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Thread: 55 Squadron

  1. #1
    Martin MacGuire Guest

    Default 55 Squadron

    I am interested in hearing the details of a relative's death in action during the first battle of El Alamein.

    His name was Raymond Collier - a Sergeant Air Gunner with 55 sqn RAF

    He was killed in July 1942 and is buried in Eygypt according to the war graves web site.

    Any details of the circumstances of his death would be appreciatede by the family.

    Martin MacGuire

  2. #2
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    Hi Martin
    From "RAF Bomber Losses in the Middle East and Med, David Gunby and Pelham Temple".
    Collier was killed on a Training Flight, in Baltimore II, AG824. They were detailed for Low Flying and Formation Practice. Whilst flying over a Landing Ground (LG207)at Qassassin the a/c struck the ground, burst into flames and blew up with the loss of the 4 man crew. They are buried in Tel el Kebir War Cemetery.
    Regards
    Dick

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    Martin,

    The following information may also be of interest.

    From my trilogy 'For Your Tomorrow - A record of New Zealanders who have died while serving with the RNZAF and Allied Air Services since 1915 (Volume One: Fates 1915-1942)':

    Wed 22 Jul 1942
    Middle East
    Formation practice
    55 Squadron, RAF (LG Y [Qassassin, 6 miles NW Abu Sueir], Egypt)
    Baltimore II AG824 - while flying low over the Landing Ground at 0730, struck the surface and burst into flames. All four crew are buried at Tel-el-Kebir.
    Pilot: NZ41527 Plt Off Cecil George RUSSELL, RNZAF - Age 26. 199hrs.

    And from Vol Three (Biographies & Appendices):

    RUSSELL, Pilot Officer Cecil George.*
    NZ41527; b Napier 15 Jan 16; Palm Nth BHS; clerk - PWD (hydro electric branch), Wgtn. RNZAF Levin/ITW as Airman Pilot u/t 19 Jan 41, 3EFTS 2 Mar 41, emb for Canada 29 Apr 41, att RCAF 14 May 41, 12SFTS 17 May 41, Pilots Badge & Sgt/Comm 1 Sep 41, 1 Y Depôt 7 Sep 41, att RAF & emb for UK 16 Sep 41, 3PRC 7 Oct 41, 17OTU (Blenheim) 28 Oct 41 [RAF Hosp Halton 14 Nov-?], emb for Gold Coast c.12 Apr 42, by air to Egypt, 55 Sqn (Baltimore) 1 Jun 42, kaa 27 Jul 42. Tel-el-Kebir War Memorial Cemetery - 1.M.7, Egypt. Son of William Alexander & Lily Mary Russell (née Jack), Masterton. Note: * birth reg as Cecil George Montague Russell. [phot. TWN 7.10.42].

    Errol

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