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Thread: Sgt D Oxley

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    Default Sgt D Oxley

    Looking for any info on sgt d Oxley who was a flight engineer. I can find him in the 199 orb from sept 43 until feb 44 . He and the rest of his crew are transferred to 190 squadron and he did a number of SOE drops in June 1944 .At the end of July 1944 it appears he is screened and sent to 1665HCU .
    My understanding is that screening occurred at the end of a tour . Looking at the ORBs I can only find 15 ops completed by Oxley and his crew ? Is it possible he completed ops when at an OCU or he was with another operational squadron before he and his crew were posted to 199 squadron? Pilot was a chap called Chappell

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    Default Re: Sgt D Oxley

    Hello,

    Your chap, Chappell:

    http://www.rafcommands.com/archive/06100.php

    DISTINGUISHED FLYING CROSS.

    CHAPPELL, William Harvey. FO. (158578) RAFVR. 190 Sqn.
    London Gazette: 27/10/44:p.4925.

    Flying Officer Chappell has set a fine example of keenness, courage and devotion to duty. Early in his operational career he was injured when forced to land his badly damaged aircraft in adverse circumstances. On his recovery he resumed operational flying with undiminished keenness and since has completed very many sorties. He has shown the greatest determination in pressing home his attacks and has won much success.

    See: The DFC & How it Was Won, Vol.I, A-L/Carter & Carter/Savannah,1998/p.293.

    and ...

    On page 98 of Dennis Williams', Stirlings In Action With The Airborne Forces/Pen & Sword,2008, there is a photograph of a Stirling crew with the following caption:
    Flight Officer Thomas Higgins is seen here, standing, far left. Alongside him are the members of his aircrew; left to right:Flight Sergeant D. Oxley (flight engineer), Pilot officer A.G. Pool (wireless operator), Flying Officer W.H. Chappell (pilot), Pilot Officer L.J. Crossman (navigator) and Flight Sergeant W.R. Dunkley (air gunner) kneeling, members of their ground crew, including a Fleet Air Arm rating. (Source: 190 & 620 Sqns Archive).

    And on p.136:

    The next day, F/O Bill Chappell and his 190 Squadron crew learned that they had reached the end of their very long tour.
    Thomas (J) Higgins' (USAAF*) diary:
    17 August (1944).
    I am screened. Boy! thirteen months, and at last through an operational tour. Only two crews left from our 'Con' unit, Cottingham's crew and ours. Plenty of luck all way round. Two weeks' leave - look out London!

    In spite of his understandable relief at finishing his tour, Flight Officer Thomas Higgins volunteered for further operational duties as soon as he was posted back to the USAAF. He went on to serve as a bombardier in B-29 Superfortresses. His final mission, a bombing raid over Japan on 14 August 1945, was cut short when all aircraft were recalled, as news of the Japanese surrender had been received.

    * Bomb Aimer (Bombardier, USAAF) in Chappell's crew.

    You really need to get a copy of Dennis Williams' book. There are extensive quotes from Thomas Higgins' diary. See particularly, p.33, which contains a reference to Bill Chappell, not indexed in the book (there are others).

    See:
    Stirlings In Action With The Airborne Forces - Air Support for SAS and Resistance Operations during WWII.
    Williams,Dennis
    Barnsley:Pen & Sword,2008.

    Col.
    Last edited by COL BRUGGY; 21st October 2021 at 00:03.

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    Default Re: Sgt D Oxley

    Col,

    Post#18 gives Chappell's initials as WH. The link you posted comes up 404.

    http://www.rafcommands.com/forum/sho...ron-list/page2

    Dave

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    Default Re: Sgt D Oxley

    Quote Originally Posted by alieneyes View Post
    Col,

    Post#18 gives Chappell's initials as WH. The link you posted comes up 404.

    http://www.rafcommands.com/forum/sho...ron-list/page2

    Dave
    Dave,

    Try another browser. I'm using Google Chrome at the moment. Works fine for me, and one other person I have contacted.

    Nickcardiff,

    Chappell/Oxley were involved in the following training incident:

    11 August 1943
    1657 HCU
    Stirling I N6080 -'T'
    Training

    T/o 1625 Stradishall for circuit training. The dual effects of a burst tyre (on landing at 1655) and a collapsed undercarriage ended the flying service of this Stirling. It is not thought that those who sustained injury were seriously hurt.

    Sgt W H Chappell
    Sgt D Oxley
    Sgt L J Crossman - Inj.
    Sgt T J Higgins - Inj.
    Sgt A C Pool
    Sgt R G Knights - Inj.
    Sgt R W Dunkley -Inj.

