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Thread: Looking for info on Sub-Lt NR MacKay and PO JS Heath of 788 Sqn

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    Default Looking for info on Sub-Lt NR MacKay and PO JS Heath of 788 Sqn

    Sub-Lt NR MacKay and PO JS Heath were the observer and TAG aboard Swordfish V4413, flown by Lt S. M. de L. Longsdon, when it was shot down near Colombo on 5 April 1942. Would anyone happen to know the full names of MacKay (RNZNR?) and Heath?

    TIA

    Rob

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    Default Re: Looking for info on Sub-Lt NR MacKay and PO JS Heath of 788 Sqn

    Guessing

    (no No.) Lt (A) Norman Richardson MacKAY RNZNVR/RN Pilot Airwork 531009


    https://ww1.wales/pembrokeshire-memo...litary-burials ?

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    Default Re: Looking for info on Sub-Lt NR MacKay and PO JS Heath of 788 Sqn

    Born 9 October 1918 Napier, Napier, Hawke's Bay, New Zealand
    Died 9 October 1953 Aged 35 - Killed Mosquito Crash Airwork

    https://aviation-safety.net/wikibase/161390

    https://discovery.nationalarchives.g...ef=ADM+1/25045

    09-OCT-1953 de Havilland DH.98 Mosquito T.Mk III VP355 RDU FAA RN 1 RNAS Brawdy /HMS Goldcrest, Pembrokeshire, Wales.

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    Default Re: Looking for info on Sub-Lt NR MacKay and PO JS Heath of 788 Sqn

    We can eliminate John Stewart Heath P/MX 53748 DSM as he was on engines in 1944

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    Default Re: Looking for info on Sub-Lt NR MacKay and PO JS Heath of 788 Sqn

    This is my bio entry for the New Zealander N R MacKay that appears in my Vol Three of 'For Your Tomorrow', but it would seem to suggest that there must have been a different N R MacKay who was shot down on 5 Apr 42:
    MacKAY, Lieutenant (A) Norman Richardson.
    (no No.) (NZ402062 in RNZAF, FX85063 & NZ4408* in FAA); b Napier 9 Oct 18; Napier BHS; clerk - 'NZ Govt', Wgtn (prior RNZAF). RNZAF Harewood as Aircrafthand (GD) 9 Jul 40, discharged 15 Dec 40, enlisted NZ for RN/FAA as Aircrew u/t 18 Dec 40, emb for UK & att HMS St Vincent/Gosport 22 Dec 40, arr 1 Feb 41, HMS Daedalus/Lee-on-Solent 16 Jun 41, att 24EFTS RAF as Pilot u/t 14 Jul 41, att 1SFTS RAF 28 Sep [1 Nov?] 41, Pilots Badge & Comm 14 Feb 42, HMS Daedalus/Lee-on-Solent 23 Feb 42, HMS Heron/Yeovilton for fighter cse 2 Mar 42, 756 Sqn 8 Apr 42 [hosp 31 Jul-13 Aug], att 9(P)AFU RAF 9 Aug 42, HMS Heron/Yeovilton for fighter cse 28 Sep 42, 746 Sqn (Fulmar) 6 Jan 43, 886 Sqn (Fulmar, Spitfire &/or Seafire) 9 Feb 43, 879 Sqn (Seafire) 24 May 43 [Sqn emb on escort carrier from HMS Attacker 29 Jul], 727 Sqn (Hurricane &/or Defiant) 21 Aug 43, 728 Sqn (various a/c types) 7 Dec 44, to UK & HMS Daedalus/Lee-on-Solent for 92 days leave by 6 May 45, 772 Sqn (various a/c types) for FRU cse 6 Aug 45, 718 Sqn (various a/c types), HMNZS Cook/Wellington for leave in NZ & 'reverts to RNZN' 22 Oct 45, arr Jan 46, discharged 17 Feb 46; RN/FAA & SSComm & emb for UK 15 Nov 51, HMS Daedalus/Lee-on-Solent 28 Dec 51, HMS Phoenix/Portsmouth for cse 7 Jan 52, HMS Victory/Portsmouth for cse 21 Jan 52, HMS Siskin/Gosport for survival cse 4 Feb 52, 799 Sqn (Firefly) 19 Feb 52, Rochester for IF cse 28 May 52, 796 Sqn (Firefly) 25 Jun 52, HMS Fulmar/Lossiemouth 13 Aug 52, HMS Gannet/Eglinton 3 Nov 52, HMS Siskin/Gosport 5 Jan 53, HMS Seahawk/Culdrose for LTI cse 3 Feb 53, HMS Daedalus/Lee-on-Solent 9 Mar 53, 719 Sqn (Firefly) 1 Jul 53, HMS Goldcrest/Brawdy [for Mosquito conv?] at St Davids with Airwork Ltd FRU 5 Oct 53, kaa 9 Oct 53 (Mosquito). [buried or cremated in England?]. Son of Norman & Beatrice Sarah MacKay (née Murrow), Napier; h of Elvina MacKay. Note: * NZD4408 allotted retrospectively by RNZN, in May 42. Brother of Henry, above.
    Cheers,
    Errol

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    Default Re: Looking for info on Sub-Lt NR MacKay and PO JS Heath of 788 Sqn

    Errol - yes must have been another - the dates and roles do not 'FIT'

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    Default Re: Looking for info on Sub-Lt NR MacKay and PO JS Heath of 788 Sqn

    Gentlemen,

    I very much appreciate you info. FYI, I've found the following in The Navy List:

    --The December 1941 edition has no NR Mackay.

    --The April 1942 edition has a Sub-Lt (A) NR Mackay RNVR. His date of seniority is given as 14.2.42. On another page in the same edition he is listed as (P) Norman Richardson Mackay, Temporary Sub-Lieutenant RNVR, with seniority from 14 Feb 1942. The unit where he was serving is not given.

    --The June 1942 edition has the same info on the same person, but adds on a second page that he was serving at HMS Kestrel (the former RAF station at Worthy Down, taken over by the RN in 1939). On a third page says that Tempy Sub-Lt (A) (P) NR Mackay RNVR was serving with 756 Squadron, which was based at Kestrel, to which he had been appointed on "8 Apr 32" (a typo for 8 Apr 42).

    --The October 1944 edition has a Tempy Lieut (A) (P) NR Mackay RNZNVR, with seniority from 21 Aug 43. This is the only entry for a NR Mackay.

    --The July 1945 edition doesn't list any NR Mackay.

    So it seems that the only NR Mackay in The Navy List was in the UK on 5 April 1942, as also indicated by the info in your responses. This makes me wonder if the initials and/or surname given for Longsdon's observer are incorrect. My source for identifying him as NR MacKay was Bloody Shambles vol. 2, however I recently ordered a copy of Sturtivant's "The Swordfish Story". I received it this week, and I see now that he identifies Longsdon's observer as a NA McKay, however, I can find no NA McKay in any of the five editions of The Navy List which I list above. Would either of you have any info on such a person?

    Many thnaks,

    Rob

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    Default Re: Looking for info on Sub-Lt NR MacKay and PO JS Heath of 788 Sqn

    I now see that Sturtivant identifies Longsdon's TAG as PO WJ Heath rather than PO JS Heath. (Sigh.)

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