Rupert John Smith, RNZAF NZ41950 – Pilot.
Killed age 26 on the 9th of June 1942.
Son of Ernest Harrison Smith and Emma Smith, of Wellington City, New Zealand.
Buried Reichswald Forest War Cemetery, Germany..
Grave location – 9. F. 17.

08/06/1942 – Attack Against Targets at Essen
Twelve aircraft were detailed to attack the above target. Bomb load of 4000lbs, 500lbs, 250lbs and 4 lb inc was dropped in the target area. Owing to haze results were not observed. There was a heavy concentration of flak and searchlights in target area. Two unidentified a/c were observed near Dutch Coast by Well.III, X3720 and were eluded. Weather was good no cloud over target but hazy. Navigation was very good. Well.III, X3587, captained by P/O. Smith and Well.III, Z1573, captained by P/O Murdoch failed to return.

Wellington Mk.III X.3587 AA-P/S

P/O Rupert John Smith, RNZAF NZ41950 – Pilot.
Sgt. William Graham Clark, RAFVR 903293 – Observer.
Sgt. William Robertson Ramsay, RNZAF NZ405508 – Front Gunner.
Sgt. Barry Herbert Coulter, RAFVR 1261820 – Wireless Operator.
Sgt. Henry Edward Jones, RAFVR 1192997 – Rear Gunner.

The aircraft was brought down, probably by flak, crashing near Dusseldorf. There were no survivors. All five crew were buried in the Nordfriedhof Cemetery, in Dusseldorf, but later reinterred at Reichswald Forest War Cemetery, South West of Cleve.

nzwargraves.org.nz/casualties/rupert-john-smith © New Zealand War Graves Project

nzwargraves.org.nz/casualties/rupert-john-smith © New Zealand War Graves Project


SMITH, Selwyn Clarence

Sgt. Selwyn Clarence Smith, RNZAF NZ41952 – Observer.
Killed age 29 on the 25th of October 1942,
Son of E. T. and Sarah Elizabeth Smith, of Winton, Southland, New Zealand.
Buried Valenciennes (St Roch) Communal Cemetery, France..
Grave location – Plot 4. Row A. Coll. Grave 15.

24/10/1942 – Operations. Attack Against Targets At Milan
Five aircraft were detailed to attack the above target. Bomb load of 1,000lb. 500lb. 250lb and incendiaries were dropped in the target area. Some slight A.A. fire was encountered, cloud stopped searchlight activity. No combats with enemy aircraft took place. 10/10ths cloud from the French Coast to the target made identification of the target difficult. Navigation was difficult owing to cloud preventing the use of Astro. Wellington Z1652 captained by Sergt. Hugill and Wellington BK725 captained by Sergt. McConnell failed to return.

Wellington Mk.III BK.725 AA-?

Sgt. James Allison McConnell, RNZAF NZ414646 – Pilot.
Sgt. Selwyn Clarence Smith, RNZAF NZ41952 – Observer.
Sgt. Douglas Noel Tonkin , RNZAF NZ413285 – Wireless Operator .
Sgt. Arthur Quinn , RNZAF 1095594 – Front Gunner .
Sgt. Vallance Albert Oliver Dimock , RNZAF NZ412317 – Rear Gunner.

Wellington Mk.III BK.725 was brought down by enemy action over France, crashing near Valencienns, 25 miles North East of Cambrai. All five crew were killed. They were buried at Valenciennes.

nzwargraves.org.nz/casualties/selwyn-clarence-smith © New Zealand War Graves Project

nzwargraves.org.nz/casualties/selwyn-clarence-smith © New Zealand War Graves Project


SMITH, Trevor Harry

P/O Trevor Harry Smith, RNZAF NZ41953 – Pilot.
Killed age 24 on the 9th of July 1942.
Son of Walter George Thomas Smith and of Hannah Elizabeth Smith (Nee Price), of Matarawa, Wellington, New Zealand.
Buried Oldebroek General Cemetery, Holland.     .
Grave location – Grave 41.

08/07/1942 – Attack Against Targets at Wilhemshaven
Thirteen a/c were detailed to attack the above target. Bomb load of 4000lbs, 1000lbs, and 4lb inc was dropped in the target area and hit were believed to be scored. There was heavy predicted flak and searchlights were scattered. No enemy a/c were seen. Weather was good clear over target. Navigation was excellent.

Wellington Mk.III X.3557 AA-X

P/O Trevor Harry Smith, RNZAF NZ41953 – Pilot.
P/O Donald Norman Potts RNZAF NZ412267 2nd Pilot.
P/O Alan Stuart Broun, RNZAF NZ405367 – Observer.
Sgt. Frank Edwin McKenzie, RNZAF NZ391085 – Wireless Operator.
Sgt. George Anthony Young, RNZAF NZ405771 – Front Gunner.
P/O Jack Ralph Gavegan, RNZAF NZ402128 – Rear Gunner.

Wellington Mk.III X.3557 AA-X came down at the northern end of the Waddenzee, near Rottumeroog Is at 01.30hrs. The time of the crash indicates the aircraft was still on the outward bound route to the target and was almost certainly shot down by one of the many German night fighters operating along that part of the Dutch coast. The details contained within German documentation regarding the injuries to the body of George Young certainly seem to support this, describing significant head injuires, assumed to be from a bullet or shell.

All of the crew were killed. Only the bodies of Sgt Young and the Pilot, P/O Trevor Harry Smith were recovered. As mentioned previously, a second body was recovered with Sgt. Young’s – the conjecture by rank of the airman is that this was Frank McKenzie, however a positive I.D. was never able to be made.

Trevor Smith was initially buried in Rottumeroog, but was subsequently moved to and re-interred at Oldebroek General Cemetery. The rest of the crew are remembered on the Air Force Memorial at Runnymede.

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SMYTH, William Bennett Megarry

Sgt. William Bennett Megarry Smyth, RAFVR 1053919 – Pilot.
Killed age 23 on the 18th of September 1941.
Son of William Samuel and Augusta Dorothea Smyth, of Kill of The Grange, Co. Dublin, Irish Republic. B.A. (Dublin): Trinity College.
Buried Rheinberg War Cemetery, Germany..
Grave location – 8. G. 16.
‘Courage is the only purpose,
For without courage
There can be no survival’

17/09/1941 – Bombing Attacks Against Targets at Karlsruhe
Eight Wellington aircraft of this Unit were detailed to carry out individual bombing attacks on the above targets. One of these aircraft failed to return. A mixed bomb load was carried and consisted of 1,000 lb, 500 lb, 250 lb and containers of incendiaries. A.A. fire and searchlights were slight in the target area. Weather was hazy over the target.

Wellington Mk.Ic X.9834 AA-?

Sgt. William Bennett Megarry Smyth, RAFVR 1053919 – Pilot.
P/O Walter John Smith, RAFVR 1058110/ 67704 – 2nd Pilot.
P/O Kenneth Edward Algar Savage, RAFVR 106545 – Observer.
Sgt. James Henry Reid, RAFVR 997006 – Wireless Operator.
Sgt. Howard Clive McLeish Haselden, RNZAF NZ403003 – Front Gunner.
Sgt. A.H. Heard, RAFVR 960717 – Rear Gunner.

X9834 was not heard from and thus it must be assumed it was either hit by flak or by a night fighter. It would appear that the Pilot was forced to crash-land the aircraft, on fire, at Holsthum on the river Prüm, seven miles South South West of Bitburg, Germany.

Sgt. Smyth, P/O Savage and Sgt. McL Hazelden died in the crash and were buried in the Rheinberg War Cemetery. P/O Smith, Sgt. Reid and Sgt. Heard escaped unhurt from the plane and were taken prisoners of war. When under confinement at Lamsdorf POW camp, Sgt Reid was shot by  a prison guard and killed on 29 Dec 41. It was reported that Sgt. Reid was shot whilst trying to remove fence panels for heating, other reports indicate that he was trying to escape. He is buried in the Cracow Military Cemetery.


SNEDDON, James Wilson

Sgt. James Wilson Sneddon, RAFVR 1342219 – Flight Engineer.
Killed age 31 on the 3rd of August 1943.
Son of The Late James Gorman Sneddon and Elizabeth Wilson Sneddon. of Kilmaurs, Kilmarnock, Ayrshire.
Buried Hamburg War Cemetery, Germany..
Grave location – Coll. grave 4A. D. 10-12.

02/08/1943 – Attack Against Targets at Hamburg
Seventeen aircraft were detailed to attack the above targets with incendiary bombs of 30lb and 4lb. Six of the aircraft returned early owing to severe icing and engine trouble, two failed to return. The remainder successfully dropped their bombs in the target area. Large fires and columns of smoke were seen although this attack was not considered to be a successful as the previous one. Moderate heavy and light A.A. fire co-operating with searchlights were encountered, which proved to be ineffective. Some enemy aircraft were seen but no combats took place. The weather was good at the beginning of outward journey, but cloud gathered and was 10/10ths at the target, icing and electrical storms were also encountered. Navigation was very good. The missing aircraft were Stirlings Mk. III EH928 captained by Sgt. Baille, P. and BF 557 captained by F/Sgt. Couper, J.A.

Stirling Mk.III BF577 JN-M

Sgt. James Arthur Couper, RNZAF NZ417027 – Pilot.
Sgt. George Albert Walker, RAFVR 1332840 – Navigator.
Sgt. Geoffrey Scott Corlett, RNZAF NZ42289 – Air Bomber.
Sgt. Sydney Cecil Oliver Reeves, RNZAF NZ42339 – Wireless Operator.
Sgt. James Wilson Sneddon, RAFVR 1342219 – Flight Engineer.
Sgt. Thomas Edward Wadeson, RAFVR 1489406 – Mid Upper Gunner.
Sgt. Alan Ashworth, RAFVR 1529817 – Rear Gunner.

Stirling Mk.III BF577 JN-M collided with a German night-fighter (Fw Krauter, II /NJG3), north of the mouth of the River Elbe, crashing on the Kaiser-Wilhelm-Koog. All on board perished. They are buried in Hamburg Cemetery, Ohlsdorf.


SOLBE, Edward Urlic Guerin

S/Ldr. Edward Urlic Guerin Solbe, RAF 34090 – 2nd Pilot.
Killed age 30 on the 21st of February 1941.
Husband of Jean G. Solbe, of Rustington, Sussex.
Buried Kiel War Cemetery, Germany..
Grave location – 4. E. 6.
‘Beloved Budge’

21/02/1941 – Bombing Attacks on Wilhelmshaven
Seven Wellington aircraft of this Unit were detailed to carry out individual bombing attacks against the above target. One of the aircraft, JAH.124, captained by P/O Falconer, failed to return to base. A mixed bomb load was carried and consisted of 1000lbs. 500lbs. 250 lbs. and containers of incendiaries. JAH.243 bombed docks at EMDEN. Incendiaries not observed; 500lbs. bombs seen to explode in target area. Owing to front and rear turrets being unserviceable, JAH.460 returned to base. Bombs were jettisoned in sea. JAH.598 reports bombs seen to explode on docks. Incendiaries seen to cause large fires. JAH.607 reports one good fire, and three minor fires. JAH.969 dropped in vicinity of target area. JAH.996 bombed on ETA and heaviest flak concentration. Bomb bursts seen under cloud. No observations were made, and no reconnaissance carried out. The A.A. fire encountered was medium and inaccurate. There were few searchlights, mostly operating in cones. No enemy aircraft were seen. There was 10/10 cloud over most of the journey, with severe icing conditions. Navigation was by D/R, W/T, map reading, pin points.

