Results 1 to 7 of 7

Thread: Help identifying Air Gunner

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Feb 2008
    Posts
    1,040
    Thanks
    70
    Thanked 10 Times in 10 Posts

    Default Help identifying Air Gunner

    I wonder if anyone can help with the identity of an Air Gunner who served with 78 Squadron in 1942. The chap in question is Sgt W ELSTYNE, he flew his first operation with the Squadron on 19 July 1942 and his last on 6 September 1942.

    I have drawn a blank in AIR78 and in the databases available on here, Im guessing that he may be RCAF, RNZAF or RAAF, but have nothing to support that theory. Any suggestions appreciated.

    Daz

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Feb 2009
    Location
    Northumberland, UK
    Posts
    5,487
    Thanks
    215
    Thanked 526 Times in 503 Posts

    Default Re: Help identifying Air Gunner

    Daz

    Could it possibly be Van Alstyne...?

    https://losses.internationalbcc.co.uk/loss/228812

    It's not this particular chap as he didn't leave Canada until August 1943, and he was an air bomber.

    Regards

    Simon
    Researching R.A.F. personnel from the North East of England

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Feb 2008
    Posts
    1,040
    Thanks
    70
    Thanked 10 Times in 10 Posts

    Default Re: Help identifying Air Gunner

    Simon

    the name is consistently spelt the same way in the ORB so I'm fairly confident that the spelling is correct although you can never be 100% certain. He is one of many that I am working on as I have identified over 3600 men who flew with 78 Squadron, 92% of which I have identified just the last 8% to solve. The problem is that in the early years the SNCO aircrew were not identified specifically in the ORB. Later in the war they show initials and service numbers, but even this poses challenges. I have identified a period where whoever was compiling the ORB if they didn't know the correct initials they just used the letter L. Very confusing.

    Daz

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Dec 2007
    Posts
    656
    Thanks
    8
    Thanked 37 Times in 34 Posts

    Default Re: Help identifying Air Gunner

    There was a Canadian chap from Vancouver BC named
    William Elstyne
    Birth
    Mar 27 1908
    Death
    Dec 25 1968
    Last edited by PeteS; 25th November 2023 at 13:54.

  5. The Following User Says Thank You to PeteS For This Useful Post:

    78SqnHistory (25th November 2023)

  6. #5
    Join Date
    Feb 2008
    Posts
    1,040
    Thanks
    70
    Thanked 10 Times in 10 Posts

    Default Re: Help identifying Air Gunner

    Cheers Pete, I'll see if I can find any connection

    Daz

  7. #6
    Join Date
    Feb 2008
    Posts
    1,040
    Thanks
    70
    Thanked 10 Times in 10 Posts

    Default Re: Help identifying Air Gunner

    By way of an update, the suggestion from Pete proved to be correct as I am now in contact with the subjects grandson. Sgt William Elstyne did indeed serve with 78 Squadron but the family donít have his service record or any paperwork relating to his time in the airforce. He seems to have been repatriated on 6th June 1944 and then discharged.
    The family do have his medals which are 1939-45 Star, Defence Medal, War Medal and CVSM. The fact that he doesnít have the Aircrew Europe Star May confirm that he was taken off of operations for some reason before qualifying.
    Hopefully the family will be able to shed some light on what happened.

    Thanks again to Pete for the pointer.
    Daz

  8. #7
    Join Date
    Dec 2007
    Posts
    656
    Thanks
    8
    Thanked 37 Times in 34 Posts

    Default Re: Help identifying Air Gunner

    You are very welcome Daz, I'm pleased I could help
    cheers
    PeteS
    https://630squadron.wordpress.com/

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •