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Thread: Loss of Sunderland N9045 204 Squadron 13th October 1939 Crew identification help

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    Default Loss of Sunderland N9045 204 Squadron 13th October 1939 Crew identification help

    Dear All

    I am in the latter stages of my project and am trying a last ditch attempt to fully identify this crew. I am missing full details of three which I would like help in identifying.
    The crew and passengers I have are

    F/Lt Ernest Leslie HYDE DFC 37179 RAF
    P/O William Henry TREMEAR 40270 RAF
    W/O George Dennithorn CASTLE 243919 RAF
    AC A E STRINGER 564356 RAF
    AC Albany Louis DARK 616025 RAF
    AC Walter George PERRY 565292 RAF
    AC Dennis Sinclair LLOYD 547593 RAF
    AC Reginald Cantley HOSKING 523365 RAF
    AC Cyril Charles Ambrose ATKINS 569924 RAF
    AC William Harris ARUNDELL 552304 RAF
    AC MARLES
    There were also two passengers:-
    Lt CARRAN (National Defence Corps)
    W/O Harry Crawford HALEY 355207 RAF (Station Armoury)

    1. AIR78 gives Stringer as shown, Can anyone help fill in the given names?
    2. AC Marles. I can find nothing in the ORB that hints at an initial or service number or accounts for him before or after this loss. Any ideas?
    3. Lt Carran. I am assuming the 'National defence Corps' referred to can only be the home guard, but can find no reference to any Army or RN commissioned officer with this name so any pointers there would be great.
    There were no fatalities on this flight but the aircraft was lost under the following circumstances:-
    KG-J was airborne at RAF Mount Batten at 1020 hours tasked with a search for a U-boat that had had been chasing a British ship MV Stonepool. The crew made their way to the ship’s last reported position and identified a second ship. This ship, Westmoreland passed on a range and bearing, that the crew took to be the last position of the Stonepool. The crew redirected their search but again failed to locate Stonepool. By this stage the aircraft was running low on fuel and at a position 18 miles from the Isles of Scilly was forced to alight. The aircraft came down in heavy seas and gale force winds close to a third ship. The Sunderland lost a float in the process. This ship a Dutch merchant vessel on route to New York came in close in order to rescue the crew, but in doing so collided with the bows of the Sunderland, which then began to sink. All the crew were safely rescued. They were then transferred to a RN destroyer HMS Icarus. This ship however was ordered to continue its patrol so the crew did not land until 17th October at Plymouth. A court of inquiry found the fuel consumption on the aircraft had been abnormally high due to the prevailing weather conditions.

    Last chance on this one.

    Thanks

    Chris

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    Chris,

    Unfortunately AIR78/153/1 (pg 97 of 154) only gives his surname and initials as you have them.

    Dave

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    Chris,

    Are you sure about this 'Perry' ? There were two men by that name on the squadron during the period January to March 1940 according to the 204 Sqn. Appendices (AIR 27/1211). The other man was 589430 LAC Eric Willoughby Perry whose trade was Instrument Maker. He is shown once as a passenger during a transfer flight. I am not sure which one was on board N9045.

    I found the same problems with Stringer and Marles unfortunately. As there were no injuries an AIR 81 Casualty File was never made out.

    The name of the NDC officer is difficult to read on the 204 Sqn. Form 540. It seems more like 'Carron' to me, but is definitely 'Carran' on the Form 541.

    Sorry I cannot be of more help.

    Regards,

    Martin Gleeson.

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    Hello All,
    I may (rpt, may) have reduced ‘unknown Marles’s’ to manageable numbers.

    1 The are 20 Marles in AIR 78/103/2.

    2 #1 – 3 can be discounted (all RFC (or similar)).

    3 #8 – 20 can be discounted as their numbers were not issued until after the N9045 event.

    4 This leaves us with:-
    571865 Edward Thomas Marles, b. Q4 1920, Boy Entrant 36 15-Aug-1937
    627214 James Watson Marles, b. ????, Number Block Start 1-Mar-1938
    640338 Leslie Marles, b.(prob) Q4 1920, Number Block Start 1-Mar-1938
    648562 John Marles, b. Q2 1912, Q4 1913, Q2 1920 (there are 3 x ‘John Marles’ on FREEBMD that might fit), Number Block Start 1-Mar-1938.

    Best I can do!
    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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    “ In the summer of 1939, the Territorial Army Association began to enrol ‘old soldiers’ over 45 years of age to form a National Defence Corps. ”

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    Hello All)
    Stringer, A. E., various
    1 The are 7 Stringers in TNA AIR 78/153/1 Images 96-102 with the Forenames that initialise “A E”.
    2 #1 is 26678 1 Jun 1918.
    3 #2, and 4-7, are all issued after the N9045 event
    4 This leaves us with #3. He is 564356 Stringer, A E. That number was issued at Halton to Aircraft Apprentices Entry 21. I don’t have the Start/End dates for that entry, but it was probably around 1930.
    5 If he was an Aircraft Apprentice then he would have been about 17 when he Enlisted?. If he was 17 in 1930, he would have been born around 1913?
    6 There are 7 x Stringer, A E, on FREEBMD between 1910 and 1916. Alfred/Arthur was a popular first forename. Edward was often the second forename.
    7 The answer probably lies in the Halton archives. They are not easy to access!
    Best I can do!
    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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    Very many thanks for all contributions. 204 Squadron records at the beginning of the war were very brief on detail especially with regards to recording aircrews, and even more so with airmen as opposed to officers. The only real help with identifying them comes from the appendices dating to late March 1940 when the squadron was planning its relocation from Mount Batten to Sullom Voe. It would appear the names and service numbers of the entire squadron are listed in order to plan transporting everyone. AC Marles does not appear on this list so it must be presumed he had moved on elsewhere by then. I am fairly sure he didn't go to another Sunderland Squadron (or I'd have noticed the name) but it is more then likely (if he remained in the service) that he went to another Coastal Command Squadron.

    I plumped for the Perry shown as listed but you are right I cannot be certain. There were two Perry's on 204 at the time one an instrument maker the other a Rigger. I went for the Rigger as the only two passengers as identified in the 540 are Lt Carran and W/O Haley. AC Perry was therefore aircrew, and I have not come across any instrument makers as anything other than passengers on a Sunderland. There were though certainly Riggers. I also accept there could be a completely unrelated third 'Perry'. Without personal knowledge from a relative for instance it is unlikely we will ever know.

    I don't know of any easy (or cheap) way to access the Marles service records to see if any of them were posted to 204 Squadron. What's the best way to go about that?

    Lt Carran or Carron remains a mystery. I have searched the Army Lists for October 1939 and November 1939 and the Navy list for December 1939 with no trace of either name.

    Any how thanks again and any more suggestions would be most appreciated.

    Chris

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    I would look for a WW1 Carran or Carron in army list as it appears he may have been over 45 in 1939 when NDC started

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    1919 ish Army List

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    6 There are 7 x Stringer, A E, on FREEBMD between 1910 and 1916. Alfred/Arthur was a popular first forename. Edward was often the second forename.

    One born in 1912 West Derby, Lancashire, England can be discounted as he died same year

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