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Thread: Crew of Lancastrian G-AHJW 23/11/1948

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    Default Crew of Lancastrian G-AHJW 23/11/1948

    This Flight Refuelling aircraft crashed on return from Berlin Airlift. 2 of the crew aboard were ex Sgt. K.A. Seaborn DFM (F/E) ex 640 Sq.and R.H.M. Heath D.F.C. ex 44 Sq. Does anyone have the AFL which would give service number or any other information on the rest of the crew:
    Cyril Taylor aged 34 (Pilot)
    William Cusack aged 25 (Pilot)
    Michael Edwin Casey aged 24 (Nav.)
    Alan John Burton aged 28 (Nav)
    Dornford Wimston Robertson 26 (Radio Off.)
    and the sole survivor - Paul Stanley Vincent

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    John,

    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 Two: Fates 1943-1998)':

    Supplementary notes - postwar section

    Mon 22/Tue 23 Nov 1948
    ENGLAND

    Berlin Airlift - returning from Wunstorf, Germany, to base for routine maintenance
    Flight Refuelling Ltd (Tarrant Rushton, Dorset)
    Avro Lancaster III G-AHJW/fleet No 28 - on an evening flight, captained by R M W Heath, flew into trees on fog-covered high ground in Conholt Park at Chute, on the Wiltshire-Hampshire border, coming to rest in a copse close to four cottages, where it burst into flames. Thrown out through the escape hatch with his clothes on fire, the Canadian wireless operator was the sole survivor. His three fellow crew members and a supernumerary crew of four travelling as passengers died in the crash. G-AHJW was a Lancaster which had been converted into a tanker aircraft. Flying under charter in the RAF-USAF Berlin Airlift, it had completed 40 petrol sorties to Berlin.
    (Radio Officer): Dornford Winstan ROBERTSON, Flight Refuelling Ltd - Age 26. 32 ops.
    During the Second World War Robertson served as a wireless operator-air gunner in the RNZAF and flew an operational tour with 138 Sqn, RAF. He was one of two New Zealanders to lose their lives in connection with the Airlift (see also entry for I R Donaldson, RAF, under 16 July 1949 in the main body of this work)

    Note spelling of Robertson's middle name.

    Robertson was born at Dunedin, New Zealand, on 9 Jul 22
    Enlisted with the territorial force of the Army 13 Sep 40
    Enlisted in the RNZAF as NZ405577 on 17 Dec 40 as a wireless operator (ground)
    Embarked for the UK and attachment to the RAF on 29 Apr 41
    In 1942 was employed at Mount Batten Signals Section
    Remustered as a WOp/AG in Jul 43
    Joined 138 Sqn and flew 32 ops
    Was injured in training accident to 138 Sqn Halifax LK736 on 17 May 44 (see Chorley 1944/p226)
    Commissioned 9 Jan 45
    Fg Off 9 Jul 45
    Reserve 3 Nov 45
    Married in UK

    Errol

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    John,

    From Oct 1945 AFL

    Cyril Taylor aged 34 (Pilot)
    This might be 115902 Taylor, Cyril (released)
    (The AFL has 5 x 'C. Taylor', a Clarence, Clifford and a Cyril Taylor)

    William Cusack aged 25 (Pilot)
    No W Cusack names

    Michael Edwin Casey aged 24 (Nav.)
    No M E Casey names

    Alan John Burton aged 28 (Nav
    Might be 163576 (released), 116531 (released) or 188745 (a Flt Lt nav dated 14 Jan 46) - all indexed as A J Burton

    Errol

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    John,

    Nco 16011201 Alan John BURTON P/O 163576 14/1/44 Navigator !
    116531 A.J BURTON Navigator P.O.W 15/2/43 103 Sqn (can't find his first names)
    188745 A.J BURTON Admin - Mech Transport

    Mark

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    Thanks Errol & Mark for hekp.

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    Hello John,

    I am trying to locate the service number of Capt. William Cusack who was killed when this aircraft crashed in Conholt Park at Chute
    He flew with the Fleet Air Arm during WW2.
    Did you ever have any luck with your original request?
    Thanks

    Ciaran

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    Hello Ciaran and welcome to the forum.
    I can't help with the service number but I found an entry in the April 1945 Navy List. Would your man have been Sub Lt W Cusack at that time? (seniority 26/5/44)

    Bruce
    http://www.filephotoservice.co.uk/
    RESEARCH AT THE NATIONAL ARCHIVES & OTHER UK INSTITUTIONS

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    Hi

    I am so sorry to jump in like this but I couldn't find a way to post my question !

    My Uncle was Michael Edwin Casey on this flight. I wonder if anyone has access to any more information about him ?

    Regards

    Sue

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    Sue (welcome to the forum) et al,

    I have a Michael Edwin Casey:-

    b. Q4 1924 (Reg Devonport 5b 393. MMS Lineham).
    E. There is a Michael Edwin Casey Enlisted RAFVR 1805771 (AIR 78) in Block 1800001-1814800 early May(?) 1942 Euston. He would have been just 18!
    m. Ellen Newbery Q3 1948 (Reg Barrow-in-Furness 10b 437) – but don’t know if this is the same M E Casey?
    d. 23 Nov 1948. The Death loc is given as E&W, but I can’t get his Death Reg to come up on FREEBMD. Is it me?

    HTH
    Peter Davies
    Meteorology is a science; good meteorology is an art!
    We might not know - but we might know who does!

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    Hi

    Thank you for taking the time to reply !

    Michael was born in Devonport 7 October 1924- Irish father serving in Royal Garrison Artillery, Mother's maiden name Linehan.

    I don't think he married.

    Obviously his date of death was 22nd November 1948 - but wasn't registered until 2nd December 1948 after post-mortem, which recorded the cause of death being 'multiple injuries caused by misadventure' which I think my Father (Michael's brother) found a little hard to bear. Place of death given as Pewsey, Wiltshire.

    Forgive my ignorance but what does RAFVR stand for and is that his roll number ?

    Regards

    Sue



    I tried to post a picture of him in uniform but couldn't seem to be able !

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