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Thread: PRU Mission 13 February 1944

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    Default PRU Mission 13 February 1944

    Hello,

    I have a special request regarding a mission onto France.
    I am looking for the crew/plane of No.544 Squadron which performed the sortie with number J/314. This mission took place on February 13th, 1944 in the Tours-Orleans-Bourges area.
    Damage assessment on Avord airfield.

    Regards,
    Frederic

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    Default Re: PRU Mission 13 February 1944

    544 Squadron Operations Record Book at UK National Archives, AIR 27/2028/34
    Mosquito Mk IX LR425
    S/Ldr D Douglas Hamilton
    P/O PE Gatehouse DFM
    Ops PR J.314 (multiple objectives listed)
    Form 541 Feb 1944 Frame 2
    https://discovery.nationalarchives.g...ils/r/D8414853

    Mosquito IX LR425 served only with 544 Sqn.
    Engine vibrated and control lost, abandoned ... SW of Trindom Grange Colliery Co Durham 23 Jul 1944
    Halley RAF Aircraft LA100-LZ999 AB 1991

    Form 78 Movements: Frame 59 of
    http://lancasterbombersinfo.ipage.co...3-LR495/0.html

    Then a Flight Sgt of 248 Sqn, Philip Edwin Gatehouse 902375 had been awarded the DFM 4 Sep 1942.
    Citation: http://www.rafcommands.com/database/...SE&qnum=902375

    Neither man was to survive the war.
    S/Ldr Lord David Douglas Hamilton, with Gatehouse as Navigator, crashed on return from a PR sortie on 2 Aug 1944 in their Mosquito IX MM240 of 544 Squadron: both were killed instantly.
    The crash, near Wallingford, occurred a few miles from the airfield, apparently with both engines dead, assessed to be an attempted forced-landing.
    Full details of the crash are in the 544 Squadron Form 540 Summary of events, and noting the loss of the two men by first name and in glowing terms.
    https://discovery.nationalarchives.g...ils/r/D8414864
    Also see
    http://www.rafcommands.com/database/...php?qnum=16219
    Last edited by Don Clark; 28th January 2023 at 04:01.
    Toujours propos

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    Default Re: PRU Mission 13 February 1944

    Hello. It had been nearly 20 years since Frederick had received an answer to his question. And thanks to Don Clark, the question has not been forgotten.
    Last edited by ArnoldGilson; 11th April 2023 at 08:52.

  4. The Following User Says Thank You to ArnoldGilson For This Useful Post:

    Don Clark (11th April 2023)

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    Default Re: PRU Mission 13 February 1944

    Thanks, Arnold.

    Henofred is still occasionally active here, the system records him as posting for a time around Jun 2022, his most recent visit being 23 March this year (after my post, and before yours), and that he appears not to have sighted my reply to his 2007 post. I've used his profile to email him to let him know.
    Toujours propos

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    Default Re: PRU Mission 13 February 1944

    Hello/Bonjour Arnold and Don,

    What is fabulous here in this Forum is that a topic is like a bottle thrown into the sea, one day someone finds it and... answers!

    With today's free access to the ORBs on the NA Kew website (which was not the case in 2007!), I found many elements regarding the reconnaissance missions carried out over the airfields of Bourges and Avord. Merci beaucoup for your answers Don, and this nice message Arnold.

    (Don, I have answered your email)

    Best regards,
    Frederic

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    Default Re: PRU Mission 13 February 1944

    Thank you, also, Frederic (and also for your email).

    Indeed, one of none-too-many worthwhile consequences of COVID-time: the UK National Archives free access to AIR 27 files that came with quarantine closure and has continued since...

    As for the 544 Squadron events, having read on about S/Ldr D Douglas Hamilton & P/O PE Gatehouse DFM of LR425 on that 13 Feb 44 PRU sortie, thought it only proper to record their death on operations, 2 Aug 1944, from the Squadron's account.

    For others interest, Frederic (again as Henofred) keeps an on-line site
    Bombes sur le Cher (Bombs on the Cher) at http://airwar-18.blogspot.com
    with occasional articles about the 1939-1945 airwar over the Cher region.
    Last edited by Don Clark; 12th April 2023 at 20:54.
    Toujours propos

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