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Thread: AC2 R. McQuade, 623838, 01/01/1940, France

  1. #1
    Bart FM Droog Guest

    Default AC2 R. McQuade, 623838, 01/01/1940, France

    What caused the death of and to what unit belonged:

    Aircraftman 2nd Class Robert McQuade, RAF 623838, age unknown, 01/01/1940, Beuvry Communal Cemetery Extension, France

    Regards,

    Bart

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    McQuade was from #2 Sqn and died on active service.

  3. #3
    Bart FM Droog Guest

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    Thanks, Henk!

    Regards,

    Bart

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    hello,

    Sorry to join this thread so late, but I've lost my internet access at home and can only rely on an occasionnal access from the office.

    In pages 58-59 of "Second to none the History of No. II (AC) Squadron Royal Air Force 1912-1992", author Hans Onderwater mentions the accidental death of two airmen, "while the Squadron was sharing Abbeville aerodrome with No. 26 Squadron, with its billets around "La Tricquerie", a castle north of the field".

    In one case, an airman was "killed in the flames when a petrol lamp exploded".

    In the second case, the airman "shot himself beside the village square the morning he was due to return to England for a short spell of leave."

    The author gives a detailed explanation of the circumstances, both "touchy" to mention here, and also quite lenghty, but ends by mentioning that this airman was buried in a cemetery near the airfield. The problem is that no name is given for either airmen.

    As Robert McQuade is buried in Beuvry, near Béthune (in the Pas-de-Calais), 20 km from my home, in my research area, I'm interested in him. Until this thread, I didn't have a clue about his unit. But the fact is that Beuvry is indeed quite far from Abbeville-Drucat airfield.

    I know we've had at least a thread recently on the subject of suicides of servicemen. I'm not intending to judge anybody, but can someone confirm if Robert McQuade was the airman killed in the explosion of the petrol lamp, or if he committed suicide ? Who is the second 2 Squadron airman ? No name given either in the Roll of Honour in the appendices section of the book.

    Thanks in advance

    Joss

  5. #5
    Bart FM Droog Guest

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    Joss,

    If you can provide me with the dates on which 2 Squadron was based at Abbeville aerodrome I might produce some names of men who could be the second man from the Squadron.

    Regards,

    Bart

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    hello Bart,

    According to the book (I didn't cross-checked with Jefford's) No. 2 Squadron was based at Abbeville from 29th September 1939 to 10th May 1940 (with detachments to other airfields).

    Hans Onderwater being Dutch as you are, perhaps can you reach him and ask him ? I'm sure he has the answer and might reply.

    Joss

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    Bart,

    Jefford's 2nd edition has:

    29 Sep 39 to Abbeville/Drucat
    Feb 40 dets at Senon, Ronchin, Labuissiere
    15 May 40 to Labuissiere

    Errol

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    hello,

    I was in Kew yesterday and checked No. 2 Squadron ORB (AIR 27/19). I couldn't find any mention about the death of Robert McQuade.

    Even if the real circumstances of the death of the airman were "camouflaged" as explained by Hans Onderwater in his book, I'm surprised that there's absolutely no mention about it. I've made digital pictures of the form 540s and will come back to it later. Perhaps did I miss it...

    I've seen that despite being based at Abbeville-Drucat, there are frequent mentions of Béthune. There was an Advanced Landing Ground nearby, in La Buissière, sometimes used by the crews. As Beuvry is a village situated by Béthune, that may explain why McQuade was buried there.

    I hope someone will be able to add details about this, I'm more and more puzzled.

    Joss

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    Default Re: AC2 R. McQuade, 623838, 01/01/1940, France

    Coming back to this Robert McQuade was from Glasgow - So he is on ScotlandsPeople (I have no credits) for his birth and death - I don't know if Service Returns mentioned cause

    Death

    MCQUADE
    ROBERT
    18
    1940
    156/AF 176
    Service Returns

    Birth

    MCQUADE
    ROBERT
    M
    1921
    644/17 892
    Gorbals


    The other airman was William Sankey #639683


    http://www.rafcommands.com/database/...hp?qnum=108323


    McQuade is Died on Active Service, Sankey is not mentioned

    I think based on Second to None by Hans Onderwater who says teh Serviceman who was killed by is own had was 'the first casualty' then it implies Sankey - But McQuade is NOT in roll of honour for the book!

    I would to nail this 100% as I still have my doubts

    Thanks Paul

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    Default Re: AC2 R. McQuade, 623838, 01/01/1940, France

    Any service return is a waste of time, they read things like : killed inaction, presumed killed in action, died , died of wounds, one random one I've picked has 16 men on it, and only for one POW in Germany dies it have influenza, all the others Kia, dow, died, etc

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