View Full Version : Henk Welting and his work

20th July 2013, 06:38
A year ago Henk Welting lost his struggle with life and passed away.

His posts on Unaccounted airmen/airwomen have periodically risen to the top of the forum as a new generation of researchers has found and added to the seed he planted but the absence of his new postings has had a marked effect on the board in my opinion.

Henk had put considerable work into answering his own questions before coming to the board with the outstanding items that he could not clear with his own extensive information sources. What had become apparent was that a large number of people were all chipping away at the same questions off board and a collaboration soon came up with the goods to all interested parties then and since.

I hope that those who took on the custodian duties for Henk's work will realise that what was called "his legacy" consists not only of the database that he created but also of his kindness in using it to answer the questions of others and his "Unaccounted" posts to spark and aid collaboration of research.

Come on gents lets have the unseen "Unaccounted" trickle running again in memory and continuation of Henk's passion rather than let it end as a hidden database sitting on a few hard drives and Henk's posts on this forum.


20th July 2013, 08:39
Here here (or is that hear hear)

I no longer have the time I used to have to devote to it but I'd still try. There's still 100's of DOAS, KOAS men/women out there with no unit on CWGC. Also I dont have Henks data or any reference library worth talking about. I've no time for secret databases, may as well not exist.


20th July 2013, 09:44
For what it is worth, I totally agree. Although my part in answering Henk's questions was minor, I have no idea who currently holds this database, nor what the plan is to make the information available. I do not believe that this serves as a suitable legacy to Henk's wonderful work.



20th July 2013, 11:03
My sentiments exactly Ross,
I miss Henk's posts as I quite often found myself researching outside my chosen field just to give something back to him for all the additional information he was giving to us all.


20th July 2013, 11:49
Ross, et al,
Where can this list of UAs be found? I, like others, do not have an extensive library, and I cannot get to TNA. But I am relatively computer literate (do I hear hollow laughter from Lyffe?) and I do have some time now I'm in my dotage!
If we knew where the list was, and if we knew what was required, and if we knew where to send anything we found, then I am sure that by parcelling out 10, 40, or 100, 'names' to various folk you could re-energise Project Welting. I would be pleased to help.
Peter Davies

20th July 2013, 12:14
There is no list, Henk was creating it. He had the CWGC registers and he had commuted all the names to spreadsheet.

Those names that he could account for from Bomber Command losses, Coastal Command losses, Fighter Command Losses, from webpages, from other books, from post on this and other forums.

What he was left with then were the invariable llist of those who died of natural causes or road crashes etc, the Died on Active Service (DOAS) people.

The others are the many personel killed on non front line crashes in the UK, those who were with OTU's, radio Schools, Armament Camps, MU's etc, who were Killed on Active Service (KOAS).

Henk was creating the llist.

Some of it can be easily derived from Geoff's search engine by searching for those with no unit listed. But for example all the BC OTU losses are in that Volume. Henk's data will have cleared out any that he could account for.

he was not working from an unaccounted list in the NA or elsewhere as they knew why everyone deid, they just failed to reflect this to the CWGC and the rest of us.

Baby to look after here!

20th July 2013, 12:28
Well done, Dennis (and, of course, Mrs Dennis!!). Got to get The Priorities right. Welcome Dennis Junior!!
Rgds to all 3
Peter Davies

20th July 2013, 14:57
Hi Peter,

As Dennis said, there is no prepared list that can be put up on the forum at the drop of a hat. It needs those who are custodians of Henk's work to put in a fraction of the effort that he did.

Air Britain were releasing a list of Cat E losses in day list order in their newsletters. Henk would look to link them to one of his recorded airmen/airwomen fatalities. Once he had linked all that he could he then posted the remaining on here in his Unaccounted posts.

Dennis has given a link to a spread sheet he created to track the requests and replies but you can easily find them by googling

Unaccounted site:www.rafcommands.com

They were in date order up to approx. Sept 1943.

The big BUT was that Henk spoon fed us the info making it very easy eg Full names, service numbers and place of burial of who he was looking for AND serials of possible aircraft as well as known crash locations.

To restart the Unaccounted lists needs those who have Henk's files to continue his process and then to post the daily remainder for crowd sourcing of answer.

What it seems to me is that those who were gifted Henks's work have failed to progress it publically in the year since his death. A few questions have been answered using the database and I suspect that the subsequent AB lists have been linked to some deaths after Sept 1943.

I feel strongly that an important part of the work has not be continued ie the Unaccounted which, in my mind, had an effect well beyond what Henk intended.

I for one can say that the volume allowed me to hone my gene search methods and brought me into personal contact with registers I would not have found without the impetus of searching for answers to the Unaccounted.

I'm sure that many others can chip in with what it brought to them.

It's that spark that I see as missing and, a year after Henk's death, am deeply saddened that the custodians seem to feel it has no place in continuing.


20th July 2013, 17:28
I can provide anyone with access to Henks files online (where they can be updated using Google Apps). I would wish I had the time to continue his work, but at this time in my life it is a) not a RAF time period I am interested in b) do not have the time to devote to it at this time

However, if anyone feels they can contribute in a co-operative mode then please contact me... But I am not able to moderate various people - any update provided would be on trust.

Sometime in the future Air Britain will publish a CD with the research that Geoffery Negus has been undertaken for a number of years on RAF Casualties - I do not know the form, detail or time period involved (though I know it covers WW2). But Geoffery Negus though not on this site (as far as I am aware) is on the air-force deaths yahoo group


20th July 2013, 19:36
I would love a chance to see Henks data to see how difficult continuation might be.

20th July 2013, 20:29
I already have access to Henk's list courtesy of Paul and have made a number of updates to them.

I would be willing to assist in furthering Henk's work as per Paul's suggestion


20th July 2013, 21:01
Can someone with access let me know if the list can be broken down by service? For example, can I get a list of all outstanding RCAF cases from the Unaccounted series?


Alex Smart
21st July 2013, 00:16
Dear Aqll,
Sad to recall that it has been a year since Henk departed.

His work on Unaccounted Airmen and Women had a start date I beleive of June 1940 up to Mid September 1943 with a couple of odd ones in 1944.
Not all of his questions were solved in that period but there are only a few that remain unanswered as far as I can recall.

Just an idea that I throw out to you all, if we can set our sights on firstly completing 1943 period on his behalf perhaps Day per Day.
Someone could check the CWGC site and list here on this Forum those that have the days date.
Others can then dip their toes in and help answer with known details. As they did for Henk.
Then with luck by the end of this year 1943's list will have been completed. Then maybe next year set our sights on 1944 and onward ?


21st July 2013, 08:24
Important that the thread TITLES follow Henks format, start ALL these threads TITLES with the date in THIS format

430924 yymmdd
That will allow them be sorted by date. Very important for indexing.

See the thread titles on the index

Scroll down to see format I refer to.

3rd April 2014, 20:42
Recently, I noticed a 2012 post from Henk asking for information regarding the death of Sgt (Bombaimer) Ernest G.W. BARTLETT. I have further information with respect to the death of Sgt Bartlett if still required. I am new to this forum/board so am unsure if my post is relevant given Henk's death and/or if the information on Sgt Bartlett is still of interest.

3rd April 2014, 23:30
Hi there, yes it still is of interest so please by all means post to that old thread. Thanks.