S.M. Tietjens crew 21.5.43 †

12/05/1943 – Attack Against Targets at Duisburg
Nine aircraft were detailed to attack the above targets with bombs of 2000lb, 1000lb and incendiaries of 30lb and 4lb. Stirling Mk.III. BK.721 captained by F/Lt. E.R.M. Appleton, whilst taking off failed to clear an obstruction at the end of the runway and crashed almost immediately afterwards, all the crew with the exception of the captain and the wireless operator, F/Sgt. Cocks, S.G. were killed. The captain received severe injuries and the wireless was also injured, both were admitted to hospital. As a result of this crash two aircraft were unable to take-off. One aircraft returned early owing to the Captain being sick. The remaining five aircraft successfully dropped their bonbs in the target area, and large concentrated fires and some explosions were seen. Some heavy A.A.Fire, co-operating with searchlights was encountered, but it was ineffective. A few enemy aircraft were seen but no combats took place. The weather was very clear in the target area with good visibility except for ground haze which prevented identification. Navigation was very good.

Stirling Mk.III BK810 AA-G

Sgt. Herbert James Dalzell, RNZAF NZ414263 – Pilot.
Sgt. Stephen Muir Tietjens, RNZAF NZ415640 – 2nd Pilot.
F/O Roy Reginald Rayner, RNZAF NZ41399 – Navigator.
Sgt. G A Carvell, RAFVR 1322753 – Air Bomber.
Sgt. W.E. Hopely, RAFVR 1071316 – Wireless Operator.
Sgt. W.F. Mesley, RAFVR 752390 – Flight Engineer.
Sgt. J. Lamonby, RAFVR 947546 – Mid Upper Gunner.
Sgt. A. Brown, RAFVR 1358025 – Rear Gunner.

Take Off not recorded – Landed not recorded
Flight Time –

13/05/1943 – Attack Against Targets at Bochum
Twelve aircraft were detailed to attack the above targets with bombs of 2000lb, 1000lb, and incendiaries of 30lb and 4lb. Three aircraft, however, were forced to return early owing to engine trouble. The remainder successfully dropped their bombs in the target area, and very large concentrated fires were seen, together with explosions. This is considered to have been a very successful raid. Heavy predicted A.A. Fire co-operation with searchlights was encountered. Several enemy aircraft were seen and some short combats took place. Stirling Mk.I. BK619, captained by Sgt. J.L. Mitchell was attacked by an ME110 and opened fire at 400 yards slightly below our aircraft. The mod-upper gunner fired a medium burst and the enemy aircraft was seen to burst into flames and passed beneath the Stirling. The rear gunner fired a further long burst at 300 yards and the enemy aircraft was seen to turn on its back and dive, hit the ground and explode. The weather was very clear in the target area, but visibility was impaired by slight ground haze. Navigation was good.

Stirling Mk.III BK810 AA-G

Sgt. Herbert James Dalzell, RNZAF NZ414263 – Pilot.
Sgt. Stephen Muir Tietjens, RNZAF NZ415640 – 2nd Pilot.
F/O Roy Reginald Rayner, RNZAF NZ41399 – Navigator.
Sgt. G A Carvell, RAFVR 1322753 – Air Bomber.
Sgt. W.E. Hopely, RAFVR 1071316 – Wireless Operator.
Sgt. W.F. Mesley, RAFVR 752390 – Flight Engineer.
Sgt. J. Lamonby, RAFVR 947546 – Mid Upper Gunner.
Sgt. A. Brown, RAFVR 1358025 – Rear Gunner.

Take Off 00:30 – Landed 04:30
Flight Time 04:00

21/05/1943 – Mining off the Frisian Islands
Six aircraft were detailed to carry out the above operation with Mines of 1500lb, All of the aircraft successfully dropped their Mines in the allotted area. And the parachutes were seen to open. No A.A. Fire, searchlights or enemy aircraft were encountered. The weather was good, but visibility was impaired by sea haze. Navigation was very good..

Stirling Mk.III BF465 AA-K

Sgt. Stephen Muir Tietjens, RAFVR NZ415640 – Pilot.
Sgt. George Watson Turnbull, RAFVR NZ421342 – Navigator.
Sgt. Frederick John Leigh Joblin, RNZAF NZ417063 – Air Bomber.
Sgt. Ronald Bell, RAFVR 1077692 – Wireless Operator.
Sgt. Stanley John Wayman, RAFVR 1391814 – Flight Engineer.
Sgt. Derrick George Amos Storey, RAFVR 1809725 – Mid Upper Gunner.
Sgt. Leslie William Kennedy, RNZAF NZ41594 – Rear Gunner.

Take Off 22:04 – Landed 02:05
Flight Time 04:01

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

Stirling Mk.III BK783 AA-Q

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

Take Off 23:15 – Landed –
Flight Time – Missing

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

Sgt. Stephen Muir Tietjens, RNZAF NZ415640 – Pilot.
Killed age 26.
Son of John Christopher and Margaret Bremner Tietjens, of Auckland City, New Zealand.
Buried Beesd General Cemetery, Holland..
Grave location – Coll. grave 1-2.

Sgt. George Watson Turnbull, RNZAF NZ421342 – Navigator.
Killed age 24.
Son of Charles Le Masurier Turnbull and of Myrtle Victoria Turnbull (Nee Dement), of Wellington City, New Zealand.
Buried Beesd General Cemetery, Holland..
Grave location – Coll. grave 1-2.

Sgt. Frederick John Leigh Joblin, RNZAF NZ417063 – Air Bomber.
Killed age 25.
Son of Frederick Leigh Joblin and Ivy Joblin, of Morere, Poverty Bay, New Zealand; Husband of Mary Esther Joblin, of Gisborne, Auckland, New Zealand.
Buried Beesd General Cemetery, Holland..
Grave location – Coll. grave 1-2.

Sgt. Ronald Bell, RAFVR 1077692 – Wireless Operator.
Killed age 22.
Son of Bernard and Hilda Bell, of Otley, Yorkshire; Husband of Marguerite Bell, of Otley.
Buried Beesd General Cemetery, Holland..
Grave location – Coll. grave 1-2.
‘At the going down
Of the sun
And in the morning
We will remember them’

Sgt. Stanley John Wayman, RAFVR 1391814 – Flight Engineer.
Killed age 21.
Son of Henry and Emily Wayman, of Brixton, London.
Buried Beesd General Cemetery, Holland..
Grave location – Coll. grave 1-2.
‘To all, peace.
Dad Wayman and family’

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

Sgt. Leslie R. Vale, RAFVR – Rear Gunner.
P.o.W
Prisoner of War Number: 272
Prison Camps: Dulag Luft, Stalags Luft VI and 357
Date of return to United Kingdom: not known

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