Wellington Mk.Ic T.2503 AA-

P/O Arthur James Falconer, RNZAF NZ39910 – Captain.
S/L Edward Ulric Guerin Solbe, RAFVR 34090 – 2nd Pilot.
P/O Anthony Vincent Muir, RNZAF NZ40195 – Observer.
Sgt. William Donald ‘Don’ Morrison, RAFVR 946356 – Wireless Operator.
Sgt. Harry Thomas Hellier, RAFVR 650057 – Front Gunner.
Sgt. Andrew Moore Brodie, RNZAF NZ391378 – Rear Gunner.

All aircraft, except Wellington Mk.Ic T.2503, returned to base safely, landing at approximately 00.30hrs. Wellington T2503 failed to return. Very little information is available to determine the fate of the aircraft, although it became apparent it was brought down in the North Sea. The crew all perished. Two bodies were later washed ashore near Helgoland, north of Wilhelmshaven. Acting as second pilot on this ill-fated sortie, was S/L Solbe, ‘A’ Flight Commander.


SOUTHWARD, Keith

F/O Keith Southward, RNZAF NZ411048 – Pilot.
Killed age 28 on the 6th of October 1944.
Son of William Henry and Janet Sneddon Southward, of Runanga, Westland, New Zealand.
Buried Rheinberg War Cemetery, Germany..
Grave location – 11. B. 10.

06/10/1944 – Attack Against Dortmund
Twenty nine aircraft were detailed to attack Dortmund, but one of these was withdrawn owing to a technical failure. Twenty six aircraft attacked the target in good weather and a very accurate and concentrated raid was reported, large fires being left burning. A.A. Fire was moderate but fighters were active and the aircraft captained by NZ427798 F/S Farr, W. had a series of combats during which the enemy aircraft was claimed as being destroyed. One aircraft returned early and landed at Woodbridge owing to a technical failure and another (Captain NZ411048 F/O K. Southward) failed to return.

Lancaster Mk.I LM104 JN-K

F/O Keith Southward, RNZAF NZ411048 – Pilot.
F/O Arthur Francis Thompson, RNZAF NZ4212803 – Navigator.
F/O Baden Gordon Clare, RNZAF NZ429590 – Air Bomber.
Sgt E.W. Vero, RAFVR – Wireless Operator .
Sgt. D.J. Roberts, RAFVR 2220435 – Flight Engineer.
Sgt. L. Cooper, RAFVR 1585673 – Mid Upper Gunner.
Sgt. T. Burnett, RAFVR 1823259 – Rear Gunner.

Lancaster Mk.I LM104 JN-K was at 22,000ft, probably en route to the target, when it was brought down by an enemy night-fighter South West of Monchengladbach, 50 miles South West of Dortmund, crashing near Willich. The Captain was able to control the aircraft long enough to enable his crew to bale out successfully, but was unable to do so himself and he bravely died in the crash. He was buried at Willich but later reinterred at the Rheinberg War Cemetery. All of Southward’s crew were captured as prisoners of war.

nzwargraves.org.nz/casualties/keith-southward © New Zealand War Graves Project

nzwargraves.org.nz/casualties/keith-southward © New Zealand War Graves Project


SOWERBY, Geoffrey Phillips

F/S Geoffrey Phillips Sowerby, RNZAF NZ417243 – Navigator.
Killed age 22 on the 23rd of September 1943.
Son of James Reginald and Jessie Sowerby, of Auckland City, New Zealand.
Buried Durnbach War Cemetery, Germany..
Grave location – 2. C. 20.

23/09/1943 – Attack Against Targets at Mannheim
Eighteen aircraft were detailed to carry the above operation with incendiary bombs of 30lb. and 4lb.. Three aircraft failed to return, but the remainder successfully dropped their bombs in the target area. This was, undoubtedly, a good attack, concentrated fires which were spreading to the West, and large heavy explosions were seen. Moderate heavy A.A. fire and a large curtain of searchlights were encountered, but caused no trouble. Enemy aircraft were very active and several combats took place. The aircraft captained by W/O. P. MOSELEY had a combat with a JU88 which was claimed as a probably destroyed. In the action our aircraft received damage the Pilot W/O. P. MOSELEY and the Mid Upper Sgt. C(?) MIDDLETON were slightly injured. The aircraft captained by P/O A. BURLEY had three combats with enemy aircraft, one of which was claimed as destroyed, the two as  damaged. The weather was good with clear visibility. Navigation was excellent. The missing aircraft were Stirlings Mk.111 EF459 captained by P/O C.C. LOGAN, EH946 captained by F/Lt. G. TURNER , and EH935 captained by F/O L. KIRKPATRICK.

Stirling Mk.III BF459 JN-E

P/O Clifford Charles Pownall Logan, RAAF AUS.405918 – Pilot.
F/S Geoffrey Phillips Sowerby, RNZAF NZ417243 – Navigator.
F/O John Paul Ingham, RAFVR 132331 – Air Bomber.
Sgt. Terence James Hegarty, RAFVR 1030026 – Wireless Operator.
Sgt. Thomas Stewart, RAFVR 1117389 – Flight Engineer.
Sgt. Frederick Edward William Crowther, RAFVR 1339159 – Mid Upper Gunner.
F/S Albert John Knox, RNZAF NZ416006 – Rear Gunner.

Stirling Mk.III BF459 JN-E was brought down at Lampertheim, 7 miles North of Mannheim. All but two of the crew died in the crash, The M/U gunner, who was seriously injured, died 10 days later. The only survivor was the rear gunner, F/S A J Knox, RNZAF, who was captured as a P.o.W. All who died were buried at Lampertheim and later reinterred at Durnbach War Cemetery, East of Bad Tolz.

nzwargraves.org.nz/casualties/geoffrey-phillips-sowerby © New Zealand War Graves Project

nzwargraves.org.nz/casualties/geoffrey-phillips-sowerby © New Zealand War Graves Project


SPARK, Frederick Alexander

Sgt. Frederick Alexander Spark, RNZAF NZ401415 – 2nd Pilot.
Killed age 26 on the 22nd of October 1941.
Son of William and Elizabeth Maria Spark, of Dunedin, Otago, New Zealand; Husband of Effie A. Spark, of Dunedin.
Buried Werken Churchyard, Belgium..
Grave location – Grave 168.

22/10/1941 – Bombing Attacks Against Targets Mannheim
Six Wellington aircraft from this Unit were detailed to carry out the above attacks. A mixed load was carried and consisted of 1000lbs, 500lbs, 250lbs and containers of incendiaries. Owing to the weather conditions operations were marred, but a fire was bombed in a town on the Rhine, probably Mannheim and bomb bursts seen. There was  slight A.A. activity and searchlights were ineffective where seen. Electrical storms, thunder cloud and snow storms were met throughout operations. Navigation was good. D.R. and special beam No.6 used. Icing (black) was experienced over Continent. Unable to see through windscreens owing to accumulated snow, from Belgian coast onwards. Severe weather conditions made accuracy impossible. One of these aircraft, X.9914, captained by Sgt. Taylor, failed to return to base.

Wellington Mk.Ic X.9914 AA-M

Sgt. Cyril Taylor, RAFVR 110661 – Pilot.
Sgt. Frederick Alexander Spark, RNZAF NZ401415 – 2nd Pilot.
Sgt. Sidney Joseph Lawrence Levack, RAFVR 971231 – Observer.
Sgt. James Roberts, RAAF AUS.400310 – Wireless Operator.
Sgt. William Reid Steele, RAFVR 1051619 – Front Gunner.
Sgt. Robert Holtby Tasker, RAFVR 1381172 – Rear Gunner.

Wellington Mk.Ic X.9914 AA-M failed to return. It was later determined to have been brought down near Werken (West Vlaanderen) approximately 5ml East South East of Diksmuide, Belgium. There were no survivors. All were buried in Werken Chuchyard.

nzwargraves.org.nz/casualties/frederick-alexander-spark © New Zealand War Graves Project

nzwargraves.org.nz/casualties/frederick-alexander-spark © New Zealand War Graves Project


SPENCER, Ronald Howard

W/O Ronald Howard Spencer, RAFVR 1575186 – Air Bomber.
Killed age 21 on the 29th of July 1944.
Son Of William H. Spencer And Elsie Spencer, Of Bescot, Staffordshire.
Buried Millery Communal Cemetery, France..
Grave location – Grave 1.
‘Dearly beloved son
Of William and Elsie Specer
“O rest in the Lord” R.I.P.’

28/07/1944 – Attack Against Stuttgart
Twenty two aircraft set out as detailed to attack Stuttgart. Twenty aircraft successfully bombed the target with the aid of markers, but it is thought that several aircraft undershot, as they appeared to be two concentration of fires 2-3 miles apart. Fighters were very active in the target area and also en route, several aircraft having combats. The aircraft captained by NZ413043 A/S/L. L. Drummond, was attacked five times by a JU88, all of which were indecisive, followed by an attack by an unidentified enemy aircraft which is claimed as destroyed, being seen to go down in flames. At the same time as this our aircraft was also being attacked by two JU88s, one of which was damaged by fire from our aircraft. Two aircraft failed to return, they were captained by NZ421403 A/F/L. N. Stokes & NZ421469 F/O. I. Blance.

Lancaster Mk.III ND756 AA-M

P/O Ian Edward Blance, RNZAF NZ421496 – Pilot.
F/S Colin Frederick Johnson Grieg, RNZAF NZ422281 – Navigator.
F/S Ronald Howard Spencer, RAFVR 1575186 – Air Bomber.
F/S Frederick Walter Percival Climo, RNZAF NZ4210148 – Wireless Operator .
Sgt. W.J. Hyde, RAFVR 1895228 – Flight Engineer.
F/S Frederick Francis Arthur Jenkins, RNZAF NZ429888 – Mid Upper Gunner.
F/S Aubrey Charles Kirk, RNZAF NZ425845 – Rear Gunner.

Lancaster Mk.III ND756 AA-M was shot down in flames by a night-fighter over France, crashing at 01:25hrs close to Millery village, 3 miles North of Pompey. All but the Flight Engineer, Navigator and Rear Gunner died and were buried at the Millery cemetery. The surviving three crew members had baled out of the burning aircraft successfully. Sgt Hyde (F/E) and F/S Kirk (R/G), evaded capture and escaped but F/S Grieg (Nav) was captured as prisoner of war.

It was revealed that 1,500 local inhabitants of Millery Village turned out for the funeral of the four airmen who died. Two large rooms in the church were overflowing with flowers.


SPITTAL, Phillip Charles

P/O Phillip Charles Spittal, RNZAF NZ404420 – Observer.
Lost without trace age 26 on the 26th of July 1942.
Son of Charles Edward and Maud May Spittal, of Riccarton, Christchurch, New Zealand.
Buried Runnymede Memorial, Surrey, England..
Grave location – Panel 117.

