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Thread: Halifax Aircrew

  1. #1
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    Default Halifax Aircrew

    Hello,

    I am looking for the full name, service number and trade (if not already indicated) of the following airmen, most of them RAF:

    W/O II R.A. Scott (RCAF) - ? - Pilot
    Sgt T.S. Harries - 1153261 - Flight Engineer
    F/S A. Manson - 1371026 - Navigator
    Sgt D.H. Owen - 1237257 - Air Bomber
    Sgt J.G.A. Trusty - ? - Dispatcher *

    These men were serving with 138 Sqn when their Halifax crashed in France on 12 August 1943. All of them were captured or evaded while the other crewmen were KIA (buried in Ecorcei, Normandy, France).


    P/O S.E. Stapley - 134383 - ?
    Sgt W.H.B. Bilton - ? - ? (not sure if he was RAF or other)
    Sgt H. Lewis - 550574 - ?

    These men were serving with 10 Sqn in 1943 when their Halifax crashed on 15 September 1943. All of them were captured or evaded while the other crewmen were KIA (buried in Ecorcei, Normandy, France).

    Please let me know if you can help,

    Regards,

    Fox.

    * PS: I don't know what 'Dispatcher' corresponds to. What was his role in the aircraft? Does any trade badge corresponds to the post?
    Author of Crash in Bayeux - The Last Flight of Sergeant Ferguson (ISBN 979-10-91044-13-4) - www.facebook.com/crashinbayeux.

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    Fox,
    A "Dispatcher" was just what it says! He (I don't think, in WW2, there were any She Dispatchers?) was responsible for dispatching - i.e. chucking out! - any loads that were to be dropped by parachute, rather than actually landing. In WW2 the job was often done by members of 14 ADR (Air Dispatch Regiment) - an Army Unit! This was mainly ensuring that any loads were pushed out of C-47s (or similar) without fouling the tail. They did sterling service on Op MARKET GARDEN (etc) - and suffered many casualties. They were still around post-WW2 - and may still be? (Google). Responsible for loads - not paratroopers (the RAF Loadmaster did that), although I think that nowadays anything that comes out of the back of an RAF C-130/C-17 is the sole prerogative of the RAF. But, as in all these things, I stand to be corrected.
    HTH
    Peter Davies
    Meteorology is a science; good meteorology is an art!
    We might not know - but we might know who does!

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    from WWII Escape and Evasion Information Exchange website:

    http://www.conscript-heroes.com/escapelines/SPGnumbers.html

    Scott Roderick Alexander W/O RCAF 138 SD (Halifax)

    Bilton William Henry Brian Sgt 10 Sq (Halifax)


    Dave

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    James George Anthony Trusty, 519071 Air Gunner. Awarded DFM in 1944.

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    From Oliver Clutton-Brock's "RAF Evaders":

    R.A. Scott's RCAF number: R/78434

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    Default 138 Sqn Halifax BB334 WO2 Scott

    Two books will give you the full details of the circumstances of the loss of this crew, though not their service numbers. It was dropping supplies to the French Resistance (Operation SPRUCE 20)

    Agents by Moonlight by Freddie Clark, and Flights of the Forgotten by Ken Merrick. Both are standard reference works of the squadrons (and their predecessor Flight) that dropped agents and supplies for SOE and SIS between 1940 and 1945. If you can get a copy.....

    The Despatcher was responsible for stowing the people and cargo to be dropped, and for encouraging the reluctant to leave the aircraft. In the early days the Despatcher was often a ground-based tradesman who wanted to do ops. The very first ones came from the Parachute Training School at Ringway, but otherwise they were trained 'on the job', listed in the Ops reports as 'Despatcher U/T'.

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    Thank you very much for your help and advice, I do appreciate it.

    Please feel free to update the thread at any time!

    Fox.
    Author of Crash in Bayeux - The Last Flight of Sergeant Ferguson (ISBN 979-10-91044-13-4) - www.facebook.com/crashinbayeux.

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    Dispatcher is usually called kicker in the US slang, but it does not mean he kicked men out of the plane. Duties of dispatcher were very important, assuring the agents are properly preapred, and placed in the plane, their static lines attached, and leaving the plane at the proper time. Sometimes dispatcher was responsible for dropping packets, but usually the main load was stowed in containers and dropped from bombracks.
    In the Polish AF, dispatcher was usually an airman trained in the other duties, and sometimes flying on a secondary position, like gunner or mechanic.

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    Default S. E Stapley

    Sidney Edwin Stapley was my father. He was Pilot Officer/Navigator in the Halifax which was shot down over Ecorcei in France in September 1943. He jumped from the burning 'plane with his parachute and landed near the village. He was captured by the Germans, interrogated by the Gestapo and taken to Stalag Luft 3 where he stayed for the remainder of the war. He was also in the long march following the Allied Invasion. He joined the Caterpillar club because his life was saved by the parachute. He remained in touch with Hadyn Lewis after the war.
    I would be interested to learn about your connection and and any other information which may be relevant to my father.

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    Geordie,

    I have sent you a private message.

    Regards,

    Fox.
    Author of Crash in Bayeux - The Last Flight of Sergeant Ferguson (ISBN 979-10-91044-13-4) - www.facebook.com/crashinbayeux.

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