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Thread: Andrew S

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    Default Andrew S

    Hi there,
    Can any body help. I am looking for photographs of my uncles aircraft/crew. Short Stirling IIIB. EH943 OJ-B 149 Sqdn RAF Lakenheath 1944. My uncle flew with 2 crews. one captained by P.O. Ward and one captained by P.O. Billens. I have details of the Billens crew, but am lacking details of the ward crew. Is there any body out there that can help.

    Thanks
    Andy

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    Andy,
    Without knowing your uncle's name, it would be more difficult to find out when he was with the Ward crew, but here's one of Ward's crews......
    P/O A.N. Ward.
    F/S G. Williams, Nav, RNZAF.
    F/S J.E.G. Ryman, B/A, RNZAF.
    Sgt D. Hammond, F/E.
    Sgt S. Clarke, W/Op.
    Sgt S.R. Tomlinson, M/U.
    Sgt S.S.J. Haines, R/G.

    Just realised it might be Sgt Haines, as he is the only one in this crew, who flew with Billens.
    Last edited by AlanW; 9th December 2011 at 12:17. Reason: replace father with uncle

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    Default P/O A.N.Ward

    Thank you Alan,
    This is the exact crew I have been looking for. The person at the bottom of the list. Sgt S.S.J Haines was my uncle.

    I have another question for you. Did P.O Ward and P.O Billens pilot the same stirling aircraft.

    Thank you
    Andy

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    Hi Andy,
    Ward seemed to have mostly favoured LJ504, cannot see him in EH543. Your uncle flew his last op with the Ward crew on 23/24th March to Laon. His next op is on 18/19th April, with P/O R.W. Chapell, minelaying in Kiel Bay.
    Billens flew his first op on 20/21st April, minelaying off St Nazaire.
    The next time your uncle flew, was with Billens on 22/23rd April, to Laon, on which they were lost.
    Crew for 18/19th April....
    P/O R.W. Chapell.
    Sgt D. Mitchell.
    F/S D.J. Mackie.
    Sgt W.I. Harvey.
    Sgt G.L. Thomas.
    Sgt H. Foxton.
    Sgt S.S.J. Haines.

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    Hi Andy

    I've had a look through most of the Stirling reference books and haven't come across any photos of EH943. Of general interest to you may be this link with refernce to 149 Squadron airgunners:

    http://www.mildenhallregister.stirlingpilot.org.uk/Milden5.htm

    I have to declare an interest however as the author of one of the pieces!

    Regards

    Dave

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    "F/S J.E.G. Ryman, B/A, RNZAF."

    No 'E' initial. This man was:

    NZ421100 James Graham Ryman
    Later commissioned (1 Mar 44)
    He died at Waikanae on 24 Jun 04

    I've not been able to confirm G Williams.

    Errol

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    Default

    And the following:

    17 Nov 1943
    No.149 Sqn
    Stirling III MZ260 OJ-C
    Training.

    Overshot from a three-engined approach and crashed at Lakenheath airfield, Suffolk. Sgt Pilbeam had been Head Boy at Highfield School in Blackpool. Sgt Solomons served under the name of Somers. Those who perished rest in various United Kingdom cemeteries; P/O Lowe RNZAF being taken to Cambridge City Cemetery.

    P/O G T Lowe RNZAF +
    Sgt A B Pilbeam +
    Sgt R A Nicholls +
    Sgt L J Solomons +
    Sgt A F A Smith
    Sgt D W Francis RCAF
    Sgt S S J Haines

    See: BCL4/379 and FYT2/161

    Errol should be able to tell us more on this one (2 of the 3 survivors were injured).

    Col.
    Last edited by COL BRUGGY; 10th December 2011 at 01:09.

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    HI Errol,
    For F/Sgt G. Williams RNZAF. He is also listed in the ORB on other occasions as G.P Williams NZ422447. Ryman is referred to as J.E.G, but this is obviously a long running error in the book. P/O A.N. Ward was also RNZAF, NZ42485

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    Default Andrew S

    Thank you all for your help in my quest.

    Andy

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    Thanks to Alan, I can now confirm Williams and Ward:

    NZ422447 Gordon Prujean Williams, later commissioned as a navigator. May still be alive.

    And from Colin Hansonís By Such Deeds - Honours and Awards in the Royal New Zealand Air Force, 1923-1999:

    WARD, Flight Lieutenant Albert Noel, DFC(US).
    NZ42485; Born Canvastown, Marlborough, 19 Mar 1922; NZ Army/TF (Nelson Marlborough Mtd Regt) 20 Mar 1940 to c.Jul 1941; RNZAF 10 Jan 1942 to 12 Jan 1946; Pilot.
    Citation Distinguished Flying Cross (US) (1 Feb 1945): [149 Sqn RAF (Stirling)] This officer has attacked a variety of targets and has also engaged in mine laying and special operations. His bombing targets have included Berlin and several marshalling yards in France, whilst his mine-laying operations have extended from Kiel Bay to the south-west coast of France. On special operations he has been to targets all over France as well as to places as far as the Swiss and Spanish frontiers. These operations have sometimes entailed flying for more than 8 1/2 hours with a very high degree of accuracy in order to ensure reaching the very small target areas. Flt Lt Ward completed one tour with 199 Sqn RAF (Stirling) and one with 149 Sqn.
    Died Auckland, 16 Apr 1988.

    Errol

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