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Thread: Sqn Ldr Neville Charles Atkins 130992

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    Default Sqn Ldr Neville Charles Atkins 130992

    Neville Charles Atkins (for obvious reasons known as Tommy). on active service fron 1942 to 1946. He flew Hurricanes and later was in météorology. he married Wren in 1945 and was demobed in the UK at Bentley Priory in 1946.
    I got a query above on facebook.

    looking around, I do have the following Gazette entries.

    Number Name /Text London Gazette Details
    130992 1386396 Charles Neville ATKINS London Gazette supplement : 35804 , Dated 1942-11-27 , Download #35804
    130992 N C ATKINS London Gazette supplement : 36059 , Dated 1943-06-15 , Download #36059
    130992 C ATKINS London Gazette supplement : 36744 , Dated 1944-10-10 , Download #36744

    This matches with the above. His medal entitlement only has the 39-45 Star, Burma Star, Defence Medal and the War Medal.

    Anyone know which Squadron he served with during his Far East Stint?

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    Hello,

    Neville Charles Atkins* served on No.261 Squadron in the Far East. He also served with No.9 Squadron RIAF**, 21 Feb 1944 - ?

    From Chris Shores' Air War Over Burma, p.159:

    Wednesday, 9 February 1944.

    The Hurricanes of 261 Squadron got to 27,000 feet over Seinnyinbya then diving on nine Ki 43s seen below at about 14,000 feet. Flg Off N.C. Atkins hit one and saw an explosion on the engine, but then lost it. He then spotted it going down as he dived, and it was confirmed by pilots of 607 Squadron to have hit the ground and burnt.

    *
    https://discovery.nationalarchives.g...ls/r/C15623657 - Image 145 of 225.

    **
    http://www.bharat-rakshak.com/IAF/Da...2/9%20Squadron

    Col.
    Last edited by COL BRUGGY; 24th March 2020 at 23:05.

  3. The Following User Says Thank You to COL BRUGGY For This Useful Post:

    Jagan (24th March 2020)

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    Thanks Col, thats some story for the family to share.. the initial inquiry did not give any inkling that he had a aerial kill to his credit.

    https://discovery.nationalarchives.g...mageViewerLink Page 3 has the detail of the op based on your tip. Hurricane seems to be LB790 based on the F541

    Added Later:

    DUH - saw your reference to 9 Sqdn IAF.. should have caught that one !!
    Last edited by Jagan; 25th March 2020 at 21:04.

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    I have no idea if one of these three men is the victim of Charles Atkins, but they are the only name mentioned, for what it's worth, for 9 Feb '44 in the chronological list of Japanese Army Air Force fighter pilots killed in the war, from "Japanese Army Air Force Fighter Units and their Aces" 1931-1945" by Ikuhiko Hata, Yasuho Izawa, and Christopher Shores:

    Major TABUCHI Hajime Entry*: 40 204th Sentai 09/02/44 Buthidaung
    Sgt Maj NAGASAKI, Tomekichi Entry**: NCO84 204th Sentai 09/02/44 Buthidaung
    Cpl YAMAMOTO, Teizo Entry***Sho-10 64th Sentai 09/02/44 Arakan

    *The pilot is a graduate of Course 40, Army Military Academy, later the Army Flying Academy [I haven't researched which one Tabuchi attended.]
    **The pilot undertook his original training with the 84th intake of the NCO Cadet flying programme.
    ***Graduate of the 10th Juvenile Flying Soldier programme

    The book lists Tabuchi as the CO of the 204th from April '42 until his death. The 204th had formed in China as a training regiment and was only designated as the 204th Hiko Sentai (Flying Regiment) in February '44, the month Tabuchi died. It appears, then, that Tabuchi was the CO during the training phase, the deployment to Burma, and in the initial air combat phase.

    Buthidaung is located on the northwesternmost corner of Burma almost halfway between the Allied-held Cox's Bazar (Bazaar), India (then; now Bangladesh) and Sittwe (called Akyab by the British, at times). I have not located "Seinnyinbya", listed in the "Air War for Burma" book.