26/07/1942 – Attack Against Targets at Hamburg
Fifteen a/c were detailed to carry out an attack against the above target. Bomb load of 34000lbs, 1000lbs, 500lbs and incendiaries was dropped on target area. Numerous fires and bomb bursts were seen. A.A. fire was accurate. Seven searchlights destroyed and others damaged and one m/c gun post silenced by Well.III, X3396, captained by Sgt. Kearns. Searchlights were ineffective owing to moon. One JU88 was seen 30 miles from enemy coast but did not attack. Weather was clear over target but cloudy on route. Navigation was very good by TR and DR

Wellington Mk.III X.3714 AA-W

Sgt. Colin Valentine McPherson, RNZAF NZ404912 – Pilot.
Sgt. Stanley David Ross, RNZAF NZ41359 – 2nd Pilot.
P/O Philip Charles Spittal, RNZAF NZ404420 – Observer.
Sgt. Raymond Patrick Coppersmith, RNZAF NZ391697 – Wireless Operator.
F/S Louvain Trevor Cairns, RNZAF NZ402437 – Front Gunner.
F/S Norman Albert Bryson, RNZAF NZ40859 – Rear Gunner.

The circumstances leading to the loss of Wellington Mk.III X.3714 AA-W, are unknown and it was thus recorded as ‘lost without trace’. All of the crew are commemorated on the Runnymede Memorial.

PC Spittal


SQUIRE, Harry

Sgt. Harry Squire, RAFVR 1302829 – Rear Gunner.
Killed age 31 on the 26th of June 1943.
Son of George and Catherine Squire, of Tottenham, Middlesex.
Buried Amsterdam New Eastern Cemetery, Holland..
Grave location – Plot 69. Row B. Coll. grave 14.
‘For his Country’s sake
His life he gave
And rests in peace In a hero’s grave’

25/06/1943 – Attack Against Targets at Gelsenkirchen
Eleven aircraft were detailed to attack the above targets, with incendiary bombs of 30lb. and 4lbs. One aircraft failed to return and the remainder successfully dropped their bombs in the target area. Owing to 10/10ths cloud it was difficult to estimate the effectiveness of the attack, although the glow of fires below the cloud, could be seen over a large area. Both moderate and heavy A.A.fire co-operating with searchlights was encountered, but were ineffective. Sergt. Burley’s aircraft sighted an unidentified aircraft from astern, the Stirling corkscrewed and the mid-upper-gunner and rear gunners opened fire. The unidentified aircraft was seen to dive to the ground and a fire and flash were seen. The aircraft was claimed to be destroyed. Some enemy aircraft were seen and three short combats took place but no damage was sustained by our aircraft. It was very cloudy in the target area and visibility was poor. Navigation was good. The missing aircraft was Stirling Mk.III BK768 captained by F/O Perrott.

Stirling Mk.III BK768 AA-L

P/O William Rosser ‘Ross’ Perrott, RNZAF NZ416155 – Pilot.
F/S Gordon Douglas Thompson, RNZAF NZ42317 – Navigator.
F/S Clifford James Whitelaw, RNZAF NZ416188 – Air Bomber.
Sgt. Charles Cyril Mould, RAFVR 1314162 – Wireless Operator.
Sgt. William Webster Hilditch, RAFVR 611325 – Flight Engineer.
Sgt. Gordon William Colyer, RAFVR 1809432 – Mid Upper Gunner.
Sgt. Harry Squire , RAFVR 1302829 – Rear Gunner.

Stirling Mk.III BK768 AA-L fell victim to the fearsome German night-fighter defensive system, operating as a radar-controlled ‘box’ along the Netherlands/ Belgium coast. Following a night-fighter attack, the Stirling crashed into the Ijsselmeer. The bodies of both Air Gunners and the Captain were recovered and buried in Amsterdam. The Navigator’s body was washed ashore on the 4th of  July near Harderwijk, where he was buried.

The Flight Engineer, Air Bomber and Wireless-operator are commemorated on the Runnymede Memorial.


STANNARD, Alfred Richard

Sgt. Alfred Richard Stannard, RAFVR 1338510 – Wireless Operator.
Lost without trace age 22 on the 30th of July 1944.
Son Of Alfred Richard And Martha Stannard, Of Shepherd’S Bush, London.
Buried Runnymede Memorial, Surrey, England..
Grave location – Panel 238.

30/07/1944 – Attack Against Amaye Sur Seulles
Seventeen aircraft were detailed to take part in an early morning attack on enemy troops and armoured concentrations near Amaye-Sur-Seulles. All crews successfully attacked from a low level and reports indicate that the bombing was well concentrated and ably controlled with a gradual advance southwards as ordered. No results other than clouds of smoke were seen. One aircraft (Captain NZ42117 F/S. Nairne, C.) failed to return.

Lancaster Mk.I HK558 AA-D

F/S Colin George Nairne, RNZAF NZ42117 – Pilot.
P/O Lyndon Clifford Perry, RNZAF NZ428925 – Navigator.
W/O Denis Alfred Kidby, RAFVR 1391158 – Air Bomber.
Sgt. Alfred Richard Stannard, RAFVR 1338510 – Wireless Operator .
Sgt. Raymond Charles Smith, RAFVR 1235250 – Flight Engineer.
Sgt. Stanley Alfred George Woodford, RAFVR 922095 – Mid Upper Gunner.
F/S Philip Falkiner, RNZAF NZ425140 – Rear Gunner.

Although formally recorded as ‘lost without trace’, the circumstances of the disappearance of HK558 was more accurately explained in ‘For Your Tomorrow’ by author Errol Martyn. A Royal Navy minesweeper on patrol in the Channel observed two Lancasters collide in mid-air at approximately 08.00hrs while HK558 was flying northwards in the base of heavy low cloud. The other aircraft was a 514 Sqn Lancaster, LL733, probably from the same raid. The Minesweeper steamed to where the two aircraft crashed into the sea, a short distance away. After an hour’s search, only the body of an RAF Air Bomber was recovered, who was buried at sea. All seven crew of each aircraft are commemorated on the Runnymede Memorial.


STARKEY, Charles Ronald

Sgt. Charles Ronald Starkey, RAFVR 1863956 – Flight Engineer.
Lost without trace age 20 on the 21st of November 1944.
Son of Charles W. G. and Ellen E. D. Starkey, of Charlton, London.
Commemorated Runnymede Memorial, Surrey, England..
Grave location – Panel 238.

21/11/1944 – Mining in Oslo Fjord
Three aircraft took off to lay mines in the Oslo Fjord. Two aircraft planted their mines in good visibility and without opposition. One aircraft captained by NZ417082 A/F/L L. Martyn, failed to return.

Lancaster Mk.I NN745 AA-A

F/L Leslie Arthur Martyn, RNZAF NZ417082 – Pilot.
F/O Thomas Issac Elliot, RNZAF NZ421364 – Navigator.
F/O Allan Roy Frank Dunkerley, RAAF AUS.423083 – Air Bomber.
F/S John Calverley Crabtree, RAFVR 1492180 – Wireless Operator .
Sgt. Charles Ronald Starkey, RAFVR 1863956 – Flight Engineer.
Sgt. George Lindsay, RAFVR 1624589 – Mid Upper Gunner.
P/O Andrew Roy Wright, RCAF J.88789 – Rear Gunner.

Lancaster Mk.I NN745 AA-A was lost without trace. All seven crew are commemorated on the Runnymeade Memorial.


STARTIN, Geoffrey Leonard

Sgt. Geoffrey Leonard Startin, RAFVR 1600846 – Navigator.
Killed age 20 on the 25th of June 1944.
Son of Charles Henry and Lily Florence Startin, of Kenton, Middlesex.
Buried Fruges Communal Cemetery, France..
Grave location – Coll. grave 7. 10
‘Always in our thoughts’

24/06/1944 – Attack Against Rimeux
Twenty five aircraft took off as detailed to attack the constructional works at Rimeux. Twenty four crews bombed successfully with the aid of markers, and an accurate raid was reported.   There were numerous searchlights in action, but the A.A. opposition was not serious. The aircraft captained by NZ424788 F/S. Bateson, B. failed to return.

Lancaster Mk.III ND920 AA-P

F/S Benjamin William Bateson, RNZAF NZ424788 – Pilot.
Sgt. Geoffrey Leonard Startin, RAFVR 1600846 – Navigator.
Sgt. Maurice Frederick Morgan, RAFVR 1394772 – Air Bomber.
Sgt. Francis Cassidy McIntyre, RAFVR 1562888 – Wireless Operator .
Sgt. Colin Harry Slater, RAFVR 1815706 – Flight Engineer.
Sgt. Ernest Lewis Connett, RAFVR 1236363 – Mid Upper Gunner.
F/S Bruce Milne, RNZAF NZ428017 – Rear Gunner.

Lancaster Mk.III ND920 AA-P was shot down by a German night-fighter near Fruges (Pas-de-Calais), 27 mils South East of Boulogne, probably while en route to attack a V1 flying-bomb site at Rimeaux. According to local eye witnesses of the crash, the plane exploded on impact, and buried itself in a deep crater, all the members of the crew being instantly killed, such remains as were recovered were buried by French civillians in Grave No.7 in the Fruges Communal Cemetery.


STEAD, George

Sgt. George Stead, RAFVR 1525008 – Observer.
Lost without trace age 21 on the 20th of August 1942.
Son of Harry and Ada Stead, of Manchester.
Buried Runnymede Memorial, Surrey, England..
Grave location – Panel 94.

20/08/1942 – Gardening Off St. Nazaire
Five aircraft were detailed to carry out the above. Bomb load of Mines were dropped in the target area. Considerable A.A. fire was encountered near the target, searchlights were few. No enemy aircraft were seen. The weather was good. Wellington BJ.774 captained by F/Sgt. Anderson failed to return.

Wellington Mk.III BJ.774 AA-X

F/S Eliner Knud Alfred Andersen, RAFVR 745577 – Pilot.
Sgt. George Stead, RAFVR 1525008 – Observer.
Sgt. Richard Charles Stuart, RCAF R.81084 – Wireless Operator.
Sgt. Athol Ian McDonagh, RAFVR R.86634 – Front Gunner.
Sgt. Arthur Hector Robitaille, RCAF R.93774 – Rear Gunner.

Wellington Mk.III BJ.774 AA-X and crew all lost without trace.

G Stead


STEELE, William Reid

Sgt. William Reid Steele, RAFVR 1051619 – Front Gunner.
Killed age 21 on the 22nd of October 1941.
Son of James and Marion Steele, of Cumnock, Ayrshire.
Buried Werken Churchyard, Belgium..
Grave location – Grave 165.
‘Let not your heart
Be troubled:
Ye believe in God,
Believe also in Me’

22/10/1941 – Bombing Attacks Against Targets Mannheim
Six Wellington aircraft from this Unit were detailed to carry out the above attacks. A mixed load was carried and consisted of 1000lbs, 500lbs, 250lbs and containers of incendiaries. Owing to the weather conditions operations were marred, but a fire was bombed in a town on the Rhine, probably Mannheim and bomb bursts seen. There was  slight A.A. activity and searchlights were ineffective where seen. Electrical storms, thunder cloud and snow storms were met throughout operations. Navigation was good. D.R. and special beam No.6 used. Icing (black) was experienced over Continent. Unable to see through windscreens owing to accumulated snow, from Belgian coast onwards. Severe weather conditions made accuracy impossible. One of these aircraft, X.9914, captained by Sgt. Taylor, failed to return to base.

