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Thread: Fact or Fiction?

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    Default Fact or Fiction?

    977446 Alfred Francis Phillip JAMES.

    "The most emergency parachute descents by an Australian is 'reported' to be five(5). This was by A.F.P.(Francis) James of Sydney during the Second World War and included bail-outs in January 1940 Wellington Bomber; May 1940 Fairey Battle; 7/1/1941 Spitfire into the English Channel; 25/4/1942 - Anzac Day - Spitfire near St Omer; 18/9/1944 Fairey Barracuda into the North Sea."

    Ref. A.F.P.James Log books and Caterpillar Club records.

    See: Ripcord Australia.
    Johnson,Bill.
    Eastwood:A.C.P.A.,1984.
    p.79.

    Off board, Roy Nixon, and myself have researched these events. The only positive baling-out that we can come up with is the 'Anzac Day' event.

    What of the others, Fair(e)y Tales ?

    Col.(with Roy Nixon).
    Last edited by COL BRUGGY; 12th December 2008 at 03:05. Reason: removal of qualifier

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    RE: 18/9/1944 Fairey Barracuda into the North Sea.

    seems to be an anomoly on both date and type of accident

    There is only one entry for AFP James in Sturtivant's "FAA Aircraft 1939-45":

    Barracuda BV909
    Delivered 15 MU 8.1.44
    7 Ferry Pool ferry, engine failure, force landed safely, but swung availding cycylist, tyre burst, u/c collapsed Welford Park, Cat B [DATE?] (T/O AFP James ATA OK);
    ATA Hamble to Gosport 18.7.44

    A

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    hello,

    Can you expand about the ANZAC day event ? I've checked the WO344 series at Kew, for PoW Questionnaires, but failed to locate one for F/Sgt A.F.P. JAMES in WO344/160/2. The "near St Omer" geography bit puzzles me. I have a note that it might in fact be "off
    Berck[sur-Mer]". I've not dug out more in this case, like the Squadron ORB.

    TIA

    Joss

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    Hi Joss

    'near St Omer', Johnson's words, not mine. Location variously quoted as; 'Over St Omer', 'Over Northern France'. Generally accepted version is; 'Shot down by fighters off Berck-sur-Mer'.

    Col.

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    hello,

    I found the information he became a PoW in FCL volume 2, hence I wanted to get further details about his capture. Do you confirm he wasn't captured ? If so, did he crash inland and evaded capture, or did he came down in the Channel and was rescued by allied ASR, which is likely to be the correct case ?

    Joss

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    Default F/Sgt AFP James 124 sqn

    Hi Joss
    You say you could not find F/Sgt James WO344 at Kew. James was repatriated to the UK via Cairo in October in 1943. May be his WO344 if they were in use in 1943 was filed away before the 1945 POW intake started in 1945.
    I am not an expert on this so would like to hear what you think.
    Regards and thanks,
    Roy

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    Default F/Sgt AFP James 124 sqn

    Hi Joss
    Sorry I omitted to say that when he was shot down, James had serious facial burns which required plastic surgery, so possibly was treated in a field hospital before more specalised treatment was given.
    I believe he was later taken to Stalag Luft III (NCO) at Sagan. He could not have recovered from his burns to face and eyes as the Swiss Red Cross intervened to request his repatriation in October 1943 or earlier.
    Regards and thanks to Col.
    Roy

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    7/1/1941 Spitfire into the English Channel; - can't find any reference to this - Was it with 92 Sqn?

    25/4/1942 - Anzac Day - Spitfire near St Omer; This is supposed to have been AB819 but 124 Sqn also lost BL620 on the same date F/Lt BACHUREK killed and they could ave been in each other aircraft


    James had an accident in AD229 while with 92 Sqn on 25.10.41

    92 Sqn Digby 0955 hrs Cat C. Taxying from dispersal. Taxied into unmarked dull yellow post in front of dispersal pens. 25.10.41 Sgt James 977446.

    James forcelanded AD322 while with 92 Sqn on 18.11.41

    92 Sqn Skellingthorpe 1845 hrs Cat C. Dusk Patrol. Force landed lost. Disoriented by searchlights, went into camouflaged gun pit on landing. 18.11.41 Sgt AFP James 977446.

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    hello

    PoW questionnaires were filed in late April 1945, more often in May 1945. So if a PoW was repatriated back, on medical grounds for most cases, there's no questionnaire at all. So thanks for claryfying this. There may be a "liberation report" in the WO 208 section (after the Escape & Evasion reports group) but there's only an incomplete index for them, and some reports were stolen from Kew a few years ago.

    I have other PoWs repatriated back at the time, perhaps they were together as a group, not individuals. I understand better why he later joined the ATA.

    Joss

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    Default F/Sgt AFP James escape artist?

    Hi Joss
    Thanks for explaining the POW procedure returning to the UK.
    We only have 4 more bale outs to sort out how Francis James had 5 Catterpillar Badges, over to the board please.
    Regards
    Roy

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