Tag Archives: Mildenhall

Nominal Roll update – significant progress!

I am really excited to announce a very significant step forward with the Nominal Roll project. All letters, A-Z have now been created and populated with all aircrew names that appear on the Roll as operational aircrew.

In addition to this, “A” has been completed based on the first pass of information held in the database.

I have said many times before, the term ‘completed’ is a very relative one. It seems each time I return to an individual and metaphorically stare at them, another small piece of information comes to light and thus can be added – contacts this week alone have added the first names of 5 of the boys.

Additionally to this, I have dragged Kevin and Chris on board and we have had a massive increase in photographs of Squadron members, as well as new information to add.

At this point we have 431 photographs – 12% of the 3578 individuals listed – I am sure we will find many more – with your help!

Also, for easier access and perhaps to catch the eye of new visitors to the site, I have now created a specific top menu item that takes you to the downloadable aircrew information form – PLEASE if you haven’t filled one in, or thought about it and then forgot – go back, roll up your sleeves, put on your glasses, make a cup of tea and make your contribution to the Squadron, this site and the individual you are remembering!

View the “A” page……….

here

Nominal Roll – another update!

I am pleased/ relieved to announce that the Nominal Roll for the Squadron is now complete! Possibly, this sounds a lot better than it actually is, but it represents a significant point as I now have an individual Op history attached to every individual who flew Operationally with the Squadron. As I have observed many times previously, this was never going to be a quick or easy project. Starting with a blank sheet of paper and interrogating my original crew history spreadsheet, I have now, over a number of years, generated a basic list of names and then to these, attached Operational histories. Additionally, I have begun to add extra information to individual records from published sources and the extensive, if patchy historical records that exist and that are accessible.

The size of the basic list, when extracted from the spreadsheet into a Word document is 1249 pages – if laid out end to end, it would be 370 meters long…….

The histories I now have are are highly variable in size, both by duration and Op count, ranging from a number of individuals who completed 2 tours with the Squadron to, too many, who excruciatingly only have a single Op recorded, on which they were lost…..

Soberingly, based on the arrived figure of 3,480 individuals who flew operationally, based on total losses for the Squadron of 1,139, the maths shows an almost exact 1/3 chance of not surviving the Squadron, once you had arrived. Clearly, not simply by fancy, the unofficial moniker of “The Chop Squadron” was chillingly true.

I am keen to try (eventually) to provide as detailed a record for all individuals as I can. For some this will be a proud point of reference for a family, for others it will be simply a record of their contribution and a permanent statement of their commitment and bravery through the War.

The database has been built to be flexible and to accept whatever information I am able to gather on an individual. In truth, a lot of this information I have no way of gathering without the help of all the readers of this site. Without being unnecessarily wordy, I am keen that these records have a narrative feel to them – after all, it is these boy’s story that is being told – a small thing like a date of birth allows me through the database to have an age for the individual airman when he arrived at the Squadron. A service record allows their journey prior to Operational duties to be known and also the date of arrival and departure from 75(NZ) Squadron, as well as where they went afterwards. Working through Errol Martyn’s breathtaking record of all RNZAF losses – “For your Tomorrow” I have been able to add to all RNZAF aircrew lost on Operations, small details of life – whilst known on this site as a Pilot, an Air Bomber or Rear Gunner, it’s touching to discover that they were also clerks, shepherds, plumbers, plasterers and teachers. The extensive records held and accessible in the Australian National Archives, for those RAAF aircrew that flew with the Squadron provides the same personal insight into an individuals life before service and in many cases the pain when they were lost.

I am also pleased to say that WordPress have recently provided an alternative method of creating pages. One addition is a 2 column block, which means that, where it exists, a photograph of the individual can also be included. A sneak peek of what I envisage for the Nominal Roll when it becomes live can be seen here – this is ‘Z’, mercifully small, but it let’s you see the planned layout and the wonderful visual addition to a record that a picture makes – by coincidence Vernon Zinzan, my Father’s 2nd Tour Pilot.

I have also produced a pro forma for submitting individual information, which can be downloaded here

I still have a lot of information to add to the database and I hope I might receive more based on this request! – at a point in the next month or so I will begin uploading information in the format previously mentioned…………

Victory in Europe – 8th of May 1945

A wonderful opportunity today, to remember the cessation of hostilities in Europe, on this date, 75 years ago. I am sure we are all sat here today, having perhaps expected to engage with these anniversary celebrations in a way significantly different to how and where we find ourselves on this Friday.

The report of this momentous day was recorded in the Mepal Station Log, with, typically understated, yet factually precise manner as can be seen below:

One assumes that there was the odd beer and celebrations a plenty, though, the Squadron was still tasked with flying responsibilities, perhaps fittingly, it was this day that saw the final ’Manna’ sortie flown from Mepal in support of humanitarian efforts for the Dutch people.

Strangely, I have found no specific recollections of this day, though one must assume for many it represented a massive release, but perhaps also the start of the collective burden that many of the boys would carry to varying degrees for years after.

It was not long before attentions turned from the smouldering devastation of the defeated Third Reich to the Far East, where the War continued and as such, plans were made to reconfigure the Squadron to support these intended needs – 75(NZ) Squadron was to join ‘Tiger Force’. I was perhaps a cruel irony that these plans did not include the RAF aircrew of the Squadron, the Squadron being crewed exclusively by RNZAF aircrew.

75(NZ) Squadron RAF finished the War with highest number of sorties flown in all of Bomber Command, the second highest number of operational aircraft loses and the second highest number of aircrew loses in the Command – a total of 1,139

 

AKE AKE KIA KAHA!

Update to Nominal Roll – B

Before you all get excited, the apparently quick arrival of ‘B’ to the Nominal Roll section of the site is more to do with the built up reservoir of gathered individual Op histories for this section, than an indication of the speed that the whole list might appear.

A few little tweaks to the database – I realised when I updated ‘A’ that there was no way to automatically differentiate between a single Op and multiple ones, regarding ‘Op’ or ‘Ops’ – a little bit of extra code and that’s been solved. Whilst a small detail perhaps, it looks tidier and saves me from having to manually check and correct prior to up loading.

The surname Brown has been quite problematic, I must confess. A large number of RAF aircrew of this surname have no differentiating initials and a certain amount of conjecture has had to be performed to arrive at what will probably be refined and corrected over time. As always and particularly with this project, I welcome comments, corrections and suggestions regarding the accuracy of the records and especially with individuals where only a surname and therefore possible errors or discrepancies exist.

View the updated section B of the Nominal Roll here.

Update to the Nominal Roll

Personal circumstances have forced me away from broad research, emails and general site activities recently, owing to Mum’s health taking a dip and the family having to take it in turn’s to go down and be with her – but for 97, she’s still going strong!

The time has at least allowed me to push on with the data entry for the Nominal Roll. As I have noted in previous posts, this is a colossal task and will potentially dwarf the Crew Op History database, when it is finally (if ever) completed. Aside from the gathering and researching of information on the individuals in the roll, it’s entry into the database and the subsequent generation of entries for the NR section of the site has proved to be quite problematic – some individuals, such as Dad, flew with just one crew for each of his tours – others have (so far) flown with 8 during their stay with the Squadron.

Initially I had arranged the database with a series of repeated sections to record each crew that an individual might have been part of – resulting in a series of ‘blank’ lines which would contain joining text such as “Flew with xxxx for xxx Ops as xxxx” but no actual data as they were extra to that individual. Initially, I was happy with this and thought I could just delete the empty rows of each entry when I added the information to the relevant page. Of course, as this project has continued, the individual secondary editing of entries prior to publishing is a completely ridiculous strategy, given there are approximately 3,500 individuals contained in the list.

At the start of the new year I decided I had to dig deeper into the database and give it the intelligence to understand presence and absence of data and give it the ability to subsequently gather the separate pieces of information in a presentable format, automatically. 3 months later I am pleased to present the next stage of the NR project – All of the A’s have been updated to the next level of data completion – this will steadily increase as repeated sweeps are performed or new information comes in on individuals, but as you will see, it s shows a significant upgrade from the basic name and trade position that remains for the time, for the rest of the NR section. Perhaps a little smugly, I would draw your attention to the fact that the entries added have been added as is, straight from the database – the only work I have done is to bold the surname and add a divider line between each individual’s entry.

I have also taken the decision to generate a ‘completion’ rate for each individual. In discussion with Chris, it seems that at least the post war “Manna” flights were counted as a third of an Op, however in the absence of confirmation for the other post war sorties, the CR figure is based on completed operational sorties undertaken during the War. Broadly, an Op that resulted in the individual’s death, capture etc have been not counted, but an entry of this kind does reflect the event – the individual in question having for example 7 Ops as completed, but killed on the 8th Op. I am aware that there are instances where an aircraft would have been bought down after bombing and thus the sortie would count – these will be identified and corrected accordingly in time.

View the new updated ‘A’ section of the Nominal Roll here.

Another milestone – 600,000 views!

Just to let everybody that we have just passed the latest big viewing milestone – 600,000 views!

Almost 13 months to the day since we passed the half a million mark, you, the blog audience have added another 100,000 views to our tally and with it we get another small step closer to the magic figure of 1 million views. I think the passing of this new milestone, in the time it has happened is all the more remarkable given my silence regarding posts for essentially 1/4 of the year owing to the self inflicted loss of my laptop!

I have received questions over the years regarding what has been claimed to be my unnecessary emphasis on statistics and particularly the total viewing figures. In the past, I have tried to explain, but now I simply refute these queries. Put simply, this website has become, the largest single resource for 75(NZ) Squadron RAF in the world. It has achieved this by having the most comprehensive collection of records, information and images on the Squadron, which is freely accessible to all. This complete open door policy regarding information is vindicated by the volume of visitors and views that are recorded.

Frustratingly I am picking my way through the busiest part of my professional year – assessment, the awarding of Degrees, the preparation for our annual London show and planning for next academic year means that I am waiting for a clear gap in the next few months to present new material that has come to me over the last 6 months or so – all of you have have contacted me, please be patient – it will all be presented as soon as I can!.

Without sounding like a broken record – please can everybody share the site – so many relatives of the boys who flew with the Squadron have made contact over the years, that it makes me think that there are still many more that have yet to find the site. Please, share the site address, on social media, through the facebook groups you are members of – we need to find these people and we need to encourage them to share what they have or might know.

Also, please, please, please apply for your relatives service records! I cannot overstate the value and importance of the contents of these records to me and the site. Many dates and locations, because of the points of formation of a crew and their subsequent training means that details supplied for one person means that the same details of movement and training can be added to up 6 other individuals. As soon as I can, I will make a downloadable template available to hopefully streamline the transfer of personal details etc that I need for the database.

Here’s to the next 100,000 views!

Ake Ake Kia Kaha!

Squadron Nominal Roll – ‘1st occurrence list’

I am pleased to announce the addition to the top menu of a ‘Nominal Roll’ section.

I realise that I have already been working on this project for about a year and a half, gathering information, researching and creating a database. Based on what I have so far done and what therefore seems to remain to do, I now know that is impossible to even, at this point, estimate a completion date.

To this end, I have decided, in the first instance, to put up the original ‘1st occurrence’ list that the database is based on. This list, as the name suggests represents the first occurrence of every individual name that appears in the original crew database. My focus has also further refined – initially I took the reluctant decision to only focus on aircrew, based on the almost complete absence of a verifiable list of groundcrew. I have now taken the decision to focus on aircrew who flew at least 1 recorded Op or post War (Europe) sortie with the Squadron. The Form 540 records, particularly from the very well administered period of 1943, shows the very high number of movements in and out of the Squadron by aircrew who never actually flew operationally. The only exception to this new focus will be those individuals that were killed whilst with the Squadron, but whose death did not occur whilst on Ops.

On inspection, you will see that in its first iteration, the list is very basic, presenting an individual as follows:

ABBOT
D.A. Abbot. RNZAF NZ401219 – Air Gunner

Whilst overall, I have more information for most individuals than this, it is not constant or complete. To this end, I think it is better to provide this first complete list and then add/ edit it, regarding extra information than delay publishing for a mythical point of completion that might never be achieved. This current entry should be considered, relative, to what I believe is entirely achievable for the Squadron based on gathered information on my own Father, below:

SOMMERVILLE 
Robert Douglas ‘Jock’ Sommerville RAF 1562617/ 161049
Arrived at RAF Mepal on Wednesday, 21 July 1943, from 1651 H.C.U., Waterbeach aged 20
Trained as Air Bomber
Op total with Squadron, 21 

Undertook 21 Ops with AJ Mayfield’s crew as A/B

Tour History
30/07/1943 – Mining off the Frisian Islands, 02/08/1943 – Attack Against Targets at Hamburg, 06/08/1943 – Mining in the Gironde Estuary, 10/08/1943 – Attack Against Targets at Nurenburg, 12/08/1943 – Attack Against Targets at Turin, 16/08/1943 – Attack Against Targets at Turin, 17/08/1943 – Attack Against Targets at Peenemunde, 27/08/1943 – Attack Against Targets at Nuremburg, 30/08/1943 – Attack Against Targets at Munchen-Gladbach, 31/08/1943 – Attack Against Targets at Berlin, 05/09/1943 – Attack Against Targets at Mannheim, 08/09/1943 – Attack Against Targets at Boulogne, 15/09/1943 – Attack Against Targets at Montlucon, 16/09/1943 – Attack Against Targets at Modene, 22/09/1943 – Attack Against Targets at Hanover, 23/09/1943 – Attack Against Targets at Mannheim, 03/10/1943 – Attack Against Targets at Kassel, 04/10/1943 – Attack Against Targets at Frankfurt, 08/10/1943 – Attack Against Targets at Bremen, 18/11/1943 – Attack Against Targets at Mannheim, 19/11/1943 – Attack Against Targets at Leverkusen.

The Mayfield crew were screened on direct orders from 3 Group Headquarters, prior to the regulation 1st Tour total of 30 Ops being completed. The news was delivered to the crew on the morning of the 20th of November, along with one other crew, as yet to be identified. It would appear, the decision to screen the crew at this point in their tour, was to show the remaining crews that there was in fact a chance to survive the ‘chop’ Squadron, as 75(NZ) Squadron was beginning to be described, at a point in time where crew losses were beginning to mount.

Time with Squadron, 4 months 24 days (arrival to departure date)

Posted to No.3 Lancaster Finishing School, Feltwell, for instructional duties Wednesday, 15 December 1943.

2nd Tour 
Arrived at RAF Mepal on Thursday, 25 January 1945 from No.3 Lancaster Finishing School, Feltwell, age 22
Op total with Squadron, 21 – plus 1 dnc, (02/03/45 Attack Against Cologne) 

Undertook 22 Ops with VJ Zinzan’s crew as A/B

Tour History
01/02/1945 – Attack Against Munchen Gladbach, 02/02/1945 – Attack Against Wiesbaden, 09/02/1945 – Attack Against Hohenbudburg, 13/02/1945 – Attack Against Dresden, 14/02/1945 – Attack Against Chemnitz, 16/02/1945 – Attack Against Wesel, 19/02/1945 – Attack Against Wesel, 20/02/1945 – Attack Against Dortmund, 02/03/1945 – Attack Against Cologne (DNC), 04/03/1945 – Attack Against Wanne Eickel, 06/03/1945 – Attack Against Salzbergen, 07/03/1945 – Attack Against Dessau, 09/03/1945 – Attack Against Datteln, 10/03/1945 – Attack Against Gelsenkirchen Buer, 12/03/1945 – Attack Against Dortmund, 14/03/1945 – Attack Against Heinrich Hutte, 20/03/1945 – Attack Against Hamm, 23/03/1945 – Attack Against Wesel, 29/03/1945 – Attack Against Salzgitter, 04/04/1945 – Attack on Meresburg, 13/04/1945 – Attack on Kiel, 14/04/1945 – Attack on Potsdam.

Time with Squadron, 3 months 9 days (arrival to departure)

It also strikes me that by making this basic list available, there is far greater opportunity for new information to be provided by visitors to the site. I have activated comments on all pages of the list with the hope that this provides the easiest way for people to add information that can then be added to the database.

One sobering fact that has already come to light, based on a total count in the list is that almost 1/3 of individuals that flew with the Squadron, died in it.

I am currently keen to get the following information on individuals:
Date of Birth
Dates and location of training bases prior to 75(NZ) Squadron
Post 75(NZ) Squadron postings
Post War career/ achievements
Date of death

Please have a look at the list and if you feel you have any useful information, please leave a comment or email me.

Either go up to the top menu or go to the list here.

Half a million views!

Half a million views!

I must take this opportunity to let everybody know, that today, 75nzsquadron.com passed the incredible milestone of 500,000 views. This amazing figure has taken almost 7 years to reach, but it has truly been worth the wait, given the amazing journey that many others and I have enjoyed in the mean time.

The growth and success of the blog has really been remarkable – I have said it before – but I certainly never dreamt that it would grow the way it has and been able to engage so many people – as I write, the blog contains 721 posts, is followed across all platforms by 852 people and has been visited over 123,000 times.

The interest in the Squadron seems unabated and it’s my plan to get back to the old days of regular posts – we have a lot of new material in the pipeline which will all be share in due course. We have now complete all the large structural projects, so as new information appears, it can all be added to what is possibly the most detailed record of an RAF Bomber Squadron that exists.

This wonderful event in the site’s history is perhaps a timely point to make another important announcement:

Project ORB is complete!

Five and a half years ago I began the slow transcription of the Squadron’s Form 540 “Operations Carried Out” for the duration of 75(NZ) Squadrons existence. Many have contributed, but special thanks must go to Hubert, David and Brian for their protracted efforts to complete certain years. In recent months I have turned my attention to 1942, and the latter months of 1940 – finally it is finished.

Whilst other Squadrons have already had their diary documents transcribed in whole, this is the first time that it has been achieved for 75(NZ) Squadron – an other first for the site!

I have also added a little navigation to make the reading of the individual months a little easier. Clicking in the “75(NZ) Squadron RAF Records” section in the top menu and then clicking on any specific year will give you a page with links to all months in that particular years (as opposed to holding on a year to get the jump off menu that will take you to a certain month).

In addition, at the foot of each month is a link which will take you automatically to the next month – at December you will progress to the following year.

For ease of entry to the records, please click below to go to the relevant year sets:

1940
1941
1942
1943
1944
1945

ANZAC Day 2018

Those heroes that shed their blood
And lost their lives.
You are now lying in the soil of a friendly country.
Therefore rest in peace.
There is no difference between the Johnnies
And the Mehmets to us where they lie side by side
Here in this country of ours.
You, the mothers,
Who sent their sons from far away countries
Wipe away your tears,
Your sons are now lying in our bosom
And are in peace
After having lost their lives on this land they have
Become our sons as well.

 In 1934, Kemal Atatürk delivered these words to the first Australians, New Zealanders and British to visit the Gallipoli battlefields. They were later inscribed on a monolith at Ari Burnu Cemetery (ANZAC Beach) which was unveiled in 1985. The words also appear on the Kemal Atatürk Memorial, Canberra, and the Atatürk Memorial in Wellington.

What follows for this ANZAC Day post is a list of all RNZAF and RAAF airmen who lost their lives flying with 75(NZ) Squadron RAF. They are listed by country and graveyard.

