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Thread: 1627274 Sgt Charles Storer Nelson, 51 Sqdn, KIA 02/03 October 1943

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    Default 1627274 Sgt Charles Storer Nelson, 51 Sqdn, KIA 02/03 October 1943

    Does anybody know anything about the life and/or service of 1627274 Sgt C.S. Nelson RAFVR, who was killed when his 51 Sqdn Halifax was shot down on the night of 02/03 October 1943? He was the rear-gunner (I think) of Halifax LW287; according to airmen.dk the aircraft was on a Gardening op but fog had made navigation difficult; it overflew Rønne harbour about midnight and was hit by flak whereupon it flew on out to sea and an explosion was seen. The crew, all lost, are commemorated at Runnymede:

    Sgt J E Nixon RAAF
    Sgt G F Austin
    Sgt J G Conner RCAF
    Sgt D MacLean
    Sgt E C Kent
    Sgt A F Simpson
    Sgt C S Nelson

    Sgt Nelson came up on another forum I'm a member of, WW2Talk, and I would have liked to contribute something to remembering him and his life - but I've drawn a blank so far.


    Cheers, Pat.

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    Hi Pat,

    Nixon crash file is open but not on line, his service file is marked not yet examined this will give details on when he joined 51 Sqn but it will take some time for it to be examined upon request and to have it put on line will cost about $75 AUSD.

    Cheers,

    John.

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    Thanks for the thought and for taking the time to check, John - in fact I had not even thought of approaching it via the Australian records, good idea.

    Cheers, Pat.

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    Dear all,

    Very interesting story -the Kiel-based Flak claim for LW287 is new to me, at present I've no additional details about the individual Flak units involved in the shooting down of the Halifax I'm afraid.

    Cheers, Theo

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    Thanks to all contributing so far - although we don't yet seem to be significantly further on, these things sometimes coalesce gradually. I'm certainly interested in the two locations - Kieler Fjord and Rønne - for the loss of LW287 and (probably) another 4-engined a/c that night. I guess if we can ID the other loss and its location that would de facto give us the location for LW287 as well.

    Also still open to any information about the LW287 crew, of course.

    Thanks again, Pat.

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    Looking at the 51sqdn ORB, it would seem that they were lost on their first op with the squadron

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    Hi Pat/Finn,

    I had a look in Theo Boiten's book Nachtjagd War Diaries and he has Halifax LW287 as being shot down by flak in Ronne harbour and exploding over the sea north of Ronne. I'll drop Theo an email to see if he can add anymore.

    Regards,

    John.

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    Hi Pat,

    I am going to Canberra over the weekend of 21/22 October I have a trip to the Archives in mind, so I could add his crash file to my list, but that won't tell me much about his service. Dave Champion might be able to tell you more on the Canadian.

    Cheers,

    John.

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    Hi,

    The details mentioned about a crash of LW287 in the sea near Rønne, Bornholm (Baltic Sea) is not confirmed. Can see it is a transcription from an old Danish magazine.

    For few years ago the wreck of a Halifax II was found near the Bülker Lighthouse, the entrance to the Kiel Fjord in Germany. The German divers Friedrich Howe and Rolf Lorenz found human remains. A stamped number on a frame, identified with 99% the aircraft to be LW287 by the British. Not 100%, so therefore it is not official. The British Embassy in Germany was informed.

    According a German report, a British aircraft (believed to be a Lancaster) was hit and shot down by flak on 2nd October 1943 - time 23:39 in the air over the Kiel Fjord in the direction Bülker Lighthouse.

    Another Source:
    Am 02.10.1943, um 23.39 Uhr, meldet die deutsche Flak den Abschuss eines Lancaster-Bombers in Höhe des Bülker Leuchtturms, mit Absturz in die Förde.
    (Quelle: Landesarchiv Schleswig).

    I am not engaged in this case, but will add a link to the German website, from where I have read the story.

    http://www.atlantis-magazin.de/content/view/187/105/

    Best regards

    Finn Buch

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    John - thanks for the kind offer, though as you say the crash details probably won't be able to add anything about his life and service. Much appreciated though.

    Finn - many thanks for the new information, and for the link (will Google a translation as my German is too weak, I'm embarrassed to say). Sounds as if this probably is LW287 and her crew.

    Cheers, Pat.

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