Wellington Mk.Ic X.9914 AA-M

Sgt. Cyril Taylor, RAFVR 110661 – Pilot.
Sgt. Frederick Alexander Spark, RNZAF NZ401415 – 2nd Pilot.
Sgt. Sidney Joseph Lawrence Levack, RAFVR 971231 – Observer.
Sgt. James Roberts, RAAF AUS.400310 – Wireless Operator.
Sgt. William Reid Steele, RAFVR 1051619 – Front Gunner.
Sgt. Robert Holtby Tasker, RAFVR 1381172 – Rear Gunner.

Wellington Mk.Ic X.9914 AA-M failed to return. It was later determined to have been brought down near Werken (West Vlaanderen) approximately 5ml East South East of Diksmuide, Belgium. There were no survivors. All were buried in Werken Chuchyard.


STEPHENSON, John Leonard

Sgt. John Leonard Stephenson, RAFVR 2202048 – Rear Gunner.
Killed age 18 on the 21st of July 1944.
Son of Herbert Tate Stephenson and Winifred Annie Stephenson, of East Newton, Yorkshire.
Buried Eindhoven (Woensel) General Cemetery, Holland.     .
Grave location – Plot KK. Grave 115. 98
‘Of East Newton, Yorkshire.
One of England’s heroes
In the watchful care of God
R.I.P’

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.III ND915 AA-A

W/O Hugh Edward Gilmour, RAAF AUS.22776 – Pilot.
W/O Lindsay Arthur Woodward, RAAF AUS.417257 – Navigator.
F/S Samuel Mills, RAAF AUS.425036 – Air Bomber.
F/S John Edward Osborne, RAAF AUS.417877 – Wireless Operator .
Sgt. Reginald Ernest Buzza, RAFVR 2203174 – Flight Engineer.
Sgt. W.J.S. Ballard, RAFVR 1853215 – Mid Upper Gunner.
Sgt. John Leonard Stephenson, RAFVR 2202048 – Rear Gunner.

Lancaster Mk.III ND915 AA-A was brought down by an enemy night-fighter at 01:35hrs between Keldost (Noord-Brabant) and Erp, 3 miles South East of Veghel. Five of the seven crew died and two, the Navigator and Mid Upper Gunner, escaped uninjured  to be taken as Prisoners of War.

The RAF Rear Gunner, Sgt Stevenson, at 18 years of age was one of the youngest airmen killed while flying with Bomber Command during 1944.


STEVENS, Joseph

F/L Joseph Stevens, RAFVR 125607 – Navigator.
Killed age 32 on the 21st of July 1944.
Son of Joseph and Hilda Stevens, of Newton-le-Willows, Lancashire. M.Sc.
Buried Uden War Cemetery, Holland.     .
Grave location – 5. A. 8. 103
‘Greater love Hath no man than this,
That a man lay down
His life for his friends’

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 ME691 AA-R

W/O Harold ‘Dick’ Whittington, RNZAF NZ42488 – Pilot.
F/O Joseph Stevens, RAFVR 125607 – Navigator.
Sgt. Alfred Alexander Simpson, RNZAF NZ425112 – Air Bomber.
P/O Phillip Edwin Tompkins, RAFVR 157922 – Wireless Operator .
Sgt. Donald W. Gore, RAFVR 1624691 – Flight Engineer.
Sgt. Ronald John Morton Batty*, RAFVR 548542 – Mid Upper Gunner.
* ORB for this Op lists Sgt. Leslie De’Lungo, RAFVR as Mid Upper Gunner, however the recorded loss of Sgt. Batty clearly identifies this as an error.
F/S Andrew Crawford Fletcher, RNZAF NZ42675 – Rear Gunner.

Lancaster Mk.I ME691 AA-R was brought down by an enemy aircraft at 01:33hrs beside a road near Veghel (Noord Brabant), 4 miles South West of Uden. All but the Flight Engineer perished in the crash and were buried in the local War Cemetery, Uden. Sgt Gore, survived but was taken as a P.o.W.


STEVENS, Piers Trevor

Sgt. Piers Trevor Stevens, RAFVR 1813627 – Flight Engineer.
Killed age 23 on the 2nd of May 1944.
Son of Charles James Henry and Lilian Mary Stevens, of Welling, Kent.
Buried Poix-de-Picardie Churchyard, France..
Grave location – Row A. Coll. grave 15-17.

01/05/1944 – Attack Against Chambly
Sixteen aircraft were detailed to attack the marshalling yards at Chambly. Fifteen of these successfully attacked in clear weather, bombing being accurate. Two brief encounters with enemy aircraft took place and resulted in one being possibly damaged. One of our aircraft (Captain NZ41362 F/L. A/S/L. E.W. Sachtler) failed to return.

Lancaster Mk.I ME689 AA-Y

F/L Euan Wilfred Sachtler, RNZAF NZ41362 – Pilot.
F/O Allan Cleave Heron, RAFVR 133094 – Navigator.
P/O Michael Ferdinand Lombard, RAFVR 171913 – Air Bomber.
F/S Douglas John Mckenzie, RAAF AUS.417211 – Wireless Operator .
Sgt. Piers Trevor Stevens, RAFVR 1813627 – Flight Engineer.
F/S Thomas Alexander Peevers, RNZAF NZ417232 – Mid Upper Gunner.
Sgt. John Gilbert Pettifer, RAFVR 1247027 – Rear Gunner.

ME689 was shot down over France, crashing at St Arnault, 12miles South West of Poix-de-la- Somme. There were no survivors and all seven crew were buried in a collective grave.


STEWART, Alan Raymond Bryce

Sgt. Alan Raymond Bryce Stewart, RAFVR 1344346 – Rear Gunner.
Killed age 23 on the 25th of August 1944.
Buried Rheinberg War Cemetery, Germany..
Grave location – Joint grave 8. K. 6-7.

25/08/1944 – Attack Against Russelsheim
Twenty eight aircraft took off as detailed to attack Russelsheim. Of these twenty five attacked the primary target and reported a good concentrated raid. A.A. opposition was slight, but enemy aircraft were active and one of our aircraft had two inconclusive combats. Another was unable to identify the target and jettisoned its load. A further one was caught in searchlights over the target and during evasive action lost both ailerons. This aircraft was captained by NZ424504 .F/S. O’Callaghan, E. The navigator 958564 .F/S. Hartley, R., kept the aircraft on track on the return journey even though his instruments were unserviceable and his chart lost. Two aircraft failed to return, they were captained by NZ422382 .F/O. J. Fleming and NZ421345 .F/S. Barker, R.

Lancaster Mk.I LM593 AA-N

F/O James Allan Fleming, RNZAF NZ422382 – Pilot.
F/O James Atkinson Dale, RNZAF NZ425562 – Navigator.
F/S Frank Arthur Vincent, RAFVR 1395910 – Air Bomber.
Sgt. Eric Garforth, RAFVR 2206796 – Wireless Operator .
Sgt. Kenneth Eric Croxon, RAFVR 1893473 – Flight Engineer.
Sgt. Edwin Slater, RAFVR 2210570 – Mid Upper Gunner.
Sgt. Alan Raymond Bryce Stewart, 1344346 – Rear Gunner.

Lancaster Mk.I LM593 AA-N was brought down over Germany, crashing near Neunkirchen; 38 miles North West of the target. There were no survivors. All seven crew are now buried in the Rheinberg War Cemetery.


STEWART, Dryden

F/S Dryden Stewart, RAFVR 1673061 – Air Bomber.
Lost without trace age 22 on the 21st of March 1945.
Buried Runnymede Memorial, Surrey, England..
Grave location – Panel 273.

21/03/1945 – Attack Against Munster Viaduct
Twenty one aircraft were detailed to attack the Muster Viaduct. There was hardly any cloud over the target. It is thought that the concentration was good although the formation was broken up just prior to bombing. Three aircraft failed to return from this operation – AA”T”, NZ42451 F/L J. Plummer, AA”R” NZ429139 P/O A. Brown and JN”P” 190947 P/O D.S. Barr. All three aircraft were seen to hit in the target area. Considerable H/F was encountered.

Lancaster Mk.I RA564 JN-P

F/O Derek Singleton Barr, RAFVR 1394583/ 190947 – Pilot.
F/S Arthur Leslie Archibald Oakey, RNZAF NZ4213810 – Navigator.
Sgt. Dryden Stewart, RAFVR 1673061 – Air Bomber.
W/O Robert William West, RAFVR 195545 – Wireless Operator.
F/S Clifford Isaac Stocker, RAFVR 1587275 – Flight Engineer.
Sgt. Bruce Henry Nicholl, RAFVR 746205 – Mid Upper Gunner.
W/O Alwyn Amos, RAFVR 1578224 – Rear Gunner.

Lancaster Mk.I RA564 JN-P was bombing the target at Munster when it was struck by a bomb falling from another aircraft flying above, which exploded. There were no survivors. Only the body of the rear gunner was found and buried at Margraten, Holland. The other crew members have no known graves.


STEWART, Donald MacKay

F/S Donald MacKay Stewart, RNZAF NZ421336 – Navigator.
Killed age 29 on the 1st of September 1943.
Son of John Johnston Stewart and Annie Mackay Stewart, of Stratford, Taranaki, New Zealand.
Buried Berlin 1939-1945 War Cemetery, Germany..
Grave location – Coll. grave 8. L. 7-17.

31/08/1943 – Attack Against Targets at Berlin
Eighteen aircraft were detailed to attack the above targets with bombs of 1,000lb., 500lb. and incendiaries of 30lb. and 4lb. Two aircraft failed to take-off and four did not return, the remainder successfully dropped their bombs in the target area. Large fires were seen, although rather scattered they appeared to be progressing very well. Moderate heavy A.A. fire co-operating with searchlights were encountered and one air craft received slight damage. Enemy night-fighters were in great prominence, the aircraft piloted by F/Sgt. Wilkinson, G encountered a JU88 approaching from astern 500yds away. The rear gunner fired a long burst, the enemy aircraft replied and stalled. The mid-upper gunner then fired three long bursts. The enemy aircraft was seen to fall away and is claimed as probably destroyed. Our aircraft received damage to the rear of the fuselage and had part of the tailplane and fin badly damaged. The aircraft captained by F/O Alexander sighted two Me109’s, the first opened fire from the starboard quarter and the rear gunner replied with a short burst. The enemy aircraft stalled and the mid-upper gunner fired a short burst. The enemy aircraft then dived to the ground and exploded, it was claimed to be destroyed. The second Me109 opened fire with a short burst from the port bow to the port quarter. The rear gunner then fired a short burst and tracer was seen to enter the enemy aircraft, which dived. It was claimed as possible destroyed. The aircraft captained by W/O Moseley, P. sighted a Me110 on the port quarter, the mid upper and rear gunner fired a long burst and the enemy aircraft turned over and dived with smoke pouring from its starboard side. It was claimed as probably destroyed. The aircraft captained by P/O C.Logan sighted a Me109 sixty yards astern, the mid-upper and rear gunner  fired and tracer from the rear gunner was seen to hit the aircraft. The Stirling then corkscrewed and the Me109 disappeared. It was claimed to be damaged. Two other aircraft crash landed away from base due to damage caused by enemy fighters, none of the crews were injured however. 8/10ths cloud was encountered on the outward journey and 9’10ths at the target, visibility, nevertheless, was good. Navigation was very good. The missing aircraft were Stirlings MK.III EE918 captained by F/Sgt. Roberts,E, EE878 captained by F/Sgt. Henley, D, EE905 captained by F/Sgt. Helm,G. and EF501 captained by F/S McGregor, K.