AHE AKE KIA KAHA

UNITED KINGDOM

Brookwood Military Cemetery, Surrey, England.
GUNN, Garth Reginald    MiD Age 26 Squadron Leader  411397  RNZAF 21st September  1944
SIMONSEN, Horace Dean Age 31 Leading Aircraftsman  438024   RNZAF 17th April  1941
Buxton Cemetery, Derbyshire, England.
BEAVEN, James Wilfred Age 31 Sergeant 403566 RNZAF 22nd May 1942
MACKAY, Andrew Donald Age 22 Pilot Officer  411919   RNZAF 22nd May  1942
SMEATON, Wilfred Herbert Age 28 Sergeant  405331   RNZAF 23rd May  1942
Cambridge City Cemetery, Cambridgeshire, England.
BLEWETT, Terence Douglas Age 26 Flight Lieutenant 414376 RNZAF 17th January 1945
BROADY, Raymond Herbert John Age 28 Sergeant 39691 RNZAF 28th November 1942
DOBSON, Peter Gerald    MiD Age 28 Flight Sergeant 439022 RNZAF 8th September 1943
EAST, Patton Mason Age 29 Flight Sergeant 426083 RNZAF 24th October 1943
EMMERSON, Ronald Harry Age 24 Flight Sergeant 410330 RAAF 16th December 1943
HURDLE, Walter Age 28 Flight Sergeant  421279   RNZAF 4th November  1943
JENKIN, Ralph Francis Age 23 Flying Officer  416119   RNZAF 16th December  1943
KINROSS, Colin John Age 30 Pilot Officer  417069   RNZAF 16th December  1943
MENZIES, Ian Robert Age 21 Flying Officer  415002   RNZAF 8th September  1943
PURVES, James John Age 35 Flight Sergeant  422207   RNZAF 25th October  1943
RANDLE, James Robert Age 21 Flight Sergeant  416539   RNZAF 24th October  1943
WILSON, John Stanley Age 34 Flying Officer  426234   RNZAF 17th January  1945

Chevington Cemetery, Northumberland, England.

McISAAC, Alexander Age 24 Sergeant  412891   RNZAF 28th November  1942
Feltwell (St. Nicholas) Churchyard, Norfolk, England.
BENTLEY, Loch Lomond Age 28 Flight Sergeant 403936 RNZAF 23rd December 1941
FOUNTAIN, Cedric Niel Age 23 Pilot Officer  41981   RNZAF 23rd April  1942
GANNAWAY, Eric Francis Age 21 Sergeant  402110   RNZAF 12th May  1941
GRENFELL, Richard John Age 22 Sergeant  404026   RNZAF 29th June  1942
HARRIS, Richard James Age 24 Sergeant  402999   RNZAF 23rd April  1942
JOYCE, David Campbell Age 21 Sergeant  401278   RNZAF 16th July  1941
MITCHELL, Norman Age 25 Sergeant  404084   RNZAF 29th June  1942
NICOL, Trafford McRae Age 21 Pilot Officer  411929   RNZAF 23rd April  1942
RYAN, Alexander James Age 25 Pilot Officer  391367   RNZAF 10th January  1941
WOODHAM, Henry William Age 27 Sergeant  402449   RNZAF 28th February  1942
Grimsby (Scartho Road) Cemetery, Lincolnshire, England.
MEE, Alexander Coutts Age 23 Sergeant  40656   RNZAF 7th May  1941
NOLA, David Leo Age 26 Sergeant  39930   RNZAF 7th May  1941
Ilford (Barkingside) Cemetery, Essex, England.
THORPE, Noel Humphrey Age 21 Flying Officer  428168   RNZAF 26th February  1945
Lakenham (St. John the Baptist and All Saints) Churchyard, Norfolk, England.
HARVEY, Edgar William Age 27 Sergeant  41902   RNZAF 16th December  1942
Newmarket Cemetery, Suffolk, England.
CLUBB, Selwyn James Age 20 Flying Officer 414593 RNZAF 13th May 1943
FRANKLIN, Benjamin Allan Age 21 Sergeant  414277   RNZAF 16th December  1942
HARVEY, Robert Frederick Age 23 Sergeant  416483   RNZAF 13th May  1943
JOHNSTON, John Age 28 Flying Officer  416198   RNZAF 13th May  1943
WALSH, John Arthur Ernest Age 27 Warrant Officer  401294   RNZAF 9th April  1943
WELCH, Harold Rangi Age 23 Sergeant  41709   RNZAF 16th December  1942
WHITCOMBE, William Henry Age 32 Sergeant  41561   RNZAF 16th December  1942
Runnymede Memorial, Surrey, England.
AITCHISON, Richard Justin Age 28 Pilot Officer 429286 RNZAF 1st January 1945
BABER, Thomas James Edward    MiD Czech Medal for Bravery Age 23 Flight Lieutenant 39857  RNZAF 12th March 1942
BAGNALL, Trevor Horace Age 26 Warrant Officer 40640 RNZAF 17th December 1942
BAKER, James Guthrie Age 27 Flight Sergeant 41142 RNZAF 1st September 1943
BARTON, Arthur James Douglas Age 23 Flight Sergeant 413700 RNZAF 5th February 1943
BENTLEY, Robert Henry Waldron Age 23 Pilot Officer 414580 RNZAF 5th May 1943
BOSWELL, John McLaren Age 26 Sergeant 414491 RNZAF 5th May 1943
BRADEY, George Edward Francis Age 25 Pilot Officer 401954 RNZAF 11th August 1942
BRAILEY, Clifton Robert Age 23 Sergeant 404589 RNZAF 21st June 1942
BRIAN, William Leslie Fred Age 23 Flight Sergeant 411737 RNZAF 28th April 1943
BRIDGMAN, Arthur Mervyn Age 26 Pilot Officer 41866 RNZAF 3rd March 1943
BROUN, Alan Stewart Age 32 Pilot Officer 405367 RNZAF 9th July 1942
BROWN, Russell Howard Age 24 Flight Sergeant 425444 RNZAF 22nd May 1944
BRUHNS, Harold Henry Age 22 Pilot Officer 42367 RNZAF 24th February 1944
BRYSON, Norman Albert Age 26 Flight Sergeant 40859 RNZAF 26th July 1942
BUCKLEY, Ross Cameron Age 29 Flight Sergeant 411206 RNZAF 28th April 1943
BURTON, Clarence Sydney Age 22 Sergeant 414493 RNZAF 3rd March 1943
BUTLER, Laurie Licence Age 22 Flight Sergeant 421672 RNZAF 24th February 1944
CAIRNS, Louvain Trevor Age 25 Flight Sergeant 402437 RNZAF 26th July 1942
CHAMBERLAIN, Lloyd Montgomery Age 28 Flight Sergeant 40914 RNZAF 12th March 1942
COLLINS, John Noel Age 23 Flight Lieutenant 2513 RNZAF 21st May 1940
COPPERSMITH, Raymond Patrick Age 21 Sergeant 391697 RNZAF 26th July 1942
CORIN, Henry George Age 34 Sergeant 417269 RNZAF 28th April 1943
CUMPSTY, Frederick William Raukawa Age 25 Pilot Officer 413386 RNZAF 31st July 1943
DANCE, Alfred Thomas Age 25 Flying Officer 42495 RNZAF 4th November 1943
DARNEY, Jack Neville Age 22 Flight Sergeant 42376 RNZAF 31st July 1943
DARTON, Thomas William Age 22 Flight Sergeant 416465 RNZAF 26th May 1943
DAVIDSON, Neil Douglas Age 21 Pilot Officer 422057 RNZAF 21st July 1944
DROMGOOLE, Sydney Houston Age 28 Flight Sergeant 402171 RNZAF 22nd April 1942
DUNKERLEY, Allan Roy Frank Age 33 Pilot Officer 423083 RAAF 21st November 1944
DYER, Sydney Allan Age 19 Sergeant 40101 RNZAF 16th July 1941
EARLE, John Age 29 Pilot Officer 401756 RNZAF 12th March 1942
ELLIOT, Thomas Isaac Age 24 Flying Officer 421364 RNZAF 21st November 1944
FALCONER, Arthur James Age 23 Pilot Officer  39910   RNZAF 21st February  1941
FALKINER, Philip Age 21 Flight Sergeant  425140   RNZAF 30th July  1944
FAWCETT, Arnold Goodrick Age 31 Flight Sergeant  422698   RNZAF 4th November  1943
FERGUSSON, Allister Archibald Age 22 Flight Sergeant  425391   RNZAF 22nd May  1944
FINLAYSON, William John Age 23 Pilot Officer  39911   RNZAF 24th October  1940
FITZGERALD, John Age 23 Flight Sergeant  424777   RNZAF 30th August  1944
FREEMAN, Patrick Paul Deane Age 22 Sergeant  413305   RNZAF 5th February  1943
GAVEGAN, Jack Ralph Age 30 Pilot Officer  402128   RNZAF 9th July  1942
GOING, Raymond Cyril Age 21 Sergeant  414278   RNZAF 3rd March  1943
GOULD, James Douglas Age 21 Sergeant  411233   RNZAF 11th July  1942
GREEN, Cyril Vincent Age 21 Flight Sergeant  402997   RNZAF 11th August  1942
GREENING, Joseph Wesley Age 27 Pilot Officer  40022   RAAF 3rd July  1941
HADFIELD, Graham Stanley Age 23 Flight Sergeant  426239   RNZAF 14th March  1944
HALLIBURTON, Keith Age 23 Sergeant  415411   RNZAF 28th April  1943
HARE, Philip Edgar Age 19 Sergeant  401227   RNZAF 16th July  1941
HARRISON-SMITH, Francis Charles Age 20 Flight Sergeant  403959   RNZAF 30th November 1941
HARTSTONE, Roydon Horatio Age 29 Sergeant  40211   RNZAF 3rd July  1941
HIGGINS, Eric Vincent Keiran Age 27 Sergeant  400277   RAAF 16th July  1941
HIRST, Raymond John Finlay Age 22 Sergeant  404067   RNZAF 11th July  1942
HOWELL, Alexander Clunie Age 22 Sergeant  392104   RNZAF 28th April  1943
HOWES, Victor Charles Age 20 Sergeant  413418   RNZAF 28th April  1943
HUNTER, Patrick Torre Age 29 Sergeant  42297   RNZAF 28th April  1943
INNES, Owen Alfred Age 22 Sergeant  421935   RNZAF 30th May  1943
JONES, Roy King Age 26 Flying Officer  425611   RNZAF 21st July  1944
JUDD, Douglas Howard Age 26 Sergeant  413336   RNZAF 10th September  1942
KAY, Alan Lister Age 35 Flight Sergeant  42299   RNZAF 22nd May  1944
KELLY, Reginald Joseph Stephen Age 24 Sergeant  403580   RNZAF 22nd April  1942
KILBY, William Adam Age 40 Flight Sergeant  415261   RNZAF 1st September  1943
KNIGHT, Leon Gaston Age 22 Sergeant  405494   RNZAF 9th June  1942
LAMB, Erwin Henry Reubin Age 29 Sergeant  413709   RNZAF 5th May  1943
LEWIS, Alfred Edward Age 25 Flight Sergeant  412458   RAAF 28th April  1943
LODGE, Tom Age 35 Flying Officer  417284   RNZAF 4th November  1943
LOVELOCK, James Benjamin Age 26 Flying Officer  416324   RNZAF 1st September  1943
MacKAY, Kenneth McIndoe Age 27 Pilot Officer  421829   RNZAF 21st July  1944
MacKINNON, Douglas Malcolm Age 20 Sergeant  40923   RNZAF 16th July 1941
MAHOOD, Thomas Stanley Age 25 Flight Sergeant  404916   RNZAF 22nd April  1942
MARTYN, Leslie Arthur Age 35 Flight Lieutenant  417082   RNZAF 21st November  1944
MASON, Frederick David Age 21 Sergeant  1230433   RAFVR 16th August  1943
MAYO, John Russell Age 21 Flight Sergeant  417085   RNZAF 7th August  1943
McGREGOR, Keith Alexander Age 21 Flight Sergeant  415770   RNZAF 1st September  1943
McKENZIE, Frank Edwin Age 22 Sergeant  391085   RNZAF 9th July  1942
McMAHON, Henry Thomas Owen Age 27 Sergeant  403019   RNZAF 22nd April  1942
McPHERSON, Colin Valentine Age 21 Flight Sergeant  404912   RNZAF 26th July  1942
MONK, Walter Jack Age 24 Pilot Officer  411432   RNZAF 30th June  1942
MOORE, Cyril James Age 25 Sergeant  410555   RAAF 6th July  1943
MUIR, Anthony Vincent Age 29 Pilot Officer  40195   RNZAF 21st February  1941
NAIRNE, Colin George Age 22 Pilot Officer  42117   RNZAF 30th July  1944
NATION, John Ross Age 22 Sergeant  40945   RNZAF 3rd July  1941
NEWTON, Raymond John   DFC MiD Age 28 Wing Commander  40984   RNZAF 1st January  1945
OAKEY, Arthur Leslie Archibald Age 33 Flight Sergeant  4213810   RNZAF 21st March  1945
PARTON, William James Age 20 Pilot Officer  41932   RNZAF 12th March  1942
PERRY, Lyndon Clifford Age 21 Pilot Officer  428925   RNZAF 30th July  1944
POTTS, Donald Norman Age 25 Pilot Officer  412267   RNZAF 9th July  1942
PRICE, Henry John Age 25 Flight Sergeant  404095   RNZAF 12th March  1942
QUINN, Eric James Age 20 Flight Sergeant  4210077   RNZAF 21st July  1944
REDDING, Randolph Ernest Age 30 Sergeant  414678   RNZAF 5th February  1943
REID, Ian Laurie Age 23 Sergeant  391846   RNZAF 3rd July  1941
RICHARDS, James Leonard Age 25 Flight Sergeant  404946   RNZAF 23rd June  1943
RIDDLE, Charles Hudson Age 21 Flying Officer  41190   RNZAF 30th May  1943
RIORDAN, John Milton Patrick Age 32 Sergeant  422668   RNZAF 26th May  1943
ROSS, Desmond Ray Age 23 Sergeant  411451   RNZAF 28th April  1943
ROSS, Stanley David Age 25 Flight Sergeant  41359   RNZAF 26th July  1942
ROWBERRY, Geoffrey Warren Age 24 Pilot Officer  414567   RNZAF 14th March  1944
SHALFOON, Charles John Age 22 Sergeant  413897   RNZAF 11th October  1942
SMART, Randolph Cruickshank Age 25 Pilot Officer  411006   RNZAF 10th September  1942
SPITTAL, Phillip Charles Age 26 Pilot Officer  404420   RNZAF 26th July  1942
ST.LEDGER, Peter Sylvestor Anthony Age 21 Flying Officer 4 25375   RAAF 30th July  1943
STONE, Robert James Age 20 Flight Sergeant  415383   RNZAF 31st July  1943
STREETER, Donald Frederick Age 24 Sergeant  401033   RNZAF 24th July  1941
THOMAS, Raymond Age 22 Flight Sergeant  40586   RNZAF 6th July  1943
THOMSON, Jack Age 26 Flight Sergeant  421145   RNZAF 3rd August  1943
TONG, Harold Age 34 Flying Officer  416648   RNZAF 30th May  1943
TURNBULL, John George Age 33 Flying Officer  42490   RNZAF 16th August  1943
TURNER, William Age 22 Flying Officer  416579   RNZAF 3rd August  1943
TWEEDIE, Norman Age 25 Sergeant  402474   RAAF 12th September  1941
VERCOE, Terrance James Age 27 Flight Sergeant  415566   RNZAF 31st July  1943
VERNAZONI, Richard Barry Age 20 Flying Officer 416185   RNZAF 30th May  1943
WALKER, Graham Stuart Age 25 Sergeant  401817   RNZAF 24th July  1941
WATSON, Walter Davis Age 30 Flight Sergeant  428918   RNZAF 30th August  1944
WESTWOOD, Reginald Francis Age 20 Pilot Officer  416471   RAAF 5th May  1943
WHITELAW, Clifford James Age 22 Flight Sergeant  416188   RNZAF 25th June  1943
WILLIS, William Jarvis Age 33 Pilot Officer 421803   RNZAF 22nd May  1944
WILMSHURST, John Charles Age 25 Sergeant  411962   RNZAF 11th July  1942
WILSON, Norman Clarence Bruce Age 23 Flying Officer  417139   RNZAF 4th November  1943
WOODCOCK, Roy Joffre Desmond Age 26 Sergeant  404985   RNZAF 12th March  1942
WORTH, Jim Age 24 Flight Sergeant  425510   RNZAF 21st July  1944
WRIGHTSON, Cyril Charles Age 22 Sergeant  411998   RNZAF 22nd April  1942

Belgium

Adegem Canadian War Cemetery, Belgium.
ANDERSON, Lindsay Douglas Age 20 Sergeant 391321 RNZAF 20th September 1940
Chiervres Communal Cemetery, Belgium.
KELL, William Robert Age 23 Pilot Officer 411766 RNZAF 19th November  1943
MYERS, John William Anthony Age 25 Flight Lieutenant 405801 RNZAF 19th July  1944
Florennes Communal Cemetery, Belgium.
GRAINGER, James Kennedy Age 21 Pilot Officer  42295   RNZAF 15th April  1943
McCASKILL, Donald Gordon Age 19 Pilot Officer  413573   RNZAF 15th April  1943
SMITH, Ronald Alexander Age 21 Sergeant 415378   RNZAF 15th April  1943
Heverlee War Cemetery, Belgium.
BURKE, Edgar Lawrence Age 26 Pilot Officer 417016 RNZAF 23rd May 1944
PAGE, Frank Albert Age 29 Warrant Officer  409481   RAAF 23rd May  1944
PARKIN, Victor Trevor Age 21 Flight Sergeant  421090   RNZAF 31st August  1943
WATTERS, Terrence Age 21 Flight Sergeant  417299   RNZAF 31st August  1943
Hoton War Cemetery, Belgium.
ELVIN, William Age 21 Pilot Officer 426883 RNZAF 12th August 1944
JOHNSTON, Haig Douglas Age 27 Flight Sergeant  426320   RNZAF 12th August  1944
MULCAHY, Cyril Desmond Age 21 Pilot Officer  428793   RNZAF 12th August  1944
PARKER, Robert Ronald Smithie Age 20 Sergeant  1892552   RAFVR 12th August 1944
THOMSON, Edward Leonard Age 20 Flight Sergeant  4211036   RNZAF 12th August  1944
WRIGHT, John Herbert Age 26 Flight Sergeant  426209   RNZAF 12th August  1944
Ostende New Communal Cemetery, Belgium.
COATES, Dudley Dobson Age 33 Sergeant 421318 RNZAF 26th May 1943
Werken Churchyard, Belgium.
ROBERTS, James Age 20 Sergeant  400310   RAAF 22nd October  1941
SPARK, Frederick Alexander Age 26 Sergeant  401415   RNZAF 22nd October  1941
Wevelgem Communal Cemetery, Belgium.
FAUVEL, Spencer Francis Age 21 Flight Lieutenant  414971   RNZAF 28th May  1944
GOWER, Kenneth Wilfred Age 28 Flight Sergeant  421272   RNZAF 28th May  1944
LUKEY, Francis Henry Clark Age 23 Flying Officer  42990   RNZAF 28th May  1944
MASON, James Rooker Age 27 Flight Sergeant  421307   RNZAF 28th May  1944

