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Thread: No.215 Sqn Wellington. Lost 9-7-1943

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    Default No.215 Sqn Wellington. Lost 9-7-1943

    Hello,

    Need some help identifying the following No.215 Squadron Wellington.

    Friday, 9 July 1943.

    A Wellington of 215 Squadron, piloted by Sgt J A Gee, failed to return from a daytime Intruder Patrol along the Arakan coast. The crew were subsequently found in their dinghy eight days later, exhausted but alive.

    See:
    Air War for Burma.
    Shores,Christopher.
    London:Grub Street,2005.
    p.97.

    All help appreciated,

    Col.

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    Col,

    My Wellington file has no 215 Sqn loss on or around this date.

    Henk.

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    Wrong date:

    29th July 1943

    http://www.ringmer.info/war-memorial/redvers-parris.html


    Wellington BB506
    Crew:

    Sgt J.A. Gee; (Survived)
    Sgt A.C. Tenneson; (Survived)
    F/O R.F.N. Jones; (Survived)
    F/S L.E. Baxter ; (Survived)
    Sgt L.E.G. Baldry; (Survived)
    Sgt Redvers Cyril Malcolm Parris (died)

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    Hello Henk & Paul,

    Firstly, Henk thanks for that look-up.

    Paul, I had some doubts about the date. I had the following report which did not tie-in with the date quoted in Air War for Burma:

    In early August (1943), there occurred an unusual operation. Flying Officer S C Akers (AUS400767), (in Dak FD791), was flying from Chittagong to Dum Dum over the sea when one of his passengers spotted what he took to be a dinghy, and told one of the crew. Visibility was poor, but upon being told of the sighting, Akers turned to begin a search. It took ten minutes to find the dinghy. Akers instructed his WOP to report its position and continued to circle the spot until relieved. Warrant Officer Rutherford, (also) of 31 Sqn, was sent out, relieved Akers and then dropped supply containers to the men in the water, who, it had now been established were a downed RAF crew. Later this lucky crew were rescued by ASR launch.

    See:
    First in the Indian Skies.
    Franks,Norman L R.
    n.p.,:R.A.F. Collection,1981.
    p.98

    This is undoubtedly, the same incident.

    Once again, I thank you both for your help in clearing up this problem I had with Akers.

    Col.

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    Henk/Paul,

    For the sake of completeness, here are the details of the 215 Sqn Wellington that is mentioned in Parris' biography, which was lost on 8-8-1943:

    8-8-1943
    No.215 Sqn
    Wellington IC HE126

    Took off from Jessore at 0745 to carry out a FIRPO Intruder Patrol off the Arakan coast. The aircraft got into difficulties after take-off, went into a steep turn until the plane was almost vertical, then crashed into trees and burnt on impact. All the crew were killed.

    53729 P/O (Pilot) Eric Claude DOWLING RAF +
    AUS404312 F/O (2nd Pilot) Cecil Tom ENRIGHT RAAF +
    1410623 Sgt (Nav.) Edward Ronald Ellis THOMAS RAFVR +
    1331911 Sgt (W.Op./Air Gnr.) Neville Arthur James OVENDEN RAFVR +
    R/66066 W/OII (W.Op./Air Gnr.) Francis William HOLCOMBE RCAF + (Front gunner)
    611210 F/Sgt (Air Gnr.) James HYDE RAF + (Rear gunner)

    All originally buried in the Protestant Burial Ground, Jessore, Bengal, India. Later reinterred at Chittagong War Cemetery, Pakistan, India.

    Col.
    Last edited by COL BRUGGY; 27th July 2010 at 16:51.

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    Thanks Col for this info. HE126 was in my files, however only with HOLCOMBE's name.
    Regards,
    Henk.

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    Default Re: No.215 Sqn Wellington. Lost 9-7-1943

    Hello I have been trying to find out what happened to my Great Uncle who was Neville Arthur James Ovenden RAFR, who thanks to your research i found out that he was killed in the above Wellington IC HE126, you mention Parris' biography, where can I find details of this biography. Kind regards Peter Bloomfield RAF(Retired)

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    Default Re: No.215 Sqn Wellington. Lost 9-7-1943

    Peter, Hi - and welcome to the forum.
    You've probably got all this, but for completeness:-

    Q4 1905 Percy George Ovenden m Annie Kate Hills Reg Tonbridge 2a 1605
    b. Q2 1913 1 x Sister
    b. Q1 1915 1 x Brother
    Neville Arthur James Ovenden
    b. Q1 1921 (MMS Hills) Reg Tonbridge 2a 1553.
    Early Nov 1940 Enlisted 1331911 in Block 1330001-1340000 RAFVR Issued Uxbridge/Weston-super-Mare 01-Nov-40 to 03-Dec-40. Aged 19. TNA AIR 78/121/2 Image 25 R3C1.
    d. 8 Aug 1943 in HE126 near Jessore (now Bangladesh) (GE 23.181262 89.169732).

    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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    Default Re: No.215 Sqn Wellington. Lost 9-7-1943

    Peter B., Welcome Aboard.

    You will find Parris' bio, here: http://www.ringmer.info/war-memorial...rs-parris.html

    Col.
    Last edited by COL BRUGGY; 23rd May 2020 at 15:03.

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    Default Re: No.215 Sqn Wellington. Lost 9-7-1943

    Hello All,
    Just a little clearing up!
    HE126 was lost, shortly after take-off from Jessore (then India), now Bangladesh, on 8 Aug 43.
    The casualties were originally buried in the Protestant Burial Ground, Jessore. They were later transferred to the Chittagong War Cemetery.
    I have been advised by CWGC, by map directions(!), of the likely location of the Protestant Burial Ground. Jessore has changed considerably since 8 Aug 43!!!!
    It is, therefore, only highly likely that the location of the Protestant Burial Ground was at GE 23.167615 89.206879 – or nearby.
    CWGC advise that the transfer of the remains took place in 1950 under the aegis of the military.
    They do not know the precise impact location of HE126. Although they suggest that the on-line Canadians might?
    I worked in/with/for the RAF for 42+ years. It always gave me great pleasure to work with the experts in other disciplines. This quest gave me the same pleasure, and I have copied my ‘Thankyou’ email to CWGC to their man in Bangladesh – a Mr Sattar!
    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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