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Thread: AC2 Edward William Littlefair Westgarth - 627599 - Died 25/11/39 - 42 Sqd

  1. #1
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    Default AC2 Edward William Littlefair Westgarth - 627599 - Died 25/11/39 - 42 Sqd

    Hello to everyone,

    Can anyone help me with information concerning the mentioned airman. I cannot seem to find anything about him.

    I need to know the following please:

    Squadron Base

    Aircraft Flown/flown in

    Serial No

    Code

    Crash site or where lost

    TIA

    Steve

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    Steve,
    42sqdn were based at Bircham Newton at the time concerned, his death was recorded at Fakenham. Nothing in Ross's CC Losses on or before this date so death may not be connected with a/c loss.

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    From old thread - fell out of Vildebeest K8080

    http://www.rafcommands.com/cgi-bin/dcforum/dcboard.cgi?az=show_thread&om=15798&forum=DCForumI D6&archive=yes

    A
    RAF Armoured Car Companies 1920-45 http://www.rafacciraq.com/

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    Default Vildebeest IV

    Amrit

    Was that common people falling out of those aircraft. He was incredibly unlucky if not. I wonder if he was a gunner/air observer?

    Dee

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    I've WESTGARTH as a Wireless-operator; "left" aircraft near Docking.

    Henk.

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    Hi Alan, Amrit and Henk.

    Thanks for the relevant information. I have Westgarth as a W/op so I will add the information you gentlemen have provided and hopefully something will crop up in the near future. Thanks again and take care all.

    Steve.

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    Hello,

    This is to answer Dee's question. I don't know how frequent this was, but I know of a No. 825 Squadron Swordfish observer who was thrown away clear from the plane when the pilot undertook violent evasive actions, to avoid the fire from Bf-109s. This happened on 26th May 1940. The unfortunate navigator was Lt G.B. BEAUMONT. I think this must have been quite frequent in the early days of WW2, when there were still a few machines with open cockpits and gunners position.

    Joss

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    Quote Originally Posted by jossleclercq View Post
    I think this must have been quite frequent in the early days of WW2, when there were still a few machines with open cockpits and gunners position.

    Joss
    Not unknown but I wouldn't go as far as to say 'frequent'.

    There are two such instances among the 4000+ flying fatalities recorded in my 'For Your Tomorrow', one was pre-war and the other this one:

    Wed 3 Jul 1940
    New Zealand
    Practice bombing
    1 Air Observers School, RNZAF (Ohakea)
    Vincent NZ305 - took off shortly after 0940, piloted by Flt Lt L A Robertson, for practice over the Raumai bombing range. Four bombing runs were made at 3000 feet but the release gear failed to operate on each. One of the trainee observers was called upon to check the faulty mechanism from the prone bombing position after the first run, and he was not seen again after completing this action. The Vincent returned to the airfield with the gear still not in working order and while taxiing across the airfield it was noticed that the observer was missing. His body was later found near the range and it was presumed he had fallen to his death at about 1000 during the practice while his safety cable (or ‘monkey strap’) was unsecured (the strap would have been unhooked while examining the faulty bomb release equipment). He is buried at Onerahi. The other two crew members, including trainee observer LAC O W Knight, returned safely with the aircraft.
    Observer: A40739 LAC David Handforth HAWKES, RNZAF - Age 24.

    Errol

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    Default

    To clear this up one and for all


    The correct Vildebeest serial is actually K8079 (typo corrected)

    As confirmed by ORB, Air 81 and F1180 (thanks Martin!)

    Wireless-operator AC2 Edward William Littlefair Westgarth #627599 died in this incident when he fell from the aircraft near Docking

    'The K File" has K8080 which iis wrong!

    The pilot's name was 39178 F/O William Barrie-Smith. Later missing on 21 June 1940 still with 42 Sqn

    Kind Regards

    Paul

    PS the Air 81 file iAIR 81/1685 is closed til 2030

    I will come back to these closed files
    Last edited by paulmcmillan; 2nd June 2017 at 18:23.

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    Hi Paul

    I think you mean K8079

    Malcolm

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