DENMARK

Aabenraa Cemetery, Denmark.
BAILEY, Robert Age 20 Flight Sergeant 429072 RNZAF 23rd April 1944
LAMMAS, Mauson Age 30 Pilot Officer  421728   RNZAF 23rd April  1944
SAWTELL, Arthur Hartley Age 19 Flight Sergeant  417521   RAAF 24th February  1944
VAUGHAN, Douglas William Age 28 Flight Sergeant  429046   RNZAF 23rd April  1944
Esbjerg (Fourfelt) Cemetery, Denmark.
COBB, Cyril Thomas Age 30 Flight Sergeant 412315 RNZAF 21st April 1943
EARLE, Frederick Joseph Age 22 Sergeant    1332585     RAFVR 21st April 1943
SALT, Ian Charles Age 20 Flight Sergeant  404046   RNZAF 21st April  1943
TOLLEY, Alan Gray Age 21 Pilot Officer  411954   RNZAF 21st April  1943
UPTON, Frank Wakefield Age 28 Flight Sergeant  404430   RNZAF 21st April  1943
Frederikshavn Cemetery, Denmark.
CRAWFORD-WATSON, Lewis Stanley Age 21 Flight Sergeant 42734 RNZAF 4th November 1943
IMRIE, George Burns Age 22 Flight Sergeant  422676   RNZAF 4th November  1943
JAMES, Charles James Age 34 Flight Sergeant  426333   RNZAF 4th November  1943
MASTERS, William Stuart Age 21 Pilot Officer  421077   RNZAF 4th November  1943
Gram Churchyard, Denmark.
MURRY, Henry James Age 26 Flying Officer  415820   RNZAF 19th April  1944
Orslev Churchyard, Denmark.
BIGGAR, John Matthew Age 22 Flight Sergeant 427945 RNZAF 12th September 1944
HADLEY, William Orchard Age 30 Flying Officer 426041   RNZAF 12th September  1944
Svino Churchyard, Denmark
BOYD, William James Victor Age 20 Flight Sergeant 428303 RNZAF 12th September 1944
GILES, John Patrick Arthur Age 21 Flight Sergeant  425836   RNZAF 12th September  1944
GUDGEON, John Bernard Age 23 Pilot Officer  428786   RNZAF 12th September  1944
JENKINS, Ernest Roy Age 25 Warrant Officer  405780   RNZAF 29th April  1943
SHOGREN, Malcolm Edward John Age 29 Sergeant  415375   RNZAF 28th April  1943
THOMPSON, Desmond Lewis Age 21 Pilot Officer  413152   RNZAF 29th April  1943
WILLIAMS, John Muir Age 23 Flight Sergeant  401341   RAAF 29th April  1943

FRANCE

Bayeux War Cemetery, France.
BONISCH, Lester Lascelles Age 21 Pilot Officer 422098 RNZAF 11th June 1944
McKENZIE, James Murdoch Thomas Age 27 Flight Sergeant  427217   RNZAF 11th June  1944
MILLER, James Stuart Age 33 Flight Sergeant  427220   RNZAF 11th June  1944
Chateau-Voue Communal Cemetery, France.
McRAE, James Kenneth Age 27 Flying Officer  415216   RNZAF 25th July  1944
POTTS, Thomas Christopher Age 27 Flight Sergeant  421143   RNZAF 25th July  1944
Choloy War Cemetery, France.
GROVES, Kelvin Havelock Green Age 30 Pilot Officer  415819   RNZAF 17th April  1943
STONE, Ronald Charles Age 26 Sergeant  413281   RNZAF 17th April 1943
Clermont-Ferrand (Des Carmes Dechaux) Communal Cemetery, France.
HENDERSON, Hugh William Age 24 Flying Officer  421713   RNZAF 5th March  1944
JONES, Arthur Stanley Age 28 Flight Sergeant  421977   RNZAF 5th March  1944
MELVILLE, Robert James Ian Age 26 Flight Sergeant  42349   RNZAF 5th March  1944
WATSON, Raymond Johnson   DFC Age 27 Squadron Leader  404978 RNZAF 5th March  1944
Cronenbourg French National (Mixed) Cemetery, Strasbourg, France.
DUDDING, Keat Age 25 Warrant Officer 415522 RNZAF 25th July    1944
TAVERNER, George Alfred Badge Age 21 Flight Sergeant  429835   RAAF 25th July  1944
WHITEHOUSE, Keith Owen Age 23 Flying Officer  428800   RNZAF 25th July  1944
Fruges Communal Cemetery, France.
BATESON, Benjamin William Age 22 Flight Sergeant 424788 RNZAF 25th June 1944
MILNE, Bruce Age 21 Flight Sergeant  428017   RNZAF 25th June  1944
Guidel Communal Cemetery, France.
HARDING-SMITH, Dudley Age 24 Pilot Officer  405265   RNZAF 13th February  1943
Millery Communal Cemetery, France.
BLANCE, Ian Edward Age 21 Pilot Officer 421496 RNZAF 29th July 1944
CLIMO, Frederick Walter Percival Age 22 Flight Sergeant 4310148 RNZAF 29th July 1944
JENKINS, Frederick Francis Arthur Age 30 Flight Sergeant  429888   RNZAF 29th July  1944
Olonne-Sur-Mer Communal Cemetery, France.
WHITTA, Neville Bruce Age 20 Flight Sergeant  416566   RNZAF 16th August  1943
Poix-de-la-Somme Churchyard, France.
MACKENZIE, Douglas John Age 27 Flight Sergeant  417211   RAAF 2nd May  1944
PEEVERS, Thomas Alexander Age 29 Flight Sergeant  417232   RNZAF 2nd May  1944
SACHTLER, Euen William Age 24 Squadron Leader  41362   RNZAF 2nd May  1944
Rieux Communal Cemetery, France.
BETLEY, Ronald Desmond Ernest Age 22 Flight Sergeant 421495 RNZAF 16th June 1944
COOK, Peter Jackson Age 21 Flight Sergeant 42708 RNZAF 16th June 1944
HALE, Lawrence Eastmure Age 26 Flight Sergeant  42395   RNZAF 16th June  1944
TOOHEY, Edward Wallace Age 22 Warrant Officer 416672   RNZAF 16th June  1944
Therouldeville Churchyard, France.
RITCHIE, Alfred Henry Age 22 Sergeant  40207   RNZAF 22nd December  1940
Tillieres-Sur-Avre Communal Cemetery, France.
DONAGHY, Thomas Rodgers Age 33 Flight Sergeant 422267 RNZAF 11th June    1944
Valenciennes (St Roch) Communal Cemetery, France.
DIMOCK, Vallance Albert Oliver Age 22 Sergeant     412317    RNZAF 25th October 1942
McCONNELL, James Allison Age 21 Sergeant  414646   RNZAF 25th October  1942
SMITH, Selwyn Clarence Age 29 Sergeant  41952   RNZAF 25th October  1942
TONKIN, Douglas Noel Age 22 Sergeant  413285   RNZAF 25th October  1942
Ville-Sur-Retourne Churchyard, France.
HUGHILL, Howard James Age 21 Sergeant  414293   RNZAF 25th October  1942
Yevres Communal Cemetery, France.
STOKES, Noel Alfred Deal Age 25 Flight Lieutenant  421403   RNZAF 29th July  1944

GERMANY

Berlin 1939-1945 War Cemetery, Germany.
ERIKSON, Mervyn Arthur Age 26 Pilot Officer 416103 RNZAF 24th August 1943
FISK, Joseph George Arkless Age 28 Flight Sergeant  412874   RNZAF 1st September  1943
HELM, George Vincent Age 23 Pilot Officer  416113   RNZAF 1st September  1943
HOPE, Lawrence Beresford Hamilton Age 28 Warrant Officer  40940   RNZAF 19th April  1945
LUNDON, Francis Patrick Age 25 Flight Sergeant  404718   RNZAF 24th August  1943
MOSS, Douglas Hamilton Age 23 Pilot Officer  404653   RNZAF 24th August  1943
SEDUNARY, Alan Joseph Lyall   DFC Age 20 Pilot Officer  416619    RAAF 24th August  1943
STEWART, Donald MacKay Age 29 Flight Sergeant 421336  RNZAF 1st September 1943
THIRD, James Age 34 Pilot Officer  422671   RNZAF 24th August  1943
THORSTENSEN, Frederick William Age 26 Flight Sergeant  414529   RNZAF 24th August  1943
WOOLCOTT, Douglas George Age 23 Sergeant  1290189   RAFVR 24th August  1943
Becklingen War Cemetery, Germany
BRISCO, Robert Hylton Age 26 Sergeant 411204 RNZAF 29th July 1942
CAITCHEON, Gordon Edwin Age 28 Sergeant 404016 RNZAF 29th July 1942
CAMPBELL, Alan Age 22 Flight Sergeant 391857 RNZAF 29th July 1942
CARNCROSS, Murray Ellis Age 19 Pilot Officer 411718 RNZAF 29th July 1942
DAVIS, Ronald Fraser Age 22 Flight Sergeant 403569 RNZAF 29th July 1942
HUTT, George Alister Age 25 Flight Sergeant  41914   RNZAF 29th July 1942
McMURCHY, James Gordon Age 31 Sergeant  405539   RNZAF 29th July 1942
O’SHEA, William Clerken Age 28 Sergeant  411096   RNZAF 29th July 1942
SAVAGE, John Henry Age 33 Sergeant  404620   RNZAF 29th July 1942
STEWART, Ian Gordon Age 20 Sergeant  404623   RNZAF 29th July 1942
SUTHERLAND, Alexander George Age 23 Flight Sergeant  405340   RNZAF 29th July 1942
TABOR, Adrian Oscar Age 25 Sergeant  411104   RNZAF 29th July 1942
WESTERMAN, Victor Kenneth Age 24 Flight Sergeant  41970   RNZAF 29th July 1942
WILSON, Peter John Age 22 Flight Lieutenant  402475   RNZAF 29th July 1942
Hamburg War Cemetery, Germany.
CORLETT, Geoffrey Scott Age 20 Flight Sergeant 42289 RNZAF 3rd August 1943
COUPER, James Arthur Age 31 Flight Sergeant 417027 RNZAF 3rd August 1943
CRARER, Thomas Eric Age 21 Sergeant 405475 RNZAF 29th July 1942
HAWKINS, Anthony Henry Ryder Age 20 Sergeant  40971   RNZAF 15th September  1941
REEVES, Sydney Cecil Oliver Age 21 Flight Sergeant  42339   RNZAF 3rd August  1943
WARD, James Allen   VC Age 22 Sergeant  401793   RNZAF 15th September  1941
Hanover War Cemetery, Germany.
ADAMSON, David Maurice Age 27 Flying Officer 41052 RNZAF 28th September 1943
DALZELL, Errol Thomas Paterson Age 22 Pilot Officer 411378 RNZAF 28th August 1942
HAUB, Darcy Leslie Conrad Age 23 Flight Sergeant  42326   RNZAF 31st August 1943
HOGAN, Denis Patrick Age 23 Sergeant  412331   RNZAF 28th August  1942
JACKSON, Kensington Campbell Age 23 Flight Sergeant  42330   RNZAF 31st August  1943
RIDDLER, Stanley Winston Age 22 Sergeant  424999   RNZAF 3rd October  1943
ROBERTS, Eric John Age 25 Flight Sergeant  417107   RNZAF 31st August  1943
TUNBRIDGE, Victor Arthur Age 28 Sergeant  411788   RNZAF 28th August  1942
WAEREA, Tame Hawaikirangi Age 29 Pilot Officer  421300   RNZAF 28th September  1943
WHITMORE, Richard Charles Age 22 Pilot Officer  421123   RNZAF 28th September  1943
Kiel War Cemetery, Germany.
AITCHISON, Campbell Ewen Justin Age 22 Flight Sergeant 402974 RNZAF 12th March 1942
BELL, Maurice Perrott Age 26 Pilot Officer 404882 RNZAF 29th March 1942
BROWN, John Lukies Age 22 Flight Sergeant 402534 RNZAF 12th March 1942
CRAN, Franklyn Bertram Age 21 Sergeant 405237 RNZAF 29th March 1942
FIRTH, Ellison George Age 19 Sergeant  412218   RNZAF 13th October  1942
FRASER, Myles Frederick Gordon Age 22 Flight Sergeant  403437   RNZAF 16th May  1942
HARRIS, Claude Joseph Age 31 Sergeant  404028   RNZAF 29th March  1942
McDONALD, Murray Alexander Age 23 Sergeant  400352   RAAF 12th March  1942
PARKINSON, Lewis Harry Age 20 Sergeant  412518   RNZAF 13th October  1942
SMITH, Albert Ivan Age 27 Flight Sergeant  402221   RNZAF 16th May  1942
WATTERS, Ventry Age 22 Sergeant  413522   RNZAF 13th October  1942
WHITING, Norman Edward Age 27 Sergeant  404107   RNZAF 16th May  1942
Reichswald Forest War Cemetery, Germany.
ANDERSON, Ronald Alexander John Age 26 Flight Sergeant 36139 RNZAF 20th July 1940
BARCLAY, Thomas Smith Age 22 Flight Sergeant 411358 RNZAF 12th August 1942
BISSET, Stuart Richard Age 20 Flight Sergeant 415738 RNZAF 23rd June 1943
BLANK, John Frederick Age 20 Flight Sergeant 422175 RNZAF 23rd June 1943
BOAG, Robert James Age 24 Flight Sergeant 432097 RAAF 30th November 1944
BROWN, Alfred Errol Age 25 Flying Officer 429139 RNZAF 21st March 1945
COLES, Thomas Edward Age 28 Sergeant 40161 RNZAF 7th September 1942
COWIE, James Lindis Age 22 Flight Sergeant 42322 RNZAF 22nd November 1943
FRAMPTON, Laurie Albert Age 20 Sergeant  411753   RNZAF 29th July  1942
GIBSON, John Cuthbert McKechnie Age 29 Sergeant  40435 2  RNZAF 7th November  1941
GRIMES, Harold Dawson Age 26 Sergeant  404532   RAAF 15th October  1941
HAZARD, Whelan Fallon Age 20 Flying Officer  429047   RNZAF 12th August  1944
HOLLOWAY, Edgar John Age 29 Flying Officer  429923   RNZAF 21st March  1945
INGLIS, William Gordon Lloyd Age 27 Sergeant  411758   RNZAF 12th August  1942
JARVIS, Claude Joseph Frederick Age 22 Sergeant  411722   RNZAF 7th September  1942
JOHNS, Arthur Grahame Age 20 Flight Sergeant  41907   RNZAF 29th July  1942
KAVANAGH, Stanley Leo Age 24 Warrant Officer  403579   RNZAF 30th May  1943
KRALJEVICH, Mark Age 25 Sergeant  403458   RNZAF 29th July  1942
MACKENZIE, Stanley Henry Age 23 Flying Officer  422418   RNZAF 22nd November  1943
MacPHAIL, Allan Corson Anderson Age 30 Sergeant  41194   RNZAF 30th May  1943
MARSHALL, Eric William Elliott Age 31 Flight Sergeant  415637   RNZAF 23rd May  1944
McCARTIN, Patrick Leo Age 28 Flying Officer  419328   RAAF 20th November  1944
McINTOSH, James Alexander Age 26 Flying Officer  411915   RNZAF 30th November  1944
McWILLIAM, Allan Age 20 Sergeant  416586   RNZAF 30th May  1943
MILLS, George William Age 27 Pilot Officer  411769   RNZAF 7th September  1942
MORGAN, Robert Carhampton Age 26 Flight Sergeant  421389   RNZAF 30th November  1944
NEWMAN, Robert Wynne Age 29 Flight Sergeant  4210960   RNZAF 30th November  1944
NORMAN, Raymond Fraser Age 23 Flight Sergeant  416145   RNZAF 30th May  1943
OWEN, John Lewis Age 24 Sergeant  391332   RNZAF 20th July  1940
PAYNE, Douglas Beardsley Age 22 Flight Sergeant  426917   RNZAF 23rd May  1944
PLUMMER, Jack    DFC Age 29 Flight Lieutenant  42451   RNZAF 21st March  1945
RAMSAY, William Robertson Age 25 Sergeant  405508   RNZAF 9th June  1942
ROBERTSON, Trevor Bernard Age 26 Pilot Officer  404948   RNZAF 15th October  1941
SAMSON, George King Age 27 Flight Sergeant  402563   RNZAF 23rd June  1943
SAUL, Norman Priestley Age 30 Sergeant  411730   RNZAF 7th September  1942
SCOTT, Russell James Age 23 Flying Officer  428984   RNZAF 21st March  1945
SHARMAN, George William Age 27 Sergeant  412746   RNZAF 7th September  1942
SMITH, Rupert John Age 26 Pilot Officer  41950   RNZAF 9th June 1942
STEWART, Leslie Ian Age 25 Sergeant  41178 5  RNZAF 29th July  1942
THORNLEY, Sydney Russell Age 25 Flight Sergeant  40109   RNZAF 30th May  1943
TURNER, John Cecil Age 21 Flight Sergeant  421115   RNZAF 22nd November  1943
WARRING, Robert John Age 21 Sergeant  411110   RNZAF 12th August  1942
WOOD, James Haswell Age 29 Flight Sergeant  425811   RNZAF 21st March  1945
Rheinberg War Cemetery, Germany.
ANDERSEN, Kenneth Peder Christian Age 28 Flight Sergeant 429128 RNZAF 4th November 1944
ASHWIN, Eric Lumley Durham Age 22 Sergeant 41563 RNZAF 17th December 1942
BENNETT, Raymond Frederick Age 29 Pilot Officer 415282 RNZAF 30th May 1943
BERNARD, Arthur George Age 22 Flight Sergeant 424964 RNZAF 22nd November1943
BUDGE, William Finlay Age 24 Pilot Officer 41977 RNZAF 6th April 1942
CAREY, John Henry Roy Age 27 Flight Sergeant 414242 RNZAF 30th May 1943
CLARK, Mervyn Oliver Age 20 Pilot Officer 404895 RNZAF 17th December 1942
COOMBRIDGE, Trevor Walter Age 21 Flight Sergeant 42653 RNZAF 27th December 1944
CURLEWIS, Raymond Fullerton Age 25 Sergeant 402230 RAAF 11th October 1941
DALE, James Atkinson Age 27 Flying Officer 425562 RNZAF 25th August 1944
DEBENHAM, Kevin Frederick Age 26 Pilot Officer 412211 RNZAF 16th April 1943
DEVLIN, Kevin John Age 26 Pilot Officer 413334 RNZAF 11th September 1942
FLEMING, James Allan Age 27 Flying Officer  422382   RNZAF 25th August  1944
GALLETLY, Alan Russell Age 33 Pilot Officer  427481   RNZAF 5th October  1944
HASELDEN, Howard Clive McLeish Age 22 Sergeant  403003   RNZAF 18th September  1941
HENLEY, Douglas Charles   MiD Age 23 Pilot Officer  414622   RNZAF 1st September  1943
HOWARD, Edward John Francis Age 24 Flight Sergeant  424469   RNZAF 4th November  1944
HOWLETT, Arthur Douglas Age 32 Flying Officer  413335   RNZAF 23rd September  1943
JACOBSON, Gerald Howard Age 27 Flying Officer  41333   RNZAF 17th December  1942
JARVIS, William Louis Age 25 Flight Sergeant  414691   RAAF 23rd September  1943
KELCHER, Walter Foch Age 23 Sergeant  411908   RNZAF 11th September  1942
KENDAL, Christopher James Age 21 Sergeant  412342   RNZAF 17th December  1942
KIRKPATRICK, Laurence John Age 20 Flying Officer  414990   RNZAF 23rd September  1943
MacLEOD, Norman Alexander Age 26 Flight Sergeant  404079   RNZAF 30th May  1943
MARGETTS, John Edward Stanley Age 25 Flight Sergeant  422665   RNZAF 22nd November  1943
McALPINE, Walter Duncan Age 30 Pilot Officer  403551   RNZAF 17th December  1942
METCALFE, Thomas Otto Age 19 Sergeant  414386   RNZAF 11th September  1942
MILES, Haddon Shaw Age 27 Flying Officer  421746   RNZAF 27th December 1 944
MOSLEY, Stuart Edwin Age 29 Flight Sergeant  426106   RNZAF 5th October  1944
MURPHY, Timothy Rowley Age 20 Sergeant  404037   RNZAF 11th October  1941
PULLAR, Henry Welsh Age 25 Sergeant  411777   RNZAF 17th December  1942
SANDS, Hugh Powell Age 26 Flying Officer  403287   RNZAF 23rd September  1943
SCOTT, Alexander Age 20 Sergeant  413484   RNZAF 3rd December  1942
SCOTT, Alistair Henry Age 27 Flight Sergeant  428259   RNZAF 4th November  1944
SCOTT, John Harold Age 29 Flying Officer  428797   RNZAF 4th November  1944
SINGLE, Alan Roy Age 26 Flight Sergeant  413144   RAAF 22nd November  1943
SMITH, Ian Hector Ross Age 34 Flight  Sergeant  421614   RNZAF 1st September  1943
SMITH, Phillip Francis Age 20 Flight Sergeant  427206   RAAF 20th November  1944
SOUTHWARD, Keith Age 28 Flying Officer  411048   RNZAF 6th October  1944
STOKES, Wallace Frederick Age 27 Sergeant  412326   RNZAF 17th December  1942
THOMPSON, Colin Maurice Age 23 Sergeant  404427   RNZAF 11th October  1941
WALSHE, Desmond James Age 25 Sergeant  412912   RNZAF 11th September  1942
WATSON, Clifford Arnold Age 34 Flying Officer  421946   RNZAF 1st September  1943
WELSH, Neville Henry Age 20 Flight Sergeant  391334   RNZAF 15th October  1941
WHITE, William George Henry Age 27 Sergeant  41717   RNZAF 17th December  1942
WHITTINGTON, Eric Richmond Age 22 Flight Sergeant  416030   RNZAF 22nd November  1943
WILKINSON, Ernest Stanley Age 25 Pilot Officer  417138   RNZAF 6th September  1943
WOOD, Frederick Lionel Roy Age 23 Sergeant  404439   RNZAF 15th October  1941
Sage War Cemetery, Germany.
BRODIE, Andrew Moore Age 25 Sergeant 391378 RNZAF 21st February 1941
BUCKLEY, Wallace Edward Age 28 Pilot Officer 391379 RNZAF 21st June 1942
GILL, John Trevor Vivian Age 27 Sergeant  403362   RNZAF 4th September  1942
GRANT, Horace Llewellyn Age 27 Sergeant  405254   RNZAF 4th September  1942
LEES, Reginald Sidney Age 26 Pilot Officer  404907   RNZAF 27th July 1942
LOWTHER, Peter Desmond Age 22 Flight Sergeant  403583   RNZAF 11th July  1942
NEWMAN, Richard Alfred William Age 24 Sergeant  405309   RNZAF 4th September  1942
RENTON, Rupert Ernest Age 22 Sergeant  412352   RNZAF 4th September  1942
ROBERTSON, Norman Bruce Age 25 Pilot Officer  411101   RNZAF 27th July  1942
SHARP, Richard Edwin Age 23 Sergeant  405513   RNZAF 11th July  1942
SHEPHERD, Ian James Age 26 Pilot Officer  404414   RNZAF 27th July  1942
TRENGROVE, Raymond Wickliffe John Age 20 Pilot Officer  40927   RNZAF 21st June  1942
WINSTANLEY, James Francis Age 20 Sergeant  412373   RNZAF 27th July  1942
Durnbach War Cemetery, Germany.
BARKER, Richard Stockdale Age 28 Pilot Officer 421345 RNZAF 26th August 1944
BRIDGER, Cyril Jack Age 26 Flight Sergeant 417192 RNZAF 28th August 1943
DAVEY, Charles Raglan Age 21 Sergeant 413937 RNZAF 8th March 1943
FIRTH, Raymond Age 28 Warrant Officer  417203   RNZAF 26th August  1944
HENDERSON, Matthew Ronald Age 25 Flight Sergeant  427204   RNZAF 28th April  1944
HERRON, Robert Weir Age 23 Flying Officer  422282   RNZAF 28th April  1944
HIGHAM, Frank Douglas Age 24 Flight Sergeant  416116   RNZAF 28th August  1943
LOGAN, Clifford Charles Pownall Age 28 Flying Officer  405918   RAAF 23rd September  1943
McLACHLAN, Euen Wilfred Age 22 Flying Officer  415266   RNZAF 28th April  1944
NORTON, William George Age 28 Flight Sergeant  413227   RNZAF 26th August  1944
PERKS, Eric Age 29 Flight Sergeant  411934   RNZAF 29th August  1942
SMITH, Keith Alfred Age 23 Warrant Officer  416022 RNZAF 28th April  1944
SOWERBY, Geoffrey Phillips Age 22 Flight Sergeant  417243   RNZAF 23rd September  1943