    I just went to this book, to pg 159, and there is additional info which throws up a red flag regarding Tabuchi or Nagasaki as the victim of Atkins' guns. After the info presented by Col comes this:

    "Ki 43s of the 204th Sentai were engaged with Spitfires. Maj Hajime Tabuchi, the Sentai commander, and Sgt Maj Tomekichi Nagasaki both being lost. Lt Hiroshi Gomi claimed two Spitfires shot down, one of which was on the tail of one of the chutai leaders. This blew up as he attacked, and he barely avoided flying into the explosion; it seems likely that this was Flt Sgt Mann's aircraft.

    Capt Miyabe of the 64th Sentai led seven bomb-carrying Ki 43s to the Ngakyedauk area, 2/Lt Ito spotting two Spitfires at 7,500 feet as the Japanese aircraft were bombing. He and his wingman, Cpl Teizo Yamamoto, dived after them, pursuing them at very low level. As they did so, AA fire sent Yamamoto's Ki 43 into the sea."

    So this mentions Spitfires, not Hurricanes (the fighter apparently flown by Atkins). The details from these books should be taken with a grain of salt.

    Ngakyedauk:
    20° 56' 00" N
    92° 29' 00" E

    Buthidaung:
    20.8747°N
    92.528°E
    Last edited by Matt Poole; 25th March 2020 at 13:50. Reason: Typos

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    Matt, thanks for that.. rather realized belatedly that this incident and the personalities involved from the Japanese side are rather closely associated with a query I had of an air combat from a day before!


    http://www.j-aircraft.org/smf/index.php?topic=17551.0



    Sennyinbya as per https://books.google.com/books?id=6DaEATCE1YYC seems to be 20 46 N , 92 33 E , works out to be Sein Hnyin Pyar
    Last edited by Jagan; 25th March 2020 at 21:10.

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    Thanks, Jagan.

    Sennyinbya's location (Sein Hnyin Pyar) is -- just south of Buthidaung -- makes sense. (For anyone confused by Jagan's posted map, just click on the minus sign at lower right to zoom out a few times to see a wider view of the location south of Cox's Bazar and north of Sittwe.

    Just in case there is anything of use to you, I have scanned excerpts covering 8 and 9 February 1944 from two books by the same Japanese aviation researcher and will send these to you via email.

    One is a single paragraph on the 8 February 1944 air combat in the Osprey Aircraft of the Aces book #85, entitled "Ki-43 'Oscar' Aces of World War 2" by Hiroshi Ichimura (published in 2009).

    The other, several pages in length, comes from Hiroshi's two-volume Japanese language history of the air war in Burma, where he uses a pen name, Hiroshi Umemoto: "Burma Airwar" (late 2002 publication, or early 2003, based on my correspondence with Hiroshi; I can't find the date in the printed books).

    My excerpts of Hiroshi's Japanese language work come from Volume Two. I can't read Japanese, but I can tell that pages 90 to 97 focus upon 8 and 9 Feb '44. Hiroshi also added a chronological summary, by date, listing air combats and results. The 8 and 9 Feb '44 actions appear on pages 492 and 493.

    The Japanese language book obviously will be the greater source of detail.

    Possibly, Jagan, I can help you to reach Hiroshi Ichimura, though I have lost contact with him. We had worked together on some things in the early 2000s (and his Vol 2 in Japanese has some photos and info I sent him, but I haven't been able to reach him in ages. A year or two ago I contacted Osprey, and a woman said she'd forward a message to Hiroshi. I have no idea if she did, and I never received an email reply from Hiroshi. Researcher John Stanaway has co-authored one or two books with him, and researcher Steve Blake has also worked with him, so possibly I can reconnect with either of these two men to get Hiroshi's latest contact details. My guess is that one way or another we can reach Hiroshi, eventually.

    Besides being an aviation researcher and author who knew many Japanese veterans, Hiroshi at least used to be an editor of military books and three plastic model builder's magazines. His father was on the 64th Sentai in Burma, though not as a pilot.

    Cheers,

    Matt
    Last edited by Matt Poole; 26th March 2020 at 12:34. Reason: Clarifying some details

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