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Thread: P/O Cameron Ferguson #43033 (help with records)

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    Default P/O Cameron Ferguson #43033 (help with records)

    Greetings,
    I have finally received the records (see 2 image links below) for my great Uncle Cameron Archibald Ferguson (previous thread here)

    Could someone please help me decipher them I am having a difficult time understanding the records provided by the RAF.

    Thank you in advance for your support,

    Best Regards,


    Phil

    Record Image 1
    Record Image 2

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    Phil, Hi,
    So what acronyms/short-forms can you not translate? If you list the ones you don't know, I'll have a go at translating 'em!
    HTH
    Peter Davies.
    Meteorology is a science; good meteorology is an art!
    We might not know - but we might know who does!

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    Hey Pete,

    I think I have decryptes most of it but I dont understand the authority column for image 1 and what does RTU stand for...Returned to Unit?

    Here is my sunmmary of the records provided thus far for anyone interested (im still working on figuring out what Squadron he was assigned to in Africa and how he got there):

    Flight School / Unit Training Provided Location Aircraft Types Flown by Cam Date Effective
    Initial training provided an induction for cadets to RAF service. Ground instruction also formed the basis for flying training. Topics included mathematics, navigation, and the principles of flying.
    Initial Training School Ground School White Waltham N/A
    Ground School
    11 Sept1939
    Training School / Unit No.1 Ground School Cambridge N/A
    Ground School
    18 Sept 1939
    During basic training at Elementary Training Schools pupils learnt the basics of how to fly in aircraft and flew their first solo flight.
    Elementary Flight Training School /
    No. 2
    Yatesbury Hawker Hart/Audax
    23 Oct 1939
    Advanced training at Service Flying Training Schools introduced pupils to more powerful aircraft. Cam graduated 29 April 1941 from FTS graded average/competent with a grade of 74.6%
    Service Flying Training Yatesbury Miles Master 23 March 1940
    Injured Playing Organized Sports. Fractured middle of right humerus, consistent with picture of him with arm in sling. 21 September 1940
    Service Flying Training / Unit 9 Hullvington Miles Master 3 March 1941
    Qualified pilots were sent to Operational Training Units to make them ready for front-line duties.
    Operational Training / Unit No.52 This was formed at Debden on 25 March 1941 to train day fighter pilots using Hurricanes Debden Hawker Hurricane 6 May 1941
    HQ RAF North Africa MA'ATEN BAGUSH, Egypt 20 June 1941
    KIA During Communications Flight
    Bir El-Talatha, Lysander Mk I R2649 14 December 1941*

    *I suspect his actual death was on 9 December 1941 as only 1 kill is registered against a Lysander in the North African Theater for a period of ~14 days and the timing appears to be very close. It was not uncommon to not report pilots MIA for a few days as sometimes they turned up days later from the desert. Regardless his death would have occurred in the early days of Operation Crusader.

    The kill is claimed by Uffz. Johann Niederhoefer in Bfe 109 (A German Ace who survived the war but crashed in 1943 and never flew again) who reported the Lysander kill being South - South East of El Adem. This location is consistent with where the burnt out wreckage of his plane was found Lysander Mark I R2649 just outside of Bir-El Thalata.

    He was buried on the crash site and the RAF attempted to locate it in July 1948 to reclaim his body unfortunately they were never able to find the crash site again. As such he is remembered on Column 241 of the Alamein memorial to the Missing, see: https://www.cwgc.org/find-war-dead/c...ibald-gustave/
    From what Estelle McCraw (formerly Ferguson) told me she was informed by the RAF that he was flying back to the second lines for rest during the holidays. I believe he was flying orders back to HQ and getting ready to take some leave for the holidays, he would have departed near the front lines or

    Thanks again,


    Phil

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    Additionally is there anyway to trace what squadron he was assigned to in the end? Its not clear on his records and but we do know he was Flying:
    Is it possible to trace the aircraft to a unit or sqadron? Im just trying to put together the last few pieces of the puzzle, any help is appreciated.

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    Phil, Hi,

    You are right: RTU = Return(ed) To Unit.

    Everybody in the RAF always had to be somewhere! Very few Formed Units were totally independent. Their personnel relied on the Station at which they were located, or attached, for such things as Pay, Rations, Sick Quarters, etc, etc. Each Unit/Station had an approved establishment of the number of people. Each Station issued regular Station Routine Orders (SRO) – once or twice a week (sometimes more often on the bigger Stations).

    At the end of the SRO (usually on a weekly basis) would be the Personnel Occurrence Report (POR). This listed the formal authority for, say, Cpl Bloggs to be a paid Sgt and/or Attached to a nearby Station for a short course. All the other Sections (Messes, SSQ, etc,) on the Station would thus be aware of the change in Bloggs’ status/circumstances. Each of the PORs issued on a Station had a successive number. These numbers ran from 1 Jan to 31 Dec each year. Thus POR 1/41 – et seq - would be the first POR issued at that Station in 1941.

    The ‘Authority Col’ on your man’s docs is simply the formal reference number of the POR on which the change of status/circumstances were announced at whatever Station he was serving at the time. Very few SROs have survived. Consequently, very few PORs have survived.

    HTH

    Peter Davies
    Meteorology is a science; good meteorology is an art!
    We might not know - but we might know who does!

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    Hello

    I would suggest http://discovery.nationalarchives.go...ils/r/C7160690

    but with no certainty at all.

    Otherwise this unit would have been promising, but according to the catalogue, the ORB starts in April 1942. http://discovery.nationalarchives.go...ils/r/C7159025
    Your parent may have belonged to the communication unit that preceded that one.

    He's not showing up in the AIR 81 "casualty packs" released so far. This would have been a really good pick for your research.

    Good luck

    Joss

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    Thanks Joss,
    I have requested the paperwork and will post what I learn.

    Best Regards,


    Phil

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    So I followed up on both Joss's suggestion and the National Archives got back to me that nothing came up for Cameron and or Lysander R2647...The search continues, never thought it would be this difficult to track down what unit he was last assigned to. Any additional suggestions on where to look?

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    Do you understand that a Head Quarters is a unit that personnel can be posted to?

    You have his service record showing the postings - you have the F1180 showing the unit of the Lysander - you have the precis of the Casualty File from the RAFAHB.

    As I see it his posting, the on charge unit of the Lysander and the summary of his individual casualty report are known to you so there is really nowhere else to look.

    Ross
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