HOLLAND

Aardenburg General Cemetery, Holland.
HEWETT, Harold Max Age 21 Flight Sergeant  419311   RAAF 12th May  1944
Amersfoort (Oud Leusden) General Cemetery, Holland.
BLINCOE, Kenneth Howard DFC Age 33 Pilot Officer 412194  RNZAF 3rd February 1943
CLEARWATER, Desmond Age 24 Sergeant 412314 RNZAF 3rd February 1943
COOK, George Wood Age 24 Sergeant 412514 RNZAF 3rd February 1943
SCOTT, Andrew James Newell Age 21 Pilot Officer  414685   RNZAF 3rd February  1943
Amsterdam New Eastern Cemetery, Holland.
ANNAN, William Douglas Francis Age 20 Sergeant 391377 RNZAF 26th July 1940
BYRNE, Martin John Age 32 Flight Sergeant 404529 RNZAF 29th July 1942
COLEMAN, William Harcourt DFC Age 23 Flying Officer 2526 RNZAF 26th July 1940
GILBERTSON, John Edward Age 22 Flight Sergeant  41894   RNZAF 29th July  1942
PERROTT, William Rosser Age 21 Flying Officer  416155   RNZAF 25th June  1943
Beesd General Cemetery, Holland.
JOBLIN, Frederick John Leigh Age 25 Sergeant  417063   RNZAF 24th May  1943
TURNBULL, George Watson Age 24 Sergeant  421342   RNZAF 24th May  1943
TIETJENS, Stephen Muir Age 26 Sergeant  415640   RNZAF 24th May 1 943
Bergen-Op-Zoom Canadian War Cemetery, Holland.
BLACK, John William Age 27 Flight Sergeant 402843 RNZAF 7th November 1941
COOKSEY, James Brett Age 23 Flight Sergeant 416460 RNZAF 24th June 1943
FOTHERINGHAM, Robert Ewen Ernest Age 29 Sergeant  391833   RNZAF 16th July  1941
GRAY, Trevor Hedley Age 27 Sergeant  404356   RNZAF 7th November  1941
LLOYD, Eric Age 28 Pilot Officer  402197   RNZAF 7th November  1941
MURDOCH, Graham Edward Age 26 Pilot Officer  411927   RNZAF 9th June  1942
O’DOWD, Albert William Age 25 Sergeant  41544   RNZAF 9th June  1942
PENMAN, Alexander Mitchell Age 23 Flying Officer  416154   RNZAF 21st October  1944
Doetinchem (Loolaan) General Cemetery, Holland.
HARRISON, Alfred Herbert Age 25 Flight Sergeant  403000   RNZAF 8th November  1941
WYLLIE, Thomas Young Age 25 Sergeant  404011   RNZAF 8th November  1941
Eindhoven (Woensel) General Cemetery, Holland.
GILMOUR, Hugh Edward Age 24 Warrant Officer  422667   RAAF 21st July  1944
MILLS, Samuel Age 32 Flight Sergeant  425036   RAAF 21st July  1944
OSBORNE, John Edward Age 23 Flight Sergeant  417877   RAAF 21st July  1944
Flushing  (Vlissingen) Northern Cemetery, Holland.
BLUCK, Norman Bradford Age 22 Pilot Officer 40364 RNZAF 24th June 1943
STRONG, Geoffrey Walter Age 31 Flight Sergeant  413905   RNZAF 24th June  1943
Gilze-En-Rijen (Gilze) Roman Catholic Cemetery,  Holland.
COOK, Stephen Astley Age 21 Flight Sergeant 421142 RNZAF 28th May 1944
SCOTT, Francis Alexander Jack Age 28 Sergeant  421105   RNZAF 28th May  1944
Harderwijk General Cemetery, Holland.
THOMSON, Gordon Douglas Age 22 Flight Sergeant 42317   RNZAF 25th June  1943
Jonkerbos War Cemetery, Nijmegen, Holland.
CALLOW, Horace Age 27 Flying Officer 427185 RNZAF 21st July 1944
DOBBIN, Laurence St.George Age 29 Flight Sergeant 401375 RNZAF 12th August 1942
HICKFORD, Leonard Charles Age 21 Flight Sergeant  426886   RNZAF 21st July  1944
HOWELL, Edward Age 21 Pilot Officer  428819   RNZAF 21st July  1944
JURY, Jack Leslie Age 20 Sergeant  411764   RNZAF 12th August  1942
McKENZIE, Francis Max Age 26 Pilot Officer  41344   RNZAF 23rd June  1943
REDWOOD, Gerard Henry Age 34 Flight Sergeant  425012   RNZAF 21st July  1944
ROCHE, Gerald Brian Age 21 Flight Sergeant  413219   RNZAF 21st July  1944
SMITH, Keith Emmett Age 21 Flight Sergeant  425179   RNZAF 21st July  1944
Markelo General Cemetery, Holland.
BURBIDGE, Kenneth Alfred Age 22 Flight Sergeant 412200 RNZAF 23rd June 1943
MARTIN, Donald Ernest Age 26 Flight Sergeant  413872   RNZAF 23rd June  1943
McEWIN, Andrew James Age 25 Flight Sergeant  417077   RNZAF 23rd June  1943
WILCOCKSON, Walter Frederick Age 34 Flight Sergeant  42314   RNZAF 23rd June  1943
Oldebroek General Cemetery, Holland.
SMITH, Trevor Harry Age 24 Pilot Officer  41953   RNZAF 9th July  1942
Rotterdam (Crooswijk) General Cemetery, Holland.
FOSTER, Ralph Owen Age 29 Pilot Officer  402443   RNZAF 8th November  1941
RYDER, Robert Leslie Owen Age 25 Pilot Officer  404626   RAAF 8th November  1941
WILSON, John Stephen Age 27 Sergeant  402530   RNZAF 8th November  1941
Schiermonnikoog (Vredenhof) Cemetery, Holland.
CHRISTIE, Arthur Stafford Age 21 Flight Sergeant 402982 RNZAF 21st June 1942
FRASER, Allan Armistice Age 23 Flying Officer  405030   RNZAF 21st June  1942
YOUNG, George Anthony Age 21 Sergeant  405771   RNZAF 9th July 1 942
Tilburg (Gilzerbaan) General Cemetery, Holland.
BURTT, Henry John Age 31 Flying Officer 414560 RNZAF 21st July 1944
CRAWFORD, Henry Varley Gibb Age 28 Sergeant 404339 RNZAF 7th September 1942
GILLAN, Gottfred Lyall Age 21 Warrant Officer  42324   RNZAF 21st July  1944
GROVES, Alpheus Leslie Age 30 Flight Sergeant  403574   RNZAF 7th September  1942
PARKES, William Ronald Age 31 Flight Sergeant  403822   RNZAF 7th September  1942
ROSE, George Herbert Age 30 Sergeant  391713   RNZAF 7th September  1942
WILSON, Eric Glover Age 27 Flight Sergeant  403035   RNZAF 7th September  1942
Uden War Cemetery, Holland.
FLETCHER, Andrew Crawford Age 24 Flight Sergeant  42675   RNZAF 21st July  1944
SIMPSON, Alfred Alexander Age 28 Flight Sergeant  425212   RNZAF 21st July  1944
WHITTINGTON, Harold Age 26 Pilot Officer  42488   RNZAF 21st July  1944
Westdongeradeel (Holwerd) Protestant Cemetery, Holland.
HEGAN, John Gordon George Age 23 Sergeant  411075   RNZAF 30th June  1942
McGREGOR, Murdoch Gordon Age 23 Sergeant  411079   RNZAF 30th June  1942
MONCRIEF, Eric Francis Sydney Age 25 Sergeant  411087   RNZAF 30th June  1942
RANDLE, Douglas Haig Age 24 Sergeant  405454   RNZAF 30th June  1942
Wierden General Cemetery, Holland.
McCULLOUGH, John   DFC Age 30 Pilot Officer  40410 RNZAF 3rd February  1943
MURPHY, Terence Austin Age 30 Sergeant  413307   RNZAF 3rd February 1943

They shall grow not old, as we that are left grow old:
Age shall not weary them, nor the years condemn.
At the going down of the sun and in the morning

We will remember them.

 

 

Ake Ake Kia Kaha

We shall remember them

November 11 crop

For the Fallen

Poem by Robert Laurence Binyon (1869-1943), published in The Times newspaper on 21st September 1914.

With proud thanksgiving, a mother for her children,
England mourns for her dead across the sea.
Flesh of her flesh they were, spirit of her spirit,
Fallen in the cause of the free.

Solemn the drums thrill: Death august and royal
Sings sorrow up into immortal spheres.
There is music in the midst of desolation
And a glory that shines upon our tears.

They went with songs to the battle, they were young,
Straight of limb, true of eye, steady and aglow.
They were staunch to the end against odds uncounted,
They fell with their faces to the foe.

They shall grow not old, as we that are left grow old:
Age shall not weary them, nor the years condemn.
At the going down of the sun and in the morning
We will remember them.

They mingle not with their laughing comrades again;
They sit no more at familiar tables of home;
They have no lot in our labour of the day-time;
They sleep beyond England’s foam.

But where our desires are and our hopes profound,
Felt as a well-spring that is hidden from sight,
To the innermost heart of their own land they are known
As the stars are known to the Night;

As the stars that shall be bright when we are dust,
Moving in marches upon the heavenly plain,
As the stars that are starry in the time of our darkness,
To the end, to the end, they remain.

Ake Ake Kia Kaha

75(NZ) Squadron RAF Crew Op Histories – a little tweek

Subsequent to my announcement on Monday, within the ANZAC Day 2016 post, of the completion of all crew histories throughout the War, I realised a small problem……

Attempting myself to use them to add and correct some details, It dawned on me very quickly that I would need an eidetic memory to actually find individuals within the chronological format that I had layed out – the lists so far indicate 552 crews flew Operationally in their own right.

To try to make the identification easier, I have added a full list of all Pilots listed alphabetically. I have placed this alphabetical list at the top of the menu subsection and then the individual years sit below that.

Additionally, I have also moved the crew sub-section out from under the “75(NZ) Squadron RAF” menu item at the top of the page and re-positioned it in it’s own right next to “Dads crews” under the title “75(NZ) Squadron RAF crews“.

The original “75(NZ) Squadron RAF” menu item still exists and currently contains empty pages to be filled at some point with a history of the Squadron and information about the airfields it flew from (if anybody has information on  the home’s of the Squadron, don’t be shy, I would welcome it!)

A quick jump to each section is below:
Alphabetical list of Crews – here.
Crews starting 1940 – here.
Crews starting 1941 – here.
Crews starting 1942 – here.
Crews starting 1943 – here.
Crews starting 1944 – here.
Crews starting 1945 – here.

The eagle eyed among you might have noticed that there has also been a slight addition to the tag line of the site. Originally saying “About my father and the aircrews of 75(NZ) Squadron RAF”, I have added “- the largest online resource for 75(NZ) Squadron RAF in the world”

I have added this for the simple reason that it is.

And it is, because of the tireless work of Chris, and everybody else who has been generous enough to give an item, information or their time to this wonderful, crazy, amazing project.

Here’s to all of you!

KIA KAHA!

ANZAC Day 2016

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Those heroes that shed their blood
And lost their lives.
You are now lying in the soil of a friendly country.
Therefore rest in peace.
There is no difference between the Johnnies
And the Mehmets to us where they lie side by side
Here in this country of ours.
You, the mothers,
Who sent their sons from far away countries
Wipe away your tears,
Your sons are now lying in our bosom
And are in peace
After having lost their lives on this land they have
Become our sons as well.

In the spirit of ANZAC day and the opportunity it provides for us to remember the fallen, I wish to announce a significant addition to the blogsite.

What now must be about three and a half years ago I began to slowly transcribe the contents of the Form 541 ‘Details of work carried out‘. Broadly speaking, for those of you that are not familiar with the physical contents of the Squadron Operational Record Books, that I often mention, FORM 541 lists all aircraft and crews that took part in all Ops throughout the period of the War.

The transcription from these forms to a database has been good and bad. It has been very useful and efficient regarding individual queries about crew, but it has also been, at times, a right royal pain in the arse……….

Now that I try to remember the various ‘stages’ of completion I outlined over the last 3 years, I can now, to be honest, not recall a single one.

Suffice to say, in broad strokes, it is now done.

We now have, online, for all to look through and perhaps add to, an Operational history for every crew that flew Ops between 1940 and 1945. By extrapolation, we also therefore have a record of every Op that every individual undertook throughout the same period.

Each year can be viewed through each of the following respective links:

Crews starting 1940.
Crews starting 1941.
Crews starting 1942.
Crews starting 1943.
Crews starting 1944.
Crews starting 1945.

By Navigation each year can alternatively be accessed from the top menu under ’75(NZ) Squadron RAF’ and then from that drop menu under ’75(NZ) Squadron RAF Crews’

No such collection exists anywhere else on the web for 75(NZ) Squadron RAF and to the best of my knowledge, I think, it may be unique as a ‘fixed’ collection, as opposed to a dynamic search and return data based approach for any Squadron from the War.

The ordering and layout may undergo some subtle changes as we move forward, but I have applied the following approach.