Stirling Mk.III EH905 AA-R

F/S George Vincent Helm, RNZAF NZ416113 – Pilot.
F/S Donald Mackay Stewart, RNZAF NZ421366 – Navigator.
F/S Joseph George Arkless Fisk, RNZAF NZ412874 – Air Bomber.
Sgt. Arthur John Bishop, RAFVR 1271480 – Wireless Operator.
Sgt. Oliver McCoo, RAFVR 1365426 – Flight Engineer.
Sgt. G.T. Buglass, RAFVR 645313 – Mid Upper Gunner.
Sgt. Frederick Thomas John Harries, RAFVR 1358765 – Rear Gunner.

Stirling Mk.III EH905, AA-R was reported to have been struck by at least one bomb, dropped from an aircraft flying at a higher level over the target area.

The damaged aircraft came down near Ludwigsfelde-Heide, 18 miles South South West of Berlin. All crew except the two Air Gunners died and were buried initially in a collective grave in the Russian Prisoner of War Cemetery near where the aircraft crashed. They later were re-interred in the Berlin 1939-1945 War Cemetery.

nzwargraves.org.nz/casualties/donald-mackay-stewart © New Zealand War Graves Project

nzwargraves.org.nz/casualties/donald-mackay-stewart © New Zealand War Graves Project


STEWART, Francis Barkhouse

Sgt. Francis Barkhouse Stewart, RAF 547841 – Mid Upper Gunner.
Lost without trace age 23 on the 3rd of March 1943.
Son of Peter Wilson Stewart and Dorothy Isabella Stewart, of Redcar, Yorkshire.
Commemorated Runnymede Memorial, Surrey, England..
Grave location – Panel 166.

03/03/1943 – Mining off the Frisian Islands
Three aircraft were detailed to carry out the above operations, with mines of 1500 lb. Two of the aircraft successfully dropped their mines in the allotted area, the other aircraft failed to return. No A.A. fire or searchlights were encountered. Sergt. French the Captain of Stirling 1 BF398, met a JU88 on the homeward journey, after a short exchange of firing the enemy aircraft disappeared. The weather was very clear and visibility was good. Navigation was very good. The missing aircraft was Stirling 1 N6123, captained by Sgt. R.C.Going.

Stirling Mk.I N6123 AA-Q

Sgt. Raymond Cyril Going, RNZAF NZ414278 – Pilot.
Sgt. Arthur Mervyn Bridgman, RNZAF NZ41866 – Navigator.
Sgt. Frederick Arthur William Willis, RAFVR 1382215 – Air Bomber.
Sgt. Kenneth Cedric Eyre, RAFVR 1071970 – Wireless Operator.
Sgt. Emrys Herbert Weaver, RAFVR 1409013 – Flight Engineer.
Sgt. Francis Barkhouse Stewart, RAFVR 547841 – Mid Upper Gunner.
Sgt. Clarence Sydney Burton, RNZAF NZ414493 – Rear Gunner.

Took off from Newmarket to lay mines off the Frisian Islands. Lost without trace. All are commemorated on the Runnymede Memorial.

The crew took off from Newmarket to lay mines off the Frisian Islands, off the coast of Denmark, part of the Squadron’s continuing efforts to disrupt German shipping. Mine-laying operations were often given to rookie crews as they were considered slightly less dangerous. Bomber Command code-named all the waterways after vegetables or fruit, hence these op’s became known as “gardening”. Sadly, on their very first operation, the Going crew was lost without trace.

After the war, Luftwaffe records showed that the aircraft was shot down by a Messerschmitt Bf 110 flown by Ofw. Karl Haisch of 4./NJG3 (Nachtjagdgeschwader 3) night fighter wing, at 22:26 hours, 33 miles North West of Heligoland headed to the Dutch Frisian Islands (Nectarines Region). Karl Haisch had at least eight victories to his name, but was himself killed in a flying accident only a few weeks later.


STEWART, Ian Gordon

Sgt. Ian Gordon Stewart, RNZAF NZ404623 – Rear Gunner.
Killed age 20 on the 29th of July 1942.
Son of Percy Lordon Stewart and Nellie Eileen Stewart, of Wellington City, New Zealand.
Buried Becklingen War Cemetery, Germany.
Grave location – 27. A. 12.

28/07/1942 – Attack Against Targets at Hamburg
Seventeen a/c were detailed to carry out an attack on the above target. Bomb load of 4000lbs, 30lb and 4lb incendiaries was dropped in target area and bursts were seen in dock area. A.A. fire was very accurate, light and heavy predicted. There were many accurate searchlight cones in parts but clear over target. Navigation was good by TR and DR. Six a/c failed to return to base

Wellington Mk.III X.3558 AA-Z

Sgt. Alexander George Sutherland, RNZAF NZ405340 – Pilot.
W/O George Ernest Shones, RAFVR 564432 – Observer.
Sgt. Adrian Oscar Tabor, RNZAF NZ411104 – Wireless Operator.
P/O Charles Harkness, RNZAF 121958 – Front Gunner.
Sgt. Ian Gordon Stewart, RNZAF NZ404623 – Rear Gunner.

The Wellington was probably hit by AA fire over or near the target city and crashed near Cuxhaven, northern Germany. All the crew perished. They were buried in the Central Cemetery Brackeswalde, but later reinterred at Becklingen War Cemetery.

nzwargraves.org.nz/casualties/leslie-ian-stewart © New Zealand War Graves Project

nzwargraves.org.nz/casualties/leslie-ian-stewart © New Zealand War Graves Project


STEWART, Leslie Ian

Sgt. Leslie Ian Stewart, RNZAF NZ41178 5 – Rear Gunner.
Killed age 25 on the 29th of July 1942.
Son of Ernest Charles Stewart, and of Anne Elizabeth Stewart, of Remuera, Auckland, New Zealand.
Buried Reichswald Forest War Cemetery, Germany..
Grave location – 15. E. 12.

28/07/1942 – Attack Against Targets at Hamburg
Seventeen a/c were detailed to carry out an attack on the above target. Bomb load of 4000lbs, 30lb and 4lb incendiaries was dropped in target area and bursts were seen in dock area. A.A. fire was very accurate, light and heavy predicted. There were many accurate searchlight cones in parts but clear over target. Navigation was good by TR and DR. Six a/c failed to return to base

Wellington Mk.III Z.1570 AA-B

Sgt. Arthur Grahame Johns, RNZAF NZ41907 – Pilot.
Sgt. Mark Kraljevich, RNZAF NZ403458 – Observer.
Sgt. Ronald Ellis, RAFVR 1186850 – Wireless Operator.
Sgt. Laurie Albert Frampton, RNZAF NZ411753 – Front Gunner.
Sgt. Leslie Ian Stewart, RNZAF NZ411785 – Rear Gunner.

Wellington Mk.III Z.1570 AA-B crashed near the small town of Lingen, 130 miles South West of Hamburg and close to the Netherlands border. It may have been attacked by a night- fighter either en route to the target or on its way back to base. Whatever the situation, Sgt. Johns the captain, was unable to maintain control and a crash landing became inevitable. It was not survivable and all crew members died. They were initially buried at Lingen- on-Ems, but later transferred to Reichswald Forest Cemetery.

nzwargraves.org.nz/casualties/leslie-ian-stewart © New Zealand War Graves Project

nzwargraves.org.nz/casualties/leslie-ian-stewart © New Zealand War Graves Project


STEWART, Thomas

Sgt. Thomas Stewart, RAFVR 1117389 – Flight Engineer.
Killed age 21 on the 23rd of September 1943.
Buried Durnbach War Cemetery, Germany..
Grave location – 2. C. 19.

23/09/1943 – Attack Against Targets at Mannheim
Eighteen aircraft were detailed to carry the above operation with incendiary bombs of 30lb. and 4lb.. Three aircraft failed to return, but the remainder successfully dropped their bombs in the target area. This was, undoubtedly, a good attack, concentrated fires which were spreading to the West, and large heavy explosions were seen. Moderate heavy A.A. fire and a large curtain of searchlights were encountered, but caused no trouble. Enemy aircraft were very active and several combats took place. The aircraft captained by W/O. P. MOSELEY had a combat with a JU88 which was claimed as a probably destroyed. In the action our aircraft received damage the Pilot W/O. P. MOSELEY and the Mid Upper Sgt. C(?) MIDDLETON were slightly injured. The aircraft captained by P/O A. BURLEY had three combats with enemy aircraft, one of which was claimed as destroyed, the two as  damaged. The weather was good with clear visibility. Navigation was excellent. The missing aircraft were Stirlings Mk.111 EF459 captained by P/O C.C. LOGAN, EH946 captained by F/Lt. G. TURNER , and EH935 captained by F/O L. KIRKPATRICK.

Stirling Mk.III BF459 JN-E

P/O Clifford Charles Pownall Logan, RAAF AUS.405918 – Pilot.
F/S Geoffrey Phillips Sowerby, RNZAF NZ417243 – Navigator.
F/O John Paul Ingham, RAFVR 132331 – Air Bomber.
Sgt. Terence James Hegarty, RAFVR 1030026 – Wireless Operator.
Sgt. Thomas Stewart, RAFVR 1117389 – Flight Engineer.
Sgt. Frederick Edward William Crowther, RAFVR 1339159 – Mid Upper Gunner.
F/S Albert John Knox, RNZAF NZ416006 – Rear Gunner.

Stirling Mk.III BF459 JN-E was brought down at Lampertheim, 7 miles North of Mannheim. All but two of the crew died in the crash, The M/U gunner, who was seriously injured, died 10 days later. The only survivor was the rear gunner, F/S A J Knox, RNZAF, who was captured as a P.o.W. All who died were buried at Lampertheim and later reinterred at Durnbach War Cemetery, East of Bad Tolz.


STOBBS, William Edward

Sgt. William Edward Stobbs, RAFVR 658070 – Navigator.
Lost without trace age 21 on the 6th of July 1943.
Commemorated Runnymede Memorial, Surrey, England..
Grave location – Panel 166.

05/07/1943 – Mining off the Frisian Islands
Four aircraft were detailed to carry out the above operation with mines of 1,500lbs., One aircraft failed to return, but the remainder successfully dropped their mines in the allotted area and the parachutes were seen to open. No. A.A. fire or searchlights were encountered. One unidentified aircraft was seen but no combat took place. The weather was clear and visibility was good. Navigation was very good. The missing aircraft was Stirling Mk.III EF436 captained by Sgt. R. Thomas.

Stirling Mk.III EF436 AA-A

Sgt. Raymond Thomas, RNZAF NZ40586 – Pilot.
Sgt. William Edward Stobbs, RAFVR 658070 – Navigator.
Sgt. Douglas Arthur Allen Tayler, RAFVR 1321755 – Air Bomber.
Sgt. John Bernard McLoughlin, RAFVR 126086 – Wireless Operator.
Sgt. Andrew Lackenby, RAFVR 941667 – Flight Engineer.
Sgt. Cyril James Moore, RAAF AUS.410555 – Mid Upper Gunner.
Sgt. Leslie Owen Lewington, RAFVR 1153956 – Rear Gunner.

