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Thread: Sgt A.J. KING, R.C.A.F., No. 88 Squadron

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    Default Sgt A.J. KING, R.C.A.F., No. 88 Squadron

    hello,

    I'm looking for the first names of Sgt A.J. KING, R.C.A.F., the only survivor of the crew of Boston IV BZ416 RH-T, shot down near Boulogne-sur-Mer, France, on 9th September 1944. I've checked the PoW questionnaires at Kew, only to find an homonym, Alfred James, who was flying with No. 427 Squadron. I'm wondering whether he was initially captured by the German garrison in Boulogne, and released a couple of weeks later when the garrison surrendered. As such, he would probably not have filed a questionnaire like the other PoWs liberated from camps in Germany in April and May 1945.

    CWGC doesn't give the second name of pilot Emsig, only the initial K. He's buried in Calais Canadian War Cemetery.

    A last question about this crew is about Sgt Charles Franklin ADAIR, air gunner, said to have been killed by the Germans while parachuting down. Is there an enquiry in Canadian archives ?

    Thanks in advance

    Joss

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    Joss,

    2nd Tactical Air Force Volume 2 - Shores / Thomas give the following information on this loss.

    9 Septemebr 1944.
    88 Squadron.
    Boston IIIa BZ416 'T'

    Crew
    P/O. M. Emsig +
    P/O. R J. Calford +
    Sgt. F W E. King +
    Sgt. C F. Adair +

    Shot down by flak Boulogne.

    Regards
    Peter

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    Peter, the is no F W E King listed on the CWGC

    A

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    hello,

    The Squadron ORB doesn't give initials of Squadron members, and mentions other crews seeing a parachute, and that later information came through that it was (might have been ?) Sgt ADAIR who was killed under his parachute.

    EMSIG, CALFORD and ADAIR are both buried in Calais Canadian War Cemetery, respectively 7-E-1, 7-E-2 and 7-F-2, no Sgt KING killed in action on 9th September buried there. 4 unknown airmen buried there, one of them R.C.A.F.

    I hope one of our Canadian members might be able to find something from the Globe & Mail or other source, for which I'm not used to.

    Joss

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    Out of interest, when did your crew join 88 Squadron?

    Johnnie

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    hello Johnnie,

    I can't tell as I copied only the relevant pages for this crew loss, in September 1944.

    Joss

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    Hi Joss,

    Emsig's first name was Mervyn but no middle name given on the death certificate. He was born of Austrian parents, Max Emsig and Lena Sprachman, all from the west end of Toronto. I am looking into the others for you and will post more later.
    David

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    hello,

    The middle initial of EMSIG is K for the CWGC. For example, another R.C.A.F airman buried in the Calais Canadian War Cemetery is F/L James K. ANDERSON (J/23749) according to the CWGC. The Canadian Virtual Memorial Memorial gives his second name as Kennedy.

    There's no urgency in my question. Just to have more details on file about this loss.

    TIA

    Joss

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    Joss,

    I found no mention of King in the Globe & Mail casualty lists. If, as you suggested, he was released within 2-3 weeks of capture he would not likely appear in a casualty list.

    Calford and Emsig were first reported Missing After Air Operations in the 12 October 1944 list, and later Officially Presumed Dead in the 1 October 1945 list.

    Adair, however, was reported Killed on Active Service in the 25 September 1944 list. Confirmation of his death so soon after the event may support the killed while parachuting story.

    Cheers, Ken

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    Toronto Star has Adair reported killed in its Sept. 26/44 edition. Calford was reported more than two weeks later in the Oct. 13/44 edition.

    Tried searching for King but that's a toughy with both our then-prime minister named King and the King himself showing up on all the searches. The Star had quite a lot of human interest stories in its war pages but mostly of Toronto boys. If you contact the library in Sarnia, perhaps they could do a search for you in their files. The local paper there is the Observer since 1853.

    He might have had a brother named Harold, whose wife had a baby shortly after. There aren't that many Emsigs in the sources.
    Last edited by dfuller52; 18th January 2009 at 23:11.
    David

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