Each crew is placed, relative to their first Operational sortie. This is important to note because there may be situations when a Pilot begun flying as a ‘2nd Dickie’ in one year, but began flying with ‘his’ crew in another.

Because each history exists on its own page, a rule and structure had to be decided on and in keeping with  protocols within the documents these histories were built from, this is the Pilot.

I appreciate if an individual possibly flew with a number of crews, this might make the tracing of their history a little circuitous, but if it proves that problematic, I am happy on contact to generate a ‘custom’ individual history directly from the database.

The creation of these pages means broadly 2 things:
1. Visitors can search and access crew histories.
2. Information can be added to these pages as it is donated.

The blog will obviously continue as the main method of communication information, but I have become aware as information has increased, that a blog post becomes quite unwieldy regarding a long and detailed Op history.

In the future, a new post about a crew, or individual,  will contain perhaps one or two images and a broad outline of the crew, but a link will be placed to take an interested reader to that crew’s Op history page.

In this way, relatives will have a single static location to visit regarding information on their loved ones.

Perhaps in the spirit of today’s remembrance, I would also note that even though we may never receive new information on a particular crew, their bravery and participation now exists as a permanent record for all to find and read – none of those brave boys will be forgotten……..

This project continues and is certainly not (if it ever will be) complete. There is more information to gather from official documents, more (I am sure) contacts to be made with relatives and the process of adding to each page what currently exists in the 600+ posts the blog already contains. As a matter of relative priority the next project is to ensure loss and burial details are added to all pages where a crew, or crew member was lost.

I am sure there are buried within the many pages, mistakes and errors – I would simply ask, that in the same spirit that I have taken regarding making my last three and a half years efforts accessible to all, others who might have information and corrections, share them to refine and improve the database – if knowledge is not shared – it has no value.

I must also, belatedly, thank you all for your continuing support and the passing of the amazing milestone of 300,000 views – daily traffic, despite my relative silence over the last few months means a great deal to me and I know i have to get back to my email and respond to what is a sizable list of contacts – I will get to you all !

Looking back, I have to be honest and say it’s been a day to day struggle to deal with things over the last few months, but despite this, the blog keeps on being visited and people keep reaching out – and its this that keeps me going – thanks to you all.

They shall grow not old, as we that are left grow old:
Age shall not weary them, nor the years condemn.
At the going down of the sun and in the morning
We will remember them.

 

Ake AKe Kia Kaha

New logbooks……..

In some cases, a very belated thank you to everyone who over the last 12 months or so have passed on logbooks. I have finally loaded up ten to the logbook section, though I am aware there are some more still to process and add, which will happen as soon as I can manage to do it.

Ten extra books to the collection is a significant addition and now brings this online collection to a total of 45 logbooks, with examples representing Operational careers in all years of the War. In itself, this must represent one of the largest online collections of this kind, for a  Bomber Command Squadron.

This new collection in itself represents a spread of trades and periods and in itself, again spreads across all years of the War.

The log books and their owners are as follows, listed chronologically:

Frank Albert Andrews, Pilot – 1940-1941 & 1943
A highly detailed logbook describing Franks entire flying career, through training and 2 tours with 75(NZ) Squadron RAF. Frank Andrews returned to the Squadron for his second tour as Squadron Leader.
Read Frank’s logbook here.

Eric Reginald Jones, Pilot – September 1941 to February 1942
Flying 9 Ops with the Squadron, Eric’s logbook is interesting as it shows  omissions regarding a number of Ops in the Official Form 540 for the Squadron.
Read Eric’s logbook here.

Verdun Cecil ‘Mick’ Strickland, Front Gunner – June 1941 to March 1942 (Francis Fox, Hone Roberts, John Sandys & Reginald Sawrey-Cookson)
Mick joined 75(NZ) Squadron in June 1941 flying with Sgt Francis Fox and Hone Roberts. After a refresher course at No. 3 G.T.F. he returned to Hone Robert’s crew. On the 12th of August 1941, after being attacked by an ME110, the crew baled out leaving P/O Roberts at the controls – eventually successfully landing the damaged aircraft. Mick then crewed with John Sandys , flying occasional Ops with Reginald Sawrey-Cookson’s crew. At the end of March 1942, Mick transferred ro No.11 O.T.U at Bassingbourne.
Read Mick’s logbook here.

Hector Alistair Stewart, Navigator – April to July 1943 (Alfred Thomas crew)
Flying out of Newmarket and then Mepal, the Thomas crew were lost on the 31st of July 1943 while attacking Remscheid. Only Hector and the crew’s Wireless Operator survived.
Read Alistair’s logbook here.

Douglas Hugh Trigg, Rear Gunner – May to September 1944  (John Perfrement crew)
30 Ops with John Perfrement, including the infamous July 21st Op to Homberg, when the Squadron lost 5 aircraft. The crew also flew on the 6th of June in support of the D-Day landings.
Read Douglas’s logbook here.

Reginald Charles Weeden, Navigator – August to December 1944 (Terry Ford crew)
Arriving with the Squadron on the 27th of August 1944, Reg completed 34 Ops with the Ford crew, including 2 to the infamous target of Homberg. Despite completing his Operational Tour, he stayed with the Squadron, instructing in Navigation, completing training flights, right up to the Squadrons disbandment after its move to Spilsby after the end of hostilities in Europe.
Read Reginalds’s logbook here.

Laurence Percy Bergman, Wireless Operator – September 1944 to December 1944 (Charlie Spain crew)
Completing a total of 29 Ops, through the second half of 1944, Laurence Bergman’s logbook contains detailed Op notes which are of great interest.
Read Laurence’s logbook here.

John Lawrence Beard, Mid Upper Gunner – December 1944 to March 1945  (Eric Parsons crew)
Flying on their final Op of 30, the Parsons crew were hit by heavy flak whilst over target at Heinrich-Hutte. Their Lancaster, PB741 AA-E suffered catastrophic damage to the port side engines, the wing being seen to break off as the aircraft disappeared under the clouds. John Lawrence Beard was aged 19.
Read John’s logbook here.

Sidney George Frederick Sizeland, Rear Gunner – January to July 1945 (Wallace Bassett, Laurence Mckenna crew).
Having flown 2 Ops with 149 and 4 Ops with 218 Squadron, Sid flew 4 Ops with Wallace Bassett, before flying the rest of his tour with Laurence McKenna, being involved in main War Ops, Gardening, Operation Manna, Prisoner Repatriation and Baedecker.
Read Sidney’s logbook here.

Fred Charles Entwistle Potter, Wireless Operator – 1945 (Don Culling crew)
Whilst short in duration, the latest logbook currently held, detailing sorties flown after the Squadron had moved to Spilsby as part of Tiger Force.
Read Fred’s’s logbook here.

Charlie Shepherd, Armourer – 1941 – 1943

Sad news from Chris

In memory of Charles Campbell “Charlie” Shepherd, RNZAF (NZ391907); 1918 – 30.1.2016

DSC_0131

Charlie at work, bombing up a 75 (NZ) Sqdn Stirling. – Charlie Shepherd collection, NZ Bomber Command Assn archives

Sad news with the passing of another original 75er, Cpl Charles Campbell Shepherd, NZ391907, who passed away just short of his 97th birthday on 30th January 2016, after a short illness.

Charlie Shepherd sailed from his native New Zealand to the UK in 1940 as an LAC armaments fitter, and was posted to 10 Squadron, RAF Leeming, on Whitleys.

He then served on 75 (NZ) Squadron at Feltwell, Mildenhall, and Newmarket, from 13 March 1941 to 9 June 1943. The NZ Bomber Command Assn hold copies of several photos that he took during his time at 75 (NZ) Squadron, for a brief glimpse into the life of the Armourers.

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Caption on reverse: “NZ groundstaff Feltwell 1941. All armourers. 75 Squadron”. – Charlie Shepherd collection, NZ Bomber Command Assn archives.

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Ground crew working on 75 (NZ) Squadron Stirling AA-B. – Charlie Shepherd collection, NZ Bomber Command Assn archives.

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Caption on reverse: “75 ARM 1941. J. Walsh, Bill Mason, Trotter, Ronnie Bartlett, could be Hartis, and C.C.S. Workers are ones without ties!” – Charlie Shepherd collection, NZ Bomber Command Assn archives.

Charlie later served on 486 NZ Squadron, Typhoons/Tempests, from 28 Sep 1944 to 8 May 1945, then went to 80 Sqdn.

He told a great story that some months after the war was over, an RAF officer noticed his New Zealand shoulder patch and asked what the hell was he doing still on an operational squadron, as everyone else had gone home. He apparently replied “I’m waiting for the next one!”. He thought he must have been overlooked as there weren’t many Kiwi ground crew in UK to start with. He eventually left the UK in December 1945.

After the war, Charlie lived in Maungatapere, Northland, New Zealand, and worked as a carpenter, joiner, and boatbuilder . He held a Private Pilots Licence at the age of 80.

– As always, thanks to Peter Wheeler and the NZ Bomber Command Assn. for permission to reproduce these photos. Extra details from the 75 Squadron (RAF/ RNZAF) Association of New Zealand.

We will remember them

final composite

The names of the 1,139 Commonwealth airmen who flew and died together in 75(NZ) Squadron RAF.
The second highest casualties for an RAF Bomber Command Squadron during World War II.

For the Fallen

Poem by Robert Laurence Binyon (1869-1943), published in The Times newspaper on 21st September 1914.

With proud thanksgiving, a mother for her children,
England mourns for her dead across the sea.
Flesh of her flesh they were, spirit of her spirit,
Fallen in the cause of the free.

Solemn the drums thrill: Death august and royal
Sings sorrow up into immortal spheres.
There is music in the midst of desolation
And a glory that shines upon our tears.

They went with songs to the battle, they were young,
Straight of limb, true of eye, steady and aglow.
They were staunch to the end against odds uncounted,
They fell with their faces to the foe.

They shall grow not old, as we that are left grow old:
Age shall not weary them, nor the years condemn.
At the going down of the sun and in the morning
We will remember them.

They mingle not with their laughing comrades again;
They sit no more at familiar tables of home;
They have no lot in our labour of the day-time;
They sleep beyond England’s foam.

But where our desires are and our hopes profound,
Felt as a well-spring that is hidden from sight,
To the innermost heart of their own land they are known
As the stars are known to the Night;

As the stars that shall be bright when we are dust,
Moving in marches upon the heavenly plain,
As the stars that are starry in the time of our darkness,
To the end, to the end, they remain.

Ake Ake Kia Kaha

A quarter of a million views – thank you all so much

DAD031

Love Bob xxx

As regular readers know, I have always tried to record and thank everybody when the blog has reached another viewing milestone.

Today I do the same, but almost breathlessly, given that we have reached the magic quarter of a million mark. Writing this, I have a smile from ear to ear every time I type quarter of a million.

Quarter of a million

I have reflected many times on occasions like this that the scale of interest and support has never ceased to amaze and touch me – and, without sounding repetitive, I do this again. I continue to come into contact with new people, relatives and interested individuals and it is their generosity and desire to share stories of the members of 75(NZ) Squadron RAF, both air and ground crew which allows me to keep posting and you all to keep viewing them.

The reservoir of information has steadily increased and recently, my ability to process and present this wonderful information seems to have, annoyingly,  decreased……

We also now have an online store for memorabilia that contributes to the UK Squadron Association and the Memorial Garden in Mepal.

The Squadron database reached a significant milestone while I was down in Wiltshire visiting my Mother – lack of internet and my Mothers eclectic TV viewing habits allowed me to complete “phase 2” of the database.

We now have every operational flight with aircraft type, serial and where known, flight and individual designator number. We now have at least a surname for every crew member of every crew who flew on all of these Ops.

As I think I have explained before to give a sense of scale of this activity, the database is approximately 8,400 rows long as a list and each row currently is made up of about 85 cells that contain pieces of information about the Op, aircraft or airmen in any particular crew. When complete therefore, the database will contain in total, approximately 714,000 pieces of information.

The generosity of people contacting me about their relatives means the database already contains new personal information – specifically the Christian names of the RAF airmen that flew with the Squadron and also, just as importantly, designator letters and names of individual aircraft that are totally new information.

In real terms the database project in content is now about 50% complete and as sections of information are completed, the natural tendency and inevitable likelihood is that extra information will be added. At a point of ‘critical completion’ the database ‘en masse’ will be made freely accessible to the public. Whilst a database/ search interface might allow swifter interrogation of the data, I am at least personally cautious about reducing the boys of the Squadron to data returns. To this end, I would still prefer to present static, laid out biographies of crews and or individuals, based on gathered filtering of the gathered information.

Perhaps ironically, my decision to start the database was simply if I could understand who the other crew that like my Father’s had been told on the 20th of November 1943 that they, on instruction from 3 Group needed to be made an example of to the other aircrews in the Squadron. They were tour expired – in Bob’s crews case after 21 Ops – the remaining crews at Mepal that early winter had to be shown it was possible to survive the ‘Chop’ Squadron. Of course as things develop you tend to get distracted (or I do) and to be honest I am actually no closer to knowing who that other crew was – but I shall.

Given that after Dad died at the end of August 2011, I knew nothing of his time in the War, let a lone anything about 75(NZ) Squadron RAF, its been a hell of a journey. I know more now than I could have possibly anticipated and have the utter privilege of presenting material that in many cases has never before been seen. I am humbled and proud of the task that has befallen me, albeit, perhaps at least initially unwittingly…..

Dad is perhaps still rather a nebulous cloud – I certainly know more, but in real terms, relatively little. My Mum, Wife and myself have on occasions mused that perhaps the joke is on me – this was Dad’s final problem, set to his only son to try to figure out. Perhaps as ignorant as me at the end of his journey and the start of mine as to what would be discovered and where the path would lead – if he could come back, only long enough for me to scream at him for not talking to me about it, he would probably nod, grunt affirmatively a number of times and then swear – and that would be enough.

The mystery of Jock Sommerville in some small part continues. Having completed the name stage of the database, I perhaps indulgently did a data sweep for the AIr Bombers of the Squadron. I know that some will say that its not about best or highest and I would normally agree, but this was a search that it felt as if I had spent the previous 2 1/2 years working to – building a huge machine (readers familiar with Douglas Adam’s ‘Hitch Hikers Guide to the Galaxy’ will know where I am going with this) to perform a single calculation.

The answer as we all know was 42 – in this case the Ops Dad completed and the answer (subject to final checking) is that F/O (highest rank with 75(NZ) Squadron RAF) Robert Douglas ‘Jock’ Sommerville had the second highest tally of Ops flown for any Air Bomber in the Squadron – I find this incredible, amazing and heart breaking that he did this – very probably in ignorance of this fact himself – and that I have to now type this without him to tell you all this fact about this quiet, funny, warm, pig headed, bullish, generous man.

and so, if on reading this, people, for what ever reason take offense at my statistical analysis, my stripping of history and the horrors of Bomber Command to discover something about my dad, I will answer as Jock would in the same situation:

bollocks……………

 

In some respects, it’s been a strange summer. Having finally shed the infection and dragging symptoms from it that I picked up before Christmas, my expectation was that I could use my leave to try to get at least slightly back on top of the mountain of information I still have to share. However, a new car as perhaps always provided an excuse to drive and enjoy it and as a result a fair few days have been spent driving between the North East and North West coast recording gravestones for the Roll of Honour section of the blog – I have posted some already and I have some still to present. Sitting behind the wheel, eye on the satnav, it began to dawn on me that apart from the Marker stone at the airfields the Squadron flew from and the plinth stone in the Memorial Garden in the village of Mepal, nowhere else on the mainland of the UK are our Squadron airmen and their losses commemorated.

By geographical necessity, the boys I have been visiting this summer were all killed over or on British soil, however I am not aware of any specific memorial information that identifies the sites or areas that these losses occurred.

Having been running this amazing project for the time I have, I am all too aware of the wonderful opportunity it provides for a multitude of new ‘projects’. I wish to propose another.

By the time this blog has recorded another 250,000 views, that between us and whatever number of other individuals or groups we must become involved in, this will be rectified.Their names and sacrifice will be commemorated in a physical memorial at or as close to the point of their loss as can be achieved.

I don’t know how we will do this, where the money will come from or who will help, but I figure by saying we should do it, it might give a few people the thought they would like to get involved and that’s a start – and at this point, that’s what we need.

Thank you all again – without all of your help and interest, there would be nothing for me to type now.

Simon

75(NZ) Squadron RAF map of Cemeteries – UK

Based off my previous post regarding my decision to visit as many cemeteries as I can this summer, I thought it might be of interest/ useful to people if I shared the Google map I have produced for my research.

If you expand the map you can fill your screen and navigate as you would in a normal Google Map. The colour convention is simple – GREEN means the graveyard has been visited and the relevant gravestones have been recorded. RED, perhaps obviously, shows a graveyard where the resting airmen’s stones are still to be photographed.

Having spent some time at the Air Force Memorial at Runnymede already this summer, I have managed to photograph approximately half of the names there. If anybody wishes to record more, then please do – but PLEASE contact me first to avoid unnecessary duplication of effort and time.

I thought that the basic adding of the locations to an accessible map would be straightforward, but quickly realised that in some cases, in the absence of a postcode, being exact was actually quite difficult. Where necessary I have confirmed map position with the Commonwealth War Grave Commission’s cemetery locator maps.

If you wish to navigate to any of the cemeteries, I would suggest either do it through Google Maps or you use the coordinates at the bottom of each location info panel – put them into Google Maps, it will take you too the location again, but will also give you the pure Long. and Lat.  coordinates that most vehicle GPS systems can take and use.

I am hoping that as I progress, I can turn the locators from red to green and this will update on the map……….hopefully……..

Happy hunting!!

2015 Friends of 75(NZ) Squadron Association Winter Reunion

2015 reunion banner

It seems a good time having gotten an email from Margaret last week to try to utilse the wider reach of the blog to try to attract more new people to the Association’s Winter Reunion this November.

If you are an Association regular it’s a wonderful annual opportunity to catch up with friends and if you are new to the Squadron and Association, it’s a chance to meet like minded people, share information and perhaps learn some things about a relative.

As in previous years, accommodation for the reunion event will be in Dolphin Hotel in St. Ives.

The Reunion weekend runs over 2 nights, with an informal dinner on Friday night, before the Reunion Dinner ‘proper’ on Saturday night. After the Dinner on Saturday night there is a raffle (so don’t forget to bring something, somebody else would like to win!) and usually any announcements related to the Association.

The Dolphin has been generous enough to charge the same as they did last year.

The charges for the weekend are as follows:
£118 per person for the weekend for dinner, bed & breakfast

For those staying 1 night the charge is £87.15 per person for a double room, or £71.75 for a single – breakfast is included in this, but the evening meal is extra.

There will be a trip out on the Saturday morning – which is yet to be confirmed, but information on this visit will be available closer to the date.

On Sunday we all move to Mepal village for a service in the Memorial Garden and the laying of wreathes at the village cenotaph before joining the people of Mepal in the chapel for a service of remembrance. There are then refreshments in the village hall.

In order to try to help Margaret and hopefully make the Reunion accessible to more people I have set up an Eventbrite page, which is accessible to the right of this post. Booking a free ticket for the event only indicates an interest in the event  and lets us gauge interest – though if you change your mind, please let us know so we can give someone else a chance.

