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Thread: FSgt. Harry Ellis 409 Sqn

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    Default FSgt. Harry Ellis 409 Sqn

    Hi all,

    I have a CWGC record of this RCAF air crewman who was killed over Belgium on 12 Dec 1944. It appears he was flying in a Mosquito that was based at Carpiquet Airfield in Normandy. Can anyone tell me what the squadron was doing that night and where I might find a record of this lost ac.
    thanks

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    On checking, it appears the squadron had left Carpiquet by Aug 44, so I assume they were back in England.

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    hello,

    Actually, the Mosquito crashed in France, near the franco-belgian border, between Lille and Tournai. A memorial was built near the crash site, in the 80es or 90es. The radar operator managed to bale out and survived but not Ellis. Ellis was buried in the Canadian war cemetery at Adegem, because he was RCAF. Actually, several RCAF casualties buried in Adegem actually lost their lives in France, we have already discussed this subject here.

    I'm at work right now, visiting the board during my lunchbreak. Will give you more details tonight when I'm back home. I've checked the Squadron ORB and the accident card (form 1180). If my memory serves me well, 409 was already based at nearby Lille-Vendeville airfield when this loss occured.

    Please note he was a Flight Lieutenant, not a Flight Sergeant.

    Joss

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    Thanks Joss, a good reminder to search the forum first before asking.

    The reason I said F/Sgt. is because that is how he is listed by the CWCG. I assumed he was given a promotion after the fact, as I'm told that happened a fair bit.

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    hello,

    I think you have misread the rank, as I printed the page back in 2001, and I've checked again a few minutes ago, and the rank was, and is still, Flight Lieutenant. Same in the accident card.

    He was flying Mosquito NF XIII serial number HK512, coded KP-A. The plane crashed at 15:00 hours, during a night flying test.
    In flight at 5000 feet starboard engine caught fire. Unable to extinguish. Navigator baled out. aircraft rolled to port. Pilot unable to jumb until too late. aircraft crashed and burnt. aircraft out of control in descent trapping pilot.
    Pilot apparently kicked control column.
    AOC suggest use of back type chutes.

    Navigator was Warrant Officer KING.

    ELLIS had only joined the Squadron the month before, coming back from a sick leave.

    I also confirm that No. 409 Squadron was based at B.51 Vendeville, France, from 12 October 1944 until 18 April 1945.

    What is your interest in this pilot ?

    Joss

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    Thanks Joss, you are correct. I am confusing him with another RCAF air crew of the same name from 426 Sqn, who went down on 27 Jan 1944. I am still trying to determine which of the two is the fellow I am researching, who is one of a number of RCAF fallen who went to my son's high school. His class is taking a trip to Beny-sur-Mer Cemetery in March and I am doing up a story for them so they can appreciate what these fellows did.
    David

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