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Thread: Looking for information on Halifax II JB801 and JB785

  1. #1
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    Default Looking for information on Halifax II JB801 and JB785

    Hi All,

    I am part of a team planning a memorial for 6 allied aircraft which crashed in the municipality of Giessenlanden in the Netherlands. Four of these were American planes and two of these aircraft were Halifax II bombers. I am looking for more info on the crew and mission. So far we only have a photo of one of the crew and we are also hoping to find more relatives of these crewmembers. Sofar we found the relatives of one of the crew.

    JB785, 12/6/1943 , Mission Münster, shot down by Hauptman Werner Baake. Crashed near Giessenburg.
    Crew:
    P/O George Racine Herbert KIA
    F/S E. Cassingham KIA
    F/S F. Greenwood KIA
    Sgt RH. Boone KIA
    Sgt RH. Makin POW
    P/O AV. Wallace POW
    Sgt F. Stewart KIA

    For this plane we don't have not a lot of information apart from eyewitness accounts and a photo of the German pilot responsible for shooting down the JB785.

    JB801, 14/7/1943, Mission Aachen, shot down by Oberfeldwebel Karl Heinz Scherfling, crashed near Giessenburg
    Crew:
    W/O Peter Horrocks KIA
    Sgt Wyndham Hadrian Harries KIA
    F/O Charles Douglas Hosken KIA
    Sgt Arthur Stanley Jelfs KIA
    Sgt Jack Chaplin KIA
    Sgt Geoffrey Bowden KIA
    Sgt Richard William Rouse KIA

    For this plane we have found more info like photo's of the wreck and the pilot and parts recovered after the crash like a Directional Gyro and a flare gun. But more info on the crew like photo's and mission details would be great

    Here is the link to an article about our project ( in Dutch)

    https://www.hetkontakt.nl/alblasserw...-giessenlanden

    I have also made a facebook group for the project where we post found data on.

    https://www.facebook.com/groups/681983018491738/

    The goal is to have a memorial unveiled on May 5th 2015 so we still have some time left.

    thanks for your help

    Sincerely
    Peter den Tek
    Giessenlanden Memorial

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    Hello

    One of your PoWs was Robert Hubert Makin, service number 1453320, from his PoW questionnaire in the WO 344 series at Kew.

    He was born on 23 February 1923, joined in June 1941, and was an accountant clerk before he joined the R.A.F.. He was a member of No. 35 Squadron when he was shot down.

    His wartime address was "Grange View", Common Road, Newton-le-Willows, Lancashire.

    He puts his place of capture as "Gorinchem, Holland", on 11th June 1943. He was wounded when he was captured.

    He went to Amsterdam Hospital from 13th to 20th June 1943, then Dulag Luft Frankfurt from 20th June to 7th July, Stalag Luft 6 Heydekrug from 7th July 1943 to 7th July 1944, Stalag Luft 4 in Gross Tychow up to 6th February 1945, then Stalag 357 in Fallingbostel 2nd until 15th April 1945.

    He escaped from a marching party leaving Stalag 357 for Middle Germany, but recaptured and taken to Stalag XIB.

    Hope this helps.

    Joss

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    Peter

    I can provide information regarding the 35 squadron aircraft (JB785) and the previous operational sorties undertaken by the crew if that is of any help to you.

    Regards

    Pete
    Main areas of research:

    - CA Butler and the loss of Lancaster ME334 (http://rafww2butler.wordpress.com/ )
    - Aircrew Training (Basic / Trade / Operational / Continuation / Conversion)
    - The History of No. 35 Squadron (1916 - 1982) (https://35squadron.wordpress.com/)

    [Always looking for copies of original documents / photographs etc relating to these subjects]

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    Hello ,

    72 aircraft , 29 Lancasters,22 Halifaxes and 21 Stirlings were dispatched on this raid.All the aircraft were provided by 8 Group and it was really a mass H2S trial. 33 of the aircraft carried markers or flares the remaining aicraft acting as the bombing force, altough the marker aircraft also bombed. The marking and bombing were very accurate and the whole raid lasted less than 10 minutes.Photografic reconnaissance showed that much damage was done to railwaystations in Münster as well as to the housing areas.132 buildings were destroyed , 317 seriously damaged and 52 people were killed.
    5 aircraft , 2 Halifaxes , 2 Lancasters and 1 Stirling were lost
    Source:The Bomber Command War Diaries


    16 aircraft from 35 sqdn took part in this mission , 2 were missing ( DT805 ) 4 aircraft returned early due to icing conditions. It was Oblt Baake second victory

    18 aircraft from 78 sqdn took part in this mission , 3 went missing ( JD108/JD175. It was Scherfling 10th victory.