You can book up to 3 Double or Single  rooms for the reunion and, as is always the case, these will go, so, to avoid disappointment, book early!!

Hope to see you all at the Winter Reunion……..

A new range of T-shirts – and something personal to you and them……..

Post illustration

Firstly, a massive thank you to everybody who has so far visited the blog shop and generously put their hands in their pockets, in some cases multiple times, to buy something and by doing so, contributing some money to the UK Association and Memorial Garden.

I am really pleased to present a new collection of T-shirts, designed to allow relatives of the brave boys of 75(NZ) Squadron RAF to celebrate and commemorate their contribution to the Squadron, Bomber Command and the Allied War effort.

The Redbubble model of production means I am able to offer a range of ‘named’ T-shirts to commemorate your dearly loved relative.

If your relative is not listed, then let me know and I can create one unique to them and special to you.

The T-shirt features the Squadron crest with motto ‘Ake Ake Kia Kaha’ (Forever and ever strong’, the personalisation statement and then front views of 75(NZ) Squadron’s aircraft, from top to bottom, the Wellington, the Stirling and the Lancaster.

Because of the way I have designed this T-shirt in particular, I can and if someone requires it provide further customisation.

If your relation to the individual ( I think that’s the right way to describe it) is not listed, then please say what you want and I can create one. This will be without extra cost.

If you want the T-shirt utterly personalised with your relatives rank, name and position, I can add this as an additional line under the ‘My Xxxxxxxxxx’ – so I will still need your relationship to them. Because of potentially another 2 lines of text, I will also require the aircraft he flew in – based on my broad estimations this means at maximum, a permutation of 2 of the 3 aircraft the Squadron used. For this service, the T-shirt will have a 50% mark up, relative to the normal 25% to reflect the time I will have to spend doing it.

As with everything else, all profits to the UK Association and the Memorial Garden in Mepal.

Many thanks in advance

Simon

A Redbubble walk through…….let’s make it easier for you to spend your money!

I have had a few queries regarding finding things on the Redbubble store – which I think are all entirely fair and obviously flags up a bit of an issue with people finding stuff – and I want you to find it, so you can buy it! Firstly, if you are gripped with the random need to buy some merchandising and don’t have the blog open, then you can go to Redbubble and put a search in for:

75nzsquadron

All one word. This should bring you to the portfolio page. screen 1

The rectangles named ‘Insignia’ and ‘Design’ are group collections of the artwork so far produced and the ‘Recently added’ below seems to just literally show all recently uploaded artwork – you can click on either to get to a merchandise range, based on that piece of artwork. I would note that there seems to not be an instant visual way to differentiate between the 2 full colour Squadron crest logos (one being full size and one being breast pocket size) but if you move your mouse over each or one, a logo name will appear and you can see the one marked ‘(small)’ We’ll go through one of the collections, ‘Design‘.

screen 2

Clicking on this collection obviously reveals all the designs in this collection. We’ll pick the ’75’ Racing number with RAF roundel colour stripes, as it’s already become one of the more popular designs.

screen 3

This brings us to the T-shirt page for this design and its worth noting a couple of things about this page regarding ordering options.

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Firstly, there is a VERY wide choice of garments that the artwork can be applied to. I must confess I do not understand why the default range seems only to show a unisex and female T-shirt.

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The second thing to note is that you can choose to have the logo printed on the front or the back of your garment – obviously for some garments, such as the racing back vest, it will make it small, but cool, nevertheless. And the next one is the proverbial ‘elephant in the room‘ regarding navigation of the site – ridiculously obvious, but only when you actually notice it – it took me a good 10 minutes to realise myself……… Just below the main merchandise section is a series of information links and one is the other products available with the chosen design……..

screen 7

The ‘Available products’ – quite obviously (duh) lists all products available linked to the design – as I say this took me 10 minutes to actually see – I’ll claim because I do all this on a Mac Book Air and the screen wasn’t big enough to let me notice it…….ahem……… Clicking on this then reveals a full list of merchandise available…….

screen 8

And obviously, clicking on any of these items, takes you to the equivalent ordering page as you have just been on for the T-shirt. Hopefully this will clarify and help those of you who have yet to make a purchase. Many thanks again to all of you who have already found something you like and bought it – the money is slowly but steadily building up in the Redbubble account! cheers Simon

Another new project and an ideal present for Christmas!!!!…….(only 221 days left)

product comp reduced

I am please to announce another expansion of the blog!. As of today, merchandise is available through Redbubble, with all profits going to the “Friends of 75(NZ) Squadron Association UK, and the Memorial Garden in Mepal.

Since becoming President in November last year, I have been, I suppose concerned, about how, as an Association, we move on and leave a legacy and tangible memory of the Squadron for those generations that follow.

In discussion with members of other squadron associations, it became very clear that the ‘traditional’ method of memorabilia creation and selling simply does not work. In simplistic terms, you pay for something to be made, you need to sell them all to make anything and very quickly the small devoted members of the association becomes pressurised and begin to disengage as they are bombarded more and more with the tacit responsibility of buying the ‘latest thing’ to contribute funds to that particular group. Indeed, one member of another association told me simply ‘ don’t bother, it will bankrupt you’…..

A chance discussion with a friend at work led me to an online portfolio site called Redbubble. A significant feature of this site is the ability to attach artwork to items and then make them available for sale. The beauty of this model being that Redbubble charges a flat production fee for the item and you (the artist of the work) decides what percentage you want to add on top for your own profit – or in the case of my plans, rather than profit – donation to the UK Association and Garden.

I will jump straight in at this point and level with you all – I have levied 25% on the price of everything – the artwork is good quality – some has taken me a while to produce – and its all for a good cause, which I would imagine if you are reading this, must be close to your heart.

Coming from a design background and now teaching it at a UK university, its nice to have the chance to do something creative, related to the bog. I am keen to not only appeal to aficionados of all things 75(NZ) RAF, but also hopefully create things that have a wider appeal – people might buy something and then be inclined to find out about the story behind the item, or they might simply like it and buy it.

Some pieces, such as the colour Squadron crest is clean crisp and I suppose I would describe as traditional in terms of its style and appeal. Other items are more graphic and perhaps will appeal to a different market – if this widens their appeal and helps more items to be sold – I am happy with that. Irrespective of the style or content however, I can assure you all that the designs will be considered, respectful and commemorative of the Squadron and the boys that flew with it during the War.

From my time in the world of professional design I am acutely aware that it’s better to get somebody to buy something if they like it, rather than if they feel politely obliged to buy it. If you keep doing things people like, they will (hopefully) keep buying things…….

The readership of the blog is large and geographically diverse – I hope if not straightaway, everybody might find something they like and maybe make a purchase.

As I mentioned at the top of this post, I have been wondering about methods to raise funds for the Association here in the UK. As time passes and our few remaining veterans eventually leave us, I think personally, that as an Association we have to take on the responsibility to reach out as widely as possible to ensure the story of the Squadron is mot only maintained, but taught to younger generations. We need to identify some projects, perhaps commemorative memorials at Squadron crash sites in the UK, but of course, to undertake this sort of activity, we need funds. Whilst a straight donation model is still a nice way of giving, your are at the whim of the individual to some extent – personally, I think that if you are something of a quality, people will want it, rather than feel they must take it.

Hopefully this has at least got you curious.

Visit my Redbubble portfolio here – as a guide, in the first instance you see designs, rather than purchase items – by clicking on a particular graphic, you will see the available items – for some designs, the options will remain limited, others as you will see, offer quite a range to tempt you.

I hope you find something you like

Cheers

Simon

May 8th 1945. The War in Europe is over………..

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Winston Churchill, the Prime Minister that got the country through the war – but pointedly refused to acknowledge the contribution of Bomber Command in the final victory.

After 2077 days the war that had engulfed Europe ended.

At 02:41 on the morning of 7 May, at SHAEF headquarters in Reims, France, the Chief-of-Staff of the German Armed Forces High Command, General Alfred Jodl, signed the unconditional surrender documents for all German forces to the Allies. General Franz Böhme announced the unconditional surrender of German troops in Norway on 7 May, the same day as Jodl signed the unconditional surrender document. It included the phrase

“All forces under German control to cease active operations at 2301 hours Central European Time on May 8, 1945.”

Winston Churchill, whilst no doubt a remarkable political leader, pointedly failed to mention Bomber Command in his VE Day speech, no doubt conscious, as the consummate politician, he tried to sidestep any future criticism that might be thrown his way regarding the bombing campaign.

Churchill’s omission tainted the memory of the vital contribution that Bomber Command had made to the Allied war effort and it was a shadow cast long for 70 years, though, perhaps for 75(NZ) Squadron RAF, we can at least look back and reflect……….

In the summer of 1941, Sergeant James Allen Ward was awarded a Victoria Cross for climbing onto the wing of his Wellington bomber and – while flying 13,000 feet above the Zuider Zee – extinguished a fire in the starboard engine, secured only by a rope tied around his waist.

Some time later, Winston Churchill summoned the shy New Zealander to 10 Downing Street to congratulate him on his swashbuckling exploits.

When Ward, dumbfounded in the Prime Minister’s presence, found himself unable to answer his questions, Churchill surveyed the man with apparent empathy.

“You must feel very humble and awkward in my presence,” he began.

“Yes, sir,” Ward replied.

“Then you can imagine,” Churchill declared, “how humble and awkward I feel in yours.”

Ignorant of what history would record, the end of the War in Europe is recorded in a remarkably understated manner in the Form 540 for May 1945.

VE day FORM 540 May 1945

 

New Zealand gave a Squadron of Planes
When Britain’s need was dire
Both countries sons made up the crews
And they flew through hell and fire.

To the Pommy lad’s the Kiwi’s made
A gesture that was grand
They gave them honorary citizenship
Of their own beloved land.

Under New Zealand’s flag, they proudly flew
Comrades of the air
They lived and died, as side by side
Fate’s lot they chose to share.

In Wellingtons, Stirlings, then Lancasters
To the foe, they took the flight
On wings they soared through Europe’s skies
In the darkness and the light.

But a heavy price, the Squadron paid
In five long years of strife
Of those who flew with “75”
One in three, laid down their life.

On the East Coast of Old England
The crumbling airfields stand
Where aircraft once left mother earth
Tractors till the land

The era of the Bomber war
Came, paused, then passed away
But the bond between two nations sons
Unchanged, will ever stay

Ken Moore, Waterlooville. 2.3.80

Full Squadron 1945 heald UNNUMBERED

 

70 years ago today……….

75nzsquadron.com – now on Pinterest……..

Pinterest_logo cropped

Perhaps after my post last week about the difficulties of contacting people and the problems of communicating via the comments sections of posts – I may be biting off more than I can chew with this post – but I think its worth mention it and for some people, this might allow a new interrogation of the information on the blog – so here goes…….

OK, so there is this thing on the internet called Pinterest – which essentially revolves around the idea of having a (P)interest in something and being able to Pin(terest) images of interest and keep them all together to view or add to.

Bev my wife has been avidly using Pinterest for a while now and watching her, I had a thought regarding the images on the blog.

It strikes me that through necessity of the blog, the method of approaching information is a very linear affair – either you start at the beginning (over 500 posts ago) and work up, or you start today and work backwards in time. Which ever way you choose, its a hellish task and the likelihood is, unless you know what you are looking for – you may well never find it……..

Potentially a far more rewarding approach is to simply pick a post based on a picture that takes your fancy – I know as a ‘creative’ that often, the most interesting discoveries are sometimes to be had, simply by seeing a picture and wondering what the story is behind it.

To this end, I have created a Pinterest account and started a few collection boards – one contains – or will eventually contain, all the photographs of the boys, the aircraft, the airfields etc that have been presented on the 75nzsquadron.com.

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A screen grab of a small portion of my Pinterest 75nzsquadron board, showing the way the images that have been pinned are presented

I hope this collection board might let those who are willing to create another affiliation with another online service and have to remember another email and password combination ( I say another because obviously we don’t all use the same passwords for everything, because that wouldn’t be very secure now would it……), you might discover some posts and some pictures you might not have seen before, simply by something catching your attention.

Getting you to the board, is, I am sure quite straightforward – just click on this link and you should be able to start looking through the archives………

Visit my Pinterest 75(NZ) Squadron RAF board here.

I’d actually be (P)interested to hear from anybody who might give this a go, in terms of whether it was an (P)interesting way to find new things on the blog

cheers

Simon

200,000 + views – thank you all so much, an amazing achievement……

Despite deciding to record 25,000 view increases to the blog, rather than originally 10,000, I really have to applaud everyone who has contributed to the blog now recording over 200,000 views. I know when we reach another milestone, I tend to say the same thing, but I think its a constantly important thing to record and thank everybody for these totals being achieved. Irrespective of the content that is posted on the blog, it is everybody’s continued interest and support that pushes the viewing figures up.

Its a personal relief in some ways that we have reached this figure. It feels a little as the blog has grown and the followers and traffic has increased, I have found it harder to keep up with the information coming in and again, without now sounding like the proverbial broken record, I am still battling to keep up.

Referenced in my last post on view totals, I am still, very frustratingly unable to shake the effects of the virus I picked up before Christmas and this is growing more annoying by the day. It seems as if a 24 hour day has been cut to about 15 hours. Getting up, going to work, getting home and my day is over – what time I seemed to have before becoming ill has, for the moment now apparently disappeared and I am not sure where.

I think I am just about keeping on top of the emails (issues of communication in the last post aside) and I am carefully archiving material as it comes in, waiting for a point when I can start posting in a more regular manner.

Perhaps the only good thing to have come out of the illness is that I have to travel to work by train. On the journey, when I am able to, I have continued to plug away at the Squadron database – in terms of the daily cost of £26 to essentially buy me this hour and a half or so of time each day, I am pleased to report as follows:

For my planned stages of the tabulation of the Squadron Operational Record Book data, Phase 1 was the recording of all raids, aircraft, Pilots and aircrew and up and down times, generating as a consequence, flight times.

1940 – Phase 1 complete
1941 – Phase 1 complete
1942 – Phase 1 complete
1943 – Phase 1 complete
1944 – Phase 1 approx. 75% complete (many thanks to Jim for stepping up to the challenge of having a go at data entry)
1945 – Phase 1 approx. 50% complete (by date) to the middle of March.

To be honest, given the number and size of Ops in 1945, this has proved to be the most time consuming year – if I am lucky, a day of travel allows me to enter a single Op………

The irony of the catch-22 situation I find myself in is not lost on me – the fatigue and inability to drive means I get the database completed, but means I am not able to post………

I will finish now, with a poem that I was sent at the weekend by Adam, a fellow WordPress blogger, who is gathering and presenting a record of his Grandfather’s time with 488(NZ) Squadron. (http://broodyswar.wordpress.com) Whilst going through papers of his Grandfather, he came across the following poem on yellowed paper. Flying Mosquitoes, Adam offered it to me on the basis that the author (unknown) had clearly written this from the perspective of an Air Gunner and as such it perhaps had a greater resonance for a bomber squadron and for this reason, as well as Adams kindness in thinking of me here it is – Another Op…….

Another Op
Bumping down the runway
With the turret on the beam,
Flashing past well-wishers
Lit by the drem’s dull gleam.
 
The pulling of the stomach
As we slowly climb on track
Setting course to eastward –
How many will come back?
 
The clipped command to alter course
As we cross the Anglian shore,
Then extinguish navigation lights
As the engines increase their roar.
 
The throbbing of the engines
Disturbs the fading light
As onward, ever onward
We fly into the night.
 
Routine settles to a rhythm,
And those ‘up front’ dictate
The course, the speed, the height
And the passage of our fate.
 
Searching ever searching,
The turret turns to and fro,
Looking, always looking
For our enemy and foe.
 
The sound of throbbing engines
Envelopes our immediate night,
And the clammy taste of oxygen
As I adjust the dull ring sight.
 
A quiet statement from the Nav –
‘Enemy coast ahead’,
The blood flows quicker thro’ the veins –
Our training stifles the dread.
 
Searching ever searching,
For that darker smudge of black.
Looking for the fighter
That could stop us getting back
 
The Nav again is heard to say
‘Target. Dead ahead’.
The tightening of the stomach
Is the only sign of dread
 
As a lonely, cold rear gunner
I always face the rear
And never see the target.
Till the aircraft’s there.
 
Flying ever closer, closer
To that awful scene.
Every nerve is strung so tight
You stifle the need to scream
 
The observer now takes full control
And by his directed call
Keeps the tingling nerves on edge
Till he lets the bomb load fall
 
With the sudden upward lift
We all expect the worst,
But heave a sigh of intense ‘relief
As the aircraft changes course.
 
Nose well down and increased speed
To escape from that dreadful sight.
We race across the crimson sky
To the safety of the night
 
As those up front now search the sky
For the fighter that lurks in the dark
While I at last see the target fires
Where we have left our mark.
(date and author unknown)

A breakdown in communications I fear……..

I must confess, I am growing increasingly concerned about my ability to communicate back to new relatives contacting the blog. Looking for an old email in my sent folder this week, I was actually shocked to realise the number of emails that I have sent out as replies to contacts, never to hear anything back……

Now, I suppose straight off the bat, I have to accept that some people, having received the information, may simply take it and not acknowledge receipt, as they have simply used me for information – a little annoying I think, but this blog is about a bomber squadron, not about teaching manners I suppose………

In actual truth, I think the answer is for the most part, far more simple and I need to take steps to try to remedy the situation.

At the moment, there are 3 ways a new relative, or someone seeking information can make contact with me:

  1. Make a comment on the ‘Ask an individual’ section of the blog
  2. FIll out the contact form and send it
  3. Make a comment on a post where perhaps the information is specific to the content or individuals named or tagged in that post.
  4. Email me directly on info@75nzsquadron.com.

My dawning realisation is that the first 3 of these ways have potential problems:

  1. Whilst making a comment is a good direct way of initial contact – I am unsure about the ease, or utilisation of the feature to allow the ‘commenter’ to be notified of a response by myself or others………..
  2. Filling out the contact form, again, a very specific method of passing on initial contact information regarding an individual………..

BUT…………..

It strikes me – and this is the actual point/ request of this post – that when I reply to the majority of contacts by email (I think a formal contact is more professional, and also easier to manage from my point of view), I am sending essentially a new email address to someones mail server and I suspect because I am sending, rather than replying, I am, to put no finer point on it, getting junked by the mail client…….

My instant attempts to correct this are as follows:

  1. I am going to remove the contact form.
  2. Accept that people will and should be able to make comments – and I need to at the very least acknowledge these comments and ask for direct contact by email.
  3. Request that ideally, in the first instance, people contact me on info@75nzsquadron.com

Lets see if these changes work…………..

Cheers

Simon

This and that……..

I am currently very busy at work with Semester 1 assessment, so probably, I may not be able to post much over the next week or so, but rather than just fall silent again, I thought it might be useful to just update you on a few things – I am mindful that the blog suggests a certain level of activity, but much like a swan – serene above the surface, but all frantic thrashing below the water – things are constantly happening off the pages as it were…..

