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Thread: Spitfire pilot Docherty shot down Albania 1943. Failed attempt at rescue by Walrus

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    Default Spitfire pilot Docherty shot down Albania 1943. Failed attempt at rescue by Walrus

    I have a cigarette case belonging to a POW who was shot down in January 1944. It was signed in the prison camp by several of his POW mates including Bill (?) Docherty (?) who was a Spitfire pilot (although it might have been another Fighter type) who was shot down close to the Albanian coast line. I do not know the date of this.
    A Walrus aircraft, alerted presumably by the returning members of his Squadron, then landed to try to rescue him. He swam out towards the plane but it was forced to take off without him due to either German troops appearing on the beach and firing at it or perhaps German fighters making and appearance. Anyway Bill was captured and ended up in the same camp as my friend.
    Does this story sound familiar to anyone? If so can you give me the details so I can research the matter further?
    The annoying thing is that years before I was given the Cigarette case I read an account of the incident but now I cant remember where! Does anyone know the book it is in?
    The case was also signed by a chap called Seery, an Australian and I have no more info on him.

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    Hi
    It's possible that you saw the story of Bill Docherty in "Beyond Courage" by Norman Franks. He records the shooting down of Flt/Sgt W Docherty in Spitfire ES306,coded "T" He was on a sortie to bomb a factory at Ulcinj on the Albanian coast and was hit by flak when he left the target and went down to strafe road transport. He was captured later when he came to a river mouth as an Allied Cant506B arrived to find him, The Cant pilot needed some persuasion to go closer but the pilot broke away and went out to sea.The 2 escort Spitfires were then attacked by Me109s and one of them was shot down. He was rescued later by a Walrus but when they went to where Docherty had been seen he had gone,
    Regards
    Dick

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    Hello,

    Your Australian, SEERY, is: AUS413435 F/S (Bomb Aimer) Francis John SEERY RAAF, who was the sole survivor of No.460 Sqn RAAF Lancaster III JB607, lost on 29/30-12-1943 (BCL4/442).

    For more on Seery, see:

    http://www.ozatwar.com/460sqdn/jb607.htm

    NB. They have got the camp wrong. Seery was in Stalag IV-B Muhlberg (Elbe). Francis Seery passed away on 8-11-2004 at Bankstown Hospital, NSW, aged 83.

    Col.
    Last edited by COL BRUGGY; 20th March 2014 at 23:25.

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    Fantastic! Thank you. I don,t think it was the Frank's book but I am not sure. Are there any photos of the chap in it? I will look for it on Amazon.

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    Hello,

    Suggest you take a look at :

    249 At War.
    Cull, Brian
    London:Grub Street,1997.
    pp.166, 168 & 174-6.

    Contains a detailed account of Docherty's loss, ands mentions other interesting information on his time with No. 249 Sqn.

    Col.
    Last edited by COL BRUGGY; 21st March 2014 at 03:06.

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    Thanks Cl I will look that book up as well!!

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    Default 249 at War

    Quote Originally Posted by barnsley View Post
    Thanks Cl I will look that book up as well!!
    Hi Barnsley

    Should you have trouble finding a copy of '249 at War' (out of print) I can let you have one (minus dust jacket and slight damage to bottom edge) for 10.00 plus postage, signed by author.

    If anyone else interested, I have a few more copies in similar condition.

    Brian
    briancullauthor@fsmail.net

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