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Thread: S/L J.H. Kitson, RAF 34160, 21/06/1940. New Zealand

  1. #1
    Bart FM Droog Guest

    Default S/L J.H. Kitson, RAF 34160, 21/06/1940. New Zealand

    What caused the death of:

    Squadron Leader John H. Kitson, RAF 34160, age 28, 21/06/1940, Christchurch (Upper Riccarton) Anglican Church Cemetery, New Zealand


    <a href=''>RAF and RNZAF Losses in New Zealand, 10/05/1940 - 30/06/1940</a>

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Nov 2007
    New Zealand
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    From 'For Your Tomorrow - A record of New Zealanders who have died while serving with the RNZAF and Allied Air Services Since 1915 (Vol One: Fates 1915-1942)'

    Fri 21 Jun 1940
    New Zealand
    Reconnaissance patrol
    1 Service Flying Training School, RNZAF (Wigram)
    Oxford I NZ275 - took off from Taieri after two others on the same patrol at 0725, each machine carrying a 250lb bomb, but was unable to gain height. After clearing the airfield boundary NZ275 entered a slow right hand turn in order to clear trees ahead, but stalled and hit the ground while still turning, and caught fire. Plt Off P R McNab, the observer, and AC1 R E Kilpatrick, wireless operator, were injured but the pilot died within an hour or two of
    being extricated from the wreckage. He is buried at Christchurch. A layer of frost on the Oxford’s wings had significantly degraded its take off performance. Investigation also revealed that the throttle control lock wire had not been broken, indicating that the pilot had failed to push the throttles through the gate when the emergency arose. For their courageous efforts in rescuing the three crew LAC D T Herrick and Cpl E A Stratton were each awarded the George Medal, and AC2 D M Nichol presented with an Air Board letter of commendation

    Pilot: 34160 Sqn Ldr John Hugh KITSON, RAF - Age 28. 1373+hrs (412+ on Oxford)

    Kitson, a flying instructor with the ITS at Wigram, was an English RAF officer on loan to the RNZAF. He was the first fatal casualty on an operational flight undertaken from a New Zealand base (a German raider was active in New Zealand waters at the time - the SS Niagara striking a mine and sinking only two days earlier).

    Herrick died of wounds on 30 June 1941 after being shot down over France while flying with 53 Sqn, RAF.


  3. #3
    Bart FM Droog Guest


    Hello Errol,




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