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Thread: Stirling III crew positions

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    Default Stirling III crew positions

    I am looking for the crew positions in a Stirling III of a HCU crew.9 men in total which i presume start off with pilot,then pupil pilot.They were all killed on a training ,night cross country exercise.Many thanks

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    Hi Linda

    you may find this of use (in the Accommodation/Crew section)

    http://www.pilotfriend.com/photo_albums/timeline/ww2/Short%20Sterling.htm

    A

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    It does look like it could vary. An example of a 9-man cre (as opposed to the usual 8) is Stirling III LK456 of 1661 HCU which crashed 11/04/1944

    Pilot
    Flt. Engr
    Flt. Engr
    Flt. Engr
    Nav
    Air Bomber
    W.Op./Air Gnr
    W.Op./Air Gnr.
    Air Gnr

    EE956 1661HCU (17/05/1944) seems to have exactly the same positions

    A
    Last edited by Amrit; 29th March 2008 at 22:28.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Linda View Post
    I am looking for the crew positions in a Stirling III of a HCU crew.9 men in total which i presume start off with pilot,then pupil pilot.They were all killed on a training ,night cross country exercise.Many thanks
    Linda,

    When did the accident occur?

    Errol

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    Default Linda

    Thanks for the help everyone!
    Errol-it was Stirling III L J 455 H -C of 1653 HCU on 20th Jan 1944,all crew killed
    Pilot P/O Samuel Johnson RNZAF(ex 218 squadron)

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    P/O S G Johnson (Pilot)
    F/S J P Bartington (Pilot)
    Sgt R Hallam (Flt. Engr.)
    Sgt R J Teague (Flt. Engr.)
    WO2 R D Poe (Nav.)
    F/S J K Callow
    Sgt W H Spibey (W.Op./Air Gnr.)
    Sgt A J Wood (Air Gnr.)
    Sgt F Tempan (Air Gnr.)

    I cannot find details of Callow's position, and his NAA hasn't been digitized. Linda, do you need the Chorley blurb too?

    A

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    Linda,

    from my 'For Your Tomorrow - a record of New Zealanders who had died while serving with the RNZAF and Allied Air Services since 1915 (Vol Two: Fates 1942-1998)

    Thu 20 Jan 1944
    BOMBER COMMAND
    Cross country exercise
    1653 Heavy Conversion Unit, RAF (Chedburgh, Suffolk - 3 Group)
    Stirling III LJ455 - while in the circuit on returning to base, lost height in a diving turn, hit trees, crashed and caught fire at Hargrave Hall, a few miles NW of Chedburgh, at 2326. All nine occupants died, the pilot instructor and his RAF pilot pupil being buried at Cambridge. It was thought that the pupil had inadvertently entered the diving turn on momentarily permitting himself to be distracted from his instruments by the airfield lighting.
    Pilot Instructor: NZ416502 Plt Off Samuel Graham JOHNSON, DFC, RNZAF - Age 22. 607hrs (over 200 on Stirling) 23 ops.
    Johnsonís ops were flown with 218 Sqn, RAF, prior to his posting as an instructor to the HCU.

    I have had a check made of Johnson's RNZAF service record but it holds no papers detailing the crew.
    Errol

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    Default Linda

    Thanks so much for the info Errol.An article in the Daily Mail for March 28th caught my eye.It was about a 1930/40's actress-Frances Day and mentioned that she starred in a revue called "Black Vanities" with Flanagan & Allen.It states that in that production she introduced a song-"A pair of silver wings" as her personal tribute to the Royal Airforce.It states that her close friends said that she sang it for one man only-her fiancee Sam Johnson DFC and that after he was killed she was never the same.The Daily Mail has him down as Squadron Leader.I presume this is the same man. It was the only one that i could find on the CWG with a DFC.It just aroused my curiosity into him and his crew,and so far i have managed to find photo's of Sergeant A.Wood one of the gunners.

    Thanks also Amrit,i have Chorleys account but the crew positions are great!

  9. #9
    Bart FM Droog Guest

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    Hello Linda,

    I located <a href='http://www.dailymail.co.uk/pages/text/print.html?in_article_id=547901&in_page_id=1770'>T he Daily Mail article</a> and the song on <a href='http://www.zavvi.co.uk/music-Easy+Listening-Vocal--Female-Frances-Day-Golden-Girl-Of-The-30s/841046/ccc.r10.1/p.jsf'>this cd</a>, but I wonder if the lyrics are the same as <a href='http://www.jilldaniels.com/silverwings.htm'>this song</a>, written by Eric Maschwitz?

    Regards,

    Bart

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    Default Linda

    Hi Bart,Yes it looks like the right song,quite a touching story.

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