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Thread: 37 Squadron, 653427 Sgt Roy Kilner - DoD 3rd September 1944

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    Default 37 Squadron, 653427 Sgt Roy Kilner - DoD 3rd September 1944

    I'm hoping to find out any information I can relating to my mum's cousin Roy who I believe was a tail gunner and, it would appear, a casualty of 'the forgotten war'.

    Thanks to the CWGC & the War Graves Photographic Project, I know he is remebered on panel 15, column 1 of the Malta Memorial.

    As I say, I believe, but do not know for certain, that he was a tail or rear gunner on Wellingtons. From the date of his death and a little internet reserch I assume he was based with 37 sqn in Italy at the time.

    Can anyone point me in the right direction to find out if what I have 'presumed' is correct and any more details at all re his service record, the plane he flew in, his fellow crew members, the missions he may have been involved in and in particular, the mission and / or circumstances of his sad demise.

    I have tried various searches within the forum to no avail and have attempted to follow the 'instructions' for using Google to search the forum. I've fallen at the first hurdle with that as I cannot even find the 'wheel' or advanced search option to add this domain. I'm using IE 8.0.6001.18702

    Thank You,

    Graeme.

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    Graeme,
    Wise Without Eyes, the history of 37sqdn 1939-45, by Kevin Mears, gives five names as lost on the 2nd Sept 44.

    D.H. Malcolm-Jones.
    D.W. Lillicrap.
    R. Hewitt.
    C. Hemingway.
    R. Kilner.

    This may possibly be the crew of the Wellington in which he was lost. I expect others will be along with other info as to either confirm this or not.

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    Thank You Alan,

    I came across Wise Without Eyes last week while trawling the web for information. I was also lucky enough to find a copy on ebay the other day too, which I'm currently waiting delivery of.

    Your list gives me a start for further research for which I'm grateful.

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    Hello,

    Further information here:

    http://natureonline.com/37/23-op13.html

    Col.

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    LOL,

    Thank you Col, I was just about to post that link too.

    Why numerous searches using Roy's name have yielded nothing up to press, one search using Malcolm-Jones and 37 sqn found that.

    There's a lot of the information I've been looking for there, I'd still be happy for any other information re his records and any other raids he flew.

    It mentions it being their 23rd operation, would that be in total for that crew, for that particular theatre (29 December 1943-2 October 1945: Tortorella), for that aircraft, or is it worked out in another way?

    Many thanks guys

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    That would be the crew's 23rd operation in a tour which, in this theatre of war, would have comprised something between 37 and 40 ops, totalling about 250 hours.

    I regret i have nothing further about the loss.

    David

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    Thank you for clearing that up David.

    I still reading through the wealth of information about 37 sqn on the link posted earlier.

    Malcom-Jones is mentioned in other Ops and therefore my 1st cousin, once removed is almost certain to have been involved also.

    My copy of Wise Without Wings has also arrived today so hopefully I'll glean even more from that.

    I'll still be thankful for anyone else passing by who reads this and has any information on 37 sqn sharing it.

    I know my mother has one or two of Roy's diaries from the war years, I hope I may be able to glean a bit of info from there too, although he's not likely to have been specific?

    Cheers,

    Graeme.

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    Hi Graeme,
    From 37 ORB Wellington Mk.X ME989 took off at 20 07 night 2/3 September 1944 as part of a group of 8 Wellingtons to bomb the Ferrara Marshaling Yards. Failed to return from operation. The attack was to remove the one serviceable through line still operating. Slight inaccurate medium flak and no searchlights.
    Malcolm-Jones Pilot
    Lillicrap Navigator
    Hewitt W/Op
    Hemingway Bomb aimer
    Kilner Air Gunner

    There appears to be no reason given for loss of crew.

    Malcolm-Jones appears to have been 2nd pilot on 13th June 1944 and on 26th June appears as Captain for first time with crew as mentioned except for Lillicrap. It would appear that your relative was on approx his 14th or 15th Op at the time of his loss. Would suspect that this was first tour of Ops for this crew.

    Regards,
    Rob Jerram.

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    Two crews were lost that night, and given the lack of opposition over the target, the causes of loss seem to be down to two: night fighters or a collision.

    David

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