Tracing a 'lost' aircraft

Discussion in 'WW2 General' started by Terry Maker, Nov 5, 2009.

  1. Terry Maker

    Terry Maker New Member

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    Hi To all of the members here.

    I am a new member, and my reason for joining of this body, is a simple one.

    I am researching my cousin Fl/Sgt. Leonard James Smith, who was a dorsal turret gunner/dispatcher on Halifax JP292 FS-W for William, that was part of 148 Squadron, R.A.F (Special Duties-S.O.E.) Balkan Air Force who was killed along with all of the crew when W - William was shot down in the viscinity of Sombor, Yugoslavia, (present day Serbia). He was on Operation 401C, dropping supplies to Josip Bros Tito's Partisans, the mission took place over the night of 3-4th July 1944.

    Details:
    Aircraft: Halifax BII Series 1A, JP292, Squadron letters FS-W, W - William.
    Unit: 148 Squadron R.A.F. (Special Duties - S.O.E.) Balkan Air Force.
    Mission: Operation 401C, Supply drop to Partisans,
    Date: Monday the 3rd, Tuesday the 4th July 1944
    Weather over Brindisi: Bad, 3/10ths cloud cover, all light, and medium bombers grounded.
    Weather over Drop Zone: Unknown
    Time off: Brindisi, Italy, 20:45 GMT, (21:45 local, GMT+1).
    Estimated arrival over drop zone: 22:15, GMT, (assuming a direct course, 00:15 local GMT+2).
    Estimated time of attack: 22:52 GMT, (00:52 Sombor Local GMT+2)
    Attacked By: Luftwaffe Ober Ltn. Johannes, "Hans" Krause, KC, of 6/NJG 101 in a Do-217 N-2 at 3500 Mtrs
    Where: Viscinity of Sombor, Yugoslavia.

    It would be nice to finish the story with Photo's of W- William, and the crew of W/O Charles Fairweather, the pilot

    148 Squadron lost three Halifaxes over the night of 3-4th July 1944, over Sombor, the fourth over Budapest

    (from the Roll of Honour:

    3/4.7.44: Aircraft: Halifax Mk II, JP179-P, P - Peter

    Sgt. Thomas William Hugh Tomlinson, R.A.F.V.R. Flight Engineer.
    F/Sgt. John Kennedy, R.A.F. Wireless Op.
    F/Sgt. Evan Ffoulkes Jones, R.A.F.V.R. Gunner.
    W/O. Harrison John Phillip, R.A.F.V.R. Gunner.
    All buried at Belgrade War Cemetery, Yugoslavia

    3/4.7.44: Aircraft: Halifax Mk II, JP292-W, W - William

    W/O. Charles Thomas Fairweather, R.A.F. Pilot.
    F/Sgt. Richard Jacques, R.A.F.V.R. Flight Engineer.
    P/O. Allen Haigh, R.A.F.V.R. Navigator.
    F/O. John Stanley Brown, R.C.A.F. Air Bomber.
    F/Sgt. Ronald Frederick Houghton, R.A.F.V.R. Wireless Op/Air Gunner.
    F/Sgt. Leonard James Smith, R.A.F.V.R. Air Gunner. (My Cousin)
    F/Sgt. John Easton, R.A.F.V.R. Air Gunner.
    All are buried at Belgrade War Cemetery, Yugoslavia

    3/4.7.44: Aircraft: Halifax Mk II, JP247-E, E - Easy.

    F/Lt. George Raymond Wood, R.A.F.V.R. Pilot.
    F/Sgt. James William Hern, R.A.F. Air Gunner.
    Both are buried at Belgrade War Cemetery, Yugoslavia

    3/4.7.44: Aircraft: Halifax, JP286-? (Definitely 'Clandestine'! Extra crew, AND Army personnel on board!)

    S/L. Surray Philip Victor Bird, R.A.F.V.R. Pilot.
    P/O. Harold Pearson, R.A.F. Flight Engineer.
    F/Sgt. Peter Lake, R.A.F.V.R. Navigator.
    W/O. Donal David Charles Stewart, R.C.A.F. Air Bomber.
    F/Sgt. Arthur Archer Lee, R.A.F.V.R. Wireless Op.
    F/Sgt. Ronald Radford, R.A.F.V.R. Air Gunner.
    F/O. Kenneth Peter Mcleod Cran, R.A.F.V.R. Air Gunner.
    F/Sgt. Marcel Tilmont, R.A.F.V.R. Air Gunner.

    Passengers: Lt. Col. E.P.E. Broughay. Maj. R.J.M. Wright.
    Lt. A. Vincent. Sgt. A.S. Manley.
    Aircrew are buried at Budapest War Cemetery, Hungary)


    I'm writing a family history, and I would like to include pictures of them and the Aircraft

    Can anyone help with any information.

    Best regards
    Terry
     
  2. f for freddy

    f for freddy New Member

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    IT WAS GREAT TO READ YOUR POST ABOUT YOUR RELATION AND THE 148 SQADRON, I AM CURRENTLY RESEARCHING THE SQUADRONS HISTORY AS I HAVE THE DAIRY AND LOG BOOK OF WOP/AG LAURIE MANN WHO SERVE IN THE SQUADRON AT THE SAME TIME AS YOUR RELATION.
    I WILL CHECK THROUGH MY INFO TO SEE IF I HAVE ANYTHING OF INTEREST FOR YOU,I AM IMPRESSED WITH THE DETAILS YOU ALREADY HAVE.
    IN THE MEANTIME IF YOU WANT TO DROP ME A MESSAGE AT 3 drews @ tiscali .co .uk (obviously without the gaps, there to stop the address being hijacked) TO MAKE EASIER CONTACT.
    ALL THE BEST
    STEVE ANDREWS
     
  3. RabidAlien

    RabidAlien Active Member

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    Caps Lock, Steve, caps lock! :occasion5:
     
  4. Terry Maker

    Terry Maker New Member

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    Hi All,

    Just to let you know of the successful completion of my search, (until new evidence or photos appear), I have written the story up under the above title, and it is available on my group site as a PDF file, on :

    operationdarkofthemoon : Operation: Dark of the Moon

    You will have to register.

    Once again, my thanks to all of the people who 'faced me in the right direction' to trace the shooting down of my cousin.

    Warmest regards

    Terry
     
  5. Shahgirl74

    Shahgirl74 New Member

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    My grandfather was a WOP/AG named Laurie Mann. I'm not certain if we are talking about the same man but the possibility is exciting. I hope you are still on the board and will make contact.
    Jenni
     
  6. Rogi

    Rogi Active Member

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    #6 Rogi, Jul 24, 2012
    Last edited: Jul 24, 2012
    Fairweather

    Just double checking, you've seen this site? Maybe its your site no idea :D but thats what I found in a quick search, I hope its something at least :S

    Also Check out Wings Palette they have a wide selection of Aircraft and it might be there, if someones made a decal set of the aircraft in question it'll definatley be up in wings palette.
     
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