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Liberator KH277 [Royal Air Force Aircraft Serial and Image Database] RAFCommands.com

 Liberator KH277



B.VI; ex 44-44148; dld Dorval 26.9.44; to India, arr Karachi 6.10.44; 358 Sqn [Z]; one of three aircraft on 358 Sqn's first SD operation, 22/23.1.45, all lost; crashed near Nimzawl, in Chin Hills, killing crew; SOC 22.2.45. More information in: The Liberator in RAF and Commonwealth Service by James D. Oughton , John F. Hamlin, Andrew Thomas

Aircraft Accident / Loss Entry

Date of Crash  23 Jan 45 Aircraft Name  Liberator VI Serial Number  KH277
Unit  358 Sqdn Operating Airfield   Country  
Aircrew details Sqn Ldr Anthony Stanley Mortimer Pim* (60566)
Details KH277 was one of three Liberators lost on 358's first Special Duties op to northern French Indo China, and allegedly at least 2 were shot down by American P-61 Black Widow night fighters. There was an official coverup, and full details are still lacking. KH277's pilot was 60566 S/Ldr Anthony Stanley Mortimer Pim DFC. Crew of 8 killed; only 5 were recovered and are buried in Imphal War Cemetery, India. KH215 and KH278 were the other two Liberators of 358 Sqn which were lost on this night. The crash site of KH277 at Nimzawl, Burma (in the Chin Hills) is only 11 miles from that of KH215, while KH278 fell in French Indo China far to the east. It is likely that only KH278 was shot down in a friendly fire incident, while KH215 and KH277 crashed due to extreme weather over the Chin Hills.
Source Matt Poole

Casualities in the CWGC Register for Liberator VI KH277

Rank Name, Number, Trade & Details DateUnit Country Cemetary/Memorial & Loc Ref
Flying OfficerEric CLARKE (149915) Wireless Op./Air Gunner Liberator KH277   1945-01-23358 Sqdn AIR27 IndiaImphal War Cemetery
SergeantGeorge GITTINS (1458467) Liberator KH277  Ext Link 1945-01-23358 Sqdn AIR27 SingaporeSingapore Memorial
Flight SergeantErik Cairnie HEARN (1585199) Navigator (Bomber) Liberator KH277   1945-01-23358 Sqdn AIR27 IndiaImphal War Cemetery
Flight SergeantJohn Hewitt HOLT (1522039) Liberator KH277  Ext Link 1945-01-23358 Sqdn AIR27 SingaporeSingapore Memorial
Squadron LeaderAnthony Stanley Mortimer PIM (60566) Liberator KH277   1945-01-23358 Sqdn AIR27 IndiaImphal War Cemetery
SergeantJames Alfred ROBINSON (976434) Liberator KH277  Ext Link 1945-01-23358 Sqdn AIR27 SingaporeSingapore Memorial
Flight SergeantSidney Ernest SADLER (428047) Air Gunner Liberator KH277   1945-01-23358 Sqdn AIR27 IndiaImphal War Cemetery
Flying OfficerWilliam John WALLACE (149990) Air Bomber Liberator KH277   1945-01-23358 Sqdn AIR27 IndiaImphal War Cemetery

Related Posts in RAF Commands Forum

ThreadPost TextAuthor
DFC citation for A.S.M. PIM, pilot, 408 SqdnDoes anyone have the wording of the DFC citation for 60566 Anthony Stanley Mortimer PIM? His daughter, who was only 18 months old when he died as a S/Ldr in the Far East in 1945, seeks this information. She said that his main operational squadron had been 408 in Bomber Command, where he flew Hampdens. Also, I have not searched the web yet, but does anyone know if 408 Squadron has an active veterans association? If not, who from 408 is a good point of contact? The daughter seeks contact with anyone who knew her father (knowing that she has left things a bit late!). S/Ldr Pim died as a 358 Squadron Liberator skipper on the night of 22/23 January 1945. He was a Flight Commander. This was 358's first Special Duties op, but things went terribly wrong when S/Ldr Pim's Liberator (KH277) and two others (KH215 and KH278) failed to return from their assigned Drop Zones in French Indo China. Of the eleven Libs sent out to FIC that night, only two were successful in finding their DZs in horrible weather. It turns out that at least two of the three missing aircraft were shot down by USAAF P-61 night fighters. A coverup was ordered at the highest level, and the facts were indeed kept under wraps until USAF Col Peter M. Dunn broke the story in the mid-1980s while researching his doctoral thesis (which later grew into a book, "The First Vietnam War"). He claimed that the Libs were targeted on purpose because of the serious political differences between the US and the UK over post-war FIC, but I have seen no evidence to support this premeditated action. The National Archives at Kew have since released some documents which verify, in general, that at least two of the three Libs were downed by P-61s, and that there was an official coverup. We have yet to learn if S/Ldr Pim's KH277 was a victim of friendly fire, or if weather or another problem was a major factor. Thanks for any help. Matt ....Read More.Matt Poole on 7th December 2007 11:31:56


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