Tag Archives: Kenneth Philip

The Mallon crew – get your copy!

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I am pleased to announce that Vic Jay’s, efforts, initially through his blog, about his Father’s time in the Squadron have now borne fruit in the the form of “The Mallon crew” – a 200 page book on the crew and on Vic’s journey through the piecing together of the stories of the boys that flew with his father, Bob Jay.

The book maps out Vic’s early research and as it develops, he begins to re-connect with the relatives of the rest of the boys in the crew.

As Vic says at the beginning of the book:

“The Mallon Crew’ is the extraordinary result of four years research. My decision in 2012 to write a blog about my dad’s war-time experiences as the flight engineer of a Lancaster bomber took me on an incredible voyage of discovery and unearthed some remarkable stories of courage, sacrifice and betrayal.

As a child growing up in the 1950s I never tired of asking my dad what he did in the war. I wanted to know all about his role, what flak was like and even how aircraft were able to fly. By the time I left primary school my interest had started to wane and, when he died in 1974 at the age of just fifty five, I thought I had lost any chance of discovering more about this period of his life. I couldn’t have been more mistaken.

Nearly forty years later, with just a handful of photographs, his log book and the name of his New Zealand pilot, Bill Mallon, my modest research project into ‘Bob Jay’s war’ uncovered more tragedies than I could have imagined possible and connected me with the families of all but one of my dad’s crew. It even gave me the opportunity to talk to a man of ninety four who had flown with my dad and to discover a photograph of his crew’s aircraft flying to its last target.

This book is not about a squadron, nor is it about individual acts of heroism, it is about a small group of unremarkable men thrown together briefly during the last few months of the war and the amazing way in which their stories have unfolded seventy years later. They survived the war but their lives would never be the same again. I defy anyone not to be moved by their experiences or to marvel at the power of the internet to bring people together”.

All credit to Vic for making the time and putting the effort into moving his research from the blog to a book and I wish him every success with it.

You can click here to buy your copy of “The Mallon crew”

Bob Jay’s War – an update

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Many thanks to Vic for updating me on recent developments with his blog about his Father Bob. Vic and I have been regular correspondents for some time now and I think that Vic actually just beat me to a blog presence before I started 75nzsquadron.com.

Vic’s blog has undergone some structural changes over the its life and represents a fascinating and very detailed research story of his Father and the crew he flew with as a Flight Engineer.

I have a lot of respect for Vic’s focus and dedication to his project – I started off with exactly the same intention, but perhaps have found it difficult to keep the single focus on my Father and his crew – I started to try to find out about an individual, then a crew and now have a whole Squadron to contend with!

Despite all of this, Vic still needs help – despite his best attempts, he has drawn a blank regarding contact with relatives of 3 of the crew:

F/O Kenneth Philip (RNZAF NZ429093), bomb aimer, aged 32 (born 1912 or 1913 in NZ)
Sgt Don Cook (RAFVR), mid-upper gunner, aged 20 (born 1924 or 1925) from London (?)
Sgt John Eynstone (RAFVR), rear gunner, aged 19 (born 1925 or 1926) from Oxford (?)

So, if any of you know of these individuals or relatives of the boys, or, even if you just happen to know someone with the same surname, please just ask if they had a relative that flew during the war – as ridiculous as a long shot it might be, you never know.

Visit Vic’s blog here – and be prepared for a gasp when you see what he got up to this summer……..