Stirling Mk.III EF436 AA-A was believed to have been shot down by a night-fighter, crashing into the sea some 12 miles North West of Terscherlling Is, the centre island of the Southern Frisian Group, at approximately 02.31hrs. All on board perished, and are commemorated on the Runnymede Memorial.


STOCK, Donald Percival

Sgt. Donald Percival Stock, RAFVR 1157823 – Front Gunner.
Killed age 20 on the 6th of April 1942.
Buried Rheinberg War Cemetery, Germany..
Grave location – Coll. grave 1. D. 6-18.

05/04/1942 – Operations – Attack Against Targets Cologne
Nine Wellington Aircraft from this unit were detailed to attack the above target. Bomb load of 4000lbs, 500lbs, and 250lbs and 4lb incendiaries was dropped but results were not observed. There was intense heavy flak and many searchlights were active but ineffective owing to the bright moonlight. One Ju.88 aircraft was seen near the target and Wellington III X3705 was attacked by a Me.110 near Liege without result. Weather was good and navigation by TR1335 and D.R was also good. One aircraft did not carry out it’s mission and two are missing. Wellington III X3489, captained by W/Cdr Sawrey Cookson the C.O. of the squadron, and Wellington III X3661 captained by F/S Thomas.

Wellington Mk.III X.3489 AA-P

W/C Reginald Sawrey-Cookson, RAFVR 39574 – Pilot.
P/O William Finlay Budge, RNZAF NZ41977 – 2nd Pilot.
Sgt. Ronald Harry Emery, RAFVR 922974 – Observer.
Sgt. Edwin Hainsworth, RAFVR 1360695 – Wireless Operator.
Sgt. Donald Percival Stock, RNZAF 1157823 – Front Gunner.
F/O George Eric Mitchell, RCAF R.74313/ J.15022 – Rear Gunner.

The aircraft was brought down by flak over the target, crashing into the city center where its bomb load exploded (see excerpt of the raid above). The bodies of all crew members were recovered and initially buried in the English Military Cemetery, south Cologne, then later reinterred in the Rheinberg War Cemetery.

Further casualties occurred among a crowd of people watching a burning bomber (probably a Wellington) crashing in the middle of Cologne as its bomb load exploded, killing 16 people and injuring 30 more.


STOCKER, Clifford Isaac

F/S Clifford Isaac Stocker, RAFVR 1587275 – Flight Engineer.
Lost without trace age 30 on the 21st of March 1945.
Son of William and Mary Stocker; Husband of Joan Eileen Stocker, of Bristol.
Buried Runnymede Memorial, Surrey, England..
Grave location – Panel 273.

21/03/1945 – Attack Against Munster Viaduct
Twenty one aircraft were detailed to attack the Muster Viaduct. There was hardly any cloud over the target. It is thought that the concentration was good although the formation was broken up just prior to bombing. Three aircraft failed to return from this operation – AA”T”, NZ42451 F/L J. Plummer, AA”R” NZ429139 P/O A. Brown and JN”P” 190947 P/O D.S. Barr. All three aircraft were seen to hit in the target area. Considerable H/F was encountered.

Lancaster Mk.I RA564 JN-P

F/O Derek Singleton Barr, RAFVR 1394583/ 190947 – Pilot.
F/S Arthur Leslie Archibald Oakey, RNZAF NZ4213810 – Navigator.
Sgt. Dryden Stewart, RAFVR 1673061 – Air Bomber.
W/O Robert William West, RAFVR 195545 – Wireless Operator.
F/S Clifford Isaac Stocker, RAFVR 1587275 – Flight Engineer.
Sgt. Bruce Henry Nicholl, RAFVR 746205 – Mid Upper Gunner.
W/O Alwyn Amos, RAFVR 1578224 – Rear Gunner.

Lancaster Mk.I RA564 JN-P was bombing the target at Munster when it was struck by a bomb falling from another aircraft flying above, which exploded. There were no survivors. Only the body of the rear gunner was found and buried at Margraten, Holland. The other crew members have no known graves.


STOKES, Noel Alfred Deal

F/L Noel Alfred Deal Stokes, RNZAF NZ421403 – Pilot.
Killed age 25 on the 29th of July 1944.
Son Of Frank Deal Stokes And Alice Stokes; Husband Of Mona Louise Stokes, Of Wellington City, New Zealand.
Buried Yevres Communal Cemetery, France..
Grave location – Joint grave.

28/07/1944 – Attack Against Stuttgart
Twenty two aircraft set out as detailed to attack Stuttgart. Twenty aircraft successfully bombed the target with the aid of markers, but it is thought that several aircraft undershot, as they appeared to be two concentration of fires 2-3 miles apart. Fighters were very active in the target area and also en route, several aircraft having combats. The aircraft captained by NZ413043 A/S/L. L. Drummond, was attacked five times by a JU88, all of which were indecisive, followed by an attack by an unidentified enemy aircraft which is claimed as destroyed, being seen to go down in flames. At the same time as this our aircraft was also being attacked by two JU88s, one of which was damaged by fire from our aircraft. Two aircraft failed to return, they were captained by NZ421403 A/F/L. N. Stokes & NZ421469 F/O. I. Blance.

Lancaster Mk.III NE148 AA-H “Hells Angel”

F/L Noel Alfred Deal Stokes, RNZAF NZ421403 – Pilot.
F/O John Moore Morris, RNZAF NZ422424 – 2nd Pilot.
F/O George Herbert Sanders, RNZAF NZ424242 – Navigator.
F/S Newton Trevor Sampson, RNZAF NZ421774 – Air Bomber.
F/S William George Raynel, RNZAF NZ424998 – Wireless Operator .
Sgt. Ralph Meanley, RAFVR 1520572 – Flight Engineer.
F/S Maurice Kennett Peter Drummond, RNZAF NZ425389 – Mid Upper Gunner.
Sgt. Norman Vaughan Wilding, RAFVR 1836301 – Rear Gunner.

Lancaster Mk.III NE148 AA-H was one of the aircraft intercepted by night-fighters en route to the target. It was critically damaged by such an attack in which the Rear Gunner was killed; Mid Upper Gunner seriously injured, and one engine put out of action. The bomb load was jettisoned and the Captain initiated a return to base. He ultimately was unable to prevent the aircraft losing height and ordered the crew to bale out. Minutes later NE148 crashed close to the village of Yevres, a mile East of Brau. Both the Pilot and Rear Gunner, who died, were buried in the village cemetery. The remaining six who baled out, all successfully evaded capture.


STOKES, Wallace Frederick

Sgt. Wallace Frederick Stokes, RNZAF NZ412326 – Wireless Operator.
Killed age 27 on the 17th of December 1942.
Son of Arthur S. Stokes and Lillian A. M. Stokes, of Mount Eden, Auckland, New Zealand.
Buried Rheinberg War Cemetery, Germany.
Grave location – Joint grave 17. A. 18-19.

17/12/1942 – Operations. Attack Against Targets At Fallersleben
Five aircraft were detailed to attack the above target with bombs of 1,000lb. This was to be a low level flight all the way climbing to 5,000feet to bomb. Four out of the five aircraft unfortunately failed to return. They were the Squadron Commander, Wing Commander V. Mitchell, D.F.C., captain of Stirling I BF396 who took W/O Bagnall and crew who had only arrived a few days previously. Stirling I,BF400 captained by F/O Jacobson, Stirling 1, BK620 captained by P/O R.E. Williams, and Stirling I, R9247 captained by F/Sgt. Rousseau. The one aircraft to return was captained by P/O McCullough who could not find the target owing to rain and bad visibility, and bombed an alternative. This was an aerodrome, the bombs were seen to explode on the flare path and hangars. A.A. fore was fairly heavy and a few searchlights were seen. The aircraft was twice attacked by fighters but they were driven off on each occasion, on return the aircraft was found to have four holes believed due to combat with one of the fighters. The weather was clear to the target but developed to rain and 7/10th cloud on return. Navigation was good.

Stirling Mk.I BF.460 AA-G

F/O Gerald Howard Jacobson, RNZAF NZ41333 – Pilot.
Sgt Walter Duncan McAlpine, RNZAF NZ403551 – Navigator.
Sgt. Eric Lumley Durham Ashwin, RNZAF NZ41563 – Air Bomber.
Sgt. Wallace Frederick Stokes, RNZAF NZ412362 – Wireless Operator.
Sgt. L.A. Hoff, RAFVR – Flight Engineer.
Sgt. Charles Lucas, RCAF 1312083 – Mid Upper Gunner.
Sgt. William George Henry White, RNZAF NZ41717 – Rear Gunner.

Stirling Mk.I BF.460 AA-G was shot down over Germany, crashing at Ankum, 20 miles North North West of Osnabruck. This was very near the point where Rousseau crew  crashed on the same night. None of the crew survived. They were initially buried at Ankum but later reinterred at the Rheinberg Cemetery, near Wessel.

nzwargraves.org.nz/casualties/wallace-frederick-stokes © New Zealand War Graves Project

nzwargraves.org.nz/casualties/wallace-frederick-stokes © New Zealand War Graves Project


STONE, Leighton Mansel

Sgt. Leighton Mansel Stone, RAFVR 1313099 – Wireless Operator.
Lost without trace age 20 on the 8th of March 1943.
Buried Runnymede Memorial, Surrey, England..
Grave location – Panel 166.

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 BF437 AA-L

Sgt. Charles Raglan Davey, RNZAF NZ413937 – Pilot.
F/S Anthony Arlen, RCAF R.84152 – Navigator.
Sgt. Ian James Duncan Brodie, RAFVR 1344759/ 147474 – Air Bomber.
Sgt. Leighton Mansel Stone, RAFVR 1313099 – Wireless Operator.
Sgt. Arthur Edgar Howlett, RAFVR 528778 – Flight Engineer.
Sgt. Andrew James Feenan, RAFVR 632983 – Mid Upper Gunner.
Sgt. Alfred Bertram Tarrant, RAFVR 1450019 – Rear Gunner.

Stirling Mk.I BF437 AA-L was brought down near Philippsburg, 22 miles North North East of Carlsruhe (18 miles south of Mannheim). All seven crew were killed. Sgt’s Davey and Brodie were buried at Mannheim but later reinterred at Durnbach. The other five crew members are commemorated on the Runnymede Memorial.


STONE, Ronald Charles

Sgt. Ronald Charles Stone, RNZAF NZ413281 – Mid Upper Gunner.
Killed age 26 on the 17th of April 1943.
Son of William Samuel and Nellie Stone, of Avondale, Auckland, New Zealand.
Buried Choloy War Cemetery, France..
Grave location – 2. A. 3.

