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Thread: Spitfire 54 Sqn 10 March 1942

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    Default Spitfire 54 Sqn 10 March 1942

    A 54 Sqn Spitfire, coded 'KL-7', and based at Castletown, crashed into a gunpost at Watten, Caithness c.08:45 on 10 March 1942, killing the pilot, 401378 P/O G H Fenton RNZAF (buried Olrig New Cemetery) and two soldiers in the gunpost. There are twelve possible matches for these two fatalities on the CWGC website - does anyone know the identities of the two involved and the serial number of the aircraft please?

    Keith

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    Hello Keith,

    I have the following,

    BL785 Vb 54 Sqn 2 miles west of Watten on the Wick to Thurso road. Cat E. Army Co-op. Made dummy attack on lorry but struck it killing driver and passenger. P/O GH Fenton 401378 (NZ) killed.

    Regards,

    Ian

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    Keith,

    From my 'For Your Tomorrow - A record of New Zealanders who have died while serving with the RNZAF and Allied Air Services since 1915 (Volume One Fates 1915-1942)':

    Tue 10 Mar 1942
    Fighter Command

    Low level demonstration attacks during Army manoeuvres near Loch Watten
    54 Squadron, RAF (Castletown, Caithness-shire - 14 Group)
    Spitfire VB BL785 - 54 Sqn and another were charged with ‘beating up’ gun positions, etc, during the day. BL785 came in too low during a dummy attack on some lorries along the Wick-Thurso road, 2 miles west of Watten, and struck one of them. The driver and a passenger were killed, as was the Spitfire pilot, who is buried at Olrig, adjacent to Castletown.
    Pilot: NZ401378 Plt Off Graeme Holt FENTON, RNZAF - Age 20. 408hrs.

    Errol

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    Keith

    Can you give us the 12 matches of possible army victims a search on Scotlands People may narrow them down

    Fenton is registered in 1942 Caithness, Watton district - I would expect other two to be as well

    Paul
    Last edited by paulmcmillan; 10th January 2013 at 08:43.

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    Default Spitfire BL785 54 Sqn 10 March 1942

    Thanks Paul, Errol & Ian. Paul - twelve names are pasted from CWGC as below.

    Keith

    Name Rank Service Number Date of Death Age Regiment / Service Service Country Grave /
    Memorial Reference Cemetery / Memorial Name
    McKENZIE, GEORGE Gunner 937373 10/03/1942 22 Royal Artillery United Kingdom Sec. Q. Grave 356. GLASGOW (LAMBHILL) CEMETERY
    ROSE, WALTER Private 5726073 10/03/1942 22 Dorsetshire Regiment United Kingdom Grave 11570. BANBURY CEMETERY
    HANKEY, LOUIS RAYMOND Driver T/184699 10/03/1942 22 Royal Army Service Corps United Kingdom Sec. 2E. C. of E. Grave 255. LIVERPOOL (ALLERTON) CEMETERY
    STEVENSON, CHARLES Fusilier 6982282 10/03/1942 21 Royal Inniskilling Fusiliers United Kingdom Sec. A. Grave 9662. SUTTON-IN-ASHFIELD CEMETERY
    DOYLE, RICHARD Lance Corporal 6977444 10/03/1942 29 Royal Inniskilling Fusiliers United Kingdom Sec. D.5. Grave 588. BELFAST (DUNDONALD) CEMETERY
    BRUMMELL, PHILLIP Fusilier 6981581 10/03/1942 22 Royal Inniskilling Fusiliers United Kingdom Sec. O. Grave 9. CHESTERFIELD (BOYTHORPE) CEMETERY
    TAYLOR, WILLIAM H. Private 2988975 10/03/1942 20 Highland Regiment United Kingdom Sec. 1. Grave 35. CAMELON CEMETERY
    DAVIES, CLEDWYN Fusilier 4188006 10/03/1942 31 Royal Welch Fusiliers United Kingdom Plot W. Grave 421. RHONDDA (TREALAW) CEMETERY
    BATHO, FREDERICK JAMES Gunner 11004774 10/03/1942 29 Royal Artillery United Kingdom NORTHOLT (ST. MARY) CHURCHYARD
    FINLINSON, JOHN ROBERT Fusilier 4279270 10/03/1942 19 Royal Northumberland Fusiliers United Kingdom Div. V. Grave 5047. GATESHEAD EAST CEMETERY
    McGUIRE, JOHN Fusilier 6981745 10/03/1942 27 Royal Inniskilling Fusiliers United Kingdom Sec. F. Grave 1337. COLERAINE CEMETERY
    ARNOLD, SAMUEL Serjeant 855796 10/03/1942 23 Royal Artillery United Kingdom Sec. C. Grave 186. ELTON (ALL SAINTS) CHURCHYARD, LANCASHIRE

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    Suggest 2 other casualties were

    McKENZIE, GEORGE Gunner 937373 10/03/1942 22 Royal Artillery United Kingdom Sec. Q. Grave 356. GLASGOW (LAMBHILL) CEMETERY

    ARNOLD, SAMUEL Serjeant 855796 10/03/1942 23 Royal Artillery United Kingdom Sec. C. Grave 186. ELTON (ALL SAINTS) CHURCHYARD, LANCASHIRE


    They are only name that are registered at Caithness, Watten in 1942 and ages match +-1 year

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    Default Spitfire 54 Sqn 10 March 1942

    Thanks Paul - a long-standing mystery resolved.
    Keith

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    Default 54 Squadron Spitfire BL 785

    Morgan & Shacklady have this A/C moving to 124 Sq on 8 March 1942, as listed by the AB file.

    124 Sq were at Biggin Hill at this time !.

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    Thanks but I think I prefer Errol's version of events! I have discovered a few (understandable) errors in M&S recently and I suspect they and Air-Britain shared the same primary source (but possibly erroneous) documents.

    Keith

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