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Thread: Edward Francis Hughes - 2210463

  1. #11
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    Hi Simon, are you sure that's him? According to his service records and the commonwealth war graves website he was a flight sergent. Or is that the same as a flight engineer?

  2. #12
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    Jeff, I found it!!! Thank you so much this will be really helpful!

  3. #13
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    Flight Sergeant was his rank, flight engineer was his trade or skill.


    A Flight Sergeant could be a pilot, a navigator, a flight engineer, a gunner, a ground based engine fitter, a clerk, cook etc.

    The day you joined the RAF you became the rank of Aircraftman and they sent you for basic training, at some point they then decided, he would be good at flying airplanes or he would be good at peeling spuds. And then you got your RAF 'trade', anything from spud peeling to dropping bombs on folks. Any of these roles could be carried out by any rank as you moved up the rank structure. Aircrew did have from 1941 onwards a minimum rank of Sergeant to be on operations.

    Probably, Air Vice Marshalls weren't peeling spuds.

    Rank structure is here:
    http://www.military.cz/british/air/war/ranks.htm
    Dennis Burke
    - Dublin

    Foreign Aircrew and Aircraft Ireland 1939-1945
    www.ww2irishaviation.com

  4. The Following User Says Thank You to dennis_burke For This Useful Post:

    ClaireTun (16th July 2019)

  5. #14
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    Claire,
    His job, as a member of the crew, was that of Flight Engineer. He looked after the engines, and much of the mechanical bits of the aircraft.
    His Rank, as a member of the RAFVR, was that of Flight Sgt (i.e. the badges he wore on his upper sleeve were 3 chevrons surmounted by a crown). A Flight Sgt was a very senior NCO (Non Commissioned Officer).
    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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    ClaireTun (16th July 2019)

  7. #15
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    I wish I'd talked to my grandma more about him when she was alive. She was very open about the fact she was married before she married my grandad (just not when my grandad was around :-)). Sadly they were only married for three months before he was killed in action. She used to say to me that she got a letter to say he was missing in action presumed dead and that she often wondered what would happen if he walked up the path 50 years later. Bless her. Thanks all for the information, you've been really helpful. I suspect I'll never find out how they met or where but it's been an interesting journey researching him.

  8. #16
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    I forgot to ask, before joining 159 Sqn in 1945 Edward is listed in Unit 231 Group. Is a group the same as a squadron?

  9. #17
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    Claire

    I have a lot of information regarding Flight Engineer training if you are interested.

    If you are, please send me an e-mail (you can find my address my clicking on my user name in the top left hand corner of this post)

    Regards

    Pete
    Main areas of research:

    - CA Butler and the loss of Lancaster ME334 (http://rafww2butler.wordpress.com/ )
    - Aircrew Training (Basic / Trade / Operational / Continuation / Conversion)
    - The History of No. 35 Squadron (1916 - 1982) (https://35squadron.wordpress.com/)

    [Always looking for copies of original documents / photographs etc relating to these subjects]

  10. #18
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    Clare,
    A Squadron was a Unit of aircraft (and air/ground-crews) carrying out a specific type of task (Fighter, Bombers, Reconnaissance, Air-Sea-Rescue, Transport, Special Duties(SD), etc, etc,).

    A Group was a collection of Stations, Squadrons, Units, etc, all doing (roughly) the same sort of task(s). The Stations in a Group may not, necessarily, have been geographically ‘grouped’ (but many were).

    231 Group had a short life. (following from Malcolm’s excellent RAFWEB – q.v.).
    It finally formed at Belvedere, Calcutta on 12 December 1943 in Strategical Air Force, assuming executive control on 15 December. On 1 June 1945 it was regrouped to command RAF squadrons of the disbanded Allied Strategic Air Force. It ceased operations on 1 August, by which time it had no units assigned and the HQ began to move to the Cocos Islands, but this was cancelled as the result of the Japanese surrender and it disbanded on 30 September 1945.

    It was, clearly, given an SD role (dropping troops/’agents’/’spooks’/supplies(weapons, ammo, explosives, etc)) to BLUE Spec Forces who had previously been inserted into RED-land.

    I have to assume that KL671 was a bog-standard Liberator VIII? Therefore we don’t do any Agent dropping? The supply dropping must have been by containers (whether with parachutes?) from the bomb-bays. I’ve done a considerable amount of work in the past on the aerial delivery of personnel and stores. I’ve never delivered stores from the bomb-bays of a bomber aircraft. That sounds like good fun – provided the ‘stores’ will stand the landing impact!!!
    HTH
    Peter Davies
    Last edited by Resmoroh; 16th July 2019 at 13:45.
    Meteorology is a science; good meteorology is an art!
    We might not know - but we might know who does!

  11. #19
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    Hello All,
    The times/places in:-

    Liberator VIII KL671 took off from Jessore at 0830 and failed to return. Believed to have reached the target, but unable to make the drop because of bad weather, at about 1430 was seen by the inhabitants of the village of Bigaing, South of Magwe, flying west through a heavy storm and completely enveloped in flames. It suddenly dived into the ground, crashing 100 yards east of the village on the west bank of the Irrawaddy (at position 1920N-9510E) do not easily ‘compute’.

    I have “flown” this sortie a number of times on FSX (I have used modern aviation systems in order to be able to replicate (as best I can) what they might have done at the time). I used GMT as my time base in order not to be snared by local times!! I cruised the Liberator at 195kts (as given in the ‘net).

    Basically, Take-Off was 0330Z. Time over the imputed DZ (Intersection FN36 18 55.33N 96.24.17E) was 0600Z(1200L). The time looks right – apart from the fact that you don’t normally do clandestine drops in broad daylight. If the a/c can see the DZ, then the DZ (and those enemy around it?) can see the a/c?. KL671 then turns for home, following roughly the same track as outward. The Impact is at 19 21.22N 95 11.38E (or thereabouts). “Flown” calculations show this would have been reached at 0623Z. FSX gives the Local Time here as 1223 – full 2 hours, or more, before the local impact time of “about 1430”.

    Now either we have a time zone problem (not the first – and don’t know whether they changed between end WW2 and the programming of FSX?) or, KL671 spent either 1 hr “stooging about” looking for the DZ – or 2 hrs!!! Either would have alerted not only the enemy ground forces, but also their air forces – not a very good idea from a survival point of view.

    This does not get the original poster any further forward, but if anybody wants my figures to have a “play” with then just PM me!!

    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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