June 16/17, 1944

    63 Halifaxes from 426, 431, 432, and 434 squadrons were joined by 37 Lancasters from 408, 419, and 428 squadrons on an attack of the oil plant at Sterkrade-Holten. The crews were over the target between 17,000 and 20,000 feet, releasing 878,000 lbs of high explosives through thick cloud. This attack wasnít very successful due to the cloud cover and the fact that the German fighter controller had his fighters orbit a beacon not far from the flight path. Many crews failed to return for that reason.

    F/O R. Clothier from 408 squadron returned  early as the stbd inner u/s. They landed safely at base on 3 engines.
    P/O D. Burnell was hit by flak and attacked by a enemy aircraft. There was damage to the rear fuselage and turrets, but the crew was not injured.
    P/O W. McIntyre was attacked by an enemy aircraft and hit by flak. The damage was not serious.

    F/O B. Walker from 419 squadron returned early due to the rear gunner being sick.
    1st/Lt. J. Hartshorn was attacked by an enemy aircraft over the target. Minutes later they were hit by flak. The astrodome was blown off, holes in windscreen, port fuselage, bomb doors and wireless operators seat. Wireless operator was also wounded in the arm and leg. Next an ME-410 made an attack. The rear gunner fired a long burst and set the ME-410s port engine on fire, was claimed damaged. The crew was able to return to base without any further injuries or damage.
    F/O E. Smith, RAF and crew failed to return from this operation. 

      Sgt. J. Trussler, RAF--POW
      P/O W. Gardiner, RCAF
      Sgt. R. Porter, RCAF--POW
      P/O M. Baran, RCAF
      P/O G. Taylor, RCAF
      P/O S. Wilson, RCAF
    5 crew were killed and 2 POWs. 

    F/O D. Morrison, RCAF and crew failed to return from this operation. 

      P/O E. Fahy, RAF
      F/O A Hupman, RCAF
      P/O G. Quinn, RCAF
      P/O H. Fletcher, RAF
      P/O P. McManus, RAF
      P/O C. Johnston, RCAF
    All were killed.

    F/Lt. J. May from 426 squadron was attacked by a JU-88. It was claimed damaged.
    F/Sgt, J. Williamson was hit by flak, holes in nose of aircraft.
    P/O W. Taylor had the port outer go u/s on return. Then the port inner started to leak oil. They landed safely on 3 engines at Woodbridge.
    F/O J. Tabor, RCAF and crew failed to return from this operation. 

      P/O F. McQueen, RCAF
      F/O G. Shannon, RCAF
      P/O R. Niles, RCAF
      P/O. H. Doggett, RCAF
      F/O W. Carson, RCAF
      F/O L. Hill, RCAF
    All were killed.

    F/Sgt. F. Longstaff from 431 squadron returned early, port outer was u/s. They landed safely at base on 3 engines.
    F/O G. Blatchford, RCAF and crew failed to return from this operation. 
    Sgt. J. Kennedy, RAF--POW

      F/O R. Carter, RCAF--Evd and murdered upon capture
      F/O S. Lough, RCAF
      Sgt. T. Masdin, RCAF--POW
      Sgt. G. Hattey, RCAF--POW
      P/O I. Gould, RCAF
    4 were killed, 3 POW. F/O Carter had evaded capture until July 9th, when he was murdered along with two other aircrew by the Gestapo at Tillburg, Holland.

    F/O E. Johnson, RCAF and crew failed to return from this operation. 

      Sgt. D. Shenton, RAF
      F/O R. Garrity, RCAF--Evd
      F/O R. Jones, RAF
      P/O W. Chapman, RAF
      P/O E. Green, RCAF
      P/O V. O'Bright, RCAF
    6 were killed and 1 evaded capture.

    P/O A. Fairless, RCAF and crew failed to return from this operation. 

      Sgt. E. Guinan, RAF
      P/O H. Robinson, RCAF
      P/O G. Massicotte, RCAF
      Sgt. L. Ellis, RAF--POW
      P/O D. McPherson, RCAF
      P/O J. McPherson, RCAF
    6 were killed and 1 was a POW.

    F/Lt. M. Johnstone, RCAF, (POW) and crew failed to return from this operation. 