Relative contacts
Firstly, I am really pleased to say that the traffic to the blog keeps up unabated – which is fantastic. As I often remark to people when I talk about the blog, one of the amazingly satisfying, but initially unforeseen consequences of the blog is the ability to reconnect people. I am pleased to say in the last week or so this has happened a few more times. I have been able to connect Ann, daughter of Albert ‘Titch’ Haliday with Ginny – her Father, Ben Barton flew with ‘Titch’ in Mart Kilpatrick’s crew. I have also been contacted by David, after first meeting him, his wife and his Father-in-law Jim Mulhall at the November Reunion of the Association – it took a while for my gears to whir, but they are now in touch with Hubert, whose Father, Jim flew with as his Flight Engineer, until they were shot down on the 21st of November 1944 on the Homberg Op. Also, George contacted me last week regarding his Father Sidney, who flew as a Mid Upper Gunner with Maurice Thorogood, so now George and Maurice’s Daughter, Mary, are back in contact.

75(NZ) Squadron Database
Work continues on the database. A recent post about Wellington Mk.III X.3482 AA-J forced me into 1941 and it showed to me the relative difficulty of identifying individuals in the Operational Record Books. I am acutely aware that I have a fair few replies to make to relatives of boys who flew during the early part of the War – this is partly because of the difficulty in putting together a thorough and accurate Op history, owing to firstly being able to identify and separate an individual from others of the same surname (you’d be surprised how many of the same surnames their are) and then to be able to confidently track them sometimes between a number of crew. Before I began the database, I was just about able to do an Op history for an individual in the later years of the war, simply by looking through the ORB’s and recording occurrences by hand/ eye – at this early point I quickly became aware this was almost impossible for these early War years.

As I have mentioned numerous times already – my entry into the database work was rather random – perhaps because of Dad’s service I decided to start in the middle of 1943 and then began to work forward as it were – being randomly distracted with other aspects of data based discovery along the way. Relative contact would then send me off somewhere else to find and complete an Op history and this could be way ahead of where I was currently working……..

Currently, the database is complete as follows:
All aircraft, Pilots and Op diary descriptions from January 1941, to the end of recorded Ops, Post – War, end of June 1945.
All additional aircrew surnames added to all Ops 1943.
Approx 50% of all additional aircrew information added to 1941 Ops.
Approx 40% of all additional aircrew information added to 1942 Ops.
Approx 75% of all additional aircrew information added to 1944 Ops.
Approx 50% of all additional aircrew information added to 1945 Ops.

In addition, there are obviously the ‘complete’ crew Op histories that have been focused on regarding relative contact – in real terms this represents at this point about 8% of records being ‘complete’

Now, this rather random approach I have taken, has sat under a few made up stages I have imagined to try to make it feel like the database won’t become a never ending Herculean task.

They are as follows:
Phase 1. – Pilots, aircraft, Raid and Raid description complete.

Phase 2. – Addition of all aircrew information for each crew, flying under each Pilot.

Phase 3. – Additional secondary aircrew detail – arrival and departure dates, fatality information, citations for awards, DoB and DoD information.

Phase 4. – Addition of extra information on Aircraft – designator letter confirmation (logbooks and various AIR Records), damage, pre and post Squadron information, nose art etc.

Phase 5. – Aircraft Op History verification. Re-checking to identify abortive or ‘non’ counting Ops to arrive at definitive final Op history and Ops tally for each aircraft.

As I mentioned above, my rather haphazard approach means at the moment that I have no actual stage complete! Therefore I am currently focusing  on 1941 full crew entry (i know this isn’t the start at 1940 – but relatively speaking there is more demand for information from 1941 ). I will then go back and enter full crew data for 1940, before then working through from 1942 onwards to complete full aircrew data for the War. This will take me to completion of Phase 2 – the database currently has approx 7,500 rows (this doesn’t include 1940), each row containing (currently) approximately 65 data entry cells – more will be needed as I move through the later phases of data entry……..

As its going at the moment, I would estimate Phase 2 completion is about 18 months off……..

Squadron Nominal Roll
Off of the back of the Squadron database, I also wish to use data captured within it and other sources to create and present a full Squadron Nominal Roll. Seasoned readers might recall the brief existence of a Nominal roll on the blog a few years back – permission was (I thought) granted for its presentation by The New Zealand Association, as a very sensible approach to adding to it and correcting it – sadly, that permission was revoked rather speedily, after it was originally put up on the blog.

The sad shame of this is that currently, a relative searching for information might only come across the blog if 1.) they know the individual flew with 75(NZ) Squadron or 2.) that individual already features in a tagged post on the blog – which I find very frustrating and which I fear, prevents relatives from making contact to provide new information about the individual – so everybody loses out.

Whilst maintaining the blog and researching crews and individuals, I have since, manged to record approximately 650 additions, corrections or expansions to individual entries in this original document – (ironically, the Squadron database allows a far more detailed overview of an individual airman within the Squadron by simple dint of it now existing). I do not have the time, or interest to argue the toss over ownership of what essentially is information that is all publicly accessible, so I will simply build another one from the gathered and sorted data and credit and reference everybody and every research source that has contributed to it.

The End Goal
I am still undecided how this information will be presented – however I know that it will be web based and freely available to anybody who wishes to access it. Many people have remarked to me that ‘there must be a book of the Squadron somewhere in you‘.

I am still of the feeling that an attempt to collate and present the data in physical book form would be little more that an act of incredible vanity and stupidity. Whilst it makes sense to record small sets of stories or the life of an individual, something as large as ‘The Squadron’ is simply too big to attempt a definitive record on the printed page.

Despite the age of the subject matter, what excites me is that information is still coming in every week and to use the metaphor of painting the Forth Road Bridge, a book would never be finished and at the point of publication would probably be already out of date. Add to this the actually VERY small potential market and the therefore, intrinsically high unit cost and I think it would be the folly of a supreme egotist, or a lunatic to try such a thing……….

Having said all of this, I do not envisage the database trying to live within the relative constraints of this blog – it was an initial idea to produce a website, but WordPress thankfully provided me with a far more immediate and efficient method of contacting and communicating with all of you. It might well be that the arrival at the end point of the database will be the point that I turn my attention to a dedicated website – but rest assure dear readers, the physical blog section will always remain!

Friends of 75(NZ) Squadron Association
Something that I do want to get sorted fairly quickly is the addition of a series of pages within the blog for Association business and communication. I envisage the top menu link currently occupied by the Memorial Garden to be replaced by an ‘Association’ one, under which will exist a series of sub set pages – I hope to include something about the History of the Association, its Mission statement (I know I hate the phrase as well, but it sounds better than ‘what we do’) and certainly a section advertising events and activities – most specifically the annual Winter reunion.

In discussion with members of other squadron associations, I think I have now, a far better understanding of what is possible, viable and useful and what is not. My first initial thoughts are that we should use the reach of the blog to grow the UK Association membership, we should give thought to some appeals for specific projects, for things like memorial stones at crash sites here and in Europe and that we need to seek opportunities to educate and inform younger generations about the role 75(NZ) Squadron RAF played during the War in Bomber Command.

Also, whilst I plan to make a more detailed and considered statement at a later point, I think also that  we need to let people know that the Association needs to be considered as an option regarding the donation of loved ones items, photographs, logbooks, uniforms etc.

I think an ongoing project should be the collection of objects and that if we were able to build one, that it could be made available through a catalogue for loan to third party organisations for short displays, exhibitions etc. In this way, these precious objects have a chance to be seen, understood and valued, rather than hidden away in the dark of a cupboard or a drawer….

I am aware that perhaps a museum appears to be a first, sensible point of donation, but I think these things value, both actual and emotional can be understood much better by the Association and it’s membership and in this respect, if they can, they need to be kept together.

I have also been recently exploring the world of PayPal and WordPress and I think with a little bit of thought we should be able allow people who visit the blog and then the Association section to buy Association membership, and also contribute donations if they wish – I am acutely aware that the reach and apparent interest in the blog should try to be tapped for the benefit of the Association and I suppose with my Presidential hat on, we need to take a wider view, regarding the direction that the Association could possibly take and what it might do in the future and that, put simply, will probably require cash…………

 

Now of course, having read that ramble back, it strikes me in the same time, I could actually have put another post up about someone………

 

 

Edwin ‘Eddie’ Worsdale, Wireless Operator, Hugill crew – Escape documents

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Fake identity papers produced to assist Edwin Worsdale, Wireless Operator with the Hugill crew escape from Switzerland, back to the United Kingdom. Accession no. 2011/256.1 ©Air Force Museum of New Zealand

The Air Force Museum of New Zealand has just presented another 75(NZ) Squadron RAF related item in it’s ‘Object of the week‘ series. This time it is a set of forged identity documents that Edwin Worsdale used to escape back to the United Kingdom with after he was shot down at 00:30 on the night of the 25th October 1942.

Owing to adverse weather conditions, the crew had failed to reach the necessary height to cross the Alps and the decision was made to abort only their 5th Op as a crew and return to Mildenhall.

Whilst on their return flight over France, Edwin and crew, skippered by Howard Hugill crashed after being attacked by an ME110. Unable to maintain height, one crew member, James Barnes the Air Bomber, baled out prior to impact, but the rest crash landed, resulting in the Pilot, Sgt Howard James Hugill, RNZAF NZ414293 and Sgt. Edmund John Pete, RAF 1279494 the Observer, being killed in the crash, approximately 30 kms east of Reims.

Edwin and another crew member, Sgt. Newbold made off on foot from the site of the crash, reaching Switzerland 18 days later, having been provided assistance by French families along their 30km a day escape. Whilst in Switzerland, Edwin spent 9 months at the British Embassy in Geneva as a cipher clerk.

On the 5th of June 1944, Edwin left Switzerland for Spain, briefed by the British escape and evasion representative in Switzerland and carrying the necessary forged documents to assist in his escape – under the alias ‘Lucien Bovet’, an insurance inspector. His initial train journey took him to South Western France and in order to get to Spain he crossed the Pyrenees unassisted. On arrival in Spain, he gave himself up to the Spanish authorities and was released to the charge of the British Embassy. Edwin returned to the United Kingdom, via Gibraltar on the 11th of July 1944.

On his return to the United Kingdom Edwin was interviewed and debriefed by Intelligence School 9 (I.S.9), which had as its chief task the support and rescue of escaped POWs and Evaders (E&E’s) stranded in enemy territory in Europe. I.S.9 activities fell under M.I.9 (British Directorate of Military Intelligence Section 9), a department of the War Office during WW II.

“I was a member of the crew of a Wellington Mk III aircraft which took off from Mildenhall on the 23rd October 1942 to bomb Milan. On the outward journey we could not get the aircraft to rise above 12,500 ft whereas we required to rise to 14,000 ft when approaching the Alps. The pilot accordingly turned back. We were uncertain of our position but thought that we were well south of Paris. We then flew out of cloud and were hit at about 10,000 ft by a fighter, the rear turret being put out of action. The pilot took evasive action, diving to about 3,000 ft in the hope of being able to hedge-hop home. However, first the instruments and then the motors went out of action, and fire started in the bomb bay where we had a full load of incendiaries. We crash-landed. The bomb aimer (J G Barner) had already baled out and I learned a year later in Switzerland that he was a P/W in Germany. Before we hit the ground we jettisoned the incendiaries but the fire was pretty bad. In spite of this the pilot made a magnificent landing about midnight. We came down in a ploughed field between a wood and a village, possibly Menil- Nelles. And certainly about 20 20 west of Vouziers. The rear gunner was trapped in his turret, but I was able to push his turret from the inside and so make an opening for him to get out. I then took off all my equipment and after the rear gunner had pushed the turret round for me, I was able to get out through the same opening. We had just got clear from the aircraft when the petrol exploded. We were unable to get at the Pilot and Navigator who were still in the aircraft. We did not know at that time that the Bomb Aimer had baled out and thought he also was in the aircraft.

Newbold and I walked all night and rested all the next day (25th October). At night we set out again and early on 26th October passed through St. Souplet-sur-Py. We continued till daylight and then slept for the day on what we believe was a former battlefield. In the evening we called at a farm at Suippes where we were allowed to stay overnight, leaving before daybreak on 27th October. The weather was bad and we could not walk far before daylight. We hid in the woods till evening when we went to Somme-Suippes. Here we found shelter at a farm for the night and the next day (28th October). From the evening of 28th October when we left Somme-Suippes, till 1st November we continued walking through woods by day and on roads at night, getting food but no other help at farmhouses. On Ist November we were taken in at a farm at Villers-le-Sec and given food and civilian clothes (up to this point we had still been wearing battle dress and flying boots). We left the farm next morning (2nd November) and from then on walked by day, approaching villages only at night time for shelter and food. We decided to head for Switzerland for the following reasons (1) We thought it was too late in the year to make for Spain. (2) Neither of us could speak French. (3) We had not been able to get in touch with any organization. I do not now remember our route but we followed a compass course S.E. avoiding all the main towns. We saw only four Germans during the whole of our walk – two in a car and two on bicycles. We got very good help from French peasants in the way of food and shelter for a night at at time. On 11th November we crossed crossed the Swiss frontier at Damvant SW of Porrentuy. We had no assistance in crossing. The country is hilly and wooded and we crossed in thick fog about 1700 hrs without seeing any German guards or patrols or any frontier wire. We gave ourselves up to the Mayor of Damvant who handed us over to the Military Police. The latter took us to Porrentruy where we spent four days in prison. We were then handed over to the British Legation in Berne. For the last nine months of my stay in Switzerland I was employed in the Consulate in Geneva, having previously been in Vevey. I left Switzerland on 5th June 1944 with Lieutenant Commander Stephen and my subsequent journey is described in a separate appendix to this report.”

After returning to New Zealand and after a training course, W/O Edwin Worsdale was commisioned as a Pilot Officer, serving as a cipher clerk in the South Pacific region. Edwin received a Mention in Dispatches on the 1st of July 1945:

“In recognition of distinguished service and devotion to duty.”

 

Sgt Howard James Hugill, RNZAF NZ414293 – Pilot. Died age 21.
Buried Ville-Sur-Retourne Churchyard, France.

Sgt Edmund John Pete, RAFVR 1279494 – Observer. Died age 20.
Buried Ville-Sur-Retourne Churchyard France.

After baling out of the Wellington, James Barnes was captured and made a Prisoner of War. He returned to the Unitied Kingdom on the 16th May 1945 and was promoted to Warrant Officer whilst interred. James was later  promoted to Pilot Officer.

Citation MBE (28 Dec 1945):
“This Warrant Officer displayed a high degree of fortitude and initiative during the time he was a prisoner of war in Germany between December 1942 and May 1945. Soon after his arrival he was elected camp leader and, although new to prison life, he rapidly gained the control and confidence of the camp. He took charge of the domestic running of the camp and was untiring in his efforts to smooth out the difficulties that inevitably occur when so many diverse nationalities are kept in the close proximity of a prison camp. Warrant Officer Barnes helped to organize all the entertainment and was entirely responsible for a very successful sports day. When the camp moved to Heydekrug, he took charge of one of the compounds there until he was moved to Stalag Luft III by the Germans and placed in a punishment cell. This Warrant Officer put in many hours of work trying to improve the living conditions of the camps he was in, and did much to help the prisoners with the own private difficulties.”

A Seasonal Post…..

P1070195 cropped and cleaned

Courtesy Kerry Foster

Kerry has kindly passed these items to me and given the nature of them I felt it was fitting to post them today. The top image is the outside cover of an RAF Christmas card from Feltwell, 1941. Below is the inside of the card. Kerry says not much is known of ‘Ted’ other than he was apparently Ground crew with 75(NZ) Squadron RAF for the duration of the war.

joining of christmas card 1941

Courtesy Kerry Foster

The second item is a NAAFI purchased 75(NZ)  Squadron RAF calender for 1943.

P1070194

Courtesy Kerry Foster

So, from 75nzsquadron.com to all of you:

Have a Merry Christmas

and a

Prosperous New Year

Bill Bridget and the Ball crew – 1942.

DSC_0258

The crew: P/O Cyril Ingelby (Front Gunner), P/O Reg Clarke Rear Gunner), F/Lt Ces Ball (Skipper), F/Sgt Semmence (Wireless Operator), F/Lt Bridget (Navigator). – NZBCA archives, Bill Bridget collection.

Many thanks to Chris for providing this post on Bill Bridget and the Ball crew and again, as always thanks to Peter and the NZBCA archive. After putting this post together Chris realised that I had already put up an Op history for the Ball crew – but I must confess it didn’t contain the images or the extra information that Chris has been able to piece together for this post!

Pilot Ces Ball from Hamilton, NZ, and Navigator Bill Bridget (from Christchurch) arrived on Squadron together from 11 OTU on 26 March. Front Gunner Cyril Ingelby also arrived from 11 OTU, but on the 3rd of April.

Ball is recorded as flying Night Flying Tests (N.F.T’s) on 4 and 5 April, and then the crew was thrown straight into it’s first op’ on the 5th April.

Ball didn’t fly any initial op’s as 2nd Pilot, and this, together with his rank of Flight Lieutenant (promoted on the day he arrived, 26 March), suggests that he already had operational experience – in fact, this was his second tour. Bridget and Clarke were also on their second tours, but I haven’t been able to find out if they had  flown together before.

The Ball crew was:
Flt Lt Edward Cecil “Ces” Ball, RNZAF (NZ40749), Pilot.
P/O William Leslie “Bill” Bridget, RNZAF (NZ40731), Navigator.
F/S (later P/O) Douglas Howard Semmence RAF (49002), Wireless Operator.
P/O Cyril Ingelby RAF (937625, 118898), Front Gunner
P/O Reginald Leonard “Reg” Clarke, RNZAF (NZ40734), Rear Gunner.

Clarke (from Napier, NZ) missed their first op’ – according to the Form 540 he didn’t arrive from 11 OTU until 17 April, however a “P/O Clark” appears as Rear Gunner on the crew’s second op. Wireless Operator Douglas Semmence didn’t join the crew until their 8th op’ on 23 April.

Operational history:

5 April 1942. Attack against targets Cologne.
It was a tough introduction – two aircraft and crews were lost, including the Squadron’s commanding officer, Wing Commander Sawrey-Cookson:

Nine Wellington Aircraft from this unit were detailed to attack the above target. Bomb load of 4,000 lbs, 500 lbs, and 250 lbs 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 III X3586, AA-A
Up 23.20; Down 05.10.

Flt Lt Edward Cecil “Ces” Ball. RNZAF. (NZ40749), Pilot.
P/O Graham Edward Murdoch, RNZAF. (NZ411927), 2nd Pilot.
P/O William Leslie “Bill” Bridget, RNZAF. (NZ40731), Navigator.
F/S Summers, RAF?, W/Op.
P/O Cyril Ingelby RAF (937625, 118898, ), F/Gnr
Sgt Charles Smith RNZAF. (NZ401466), R/Gnr..

9 April 1942. Daylight attack on Essen.
Wellington III X3667, AA-D
Up 12.45; Down 14.45.

Flt Lt Edward Cecil “Ces” Ball. RNZAF. (NZ40749), Pilot.
P/O Graham Edward Murdoch, RNZAF. (NZ411927), 2nd Pilot.
P/O William Leslie “Bill” Bridget, RNZAF. (NZ40731), Navigator.
F/S Summers, RAF?, W/Op.
P/O Cyril Ingelby RAF (937625, 118898, ), F/Gnr
P/O Clark, R/Gnr. (?)

