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Thread: "They shall grow not old" by Les Allison

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    Default "They shall grow not old" by Les Allison

    Does anyone have the above named book and would be willing to see if there is an entry for Warrant Officer George Henry Stratford who was killed in action on the night of 18/19 July 1944.

    thanks in advance

    Daz

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    Daz - I have the book and this is the entry. George Henry Stratford W.Op 642061 from Brandon Manitoba. KIA 19th July 1944 age 28 78 Sqdn. Brother to Frederick Stratford. Halifax a/c missing during low level operations over Abbeville France. Six members of the crew not Canadians missing believed killed. W/O Straford is buried in the Somme Cemetery, Neuf Molin, France.
    Chris

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    Chris

    Thank you, do you know where the information for these entries came from. I am in touch with WO Stratford's son and the family story is that the Halifax was lost during daylight when attacking German gun positions after a call for help was picked up from ground troops, the crew are alleged to have attacked the guns once they had bombed Acquet and were all killed as they were too low to bale out! I have some doubts about the low level operations over Abbeville piece as I dont know of any Halifax bombers taking part in low level machine gun attacks especially at night.

    Thanks Daz
    Last edited by 78SqnHistory; 18th August 2012 at 17:32. Reason: spelling mistake

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    Hello,

    Les Allison (Author of TSGNO), penned an earlier book, on which TSGNO was based. Here is the entry from that book:

    K/a.
    STRATFORD, George Henry, W/O (642061).
    Brandon, enlisted in May/39 and was Sgt. W.O.P. in early 1940. He too remustered and returned to Canada and graduated a Sgt Pilot. Returning overseas, he joined No.78 Sqdn. flying Halifaxes at Breighton, Yorks, in 1943. Near the end of his tour, on July 19/44 they were on a low level attack near Abbeville when shot down and all k/a. burial was in Nuef Moulin (Somme) Communal Cem., France. His older brother Fred* of the R.C.A.F. was k/a in Dec./44.

    See:
    Canadians in the Royal Air Force
    Allison,Les.
    Roland:Author,1978
    p.194

    Probably the source for your "Low-Level" story. Lord knows were Allison got it from!

    * See: BCL5/504

    and...

    http://www.awm.gov.au/catalogue/research_centre/pdf/rc09125z007_1.pdf

    p.184 of 308.

    Col.
    Last edited by COL BRUGGY; 18th August 2012 at 20:15.

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    Col

    thanks very much.

    Daz

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