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Thread: O W Kanturek

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    Default O W Kanturek

    I accidentally stumbled across a small Commonwealth plot at Scottow in Norfolk today. The cemetery lies just outside the former Coltishall base and most of the burials are wartime. There are also Dutch and German internees there which surprised me as I thought all the German war dead were later taken to Cannock Chase. One particular grave though did attract my interest more than others. It was a Commonwealth stone with the top corners cut away that I though denoted a casualty not attributed to either of the world wars. There was no cap badge carved on it but simply his name, O W KANTUREK, 20th CENTURY FOX FILMS LTD, and the date of 26 June 1941 aged 42.

    On doing a little digging it seems that he was a well known Hollywood filmmaker and he was there doing some work on 'A Yank in the RAF'. He was concurrently working on 'One of our aircraft is missing'. His death occurred when he and another cameraman were airborne and taking shots of two Hurricanes doing close passes on their plane, probably to get some exciting action footage. However, one of the Hurricanes got too close and the camera plane crashed with loss of all on board. The fighter's pilot bailed out and was presumably safe. But I can't find out anything on the camera plane and how many others went down with it. Can anyone shed any light on this please?

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    Default Re: O w kanturek

    Greg

    His death was reported in the Bradford Observer of June 28th 1941:

    KILLED FILMING THE R.A.F.
    Two civilian film experts who were taking special "shots" of R.A.F. formation flying as aprt of the film "A Yank in the R.A.F.," which is being made for release hroughout the world, have been killed together with their pilot, in an accident to their 'plane.
    They were Mr. Otto Kanturek, a Czech who has specialised in aerial photography, and Mr. Jack Parry, a Briton.
    Mr. Kanturek, who in the past has been associated with many films in this country, recently returned from Hollywood. Mr. Parry was a well-known executive and technical expert.
    Mr. Kanturke was camera man to Gracie Fields in her British-made films.


    The aircraft was 500 Sqn Anson N9732, and the pilot was 754618 Earnest William John Polden.

    See: https://wartimememoriesproject.com/w...php?uid=216817

    Regards

    Simon
    Researching R.A.F. personnel from the North East of England

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    Default Re: O w kanturek

    Hi Greg, according to his surname he had a Czech roots in the history ...

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Otto_Kanturek

    Says "He died whilst filming the aerial shots for A Yank in the RAF from an Avro Anson, when it collided with a Hawker Hurricane. "
    So at least the Anson as type.

    https://www.imdb.com/title/tt0034405/trivia
    Camera operator Otto Kanturek and his uncredited assistant, aerial photographer Jack Parry, were both killed in a plane crash when a Hurricane fighter collided with their Avro Anson camera plane over Cawston, Norfolk, England, on 26 June 1941. Other reports state that, according to 20th Century-Fox publicity, the two men were flying to England to shoot fight sequences and after the footage was shot, the plane they were in was attacked and shot down by German aircraft.


    https://www.edp24.co.uk/features/her...gedy-1-3634197
    But what was due to be a routine shoot turned into tragedy when at 12.05pm the Avro Anson N9732 aircraft Mr Polden was flying collided with one of the Hurricanes which was being filmed.

    More details in our DB:

    http://www.rafcommands.com/database/...php?uniq=N9732

    HTH

    Pavel
    Czechoslovak Airmen in the RAF 1940-1945
    http://cz-raf.webnode.cz

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    Default Re: O w kanturek

    Name
    Otto Walter Kanturek
    Birth
    27/07/1899 (27 Jul 1899) Vienna, Austria
    Arrival
    02/02/1938 (2 Feb 1938) New York, NY

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    Default Re: O w kanturek

    Greg,

    You've not said if you've looked, but he is recorded by the CWGC at https://www.cwgc.org/find-records/fi...0W%20KANTUREK/

    His wife is named at Edith Maria Lucia Beatrix Kanturek, and his address is given as 79 Charlbert Court, St. John's Wood, London. The entry is a little ambiguous as it could be interpreted as meaning his wife was also living there.

    Brian

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    Default Re: O w kanturek

    Hello Greg,

    You will find more details about Kanturek and the status of the stone here:


    https://www.cwgc.org/find-records/fi.../#&gid=1&pid=1


    Regards

    Finn Buch

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    Default Re: O w kanturek

    AIR81/7168 Sergeant E W L Polden: killed; passengers Mr J Parry, Mr O W Kanturek (20th Century Fox): killed; Anson N9732, 500 Squadron; mid air collision with Hurricane Z3391, 257 Squadron, Pilot Officer Hone: baled out; 26 June 1941.

    https://www.aircrewremembered.com/polden-ernest.html

    John 'Jack' Arthur Parry
    Hurricane Z3391 P/O Hone -> Douglas Harold Hone #80816 ???
    other Hurricane P/O Pearson Hurricane Z3164

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    Default Re: O w kanturek

    Many thanks to all for the comprehensive and prompt replies. I only stumbled across the place because of a dodgy satnav giving improbale directions!

    Cheers

    Greg

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    Default Re: O w kanturek

    Name
    John Arthur Parry
    Death
    26/06/1941 (26 Jun 1941)
    England & Wales, Civil Registration Death Index, 1916-2007
    DEATH, BURIAL, CEMETERY & OBITUARIES
    View Image
    Record information.
    Name
    John A Parry
    Birth
    abt 1897
    Death
    07/1941 (Jul 1941) Norwich Outer Norfolk England

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