    See: BCL8/Chorley/Midland Pubs.,2004/p.59.

    NB. This is not the incident in which Chappell was injured - more on that later!

    Col.
    Last edited by COL BRUGGY; 20th October 2021 at 14:20.

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    Default Re: Sgt D Oxley

    Hello,

    For what they are worth, here are my thoughts on the accident in which Sgt W. H Chappell was involved early in his career:

    24-25 June 1942
    40 Sqn RAF
    Wellington IC DV652 'E'
    Op: Benghazi.

    Took off Shallufa to attack the harbour and shipping at Benghazi. Excessive fuel consumption led to fuel exhaustion. Both engines cut and the aircraft crashed 19km S of LG 115 and caught fire. Sgt Rees is commemorated on the Alamein memorial.

    Sgt R E White - Inj.
    Sgt L W H Chappell - Inj.
    P/O E H Laithwaite - Inj.
    Sgt Price
    Sgt P D Rees +
    Sgt Wheetley

    See:
    Royal Air Force Bomber Losses in the Middle East and Mediterranean Volume 1: 1939-1942
    Gunby,David & Pelham Temple
    Hinckley:Midland Publishing,2006
    p.153.

    I'm aware of the additional 'L' in Chappell's initials, I think that is an error. Can't be sure. The No.40 Sqn ORB is not available for May-June 1942, so I can't verify it.

    Sgt W. H. Chappell is mentioned in, Flight, August 27th, 1942, p.23 - Casualty Communique 148 as, Royal Air Force, 'Wounded Or Injured In Action'.

    David (Gunby), has just had his long out of print history of No.40 Squadron, 'Sweeping The Skies', republished by Mention The War. Be interesting to read what he has to say about the loss of Wellington IC DV652.

    The following also of interest: http://ww2talk.com/index.php?threads...c-dv652.23149/

    Back to Sgt D. Oxley!

    Col.
    Last edited by COL BRUGGY; 20th October 2021 at 16:07.

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    Default Re: Sgt D Oxley

    Col,

    David's "Sweeping the Skies" (Mention the War reprint, pg 266) says:

    Wellington IC DV652 "E" Op: Benghazi

    Sgt RE White inj
    Sgt LWH Chappell inj
    P/O EH Laithwaite inj
    Sgt Price
    Sgt PD Rees killed
    Sgt Wheetley

    Took off Shallufa to attack the harbour and shipping at Benghazi. Excessive fuel consumption led to fuel exhaustion. Both engines cut and the aircraft crashed 19 km S of LG115 and caught fire.
    Sgt Rees is commemorated on the Alamein Memorial.
    Pg 147 adds
    The engines cut almost simultaneously, and, though the altimeter was reading 600 feet, the Wellington flew into the ground at close to cruising speed, the undercarriage retracted. The observer, Eric Laithwaite, recalls:

    In no time she was one mass of flame. There were four of us out - the 2nd Pilot badly hurt and dazed, the Captain dazed with a black eye, the W/Op unhurt and cool, and myself bruised and dazed. The rear gunner could not get out, but the W/Op got him out shortly by using the butt of his revolver to widen the gap between turret and airframe. There was no sound from the front gunner, and no hope of getting to him.

    Laithwaite and the wireless operator, (Sgt Price) walked north and were spotted by SAAF personnel, who rescued the others.
    Re: T/Sgt. Thomas J. Higgins. https://www.legacy.com/us/obituaries...ry?id=22425346

    A/S/N 10601609 Enlisted in the USAAF at 12th Replacement Depot, Chorley, Lancs 22 December 1943.

    Regards,

    Dave
    Last edited by alieneyes; 20th October 2021 at 20:57. Reason: Laithwaite's narrative

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    Default Re: Sgt D Oxley

    Many thanks for the replies . Going to have to look at the orbs for the two sqns to see if Iíve missed some ops.
    also thanks for the signpost to Dennis Williams book

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    Default Re: Sgt D Oxley

    Dave,

    Thanks for the additional information on Higgins. Rounds off the story, nicely. Have a copy of the new edition of David Gunby's 'Sweeping The Skies' on order. Not much new on the loss of Wellington DV652, by the looks of it!

    Nickcardiff,

    Keep us informed on your researches. Best of luck in your quest

    Col.
    Last edited by COL BRUGGY; 21st October 2021 at 00:21.

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    Default Re: Sgt D Oxley

    Can I ask where the 1657 HCU incident can be found . Have looked at the ORB for august 43 and canít find it at all !

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    Default Re: Sgt D Oxley

    Dennis Williams is a friend of mine - I'll drop him a line regarding the above.

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