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Thread: 3 RCAF deaths, 10/06/1940, Canada

  1. #1
    Bart FM Droog Guest

    Default 3 RCAF deaths, 10/06/1940, Canada

    What caused the deaths of these three men:

    Aircraftman 1st Class Oscar D. Brownfield, RCAF R/51048, age 27, 10/06/1940, Big River Cemetery, Canada
    Flying Officer John J. Cotter, RCAF C/1588, age 26, 10/06/1940, Halifax (Holy Cross) Roman Catholic Cemetery, Canada
    Aircraftman 1st Class James E. Nesbitt, RCAF R/51105, age 33, 10/06/1940, Saskatoon (Woodlawn) Cemetery, Canada

    Bill Walker of <a href='http://www.ody.ca/~bwalker/'>Canadian Military Aircraft Serials</a> suggested this already:

    'A possible candidate for the 3 RCAF deaths on 10 June 1940 is Hudson 770. This was with No. 7 (GP) Squadron, which was working up with new Hudsons at Rockcliffe before going to an operational station on the east coast. 770 was used as a VIP transport on this date, to carry a cabinet minister, The Honourable <a href='http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Norman_McLeod_Rogers'>Norman Rogers</a>, from Rockcliffe to Toronto for a speaking engagement. The aircraft came down at 12:15 local time, 1 mile east of Newtonville, Ontario and was destroyed. The records I have seen all talk about Rogers, with no mention of RCAF losses.

    Rogers was MP for Kingston, and was Minister of Defence at the time of the crash. Rogers Airport in Kingston, later home to 14 SFTS and 31 SFTS, was named after him following this crash.'

    Any comments?

    Regards,

    Bart
    --------
    <a href='http://www.epibreren.com/ww2/raf/unit_unknown.html#canada'>RCAF Losses 10/05/1940 - 30/06/1940</a>
    Last edited by Bart FM Droog; 15th March 2008 at 20:04. Reason: extra link in text

  2. #2
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    Default Hudson Loss

    G'day Bart

    First off it was Hudson s/n N7360 from the Communcations Flight at R.C.A.F. Station Rockcliffe. The accident occured at 12:15 hours, 1.5 miles east of of Newtonville, Ontario.

    The purpose of the flight was to transport the Honorable Norman Rogers, Minister of National Defence, from Ottawa to Toronto.

    The starboard wing struck some trees while the Hudson was making a 45 degree bank turn. The Hudson crashed in full flight, disintegrating upon impact, killing all onboard.

    The accident was assessed as an error on the pilot's part when he lost visual reference to the ground during a steep turn towards rising terrain without first gaining a safe altitude.

    This accident would never have happened if he had used proper judgement and not continued the flight past R.C.A.F. Station Trenton. The weather conditions at the time were increasing low cielings and poor visbility.

    The secondary cause of the accident was attributed to the charcteristics of the Hudson which preclude steep turns without some loss of control.

    Cheers...Chris

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    Default

    G'day Chris;

    I don't normally correct a full time government employed Air Force historian, but....

    N7360 was the US registration issued to this aircraft for ferrying from the US. The RCAF issued an Aircraft History Card for serial 770, ex N7360, but given the timing of the accident I have always wondered if the RCAF serial had actually been marked at the time of the crash. The Card shows 48:55 logged time when it crashed, a lot of this would have been used on the ferry flight from California to Rockcliffe. The aircraft was issued to Station Rockcliffe on 20 May 1940, just a few weeks before the crash.

    I will give you the Communications Flight part ;). 7 (GP) Squadron had dissolved in late September 1939, their General Purpose Flight became AFHQ Communications Flight on 30 September 1939. It was of course 11 Squadron that worked up with Hudsons at Rockcliffe and Uplands in late 1939 before transferring to EAC. That will teach me to work from (an aging) memory.

  4. #4
    Bart FM Droog Guest

    Default

    Thank you, Chris and Bill - most learnful.

    Can you shed some light of the functions of the three RCAF men?

    Flying Officer John J. Cotter was the pilot?
    Aircraftman 1st Class Oscar D. Brownfield ?
    Aircraftman 1st Class James E. Nesbitt ?

    Regards,

    Bart

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    Default More Hudson Gen

    G'day Bill

    The Hudson Mk. I was a military version of the Lockheed 14-F62 airliner with a transparent nose cone, two 0.303 inch nose guns and dorsal turret. It was powered by a pair of 1,100 horse power R-1820-G102A's. A total of 351 were built for the R.A.F. as the Model 214.

    British serial number range:
    N7205 to N7404 *Air Ministry order for 200 aircraft delivered under the direct purchase scheme. Note: N7360 was a direct transfer from the Royal Air Force to the Royal Canadian Air Force where it was given the new serial number 770. The aircraft crash card lists the aircraft by its R.A.F. serial number.

    P5116 to P5165

    R4059

    T9266 to T9365

    The entry on the aircraft record card does indeed show under the manufacturer's No. 'N7360', but that is not the Lockheed number. It is as I have inidcated, the R.A.F. serial number allocated to this specific airframe.

    Cheers...Chris

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    Default

    Thanks Chris, I stand corrected. Do you have any way of knowing if the RCAF serial had been marked at the time of the crash? I've found a few cases of 6000 series Ansons where there is photographic proof of the RCAF serial being marked by a certain date, but the SFTS daily diary still uses the RAF serial after this date.

    Pretty trival stuff compared to the loss of life in this case, I know. But still, I find it interesting.

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