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    Default Whirlwind Ops

    Having (yesterday) reviewed the service file of James R. Rebbetoy (killed on Whirlwinds), I have a sudden wish to collect a bit more on RCAF personnel who flew this type. Does anyone out there have the Operational Record Books for Nos.137 and 263 Squadrons during their Whirlwind days (1940-43) ?

    I believe that James R. Coyne, DFC (RCAF) wrote an article for the CAHS Journal and shall be looking through my holdings of that publication for said article. Wingspan (July 1995) had a general article on the type. Other bibliographical references (books or articles) about either the type or the two above-noted squadrons would be welcomed.

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    Default P/O James R. Rebbetoy, RCAF

    Hi Hugh,

    Maybe you will be interested by the following information concerning the last mission of P/O Rebbetoy :

    At 10.35 h on April 25th 1943, 6 Whirlwind of the 137 Squadron took off from Manston for a Rhubard mission above Belgium. P/O Rebbetoy was F/Lt Bryan n°2 and near Tielt they sighted a train. They were ready to attack when F/Lt Bryan realized it was a Flak train. He tried to warn his n°2 not attacking this target but to no avail. P/O Rebbetoy dived and was immediately hit. The aircraft went down and inverted crashed in an inoccupied house. The pilot was instantly killed. It happened at Wijnendale near the railway track. The aircraft was a Whirlwind I (SF-G/P7058). Two German soldiers were wounded too.

    P/O Rebbetoy claimed the first Whirlwind victory of the Squadron (shared with Sgt H. O'Neil) too.

    Rgds.

    Régis

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    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Decobeck View Post
    Hi Hugh,

    Maybe you will be interested by the following information concerning the last mission of P/O Rebbetoy :

    At 10.35 h on April 25th 1943, 6 Whirlwind of the 137 Squadron took off from Manston for a Rhubard mission above Belgium. P/O Rebbetoy was F/Lt Bryan n°2 and near Tielt they sighted a train. They were ready to attack when F/Lt Bryan realized it was a Flak train. He tried to warn his n°2 not attacking this target but to no avail. P/O Rebbetoy dived and was immediately hit. The aircraft went down and inverted crashed in an inoccupied house. The pilot was instantly killed. It happened at Wijnendale near the railway track. The aircraft was a Whirlwind I (SF-G/P7058). Two German soldiers were wounded too.

    P/O Rebbetoy claimed the first Whirlwind victory of the Squadron (shared with Sgt H. O'Neil) too.

    Rgds.

    Régis
    Hi Régis,
    Thanks for the information, but one correction rebbetoy did not get 137Sq first whirlwind victory, it was the second .
    order of combats as follows :-


    15.05.42 - F/Sgt G.V.Brennan P7111 & P/O Brunet P7055 (SF-W) - Ju.88 (Dam) N.Sea

    27.05.42 - F/Sgt G.V.Brennan P7122 & P/O LaGette P7046 - Ju.88 N.Sea (actually a RAF Blenheim)

    20.06.42 - P/O C.Mercer P6972 & Sgt Ashton P7012 ( SF-V)- Do.217 (Dam) N.Sea

    06.07.42 - P/O Bartlett P7111 & Sgt Roberts P7037 - Ju.88 (Dam) N.Sea

    25.07.42 - P/O J.E.McClure P7104 & W/O R.L.Smith P7012 (SF-V ) - Ju.88 3(F)./122 N.Sea

    29.07.42 - F/Sgt J.R.Rebbetoy P7058 (SF-G) & Sgt L.O'Neill P7005 (SF-H) - Ju.88D-1 N.Sea

    Cheers
    Jerry

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    Default

    Hi Jerry,

    Details about Le Gear came from the following link;

    http://www.vac-acc.gc.ca/remembers/sub.cfm?source=collections/virtualmem/Detail&casualty=1803278

    Sorry, I don't have any details of when he joined 263 Sqn. On his arrival to the UK I would assume he went to an OTU for further training before being posted to a squadron.

    Alex

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    Default

    Alex,
    From your post #5, should this read "born October 1920"?

    Coyne, James Patrick* Sgt RCAF
    09/10/41- No J/15233
    Posted in from 55 OTU. Born in October 1930
    Regards
    Max

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    Default

    Hi Galgos,

    Thanks for that.

    Hugh,

    How easy is it to get the pilots service records? As you can see from my list I have very basic info on some of the pilots.

    Alex

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    Default Rebbetoy

    Hi Jerry,

    Thanks for the correction concerning the claim by Rebbetoy. I have another 137 Sqn Whirlwind crash in Belgium : W/O A. I. Doig made a wheels up landing at Roesbrugge-Haringe on 23/1/1943 (Whirlwind I P7054/SF-?). The aircraft was hit by the Flak from Poperinge. Do you know the individual code letter of this aircraft and the first name of the pilot (POW) ?

    Rgds.
    Régis

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    Default Can you confirm in Belgium ?

    Hello to all,

    Quote Originally Posted by Decobeck View Post
    Hi Jerry,

    Thanks for the correction concerning the claim by Rebbetoy. I have another 137 Sqn Whirlwind crash in Belgium : W/O A. I. Doig made a wheels up landing at Roesbrugge-Haringe on 23/1/1943 (Whirlwind I P7054/SF-?). The aircraft was hit by the Flak from Poperinge. Do you know the individual code letter of this aircraft and the first name of the pilot (POW) ?

    Rgds.
    Régis
    Can you confirm the crash of the Whirlwind in Belgium ? I have Police/gendarmerie reports about a crash in France that day, and very likely to be his. I also have his WO 344 file (not at hand 'cause I'm at the office now, but I'll check tonight, and he was captured in France, on 27th January (four days after he was shot down). There's also another Whirlwind crash in France on 23rd January 1943, P7095 SF-H flown by P/O A.E. BROWN. There are a few pictures of his forced-landed Whirlwind. He's buried in Ennetières-les-Avelin cemetery, just across the main runway at Lille airport (now).

    Re the list of pilots provided earlier in this thread, Musgrave was Royal Australian Air Force, and I asked his file to be digitised at the National Archives of Australia a couple of years ago, so you can have a look at it. He came down in the Channel at night in May 1943, his body was recovered on a french beach and subsequently buried at Pihen-les-Guines.

    Joss

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    Default Whirlwind Ops

    I am indebted to all who have replied - and some of you will almost certainly be punished by receiving more queries "off board" from myself. Hope I can reciprocate in some way.

  10. #10
    Malcolm Guest

    Default Another Canadian?

    To add to the list of Canadian pilots who flew with 263 Sqn on Whirlwinds:

    40678 F/L David Alexander Cummings CROOKS DFC
    KIA 01.04.1941. Son of Alexander and Ethel CROOKS, of Toronto. Ontario Canada.

    If anyone can supply any biographical details of F/L Crooks I would be very grateful.
    He had flown Battles France with the AASF and received the DFC for his efforts.

    Kind regards – Malcolm.

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