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Thread: 1522815 Sgt P. Mackay 76 & 466 Sqns?

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    Default 1522815 Sgt P. Mackay 76 & 466 Sqns?

    I am trying to confirm that two Flight Engineers appearing on two Bomber Command squadrons are one and the same men.

    FROM 76 Sqn ORBs March & June 1944:
    I have discovered that on March 10 1944 Sgt P.C. Mackay, Flight Engineer -no service number given- was posted to 76 Squadron. Later, on 2 June 1944 he was replaced by another Flight Engineer Sgt Alexander Ferguson who, together with 5 other crew members, lost his life in Halifax MZ604 over Trappes, Northern France. The navigator, my father, was taken prisoner

    FROM 466 (RAAF) Sqn ORBs June & August 1944:
    I then discovered that during June 1944, a lone 1522815 Sgt Peter George Mackay, Flight Engineer was posted in to 466 (RAAF) Squadron at Driffield - no previous unit mentioned. On 9 August 1944 this Sgt Mackay lost his life in Halifax MZ368 over Coquereaux, Northern France.

    I have been unable to confirm his service number while on 76 Sqn with that shown on 466 Sqn The names are typed with different initials - "P.C." on the 76 Sqn ORBs , "P.G." on the 466 ORBs. I feel certain it must be the same Mackay but want to confirm it. It may be just a typo but .....?........if I could just discover his service number while on 76 Sqn - it would confirm it all. Can anyone help me in confirming the two Mackays by:

    1] Checking 76 Sqn ORBs "posting out" June 1944. Although I have some 76 Sqn ORBs, I can't find Mackay posted out/ joining other 76 Sqn crews. It may be a sheet missing on the cd recentlly purchased from National Archives.
    2] Any clues or advise, no matter how simple, on what to do next

    I realise there's a slim chance of ever confirming this - but here's hoping for a breakthrough to my brick wall !
    Thank you.
    Norman
    Last edited by namrondooh; 24th June 2009 at 12:56. Reason: correcting 466 sqn Coquereaux date

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    Norman,
    I've been through my copy of 76sqdn ORB several times but cannot find his posting out, and no pages missing. Might be a simple case of not being put in the book.

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    Hello Alan,

    It was good of you to check your ORBs for me, thank you. Quite a few pages of my NA Cd of 76 Sqn ORBs are totaly unreadable - about a third, there was just a hope he would pop up on a movements sheet The Cd of ORBs - recently purchased for a small fortune - incidentaly, in very poor quality and far inferior to the hard copies I usually buy - I wouldn't recommend this way of reading ORBs to anyone. Go for the hard copies!

    Have you come across omissions in the ORB aircrew movements before? I would have thought it it impossible. Mackay was the usual F/E on my Dads crew but didn't fly with them on the fateful mission to Trappes on June 2. I've been months trying to solve this puzzle and now think I will write to the disclosures office at Cranwell and ask them to look up the 466 Mackay records and see if he was previously on 76 Sqn. That shouldn't break the hallowed next of kin rules !

    Norman
    Last edited by namrondooh; 24th June 2009 at 13:07.

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    Hi Norman

    I've leafed through "Brave And True" by Stan Parker and John McManus DFC - the 466 Sqn book that the 462/466 Sqn Assns have published - and found reference to Peter Mackay. I'm afraid there's no mention of any previous service but he did serve with three different 466 crews - crews 109, 119, 127. There is considerable detail about the loss and eyewitness accounts from survivors of the crew. What might help with your search is an epilogue to the loss. Apparently, Mackay's father was an Army Colonel during the invasion of Europe and hunted out his son's grave and helped with identification. No name is mentioned though.

    Interestingly, the book refers, twice, to the op being on August 9.

    I'll scan the pages if you don't have the book (if you do, then I haven't told you anything new!). Send me an email on accemagATbigpond.com

    Cheers

    Andy
    Last edited by Andy in West Oz; 23rd June 2009 at 23:31.

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    Hello Andy,

    Thank you for the information about the "Brave and True" book. I will try see if I can get it over here. Also, thank you for pointing out my mistake with the Coquereaux date. I have always had the 8th in my head and just realised the 8th Aug was my fathers birthday. I've now ammended the opening post.

    I'm sure its the same P. Mackay but have this nagging feeling that won't go away that they're different. The 466 Squadron ORB write ups are far clearer and detailed than the 76 ones. If only I could find his service number while serving on 76 Squadron, all would be solved. Meanwhile, I think this book is a must!

    Norman
    Last edited by namrondooh; 24th June 2009 at 13:07.

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    Hi Norman,
    I've had many occasions when looking through ORB's, where omissions of this sort and other glaring mistakes have been made by whoever was recording the details at the time. Looking at his last few ops, i would imagine that his posting should have been recorded in either May or June Summary of Events pages, of which my copies are readable.
    Another point that may be of interest to you is that on a number of occasions i've seen the wrong 'initials' for forenames put down throughout an ORB, so do'nt give up hope yet that this is the same man.

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    Quote Originally Posted by AlanW View Post
    Another point that may be of interest to you is that on a number of occasions i've seen the wrong 'initials' for forenames put down throughout an ORB, so do'nt give up hope yet that this is the same man.
    Tracing two relatives on 460 Sqdn (RAAF) revealed to me how inaccurate the recorder can be at times. I have found wrong initials, wrong service number, wrong position in Lancaster crew, and my grandfather is not recorded either posted into the squadron nor out! (he flew 29 operations during the summer of 1944 with virtually the same crew all the way through before being tour expired, and the form 541 clearly shows him there, as does his log book).
    Interests include Spitfires in Malta 1942 and 460 Sqdn 1943-44 (including Black Thursday)

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