16/04/1943 – Ludwigshaven
Eleven aircraft were detailed to carry out the above attack, with bombs of 2000 lb, 1000 lb and incendiaries of 30 lb and 4 lb. Seven of the aircraft successfully attacked the target. Large fires and one big explosion were seen. Two aircraft returned early owing to engine trouble. Both heavy and light A.A. Fire was encountered co-operation with searchlights. Two of our aircraft were hit and the Navigator of one was hit in the leg. Several enemy aircraft were seen, but no combats took place. The weather was good on the route, but considerable haze was experienced at the target. Navigations was very good. Stirling Mark III BK.664 captained by F/Lt. D.C.Lowe, which experienced some very accurate A.A. Fire whilst overt the target, found on landing, that this throttle controls were jammed open, he was lucky enough to be able to land, but unfortunately he crashed into a semi built hanger on the aerodrome. The aircraft was an absolute wreck, but all the crew got away safely, although not without injuries. Stirling Mark III W 7469 captained by F/Sgt. K.F. Debenham and Stirling Mark I BF451 captained by P/O K.H.G. Groves failed to return.

Stirling Mk.I BF451 AA-Z

P/O Kelvin Havelock Green Groves, RNZAF NZ415819 – Pilot.
Sgt. James Oscar Way, RCAF R.102353 – 2nd Pilot
Sgt. Tom Graham Shergold, RAFVR 1149715 – Navigator.
Sgt. Richard Fleury Wanstall, RAFVR 656462 – Air Bomber.
Sgt. Rodney Leslie Pierson, RAFVR 1376120 – Wireless Operator.
Sgt. Leslie Charles Cameron, RAFVR 971743 – Flight Engineer.
Sgt. Ronald Charles Stone, RNZAF NZ413281 – Mid Upper Gunner.
Sgt. Leslie Leonard Everden, RAFVR 1187983 – Rear Gunner.

Take Off 22:14 – Landed –
Flight Time – Missing

Stirling Mk.I BF451 AA-Z was considered to have been shot down by a night-fighter between Rilly-la- Montange and Chigny-les-Roses (Marne), 6 miles South of Rheims. None of the crew survived. They were laid to rest in Reims, then after the city became liberated by U S Forces in 1944, their bodies were taken to Antilly. After September 1944, their remains were exhumed and transferred to the Choloy War Cemetery, 145 miles south of Rheims.


STONE, Robert James

F/S Robert James Stone, RNZAF NZ415383 – Navigator.
Lost without trace age 20 on the 31st of July 1943.
Son of Leslie and Alice Louise Stone, of Te Aroha West, Auckland, New Zealand.
Commemorated Runnymede Memorial, Surrey, England..
Grave location – Panel 199.

30/07/1943 – Attack Against Targets at Remscheld
Thirteen aircraft were detailed to attack the above targets with incendiary bombs of 30lb. And 4lb..One aircraft returned early as rear turret was unserviceable and two failed to return. The remainder successfully dropped their bombs in the target area, large concentrated fires and some explosions were seen. Moderate heavy and light A.A fire co-operating with searchlight belts were encountered, and one aircraft was slightly damaged in the mid- upper turret. Some enemy aircraft were seen, the aircraft captained by F/S. O. WHITE sighted an unidentified aircraft which attacked three times. Each time the mid upper and rear gunners fired a burst, and strikes were seen on the enemy aircraft which then fell away and claimed to be damaged. The weather was good with clear visibility except for haze caused by fires. Navigation was very good. On return, one aircraft landed at HARDWICK, due to shortage of petrol. The missing aircraft were Stirling Mk.III BF458 captained by Sgt. A.J. THOMAS and Stirling Mk.III EE915 captained by F/Sgt. J. DARNEY.

Stirling Mk.III EH905 AA-R
ORB says EE905 – this is an error.

F/S Jack Neville Darney, RNZAF NZ42376 – Pilot.
F/S Robert James Stone, RNZAF NZ415383 – Navigator.
Sgt. Ronald Charles George Evans, RAFVR 1390444 – Air Bomber.
Sgt. George Chamberlain Davies, RAFVR 1027862 – Wireless Operator.
P/O Leonard Charles Dive-Robinson, RAFVR 143800 – Flight Engineer.
P/O Peter Sylvester Anthony St. Ledger, RAAF AUS.425375 – Mid Upper Gunner.
Sgt. Terrance James Vercoe, RNZAF NZ415566 – Rear Gunner.

Stirling Mk.III EH905 AA-R was lost without trace. All seven crew are commemorated on the Runnymede Memorial.


STOREY, Derrick George Amos

Sgt. Derrick George Amos Storey, RAFVR 1809725 – Mid Upper Gunner.
Killed age 19 on the 24th of May 1943.
Son of Mr. and Mrs. E. E. Storey, of Clapham, London.
Buried Beesd General Cemetery, Holland..
Grave location – Coll. grave 1-2.
‘All you had, you gave
To save mankind – yourselves
You scorned to save Mum’

23/05/1943 – Attack Against Targets at Dortmund
Fifteen aircraft were detailed to carry out the above attacks with bombs of 1000lb and incendiaries of 30lb and 4lb. One aircraft returned early owing to engine trouble, and the remaining aircraft successfully dropped their bombs in the target area. Some very large fires were seen, and the bombs were seen to explode amongst large buildings. Medium and Heavy A.A. Fire co-operating with searchlights was encountered. One aircraft was hit whilst over the target, and the port outer propeller was shot off, but the aircraft successfully returned to base. Some enemy aircraft were seen, and two short combats took place, but no damage was sustained to our aircraft. The weather was good in the target area, but identification was difficult owing to smoke from the fires. Navigation was very good. Stirling Mk.III,BK.783 captained by Sergeant S.M. Tietjens failed to return.

Stirling Mk.III BK783 AA-Q

Sgt. Stephen Muir Tietjens, RAFVR NZ415640 – Pilot.
Sgt. George Watson Turnbull, RAFVR NZ421342 – Navigator.
Sgt. Frederick John Leigh Joblin, RNZAF NZ417063 – Air Bomber.
Sgt. Ronald Bell, RAFVR 1077692 – Wireless Operator.
Sgt. Stanley John Wayman, RAFVR 1391814 – Flight Engineer.
Sgt. Derrick George Amos Storey, RAFVR 1809725 – Mid Upper Gunner.
Sgt. Leslie R Vale, RAFVR 1235008 – Rear Gunner.

Stirling Mk.III BK783 AA-Q was shot down by an enemy night-fighter over the Netherlands on the return flight home. The aircraft came down in a ditch at Beesd, (Gelderland), 5 miles South South West of Culemborg, All but the Rear Gunner, Sgt L R Vale, died in the crash. They were buried in a collective grave at Beesd General Cemetery. Vale miraculously survived the major crash with an injured leg and temporary memory loss. He was later taken prisoner by German soldiers.
STOREY D G A TIETGENS S M


STRATTON, Raymond Walter John

Sgt. Raymond Walter John Stratton, RAFVR 1166593 – Flight Engineer.
Lost without trace age 23 on the 4th of November 1943.
Commemorated Runnymede Memorial, Surrey, England..
Grave location – Panel 166.

04/11/1943 – Mining in the Baltic Sea
Four aircraft were detailed to carry out the above operation, with mines of 1500lbs. This was an unfortunate night as three aircraft failed to return and the other aircraft returned early having jettisoned its mines. This aircraft met an enemy night fighter and sustained damage to the port wing, starboard flap, rear turret and many large holes in the fuselage, the rear gunner, Sgt.W. HURDIE, was killed during the combat. The weather was bad and ten tenths cloud made visibility poor. Navigation was good. The missing aircraft were Stirlings MKIII BF461, Captained by P/O.G.K.WILLIAMS, BK778 Captained by P/O.W.S.MASTERS and EE897 Captained by F/O. N.WILSON.

Stirling Mk.III EE897 AA-G

F/O Norman Clarence Bruce Wilson, RNZAF NZ417139 – Pilot.
F/O Thomas Lodge, RNZAF NZ417284 – Navigator.
F/O Alfred Thomas Dance, RNZAF NZ42495 – Air Bomber.
F/S Ronald Charlton, RAFVR 644136 – Wireless Operator.
Sgt. Raymond Walter John Stratton, RAFVR 1166593 – Flight Engineer.
Sgt. Leonard Charles Gaskin, RAFVR 1392668 – Mid Upper Gunner.
F/S Arnold Goodrick Fawcett, RNZAF NZ422698 – Rear Gunner.

EE897 was lost without trace. All seven crew are commemorated on the Runnymede Memorial.


STREETER, Donald Frederick

Sgt. Donald Frederick Streeter, RNZAF NZ401033 – Pilot.
Lost without trace age 24 on the 24th of July 1941.
Son of Frederick Streeter and of Emilie Streeter (Nee Macdonald), of Wellington, New Zealand.
Buried Runnymede Memorial, Surrey, England..
Grave location – Panel 64.

24/07/1941 – Daylight Attacks Against Battleship Gneisenau at Brest
Six Wellington aircraft of this Unit were detailed to carry out daylight attacks against the above target. One of these aircraft, N.2854 captained by SGT. Streeter failed to return to base. The bomb load consisted of 24 500lbs. S.A.P.
Results were unobserved by DNS.772.
DNS.329 reports bombs overshot aiming point. Direct hits on sheds or warehouses about half mile S.E. of aiming point were observed.
DNS.411 reports that one and possibly two hits were observed on north end of No.1 graving dock.
Results were not observed by P/). Ashworth.
S/L. Lucas reports that bombs were dropped in target area.
Balloons were observed in the harbour.
A.A. fire was very intense and accurate.
Enemy aircraft were numerous and our aircraft were attacked.
The weather was excellent and visibility was good.
Navigation was by D/R, and map reading.

Wellington Mk.Ic N.2854 AA-U

Sgt. Desmond Frederick Streeter, RNZAF NZ401033 – Pilot.
Sgt. William Owen, RCAF R.58067 – 2nd Pilot.
Sgt. Rodney Patrick Carling, RAFVR 950217 – Navigator.
Sgt. Reginald James Turner, RAFVR 913804 – Wireless Operator.
Sgt. Robert Samuel Carson Craig, RAFVR 947814 – Front Gunner.
Sgt. Graham Stuart Walker, RNZAF NZ401817 – Rear Gunner.

There was no report from Sgt Streeter’s crew. Their aircraft, Wellington Mk.Ic N.2854 AA-U, failed to return and was officially classified as ‘lost without trace’. Numerous enemy aircraft were operating in the area and Squadron aircraft were among those coming under attack. It became clear that these attacks had a profound bearing on the loss of R2854.

One of the other Wellington crews in the same formation as Streeter’s, witnessed the latter’s aircraft being targeted by a number of Me109’s and receiving several cannon shell bursts that caused an engine to fail. They last saw the Wellington going down steeply with two or three Me109’s still attacking it. Their chances of escaping would have been very slim, and it was concluded the aircraft had crashed out of control into the sea.

DF Streeter


STRONG, Geoffrey Walter

F/S Geoffrey Walter Strong, RNZAF NZ413905 – Air Bomber.
Killed age 31 on the 24th of June 1943.
Son of Arthur John and Grace Rubena Strong, of Christchurch, Canterbury, New Zealand.
Buried Flushing (Vlissingen) Northern Cemetery, Holland.
Grave location – Row F. Grave 13.

