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Thread: RAF Losses in Mediterranean late 1941-early 1942

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    Default RAF Losses in Mediterranean late 1941-early 1942

    Dear all,

    I am looking for info on a number of RAF losses in the Mediterranean Sea during late 1941 and early 1942; info on the identification of the aircraft such as the serial number and Squadron, no need for further information about the crew members of these aircraft:

    13 December 1941
    Beaufighter S. of Crete at 13.30 hrs (272 Sqn Beaufighter?)

    15 December 1941
    Two Blenheims or Beaufighters S. of Malta, one loss possibly at 10.05 hrs.

    18-19 December 1941
    Blenheim in Malta area.

    19 December 1941
    Hurricane in Malta area at 10.45 hrs.

    23 January 1942
    Blenheim S.E. Malta at 17.45 hrs.
    Swordfish S.E. Malta at 18.45 hrs.

    15 February 1942
    Beaufighter 100 km E. Malta.

    16 February 1942
    Wellington S. Modica

    Any info very welcome; the info will be used in the research for a planned 2nd edition of my book project the Nachtjagd War Diaries, in which I will publish separate new chapters about the German night fighter force operations in the Mediterranean, SE Europe and the Eastern Front, due to be finished around 2014.

    Cheers, Theo

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    Hi Theo
    Chris Shores/Brian Cull/ and Nicola Malizia "Malta-The Spitfire Year" gives some detail of what looks like the 2 losses on 23/1/42. The a/c were engaged in shadowing and attacking an Italian convoy escorted by Italian Naval Units. 203 Sqn Blenheim V5861 was shot down apparently by a Ju88 flown by Lt Georg Wiedow and ditched with the crew becoming POW.The other seems to be a slight misidentification, as the a/c involved were not Swordfish but Albacores of 826 Sqn FAA. One claim was made by Ofw Hermann Sommer for a Swordfish after he damaged the a/c of Lt H M Ellis who did, however, get back to Berka. The other FAA loss was Lt J D Jackson who was shot down by AA fire attacking the troopship Victoria, also the target of Ellis. Again the crew survived to become POW but the troopship sank.
    The Albacore serials are not given
    HTH
    Regards
    Dick

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    Hi Theo,

    13/12/41

    Crew from No,272 Sqn but I think the aircraft was T3250 borrowed from No.252 Sqn

    15/02/42
    This was F of 252 Sqn reported downed 120miles of by twin tailed fighters. C was shot down about 2 miles off Malta by 109s.

    Regards
    Ross
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    Hi Ross and Dick,

    Many thanks for the useful info on some of the Med. losses that I listed, much appreciated! By the way Ross, do you have a serial nr. for 'F' of 252 Sqn lost on 15/02/42, and did the a/c come down 120 miles south of Malta? And what was the time of this loss?

    Cheers, Theo

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    Hi Theo,

    Two aircraft with no confirmed serials that day off Malta.

    The detail for F is:
    Took off in company with P/252 to patrol east of Malta. Shared the shooting down of a Cant 506B before resuming course. When the flight was 120 miles due east of Malta, at 12:55 hrs two twin tailed, twin engined enemy fighters dove out of the sun and shot F/252 straight into the sea on fire before bouncing back up to 200 feet before finally hitting the sea to sink. Sgt Jackson, an American from Tulsa, and his crew are commemorated on the Alamein Memorial.

    Serial may be T4830.

    The other possible loss for T4830 was earlier that day:

    Took off for a patrol along with other squadron aircraft. The flight was recalled due to an air raid at Luqa but three aircraft still had Egypt frequency crystals fitted and missed the recall. Aircraft V, A and C set course for Egypt but when they were about 2 miles east of Malta 15 to 25 Me109s attacked the formation. V and A increased speed and escaped to Edku undamaged but Sgt Mulholland was seen to strike the water at 09:00 hrs. Sgt Mulholland, from Wellington, New Zealand and his crew are all commemorated on the Alamein Memorial.

    Details correct for C

    The third loss but no confirmed location or time was T4669
    Shot down by a Me109 off Malta. Sgt Burston was the alias for Eugene Theatre FFAF.

    Regards
    Ross
    The Intellectual Property contained in this message has been assigned specifically to this web site.
    Copyright Ross McNeill 2015/2018 - All rights reserved.

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    Hi Ross,

    Thanks a lot for the additional info, much appreciated!

    Cheers, Theo

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    Extract from the book "The Armed Rovers", by Roy C Nesbit. ISBN 1-85310-517-1

    On 13 December 1941, Flg Off Graham W Morris of 272 Sqn RAF and his navigator, Sgt Harry W Hilton, failed to return from a patrol; the reason was not known, but both men lost their lives. On the same day Flg Off Charles Roman damaged a Do 24 and an Me 110, returning with a large hole in the tailplane of his Beaufighter.

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    Theo/Ross,

    Re Mulholland's aircraft:

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

    Sun 15 Feb 1942
    Middle East
    Return of detachment from Malta to Egypt after convoy escort duties
    252 Squadron, RAF (LG 229 [Idku], Egypt - detachment at Luqa, Malta - 201 Group)
    Beaufighter IC T4651/C - took off from Luqa at 0840 with four others, but recalled almost immediately as an incoming air raid was identified. Some of the formation returned safely but several failed to receive the message and flew on, as insufficient time had been available on Malta to have their sets adjusted for the correct frequency. Fifteen to 20 enemy fighters soon intercepted them and shot T4651 down into the sea a few miles east of the island. Its two crew and a Squadron fitter travelling as a passenger are commemorated on the Alamein Memorial.
    Pilot: NZ403972 Flt Sgt Clive Herbert MULHOLLAND, RNZAF - Age 26. 317hrs.
    It will be noted that Mulholland is commemorated on the Alamein Memorial rather than that on Malta, although his last flight was from the Island.

    And Amendment section of Vol Three (Biographies & Appendices):

    p182; MULHOLLAND, C H amend aircraft serial to read T4834 (it may not have been carrying code letter C).

    Serial T4834 appears on documents held on Mulholland's service record but these do not mention the code letter.

    Errol

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    Hello Theo,

    Rather oddly, your 16 February 1942 loss, involves another Mulholland. This time, an Australian, serving in the RAF.

    16 February 1942
    458 Sqn RAAF
    Wellington IC DV539
    Relocation Flight.

    Took off Stanton Harcourt for Luqa, but shot down 45km from Malta by Ju88s. F/O Willis-Richards, the Squadron Gunnery Officer, was rescued by an Italian destroyer. W/Cdr Mulholland and Sgt Anstee are buried in Catania War Cemetery. The others are commemorated on the Runnymede Memorial.

    W/Cdr N G Mulholland + (DFC)
    Sgt A R Wills RAAF +
    F/Lt L A Brain + (DFC)
    Sgt E Anstee +
    Sgt J E Andrews +
    F/O J Willis-Richards PoW

    See:
    Royal Air Force Bomber Losses in the Middle East and Mediterranean Vol.1: 1939-1942
    Gunby,David & Pelham Temple.
    Hinckley:Midland Publishing,2006.
    p.124

    Regards,
    Col.
    Last edited by COL BRUGGY; 29th April 2009 at 06:02. Reason: minor correction

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    Dear Laurent, Erroll and Col.,

    Thanks a lot for the new information, which I have edited into the new chapter of the Nachtjagd in the Med. in the NJWD 2nd edition!

    Cheers, Theo

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