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Thread: F/Sgt. Richard Welsford Aitken-Quack, 1805819, 609 Sqn

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    Default F/Sgt. Richard Welsford Aitken-Quack, 1805819, 609 Sqn

    Hi,
    I would like to know the circumstances of the capture of the man above. He was shot down 1.12.1943, Typhoon JP924 PR-S south of Valenciennes, nothern France.

    The http://www.marcolowe.com/vrmsr/dromas_files/body_dromas_files.html says:

    “F/Sgt. Richard Aitken, 1805819, English
    From a Typhon fighter which fell at Beautignais near Valenciennes. He came from Guise, probably the home of the veterinarian and was brought by Marcel Nicolas of Queasy to his own home on the 13th of December 1943. He left on the 18th of January for Criel for the “JO” repatriation organization.“

    It is the excerpt from the Capt. Étienne Dromas´s notes. (Capt. Dromas was the head of the Chauny Escape Line in the department Aisne.)
    Among others the names of several places are probably misspelled: Beautignais x Beaudignies, Queasy x Le Quesnoy and Criel should be Creil (on the Mr Marco´s page there is mentioned the department of Oise where Creil really lies, not the department Seine Maritime where Criel-sur-Mer exists). But all that is my hypothesis only!
    Why was R W Aitken-Quack a NCO during 1943 when he had been commissioned during thirties?

    Regards
    Mojmir

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    Hello,

    R.W. AITKEN-QUACK initially evaded capture, and was caught in Paris on 5th February 1944.

    He had received a short service commission (LG 23rd December 1935) but lost it because of unauthorised leave (LG 11th July 1936). He then flew in several conflicts (Spanish war, Finnish war) and eventually joined the R.A.F. again, but as NCO pilot.

    He was posted to No. 609 Squadron on 6th April 1943, as a Sgt, as per the Squadron ORB.

    Still in the Squadron ORB :

    Nov. 19 1943 : [...] F/Sgt Aitken-Quack today interviewed pending posting to Training Command. He becomes one of 3 (out of about 50) selected as Fighter Controller (Invasion). This automatically implies a commission, previously rejected because he once overstayed leave before the war.

    The concluding paragraph of the entry for 1st december states : F/Sgt Aitken-Quack, who was on probably his last operational sortie before leaving the squadron, was one of its more picturesque characters. A veteran of the Spanish Civil War, in which he flew Boeing fighters V. general Francos forces (and possibly did battle against P/O Comte de Grunne, another 609 pilot who was in that war) he had also been in Finland during the Russo-Finnish War. He could thus speak several languages fluently, and it is hoped that these and his general buccaneering experience may get him back to this country before very long.

    Joss

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    Hello,

    The following publication contains detailed information on the career of Richard Welford Aitken-Quack, including:

    Richard Aitken-Quack (re)enlisted in the ranks of the RAF as an AC2 in May 1942 but soon became a Sergeant Pilot. Later in the year he joined No.609 Squadron but was shot down near Roubaix in France whilst flying from Lympne during 1943, in a Hawker Typhoon 1b (PR-S) and became a POW. Released at the end of the war he remained in the RAF until December 1946, when he left the service with the rank of Warrant Officer. His later years were spent in Papua, New Guinea, and Darwin, Australia. Richard Aitken-Quack died in Australia in the early sixties.

    See:
    The Flyers:The Untold Story of British and Commonwealth Airmen in the Spanish Civil War and other Wars from 1919 to 1940.
    Bridgman,Brian
    Upton-upon-Severn:Self Publishing Assoc.,1989
    p.184

    and...

    Surname: AITKEN-QUACK
    Given Names: Richard Welford
    Notice Type: Funeral notice.
    Date: 4 Jan 1966
    Type: Funeral
    Age -
    Other details: Late of Potts Point
    Publication: Sydney Morning Herald.
    Published; 3 Jan 1966

    See:
    The Ryerson Index:Index to contemporary death notices and obituaries placed in Australian newspapers.

    Col.
    Last edited by COL BRUGGY; 4th January 2010 at 00:05.

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    Thanks to both of you for quick replies and tips, Joss and Col.
    W/O Aitken-Quack was really the picturesque character...

    Regards
    Mojmir

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