Grateful for any assistance with the above – I have been contacted by members of his family with regard to a few requests for information.

Does anybody hold copies of the 130 (Punjab) Squadron ORB (AIR 37/938) for August/September/October 1944 and January 1945, or is visiting the NA shortly?

130 (Punjab) Squadron took Spitfire XIV’s on charge in August 1944, and exchanged them with 350 (Belgian) Squadron on 29 September 1944 (the 350 ORB reports the matter as follows for 29 September 1944. - "Today the Squadron moved from Hawkinge to the satellite station at Lympne, leaving its A/C Spitfire XIV (E) for 130 Squadron who are moving into T.A.F. and proceeding to HOLLAND. 350 Squadron took over 130 Squadrons A/C Spitfire XIV.") – So they are looking for serials/individual codes flown by S/Ldr Tripe during both those periods as reported in the Form 541.

On 16 January 1945 he baled out of Spitfire XIV RM762 near to Y.32 Ophoven after sustaining flak damage (whether by German or US forces is not clear), and they would be grateful for the individual code letter, if recorded, and how the matter was reported in the 130 Squadron Form’s 540 and 541.

It is reported as below in the 125 Wing ORB

Weather prevented flying before lunch, but around 1400 hours armed recces were started to the Drieborn area as it had been reported that concentrations of German Met had been located. 350 were airborne first being led by the Wing Commander. The promised "fruit" was not located, in fact there was little movement seen over a wide area. Intense flak was experienced and F/Lt Smets was hit and had to bale out inside the enemy lines. 610 were away next, but they got no joy at all. 130 took off third and they ran into a packet of trouble. Intense flak of sorts was thrown at them but despite this the pilots pressed home their attacks on scattered Met and were able to claim a tank damaged and one lorry destroyed and three others damaged, but flak was severe. S/Ldr Tripe was hit and wounded in the right arm. He smartly started for home and then all sorts of things began to happen. He was somewhere near to base when the starboard wing stripped and he realised he would have to bale out. He was severely handicapped by the wound in his arm, but he managed to jettison his hood, and then at 1500 feet he clambered to his feet and let the slipstream pull him out. His "chute" opened O.K. and he landed right next to his favourite "pub" - the "Madaga" at Niel-Pres-d'Asch. He was picked up by the Army and was back at dispersal in a few minutes - in fact before the rest of the squadron had landed. A good show.

Please note that I have recorded this request on to both the RAF Commands and TOCH Forums.

Many thanks