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Thread: S/Ldr A O Bridgeman DFC - 83 Squadron

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    Default S/Ldr A O Bridgeman DFC - 83 Squadron

    I was re-reading Guy Gibson's 'Enemy Coast Ahead' and was wondering what happened to S/Ldr Anthony 'Oscar' Bridgman, his flight commander.

    He was shot down and made POW Sept 24th 1940, does anyone on this forum know whether he survived the war and indeed what he did after hostilities ended if he had?

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    Dear Glenn
    This may not answer your question but you may be interested in the following info:

    Please note different spellings of his surname (some even within the same book)

    Oliver Clutton-Brock, Footsteps on the Sands of Time, page 252
    Bridgman AO
    S/L
    83 Squadron
    Hampden L4049
    23/9/40
    Berlin
    9AH / 6B / L3
    POW 1264
    Sole Survivor of four
    DFC

    As there is no mention of him dying while POW it it reasonable to presume he survived the war


    Harry Moyle, The Hampden File, page 90
    L4049
    83 Squadron
    23-24/9/40
    Hit by flack; crashed near Bethen
    S/Ldr A Bridgeman DFC (POW)
    PO F Watson DFC (Killed) buried at Becklingen
    Sgt J Goodwood DFM (Killed) buried at Becklingen
    Sgt A Blatch RNZAF (Killed) buried at Becklingen
    Bombing Berlin


    Low & Harper, 83 Squadron 1917-69, page 25

    83 Suqadron first attacked the Dortmund Emns Canal on the night of 25th July 1940 when eight aircraft were involved

    Sq/Ld Bridgeman
    Sgt Whitehead
    Sgt Gorwood
    PO Stanion

    Take off 21.30
    Landing 04,20

    Target not located bomb dropped in junction of Maas-Rhine.


    page 31
    "Guy Gibson was returning from a minelaying operation on Lorient on 24th/25th August, when he spotted a Dornier 215 below him and used the Hampden's fixed gun to shoot it down. This feat was repeated two nights later by another 83 squadron pilot, Squadron Leader Oscar Bridgeman, a Flight Commander who, having completed a minelaying drop, also claimed a Dornier destroyed using the same technique."

    Page 35
    "On the night of 23rd September, some two hundred aircraft (including eleven from 83) went to Berlin. They had cloud all the way, the German defences jammed their loop bearings and the bombing had to be done by dear reackoning and very few bombs fell on Berlin that night. The Wireless Operator, Sgt Garwood DFM in Sq/Leader Bridgman's Hampden (L4049) sent out a message that they had an engine on fire over Breme and were bailing out. Later another message came in that they were trying to get home. Nothing further was heard from the aircraft but the Red Cross eventually sent in a report that three of the crew had been killed but Squadron Leader Bridgman had survived and was in a prisoner of war camp. The loss of Squadron Leader Bridgman left Guy Gibson as the only surviving pilot from all those who belonged to 83 Squadron at the beginning of the war."

    page 196
    23/09/40
    Hampden
    L4049
    "A"
    S/Ldr A O Bridgeman DFC (POW)
    PO F J Watson DFC (Killed) buried at Becklingen
    Sgt J E Goodwood DFM (Killed) buried at Becklingen
    Sgt A F Blatch (Killed) buried at Becklingen
    Crashed near Bethen
    Eleven aircraft detailed to attack Berlin


    I hope this is of some help.
    Best wishes
    James

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    Thanks James, some interesting information there!

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    Default re A O Bridgman

    Quote Originally Posted by GlennB View Post
    Thanks James, some interesting information there!
    A friend has forwarded this forum to me. I am Oscar Bridgman's daughter. So as you can see he did survive POW camps until the end of the war. In fact he was in Stalag Luft 3 and helped in the wooden horse escape. He married my mother, who is American and together they had three daughters. They divorced, but my father bought a printing business in London, where he worked until he retired. He was 90 when he died in 2006. He gave me Enemy Coast Ahead to read many years ago.
    Hope this is useful to you.

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    Dear Frances
    Thank you for your posting.
    I have sent you an e-mail.
    Best wishes
    James

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    Hi Frances

    A little late in replying but thank you very much for your reply.

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