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Thread: Nightfighter attack on 428 Sqn Halifax LK908 22/10/43

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    Default Nightfighter attack on 428 Sqn Halifax LK908 22/10/43

    I'm currently trying to find out more information concerning a nightfighter attack on a 428 Sqn Halifax V, LK908, on the night of the 22/10/43. The aircraft took off from Middle St George at 17.17 on an operation to Kassel. The crew at this time were:

    1049445 Sgt Sykes E J (P)
    1020731 Sgt Graham T
    R154103 Sgt Ovendon C
    R53177 Sgt Nule A C (could be Jule, typing in ORB is unclear) (FE)
    1127272 Sgt Bibby G H
    1821792 Sgt Stuart P (MUG)
    R169994 Sgt Clemenhagen W (RG)

    The crew were on their 6th operation, the pilot on his 7th. The squadron ORB describes their operation as follows:

    "Primary target bombed on time from a height of 20 000'. Bombing results unknown, but thought to be good. Rear guner killed, mid-upper gunner injured. Navigator acute shock. Bombed target on PFF. Battle damage forced aircraft down to 15 000', no equipment failure: however flak damage to aircraft in target area. Landed at Snetterton Heath".

    The aircraft landed at 23.30.

    The pilot recoded in his log book:

    "D.C.O. Kassel. 3 fighter attacks. Coned. Rear gunner killed. Kite badly shot up. Crash land Snetterton Heath"

    He later added:

    "R/G "had it", hit in first attack. 2nd bash from flank. 3rd "belly rake". Engineer hit. 2 small fires. MUG trapped in turret. Oxygen U/S. Hydraulics burst. Rudder U/S. A.C "fell" from 21 000' to 10 000' out of control.

    Commissioned 24/10/43. Sgt Jule F/E & Sgt Stuart MUG awarded DFM". (The last line appears to relate to this operation)

    Would anyone happen to have any further details of this attack, specifically is there any record of where & when in the evening it took place & what was the other aircraft involved? In addition, would anyone happen to have details of the FE & MUG's DFM citations which might shed more light on what happened inside that aircraft during & after the attack?

    Any further information or advice would be greatly appreciated.

    Many thanks

    Rich

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    Rich

    F/E was Rule (BCL Vol.4) No award of any sort. (Maton - Honour the Air Forces)
    Sgt. Peter Stuart (1821792) Immediate award
    Sorties 5 Flying Hours 36
    .......At about 21.10 hours just after leaving the target was attacked by an enemy fighter and the rear gunner was injured. Sgt. Stuart fired 3 bursts at a fighter and drove it off. Immediately afterwards, the a/c was attacked again and Sgt. Stuart carriedon firing and giving evasive action although his oxygen supply had been cut off. The pilot ordered the crew to prepare to abandon the aircraft, butSgt. Stuart's seat release had been jammed so he continued to give evasive action when another fighter approached. The fighter was also evaded. Sgt. Stuart's seat was then released and, still without oxygen, he went back to assist the rear gunner and put out a fire in the turret.

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    Hello,

    The Flight Engineer was; R/53177 Sgt Andrew Campbell YULE RCAF.

    Here is what Ian Tavender has to say:

    Distinguished Flying Medal.

    YULE, Andrew Campbell. Can/R.53177 Sergeant, R.C.A.F., No.428 (RCAF) Sqn. Immediate.
    L.G. 14/12/1943. Sorties 15, Flying hours 102.05 . Flight Engineer. Air2/5020.

    Sergeant Yule was Flight Engineer in an aircraft detailed to carry out a bombing sortie against Kassel on the night of 22nd/23rd October, 1943. At about 21.10 hours, just after leaving the target, the aircraft was attacked by an enemy fighter and the rear gunner was injured. Sergeant Yule went back to assist the gunner and was himself wounded in both arms and the hip when the fighter attacked again. Despite his wounds, he insisted in carrying on and did his duties until the aircraft had landed. Sergeant Yule has taken part in a large of difficult operational sorties. He has always shown great spirit and fortitude. His keenness and enthusiasm have at all times been an inspiration for his fellow crew members.

    27th October, 1943.

    Remarks by Station Commander.

    This N.C.O. has consistently displayed a high degree of courage and devotion to duty during his operational tour. l consider that this, combined with his conduct during the incident referred to above merit recognition of the Distinguished Flying Medal.

    See:
    The Distinguished Flying Medal Register for the Second World War with Official Recommendation Details. Vol.II. K-Z.
    Tavender,Ian
    London:Savannah Publications,2000.
    pp.1041-2

    Col.
    Last edited by COL BRUGGY; 16th September 2014 at 12:18.

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    John / Col,

    Thank you ever so much for your lightning fast responses & the information provided. It really is appreciated & goes a long way to forming a complete picture of what happened that night.

    Many thanks again

    Rich

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    Hello Rich,

    Here's a NF claim that could well fit the incident, I've no other bomber losses that tie in with this claim:

    Uffz. Heinz Oberheide: 3 4./NJG3 Halifax 15 km. E. Kassel: 5.900 m. 21.10

    Cheers, Theo

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    Hello Theo,

    Many thanks for researching & posting that for me, it really is most appreciated.

    Cheers

    Rich

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