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Thread: German in the RAF

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    Default German in the RAF

    Todays Sunday Express (I saw it in the pub) had a feature relating to James Bond films: part of the story came from a man involved in their production, named, if I remember correctly, Ken Clark, described as '...the only German flying for the RAF...' during WWll. A photograph and caption placed him as a Typhoon pilot around D-Day.

    ???

    Bruce

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    Default Ken Adam

    hello,

    His surname is Adam, Ken Adam. I've met him twice, at No. 609 (WR) Squadron reunions. He flew Typhoons with the Squadron in 1944-45. Actually, his brother flew Typhoons with No. 183, both Squadrons being in the same Wing after the fall of 1944. So they were at least two. His brother was still alive a few years ago, in New-Zealand. He published his memoirs but I don't remember the title. Hopefully someone will.

    His real name was Klaus Adams, he was nicknamed "Heinie" in the Squadron. He the changed his name to Ken Adam. He was born in Germany but his family being Jewish, they escaped in the mid 30es.

    Ken got two Oscars : both as "set decorator" (If I have the right expression). If my memory serves me well, one for his job in "Barry Lindon" the second for "the madness of King George" but I stand to be correct. He's quite famous for his part in the James Bond movies, like the vilain's cache in "your only live twice".

    Lot of stuff with him through a google search.

    Joss

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    Default German in the RAF

    Hi Bruce,

    Actually there were quite a few German born people serving with the RAF during WW2.
    101 Squadron Bomber Command was equiped with the ABC radio jamming system, and an eighth crew member was carried to operate it on their Lancasters. The 'Special Operator' had to have a knowledge of German in order to jam the German fighter controller's messages. Several of the 'Spec Ops' who served on the Squadron were Germans, and one or two were German Jews and they were very brave men indeed. Imagine what would have happened to them if they had been shot down and captured.

    Peter

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    Default

    Many thanks, Joss. I didn't have time to read the article, which was about Bond films, but the caption was intriguing. I knew someone here would have the rest of the story. Now that you have given me the correct name, I will Google him.

    Peter, yes I was aware of the occasional Spec Op, and I couldn't agree more with your view of their bravery. I believe they did suffer losses but have not heard of the individuals fate.

    Likewise, there can be no doubt that Ken Adams knew the extra risk he faced. The posting of a German-born Jewish Typhoon pilot to a squadron engaged in the Normandy campaign, fighting over German-held territory, is worthy of at least a footnote in the history of the war.


    Regards,
    Bruce

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    Name: SCHWARZ, HANS HEINZ

    Rank: Flight Sergeant (Air Gnr.)
    Regiment/Service: Royal Air Force Volunteer Reserve
    Unit Text: 101 Sqdn.
    Age: 19
    Date of Death: 13/08/1944
    Service No: 1876107
    Additional information: (Served as BLAKE) Son of Erich and Elli Schwarz, of Cricklewood, Middlesex.
    Casualty Type: Commonwealth War Dead
    Grave/Memorial Reference: Joint grave 6. E. 8.
    Cemetery: HEVERLEE WAR CEMETERY

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    Default Another German on crew

    one of the crew of Sunderland DW110 was named originally Maurice Gougenheim - he was of Jewish and german ancestry, family changed their name prior to the outbreak of WW2 to Gillingham, which made tracking his family down a bit difficult but we managed.

    Dyan

  7. #7
    Jim M Guest

    Default Not only in the RAF..

    German and/or European Jewish refugees served in the British Army as well. One unit, 21 Independent Parachute Company, (pathfinder company for the British 1st Airborne Division) was made up of many German and European Jewish refugees. One famous member of 21 IPC was John Peter Rodley, who jumped into Holland on 17 September 1944 with 21 Independent Parachute Company. He was killed in Oosterbeek (a suburb of Arnhem) on 21 September 1944 and is buried at the Airborne Cemetery in Oosterbeek. Rodley's real name was Hans Peter Rosenfeld.

  8. #8
    Wilco ww2awards Guest

    Default

    A very well known and decorated German in the RAF:
    Czernin, Manfred Maria Edmund Ralph Beckett

    http://www.ww2awards.com/person/36407

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    Default

    Czernin also served in SOE - his cousin Peter was a LtColonel with the SD/Gestapo

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    Default Sir Ken Adam's RAF service number?

    Quote Originally Posted by jossleclercq View Post
    hello,

    His surname is Adam, Ken Adam. I've met him twice, at No. 609 (WR) Squadron reunions. He flew Typhoons with the Squadron in 1944-45. Actually, his brother flew Typhoons with No. 183, both Squadrons being in the same Wing after the fall of 1944. So they were at least two. His brother was still alive a few years ago, in New-Zealand. He published his memoirs but I don't remember the title. Hopefully someone will.

    His real name was Klaus Adams, he was nicknamed "Heinie" in the Squadron. He the changed his name to Ken Adam. He was born in Germany but his family being Jewish, they escaped in the mid 30es.

    Ken got two Oscars : both as "set decorator" (If I have the right expression). If my memory serves me well, one for his job in "Barry Lindon" the second for "the madness of King George" but I stand to be correct. He's quite famous for his part in the James Bond movies, like the vilain's cache in "your only live twice".

    Lot of stuff with him through a google search.

    Joss
    I am trying to find out what his RAF Service Number was but am unable???

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