    Source : ORB from both squadrons

    Regards

    Alain

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    Hello Joss,

    This is great! Thanks for this info, it corresponds with an account in a diary I received from a local yesterday and now we know who he was!

    In Dutch:

    Twee bemanningsleden waren per parachute geland, waaronder een ge-wonde. Deze werd in het Gorkums ziekenhuis zo lang mogelijk “verpleegd“ om z’n verblijf te rekken tot de bevrijding, hetgeen echter niet lukte, zodat hij toch krijgsgevangene werd

    Translated
    Two crewmembers landed by parachute of which one was wounded. He was hospitalized in Gorinchem as long as possible till our liberation ( Note Peter: Very optimistic) . However this didn't happen so he became a prisoner of war.


    Would you also have info on the other crewmember who survived A.V Wallace. On internet it is mentioned he was captured at Turnhout which is Belgium and more than 80 kilometers from where he landed.

    Thanks for your help again.

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    Thanks Alain so the rail infrastructure were the target. I was wondering what it was , now we can add it to the rest of the data we have.

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    Pete that would be great. For the JB785 we have the least info of the six planes.

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    Hello

    No I just happened to have Makin's PoW questionnaire, as I was checking another airman in the same volume.

    I don't have Wallace's, but it should be in WO 344/331/1 at the National Archives in Kew, London.

    Joss

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    Peter

    Halifax JB785

    No 35 Squadron Operations Record Book records that Halifax MKII JB785 was delivered by Ferry Pilot from 32 Maintenance Unit, RAF St Athan on 23rd March 1943.

    It was built by English Electric Co Ltd as part of a batch of 350 aircraft under Contract No ACFT/1808.

    It was utilised in the following operations:
    • 10/04/1943 Frankfurt
    • 16/04/1943 Mannheim
    • 18/04/1943 Spezia
    • 20/04/1943 Stettin
    • 27/05/1943 Essen
    • 11/06/1943 Munster

    The crew on 11th June 1943

    The pilot, GR Herbert (DFM) and Air Gunner AV Wallace joined No 35 Squadron from No 77 Squadron on 7th May 1943.
    As the Operations Record Books only show officer postings, it may well be that the other members of the crew were posted at the same time. Someone with the 77 Squadron ORB’s may be able to confirm this.

    Prior to the 11th June 1943 operation, the crew of Herbert, Cassingham, Greenwood, Boone, Makin, Wallace, Stewart previously flew together (with 35 Squadron) on:
    • 12/05/1943 (Halifax DT488)
    • 13/05/1943 (Halifax DT488)
    • 25/05/1943 (Halifax HR673)(excluding Cassingham and Stewart)
    • 27/05/1943 (Halifax JB785)(excluding Cassingham and Stewart)
    • 29/05/1943 (Halifax HR795)

    The loss of the aircraft

    There is some information on the reverse of the Loss Card which is, as usual, extremely difficult to read. Some of the information I would deem to be sensitive so I won't post it on here. One sections suggests Greenwood was killed in action, four were killed in the crash.

    I hope this information is useful

    Regards

    Pete
    Last edited by PeteT; 6th June 2014 at 16:28.
    Main areas of research:

    - CA Butler and the loss of Lancaster ME334 (http://rafww2butler.wordpress.com/ )
    - Aircrew Training (Basic / Trade / Operational / Continuation / Conversion)
    - The History of No. 35 Squadron (1916 - 1982) (https://35squadron.wordpress.com/)

    [Always looking for copies of original documents / photographs etc relating to these subjects]

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    Peter

    Yorkshire Air Museum have a lot of research done by the 78 Squadron historian. I will check what we have on JB801. I think we have the relevant part off 77 Sq's ORB so I will check if the whole crew transferred to 35Sq.

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