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Thread: RAF loss on the German coast, 8 February 1942

  1. #1
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    Feb 2009
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    Default RAF loss on the German coast, 8 February 1942

    Hello, I found this entry in the English traduction of the War Diary of the German Naval Staff Operations Division for Februayr 1942:
    (8 February 1942)
    "In the Hubert Gat, harbor patrol vessel "602" shot down an enemy plane during a low-level attack. While crashing, the plane tore the ship's signal bridge overboard. 1 man was killed and 2 were badly wounded."

    A check of RAF casualties that day show heavy losses for RAF Coastal Command (4 men of 48 Sqn, 1 of 53, 2 of 248, 4 of 407 and 4 of 500). From these 15 men, I suspect that the two of 248 Sqn were the ones lost in the above incident, because one, Sgt Leonard Newall Brown, is buried in Kiel War Cemetery, Germany, while the other, Belgian Sgt Paul Antoine Van de Walle De Ghelcke, is commemorated on the Runnymede Memorial. According to what I found on the Internet, the Belgian airman was posted missing that day while flying aboard Beaufighter IIf T4476, but no other name or location was given.

    Can someone confirm that the Beaufighter IIf T4476 of 248 Sqn was the aircraft shot down by the above patrol vessel, and that the crew were Sgt Leonard Newall Brown (pilot) and Sgt Paul Antoine Van de Walle De Ghelcke (navigator) ?

    I am also interested to know if this flight so close of the German coast was usual for Coastal Command or was linked to the Fuller operation and the laying of mines off the Frisian Islands on the 6th and 7th on the probable escape path of German warships in Brest. From the German war diary above, it is clear that there was a great activity by German minesweepers in the area (as the British mine laying operation was reported) and I wonder if 248 Sqn (and maybe other Coastal Command units) were tasked to interfere with this minesweeping ?

    Thanks in advance

  2. #2
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    Oct 2008
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    I think you mean 248 Sqn Beaufighter IC T4776, not T4476.

    Last edited by COL BRUGGY; 6th February 2018 at 10:35.

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