24/06/1943 – Attack Against Targets at Wuppertal
Thirteen aircraft were detailed to carry out the above attack with incendiary bombs of 30lns and 4lbs. One aircraft returned early owing to the rear turret being unserviceable and one failed to return. The remaining aircraft successfully dropped their bombs in the target area. This was a very good attack, very large concentrated fires being seen, the glow of which was visible 30 miles away from the Dutch Coast. The defences were considerably stronger than the previous attacks, both moderate and heavy A.A.fire was encountered and two aircraft were slightly hit. Some enemy aircraft were seen and one short combat took place but no damage was sustained by our aircraft. The weather was good, although the smoke from the fires obscured ground detail. Navigation was very good. The missing aircraft was Stirling Mk.III EH902 captained by F/S Bluck.

Stirling Mk.I EH902 AA-K
Form 541 for this Op lists a/c as  EH902 (above in diary report), but as BK619 (AA-X) against crew list.

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

Stirling Mk.I EH902 AA-K was brought down either by AA fire or a night-fighter, crashing into the sea off Wissenkerke on the Dutch island of Beveland. There were no survivors. The bodies were all recovered and four of the crew buried in Vlissingen Northern Cemetery. The other three were buried at Bergen op Zoom War Cemetery.

Strong war grave individual


STUART, Phillip Gordon

Sgt. Phillip Gordon Stuart, RCAF 93568 – Rear Gunner.
Killed age 30 on the 9th of April 1943.
Son of John William Stuart and of Lillian Elizabeth Stuart, of Wainwright, Alberta, Canada.
Buried Newmarket Cemetery, Suffolk, England..
Grave location – Plot P. Grave 446.
‘Your love
Will light our way;
Your memory
Will ever be near us’

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.III BK770 AA-L

W/O John Arthur Ernest Walsh, RNZAF NZ401294 – Pilot.
F/S Bertram Augustus Moffatt, RCAF R.802237 – Navigator.
Sgt. Francis Henry Reddicliffe, RAFVR 1030797 – Air Bomber.
Sgt. John William Scudder, RAFVR 1291875 – Wireless Operator.
Sgt. Jack Herbert Worthington, RAFVR 574819 – Flight Engineer.
Sgt. Stanley Arthur Curtis, RAFVR 1386838 – Mid Upper Gunner.
Sgt. Phillip Gordon Stuart, RCAF R.93568 – Rear Gunner.

Stirling Mk.III BK770 AA-L was returning to base when at 01:10hrs, a brief W/T distress signal was received from the aircraft but nothing more. A ground report was later received advising an aircraft had crashed at Valley Farm, Bressingham, Norfolk. Soon after impact an explosion was observed and the aircraft burst into flames. None of the crew survived. The three Commonwealth airmen, along with Sgt’s Reddicliffe and Curtis, are buried in the Newmarket cemetery.

This was the first Mk III Stirling written off in 75(NZ) Squadron.

STUART, Phillip Gordon RCAF


STUART, Richard Charles

F/S Richard Charles Stuart, RCAF 81084 – Wireless Operator.
Lost without trace age 23 on the 20th of August 1942.
Son of Reginald Victor Stuart and of Jacoba Martina Stuart (Nee Viertelhousen), of Murrayville, British Columbia, Canada.
Buried Runnymede Memorial, Surrey, England..
Grave location – Panel 106.

20/08/1942 – Gardening Off St. Nazaire
Five aircraft were detailed to carry out the above. Bomb load of Mines were dropped in the target area. Considerable A.A. fire was encountered near the target, searchlights were few. No enemy aircraft were seen. The weather was good. Wellington BJ.774 captained by F/Sgt. Anderson failed to return.

Wellington Mk.III BJ.774 AA-X

F/S Eliner Knud Alfred Andersen, RAFVR 745577 – Pilot.
Sgt. George Stead, RAFVR 1525008 – Observer.
Sgt. Richard Charles Stuart, RCAF R.81084 – Wireless Operator.
Sgt. Athol Ian McDonagh, RAFVR R.86634 – Front Gunner.
Sgt. Arthur Hector Robitaille, RCAF R.93774 – Rear Gunner.

Wellington Mk.III BJ.774 AA-X and crew all lost without trace.

RC Stuart


STUCKEY, William    MiD

P/O William Stuckey, RAF 51042 – Navigator.
Killed age 29 on the 23rd of June 1943.
Son of William Edwin and Alice Mary Stuckey; Husband of Peggy Stuckey, of Mildenhall, Suffolk.
Buried Wonseradeel (Makkum) Protestant Churchyard, Holland.     .
Grave location – Row O. Grave 31.
‘Beloved in life
And cherished in remembrance’

22/06/1943 – Attack Against Targets at Mannheim (actually Mülheim)
Fifteen aircraft were detailed to attack the above targets with incendiary bombs of 30lbs and 4lbs. Four aircraft failed to return and the remainder successfully dropped their bombs in the target area. Large concentrated fires and some explosions were seen the whole RUHR area was smoke palled. A very heavy A.A. barrage co-operating with searchlights was encountered and five aircraft were slightly hit by A.A.fire, some enemy aircraft were seen and three short combats took place, but no damage was sustained by our aircraft. There was 3/10ths cloud on the target area but visibility was fairly good, except for smoke haze. Navigation was very good. The missing aircraft were Stirling Mk.I EF399 captained by F/S Burbidge, Mk.III EF408 captained by Sgt. Wood, MK.III BK810 captained by W/O McKenzie and Mk.III EH889 captained by F/O McCrorie.

Stirling Mk.III EH889 AA-Z

F/O Thomas Fraser McCrorie, 1365093/ 68770 – Pilot.
P/O William Stuckey, RAF 51042 – Navigator.
F/S James Leonard Richards, RNZAF NZ404946 – Air Bomber.
Sgt. Richard Douglas Tod, RCAF R.91741 – Wireless Operator.
Sgt. Eric Grainger, RAFVR 625045 – Flight Engineer.
Sgt. Robert Ernest Tod, RCAF R.91742 – Mid Upper Gunner.
Sgt. Raymond Anthony Kennedy, RAFVR 1003148 – Rear Gunner.

Stirling Mk.III EH889 AA-Z was shot down by a night-fighter (Oblt Lothar Linke, IV /NJG1) at 01:58hrs, crashing into the Ijsselmeer. All on board died, their bodies later washing ashore. F/L McCrorie was buried in Hemelumer-Oldeferd (Molkwerum) Protestant Churchyard. P/O Stuckey rests in Wonseradeel (Makkum) Churchyard. The Todd twins lie in Medemblik General Cemetery. Sgt Kennedy is buried at Wieringermeer (Middenmeer) General Cemetery. The others are commemorated on the Runnymede Memorial.

SONY DSC


SUMMERS, Woolf Jack

Sgt. Woolf Jack Summers, RAFVR 1395702 – Wireless Operator.
Lost without trace age 22 on the 24th of February 1944.
Son of Morris and Golda Summers, of Stamford Hill, London.
Buried Runnymede Memorial, Surrey, England..
Grave location – Panel 238.

24/02/1944 – Mining in Kiel Bay
Fifteen aircraft were detailed with a large force to lay mines of 1500 lbs in Kiel Bay, and fourteen returned after completing their mission successfully. One aircraft (Captain NZ42367 F/S. Bruhns H.) is missing, and no news was heard after take-off.

Stirling Mk.III EH948 AA-Q

F/S Harold Henry Bruhns, RNZAF NZ42367 – Pilot.
F/S Eric Arthur Wilkes, RAFVR 1575513 – Navigator.
Sgt. Laurie Licence Butler, RNZAF NZ421672 – Air Bomber.
Sgt. Woolf Jack Summers, RAFVR 1395702 – Wireless Operator .
Sgt. James William Harry, RAFVR 1601839 – Flight Engineer.
F/S Arthur Hertley Sawtell, RAAF AUS.417521 – Mid Upper Gunner.
Sgt. Robert Ewen Hall, RAFVR 1392121 – Rear Gunner.

Little is known of the circumstances causing the loss of Stirling Mk.III EH948 AA-Q, although the body of the RAAF Air-Bomber was found washed ashore near Sønderborg, on the south coast of ALS Island, in the NW area of Kiel Bay. It thus seems likely the aircraft was brought down by AA fire from one or more Flak ships known to patrol Kiel Bay. The remaining six crew are commemorated on the Runnymede Memorial.


SUTHERLAND, Alexander George

F/S Alexander George Sutherland, RNZAF NZ405340 – Pilot.
Killed age 23 on the 29th of July 1942.
Son of Alexander Sutherland and of Agnes Kay Sutherland (Nee Allan), of Sutherland’S, Canterbury, New Zealand.
Buried Becklingen War Cemetery, Germany.
Grave location – 27. B. 2.

28/07/1942 – Attack Against Targets at Hamburg
Seventeen a/c were detailed to carry out an attack on the above target. Bomb load of 4000lbs, 30lb and 4lb incendiaries was dropped in target area and bursts were seen in dock area. A.A. fire was very accurate, light and heavy predicted. There were many accurate searchlight cones in parts but clear over target. Navigation was good by TR and DR. Six a/c failed to return to base

Wellington Mk.III X.3558 AA-Z

Sgt. Alexander George Sutherland, RNZAF NZ405340 – Pilot.
W/O George Ernest Shones, RAFVR 564432 – Observer.
Sgt. Adrian Oscar Tabor, RNZAF NZ411104 – Wireless Operator.
P/O Charles Harkness, RNZAF 121958 – Front Gunner.
Sgt. Ian Gordon Stewart, RNZAF NZ404623 – Rear Gunner.

The Wellington was probably hit by AA fire over or near the target city and crashed near Cuxhaven, northern Germany. All the crew perished. They were buried in the Central Cemetery Brackeswalde, but later reinterred at Becklingen War Cemetery.

nzwargraves.org.nz/casualties/alexander-george-sutherland © New Zealand War Graves Project

nzwargraves.org.nz/casualties/alexander-george-sutherland © New Zealand War Graves Project


SUTTON, Arthur Kitchener

Sgt. Arthur Kitchener Sutton, RAFVR 1816276 – Mid Upper Gunner.
Killed age 29 on the 5th of October 1944.
Buried Rheinberg War Cemetery, Germany.
Grave location – Coll. grave 8. G. 10-14.

05/10/1944 – Attack Against Saarbrucken
Thirty one aircraft took off as detailed to attack the railway centre at Saarbrucken. They all reached the target area but only fourteen bombed before the Master Bomber issued instructions to abandon the mission. Bombing appeared scattered, and the raid was unsatisfactory. The aircraft captained by NZ 427481 F/Sgt Galletly, A. failed to return.

Lancaster Mk.III ND904 AA-B “Target for Tomorrow Night”

F/S Alan Russell Galletly, RNZAF NZ427481 – Pilot.
F/S Stuart Edwin Mosley, RNZAF NZ426106 – Navigator.
Sgt. Roy Albert Wells, RAFVR 1802473 – Air Bomber.
Sgt. Reginald Samuel Hond, RAFVR 1214443 – Wireless Operator .
Sgt. Peter Eric Tuthill,   – Flight Engineer.
Sgt. Arthur Kitchener Sutton, RAFVR 1816276 – Mid Upper Gunner.
Sgt. John Peter Cooke, RAFVR 1816385 – Rear Gunner.

ND904 collided with Lancaster PD344 from 115 RAF Squadron over Wolsfeld, Kreis Bitburg, North West of Trier, Germany. There were no survivors on either aircraft. All crew members were initially buried in the Wolsfeld Churchyard but later re-interred in the British Military cemetery, at Rheinberg (North West of Duisburg)

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