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Thread: How many RAF airmen are still missing from the Battle of France?

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    Default How many RAF airmen are still missing from the Battle of France?

    Hello all,
    How many are still missing? That's probably a big question, but given some of the extensive research carried out by members, perhaps someone has already worked it out...?
    Also, I haven't delved into the online TNA records relating to the Battle of France for a long time and it's been perhaps a decade since I last visited the actual building, so I have largely forgotten where to look. What is available online regarding the RAF units during the period of the 'phoney war' up to and including the Dunkirk evacuation?
    I know that many of the individual squadron records were lost during the chaos of the evacuation, but did any of the ORBs relating to the above period survive, and are now online?
    My ultimate aim is to study the circumstances surrounding those who are still missing, so I would be grateful for any tips that would point me in the right direction.
    Thanks in advance,
    Tom

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    Default Re: How many RAF airmen are still missing from the Battle of France?

    You can query the RAF Database on this site to figure out how many were lost, how many were accounted for and how many are still unaccounted for.

    Most of the missing would have been on Runnymede Memorial and European Sector - and these are the numbers



    Year 1939 1940
    Total Records 186 1826
    Accounted 186 (100.00%) 1824 (99.89%)
    Unaccounted (0.00%) 2 (0.11%)


    By month in 1940 - First six months..
    25 http://www.rafcommands.com/database/...qmem=Runnymede
    24 http://www.rafcommands.com/database/...qmem=Runnymede
    14 http://www.rafcommands.com/database/...qmem=Runnymede
    180 http://www.rafcommands.com/database/...qmem=Runnymede
    221 http://www.rafcommands.com/database/...qmem=Runnymede
    408 http://www.rafcommands.com/database/...qmem=Runnymede

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    Andrew Arthy (7th October 2020),Tom Allett (18th September 2020)

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    Default Re: How many RAF airmen are still missing from the Battle of France?

    Hello Jagen, many, many thanks for your speedy and detailed reply, but I think I must be missing something.
    The number of unaccounted for airmen in that 1940 list is 2, but, looking through your kindly provided links, only Sgt Philips on May 19, appears to be unaccounted for...unless I am missing something...?
    Perhaps there is something that I haven't taken into account?
    Regards,
    Tom

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    Default Re: How many RAF airmen are still missing from the Battle of France?

    Hi Tom, the other unaccounted airman is from November 1940 , so falls outside of the scope of Battle of France.

    http://www.rafcommands.com/database/...qmem=Runnymede

    I wasn't able to filter the results when I copied it from the results page.


    Edit: Implemented a From / To Date Search Feature - so using that:

    http://www.rafcommands.com/database/...qmem=Runnymede

    Query terms 1940-05-10 1940-06-25 Runnymede returns 574 records, 573 records (99.83%) have circumstances of death. 1 records (0.17%) do not have details.
    Last edited by Jagan; 18th September 2020 at 21:48.

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    Default Re: How many RAF airmen are still missing from the Battle of France?

    Would the loss of the Lancastria come into the equation? Regards, Terry

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    Tom Allett (19th September 2020)

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    Default Re: How many RAF airmen are still missing from the Battle of France?

    Thanks again, Jagen, that makes it clear.
    I wonder why the 'last man' has proved so difficult to find an answer for?
    Terry - good question...one that can never be fully answered, I guess.
    Thanks, Tom

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    Default Re: How many RAF airmen are still missing from the Battle of France?

    Tom, Terry,


    I was looking around verifying the data and it appears that the losses . One particular date i believe will need further examination : 1940-06-25
    http://www.rafcommands.com/database/...qmem=Runnymede

    In the above link 37 recorded on Runnymede but only attributed to Battle for France and linked only to a common forum post. So this might need more investigation. I suspect this is some sort of 'reconciliation' of all missing . http://www.rafcommands.com/forum/sho...=2831#post2831 mentions that these are Lancastria victims . Would be worth confirming.

    A bulk of SS Lancastria casualties are recorded for June 17th and a handful in subsequent dates - total of 206 (out of the total of 574 mentioned earlier). This does not include the 30 odd from the above post..
    http://www.rafcommands.com/database/...qmem=Runnymede
    Last edited by Jagan; 20th September 2020 at 14:31.

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    Default Re: How many RAF airmen are still missing from the Battle of France?

    Hello Jagan

    There's also the case of S/L G.M. FIDLER, whose status has been put to MIA by the CWGC, as it appears it couldn't be him buried in Bachy (France). The grave marker in Bachy has been replaced by the standard "unknown" one. He was missing on 19th May 1940.

    Joss

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    Jagan (20th September 2020)

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    Default Re: How many RAF airmen are still missing from the Battle of France?

    Thanks again, Jagan...there's obviously much more detective work still to be done!

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    Default Re: How many RAF airmen are still missing from the Battle of France?

    Quote Originally Posted by jossleclercq View Post
    There's also the case of S/L G.M. FIDLER, whose status has been put to MIA by the CWGC, as it appears it couldn't be him buried in Bachy (France). The grave marker in Bachy has been replaced by the standard "unknown" one.
    Joss, many thanks for that . I updated the record on our DB to show Runnymede. When was his status changed? I am unable to locate any references to news or articles about how and when CWGC changed the status

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