Z1570-AA-B-Bridget

Wellington III Z1570, AA-B arrived on Squadron from 48 M.U. on 29 March 1942. The Ball crew first flew her on a Night Flying Test on 8 April. – NZBCA archives, Bill Bridget collection.

12 April 1942. Attack against targets at Le Havre and Essen.
Wellington III Z1570, AA-B
Up 22.10; Down 03.50.

F/L Edward Cecil “Ces” Ball. RNZAF. (NZ40749), Pilot.
P/O Graham Edward Murdoch, RNZAF. (NZ411927), 2nd Pilot.
P/O William Leslie “Bill” Bridget, RNZAF. (NZ40731), Navigator.
F/S Summers, RAF?, W/Op.
P/O Cyril Ingelby RAF (937625, 118898, ), F/Gnr
Sgt Charles Smith RNZAF. (NZ401466), R/Gnr.

14 April 1942. Attack against targets at Dortmund and Le Havre.
Wellington III X3482, AA-J
Up 22.30; Down 03.40.

– crew as above.

15 April 1942. Attack against targets at Le Havre and Dortmund.
Wellington III X3482, AA-J
Up 00.05; Down 02.55.

– crew as above.

17 April 1942. Attack against targets at Hamburg.
Wellington III X1570 (probably Z1570, AA-B)
Up 23.59; Down 05.30.

F/L Edward Cecil “Ces” Ball. RNZAF. (NZ40749), Pilot.
P/O Graham Edward Murdoch, RNZAF. (NZ411927), 2nd Pilot.
P/O William Leslie “Bill” Bridget, RNZAF. (NZ40731), Navigator.
F/S Summers, RAF?, W/Op.
P/O Cyril Ingelby RAF (937625, 118898, ), F/Gnr
P/O Reginald Leonard “Reg” Clarke, RNZAF (NZ40734), R/Gnr.

22 April 1942. Attack against targets at Cologne.
Wellington III X1570 (probably Z1570, AA-B)
Up 22.08; Down 03.00.

– crew as above.

23 April 1942. Attack against targets at Rostock.
Wellington III X1570 (probably Z1570, AA-B)
Up 22.34; Down 05.34.

– crew as above.

25 April 1942. Attack against targets at Rostock and Dunkirk.
Wellington III X1570 (probably Z1570, AA-B)
Up 22.25; Down 05.40.

F/L Edward Cecil “Ces” Ball. RNZAF. (NZ40749), Pilot.
P/O Graham Edward Murdoch, RNZAF. (NZ411927), 2nd Pilot.
P/O William Leslie “Bill” Bridget, RNZAF. (NZ40731), Navigator.
F/S Douglas Howard Semmence RAF. (49002), W/Op.
P/O Cyril Ingelby RAF (937625, 118898, ), F/Gnr
P/O Reginald Leonard “Reg” Clarke, RNZAF (NZ40734), R/Gnr.

DSC_0249

Reg Clarke (left) and Cyril Ingelby cleaning the rear turret guns on what looks to be Wellington Z1570, AA-B. – NZBCA archives, Bill Bridget collection.

27 April 1942. Attack against targets at Cologne and minelaying off Heligoland.
Wellington III X1570 (probably Z1570, AA-B)
Up 22.05; Down 04.45.

– crew as above.

This was the Squadron’s first “gardening” operation.

29 April 1942. Attack against targets at Gennevilliers.
Wellington III X1570 (probably Z1570, AA-B)
Up 21.20; Down 02.00.

Flt Lt Edward Cecil “Ces” Ball. RNZAF. (NZ40749), Pilot.
P/O William Leslie “Bill” Bridget, RNZAF. (NZ40731), Navigator.
F/S Douglas Howard Semmence RAF. (49002), W/Op.
P/O Cyril Ingelby RAF (937625, 118898, ), F/Gnr
P/O Reginald Leonard “Reg” Clarke, RNZAF (NZ40734), R/Gnr.

2 May 1942. Gardening – St Nazaire.
Wellington III Z1570, AA-B
Up 20.55; Down 05.20.

– crew as above.

6 May 1942. Bombing attacks against targets at Stuttgart.
Wellington III X3646
Up 21.45; Down 05.00.

– crew as above.

7 May 1942. Gardening Kiel Bay.
Wellington III X3646
Up 22.25; Down 04.30.

– crew as above.

15 May 1942. Gardening Kiel Bay.
Wellington III Z1570, AA-B
Up 22.50; Down 05.10.

– crew as above.

19 May 1942. Attacks against Mannheim and St. Nazaire.
Wellington III Z1570, AA-B
Up 22.50; Down 03.50.

– crew as above.

30  May 1942. Bombing attacks against Cologne.
Wellington III Z1570, AA-B
Up 23.10; Down 02.45.

Flt Lt Edward Cecil “Ces” Ball. RNZAF. (NZ40749), Pilot.
F/Sgt Arthur Grahame Johns, RNZAF (NZ41907), 2nd Pilot.
P/O William Leslie “Bill” Bridget, RNZAF. (NZ40731), Navigator.
F/S Douglas Howard Semmence RAF. (49002), W/Op.
P/O Cyril Ingelby RAF (937625, 118898, ), F/Gnr
P/O  Reginald Leonard “Reg” Clarke, RNZAF (NZ40734), R/Gnr.

31 May 1942. Bombing attacks against Cologne.
It looks as if Reg Clarke may have flown as Rear Gunner with S/L Ray Newton’s crew on this op’.

1  June 1942.  Attacks against targets at Essen.
Wellington III Z1570, AA-B
Up 22.50; Down 02.35.

– crew as above.

2  June 1942.  Attacks against targets at Essen.
Wellington III Z1570, AA-B
Up 00.05; Down 02.25.

– crew as above.

5 June 1942.  Attacks against targets at Essen.
Wellington III Z1570, AA-B
Up 23.30; Down 03.15.

Flt Lt Edward Cecil “Ces” Ball. RNZAF. (NZ40749), Pilot.
F/Sgt John Leonard “Jack” Wright*, RNZAF, (NZ405781), 2nd Pilot.
P/O William Leslie “Bill” Bridget, RNZAF. (NZ40731), Navigator.
F/S Douglas Howard Semmence RAF. (49002), W/Op.
P/O Cyril Ingelby RAF (937625, 118898, ), F/Gnr
P/O  Reginald Leonard “Reg” Clarke, RNZAF (NZ40734), R/Gnr.

* Jack Wright, later Squadron Leader and Flight Commander, DSO, DFC, .

6 June 1942.  Attacks against targets at Emden.
Wellington III Z1570, AA-B
Up 23.20; Down 03.50.

Flt Lt Edward Cecil “Ces” Ball. RNZAF. (NZ40749), Pilot.
F/Sgt Arthur Grahame Johns, RNZAF (NZ41907), 2nd Pilot.
P/O William Leslie “Bill” Bridget, RNZAF. (NZ40731), Navigator.
F/S Douglas Howard Semmence RAF. (49002), W/Op.
P/O Cyril Ingelby RAF (937625, 118898, ), F/Gnr
P/O  Reginald Leonard “Reg” Clarke, RNZAF (NZ40734), R/Gnr.

8 June 1942.  Attacks against targets at Essen.
Wellington III Z1570, AA-B
Up 23.35; Down 02.40.

– crew as above.

DSC_0256

Some crew members at 75 Squadron Feltwell 1942. F/Lt Fenton*, F/Lt Ces Ball (our Skipper), F/Lt Bridget (Navigator), S/Ldr Newton (Flight Cdr), F/Lt Boyle, S/Ldr Denton (Flight Cdr), ?, P/O Reg Clarke (Rear Gunner), P/O Cyril Ingelby (Front Gunner). * Walter Gordon Fenton, Rear Gunner with Ray Newton and Popeye Lucas. – NZBCA archives, Bill Bridget collection.

13 June – Doug Semmence receives his promotion to Pilot Officer.

16 June 1942.  Attacks against targets at Essen.
Wellington III X3586, AA-A
Up 23.35; Down 00.45.

Flt Lt Edward Cecil “Ces” Ball. RNZAF. (NZ40749), Pilot.
P/O William Leslie “Bill” Bridget, RNZAF. (NZ40731), Navigator.
P/O Douglas Howard Semmence RAF. (49002), W/Op.
P/O Cyril Ingelby RAF (937625, 118898, ), F/Gnr
P/O  Reginald Leonard “Reg” Clarke, RNZAF (NZ40734), R/Gnr.

17 June 1942.  Mine-laying off Frisian Islands.
Wellington III X3452, AA-B
Up 23.25; Down 02.35.

– crew as above.

19 June 1942.  Attacks against targets at Emden.
Wellington III X3586, AA-A
Up 23.20; Down 03.50.

Flt Lt Edward Cecil “Ces” Ball. RNZAF. (NZ40749), Pilot.
P/O William Guy Horne, RNZAF (NZ411983) , 2nd Pilot.
P/O William Leslie “Bill” Bridget, RNZAF. (NZ40731), Navigator.
P/O Douglas Howard Semmence RAF. (49002), W/Op.
P/O Cyril Ingelby RAF (937625, 118898, ), F/Gnr
P/O  Reginald Leonard “Reg” Clarke, RNZAF (NZ40734), R/Gnr.

20 June 1942.  Attacks against targets at Emden.
Wellington III X3586, AA-A
Up 23.40; Down 03.30.

– crew as above.

23 June 1942.  Attacks against targets at St. Nazaire and (Gardening).
Wellington III Z1570, AA-B
Up 23.00; Down 04.45.

Flt Lt Edward Cecil “Ces” Ball. RNZAF. (NZ40749), Pilot.
P/O William Leslie “Bill” Bridget, RNZAF. (NZ40731), Navigator.
P/O Douglas Howard Semmence RAF. (49002), W/Op.
P/O Cyril Ingelby RAF (937625, 118898, ), F/Gnr
P/O  Reginald Leonard “Reg” Clarke, RNZAF (NZ40734), R/Gnr.

29 June 1942.  Attacks against targets at Bremen.
Wellington III Z1570, AA-B
Up 23.30; Down 01.05.

– crew as above.

DSC_0248

Squadron group photo with Ball crew members circled. Bill Bridget kneeling, second from left, second row. Ces Ball is in the back row, below the cockpit, just behind Squadron Leader Ray Newton (hands in pockets). Left of centre, arms folded, is Wing Commander Ted Olson*. – NZBCA archives, Bill Bridget collection. * Wing Commander Edward George Olson, DSO, RNZAF, (NZ1006) took over as Commanding Officer on 6 April, after the loss of W/C Sawrey-Cookson. Interestingly, a newspaper article of the time lists Ball, Bridget and Clarke as members of Olson’s crew, however I can’t find any evidence in the ORB’s of any of them flying op’s with Olson.

10 July – Bill Bridget and Reg Clarke are posted to P.D.C. West Kirby.

15 July – P/O Douglas Semmence was posted to 57 Sqdn.

25 July – Cyril Ingelby was posted to No. 11 O.T.U.

9 August – Ces Ball was posted to 54 O.T.U.

Sadly, Ces Ball was killed on 9 October 1943 in a de Havilland Mosquito crash, serving on his second tour with 488 (NZ) Squadron:

Edward “Cecil” Ball of Kinsdale, Ireland and his navigator and best friend, Scotsman William “Jock” Kemp were killed after their aircraft crashed onto trees near Tiptree in Essex having developed engine trouble while returning from a patrol. – Broody’s War.

As always, thanks to Peter Wheeler and the NZ Bomber Command Assn., for permission to reproduce these photos.

 

 

Request for Information. James Allison McConnell, Pilot – 1942

Many thanks to Robin for contacting me regarding his Great Uncle, James McConnell, who flew with the Squadron as a Pilot for a tragically short period in late 1942, before being killed along with the rest of his crew on a raid on Milan in October of 1942.

Interestingly, the ORB’s throw up the fact that after Skippering his crew for their first Op, Jim flew as 2nd Pilot on their second Op, Gerald Jacobson being listed as the Pilot for the Aachen Op.

As I have remarked on previous posts from this earlier period of the War, it seems a little like a room I am still unfamiliar with. I am pleased to say that the Op history for the McConnell crew benefits from my continuing advances with the Squadron database and now that I am in these ORB’s, my familiarity with names and crews is increasing.

If anybody has a copy of the 1942 Chorley, I’d be grateful if someone could look up this crews last Op – to Milan on the 24th of October – working through the crews later Operational flights, there seems to be a number of inaccuracies in the recording of their Wellington, which I actually believe to be BK725. The 1942 ORB seems to occasionally describe this aircraft incorrectly as BJ752. Looking on the web, I was slightly puzzled to see references to BK725 as being an aircraft from 90 Squadron. I’d also like to know it’s designator letter.

As with all of these sorts of posts, I’d love to think we might here from a relative of another member of the crew and Robin might be able to learn a little about his Great Uncle, Jim McConnell……..

30/09/1942 – Operations. Gardening off Terschelling
Four aircraft were detailed to carry out the above operation, 1500lb vegetables were successfully planted. A convoy was seen at the garden which was machine gunned. Light A.A. fire was encountered, no enemy aircraft were seen. The weather was fine with patches of thick haze. Navigation was good.

Wellington Mk.III X.3747 AA-? (3)

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

Take Off 19:35 – Landed 23:10
Flight Time 03:35

05/10/1942 – Operations. Attack Against Targets At Aachen
Fifteen aircraft were detailed to attack the above target. Bomb load of 30lb. and 4lb. incendiaries were dropped in the target area, large fires were seen in built up area, which appeared to spread between MAASTRICH and AACHEN. Heavy and Light A.A. fire was moderate, with a few scattered searchlights. A few enemy aircraft were seen but no attacks were made. The weather over target was good with slight ground haze. Navigation was by D.R. T.R. and visual.

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Extract from Howard Jacobson’s logbook showing the flight with the McConnell crew on the 8th of October to Aachen. © Denis Jacobson

Wellington Mk.III X.3747 AA-? (5)

P/O Gerald Howard Jacobson, RNZAF NZ41333 – Pilot.
Sgt. James Allison McConnell, RNZAF NZ414646 – 2nd Pilot.
Sgt. Selwyn Clarence Smith, RNZAF NZ41952 – Navigator.
Sgt. Douglas Noel Tonkin, RNZAF NZ413285 – Wireless Operator.
Sgt. Arthur Quinn, RAFVR 1095594 – Front Gunner.
Sgt. Vallance Albert Oliver Dimock, RNZAF NZ412317 – Rear Gunner.

Take Off 19:20 – Landed 01:40
Flight Time 06:20

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 X.3747 AA-? (6)

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

Take Off 19:05 – Landed 00:45
Flight Time 05:40

08/10/1942 – Operations. Gardening off Ile De Groix
Two aircraft were detailed to carry out the above operation. 1500lb. mines were successfully planted in the allotted area by one of our aircraft – the other aircraft returned early owing to failiure of electrical equipment. No A.A. fire, searchlights or enemy aircraft were seen. The weather was fine, navigation was good.

Wellington Mk.III X.3747  AA-? (1)

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

Take Off 18:50 – Landed 20:05
Flight Time 01:15

09/10/1942 – Operations. Gardening off East Frisian Islands
Seven aircraft were detailed to carry out the above operation. 1500lb. vegetables were planted in the allotted area. No A.A. fire was encountered, one searchlight was seen to be sweeping the sea in the area. 10/10th. Cloud was over the allotted area, visibility was poor. Navigation was by D.R., T.R. loops, fixes and map reading.

Wellington Mk.III X.3747 AA-? (8)

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

Take Off 18:05 – Landed 22:30
Flight Time 04:25

13/10/1942 – Operations. Attack Against Targets At Kiel
Thirteen aircraft were detailed to attack the above target. Bomb load of 4,000 lb and incendiaries were dropped in the target area. Large fires were seen particularly on West side of Fiord. Light, medium and heavy A.A. fire was encountered over a large area, searchlights were also seen on the way to the target. No enemy aircraft were seen. The weather was clear, with no cloud over the target, visibility was good by the light of flares. Navigation was D.R, T.R. visual and pin-points. Wellington X3954 captained by Sergt. Watters failed to return. Wellington BJ837 captained by Sergt. Davey crashed at R.A.F. Station Lakenheath on return owing to shortage of petrol, four of the crew were injured. All taking part considered this to be a very successful raid.

Wellington Mk.III BK.725 AA-? (1)

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

Take Off 18:20 – Landed 01:00
Flight Time 06:40

15/10/1942 – Activities of “A” Flight at Mildenhall. Operations. Attacks Against Targets at Cologne
Seven aircraft were detailed to attack the above target. Bomb loads of 4lb. incendiaries were dropped in the target area. Large files were seen, which clearly lit up the town on both sides of the river. Several dummy fires were seen, light and heavy A.A. fire was encountered, searchlights were numerous but poorly predicted. A few enemy aircraft were seen, but no combats took place. There was no cloud and visibility was good, except for slight ground haze. Navigation was good.

Wellington Mk.III BK.725 AA-? (2)

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

Take Off 19:20 – Landed 00:05
Flight Time 04:45

23/10/1942 – Operations. Attack Against Targets At Genoa
Eight aircraft were detailed to attack the above target. Bomb load of 1,000 lb. 500lb. and 250lb. and incendiaries were dropped in the target area, some aircraft claimed to have also bombed Savona. A few light A.A guns and one or two searchlights were encountered. No combats took place. The cloud base at target was down to 3 to 4,000 feet. The aircraft came below this cloud to bomb. Navigation was good by D.R., T.R., loops and fixes.

Wellington Mk.III BK.725 AA-?  (3)

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

Take Off 18:15 – Landed 03:25
Flight Time 09:10

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-? (4)

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

Aircraft failed to return – Missing

5 aircraft from 75(NZ) Squadron RAF took off from Mildenhall between approximately 5 minutes to and 5 minutes past 7 on the evening of the 24th of October to join a force of  71 aircraft on an attack on Milan. As the ORB for the Op records, the force hit bad weather as soon as they reached the French Coast on the outbound leg and this persisted to the target. Little information about the raid can be garnered from the Squadron documents, though it appears to be a matter of record that all of the Squadron’s aircraft bombed the target.

In the absence of raid map, one must therefore conjecturise that the McConnell crew were bought down over France on the return leg of the Op. Records identify the crew was bought down by ‘enemy action’ at St. Roch, Valenciennes, approximately 25 miles North East of Cambrai. All of the crew were killed in the crash and were buried at Valenciennes (St.Roch) Communal Cemetery, France.

Sgt. James Allison McConnell, RNZAF NZ414646 – Pilot.
Died age 21.

Sgt. Selwyn Clarence Smith, RNZAF NZ41952 – Navigator.
Died age 29.

Sgt. Douglas Noel Tonkin, RNZAF NZ413285 – Wireless Operator .
Died age 22.

Sgt. Arthur Quinn, RAFVR 1095594 – Front Gunner .
Died age 21.

Sgt. Vallance Albert Oliver Dimock , RNZAF NZ412317 – Rear Gunner.
Died age 22.