      Sgt. J. Fareday, RAF--POW
      F/Lt. J. Burns, RCAF--POW
      F/O C. Bell, RCAF--POW
      F/O L. Stanley, RCAF--POW
      F/O M. Steeves, RCAF--POW
      F/O R. Oates, RCAF--POW


    F/O V. Smith from 432 squadron returned early as the rear turret and oxygen system was u/s.
    F/Lt. G. Larson returned with out bombing as they didnít see any T. Iís
    W/Cdr. J. MacDonald was attacked by a JU-88. Was claimed destroyed.
    P/O R. Anthony was attacked by a JU-88. Was claimed destroyed.
    F/O H. Morrow, RCAF and crew failed to return from this operation. 

      Sgt. V. Herrick, RCAF--POW
      F/O J. Slimmon, RCAF--POW
      Sgt. R. Gelfand, RCAF--POW
      W/O1 L. McElroy, RCAF--POW
      P/O J. Johnston, RCAF
      P/O J. Shanks, RCAF
    3 were killed and 4 were POWs

    P/O H. Hawley from 434 squadron returned early as the bomb sight was u/s.
    P/O R. McCullough was hit by flak and attacked by an enemy aircraft. The fuselage and port wing were damaged by flak and port inner, flaps, tire, fuel tanks, controls, and fuselage by the fighter. The crew was able to return safely without further injuries or damage.
    W/O1 M. Laffin, RCAF (POW) and crew failed to return from this operation.

      Sgt. E. Druett, RAF--Evd
      F/O J. Martin, RCAF--POW
      F/O G. Chapman, RCAF--POW
      F/Sgt. K. Donaldson, RCAF--POW
      Sgt. C. Wentworth, RCAF--Evd
      P/O C. Soderstrom, RCAF
    1 was killed, 4 POWs, and 2 evaded capture.

    F/Sgt. F. Haldenby, RCAF (POW), and crew failed to return from this operation. 

      Sgt. P. Ager, RAF
      F/Sgt. E. Downing, RCAF--POW
      Sgt. J. Dougherty, RCAF--POW
      P/O W. Good, RCAF
      Sgt. T. Inverarity, RCAF--Evd
      P/O A. Boehmer, RCAF
    3 were killed, 3 POWs and 1 evaded capture.

    P/O E. Dwyer, RCAF and crew failed to return from this operation. 

      Sgt. J. Bolton, RAF
      P/O S. Kaiser, RCAF
      F/O J. Lummis, RCAF
      P/O A Moorby, RCAF
      P/O T. Turner, RCAF
      P/O N. Moore, RCAF
    All were killed.

    P/O W. McQueen, RCAF and crew failed to return from this operation. 

      P/O W. Pearcey, RAF
      P/O D. McAllister, RCAF
      P/O P. Kingston, RCAF
      P/O A. Warrington, RAF
      P/O M. Habiluk, RCAF
      P/O C. Beech, RCAF
    All were killed.

    Both 431 and 434 operated from Croft. On this night they lost a total of 8 crews, 56 airmen failed to come home after this operation. What a sad morning it must have been.
     

    While part of the group went to Sterkrade, 101 Halifaxes from 420, 424, 425, 427, 429, and 433 squadrons were ordered to attack a V-1 site in the Pas de Calais area called Sautrecourt. The crews were over the target between 14,000 and 17,000 feet, releasing 760,000 lbs of high explosives. According to reports, the target was well hit.

    P/O W. Campbell from 420 squadron returned early as the under carriage could not be raised.
    F/O J. Zavitz was attacked by an ME-110, there was no damage or claim.

    F/O W. Dennett from 425 squadron was attacked by 2 ME-110s. There was no claim or damage.
    F/O H. Romuld was returning from this operation when he was fired upon by another Halifax. Gun fire came through the windscreen fatally wounding the pilot. The bomb aimer took over the controls and safely landed at Woodbridge.

    F/Sgt. W. Ellwood from 427 squadron returned early as their aircraft would not climb.

    F/Lt. E. Hawn from 429 squadron landed at Hethel on return.
     


    ~Headquarters~  ~Squadrons~  ~Order of  Battle~  ~Airfields~  ~Aircraft~ ~Photos~ ~DailyOps~ ~Noseart~  ~StrikePhotos~   ~Mining Codes~  ~Home~  ~Orders&Awards~ ~Betty'sBar~ ~Links~ ~What'sNew~ ~SignGuestbook~  ~ViewGuestbook~ ~E-mailMe~