Need Help finding which Wellinton this Sgt. Navigator died in, 149 Sqn.

Discussion in 'Military History and Militaria' started by bokkatankie, Apr 23, 2012.

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  1. Usual plea for help, I have gone through the web, can find lots of info on the other Wellinton lost that night:

    Wellington IC P9245
    149 Squadron
    Operation Boulogne

    First Names: STANLEY CHARLES
    Service Number 751434
    Royal Air Force Volunteer Reserve
    149 Sqdn.
    Age 28
    Date of Death08/09/1940 (MIA), appears aircraft was lost with all crew, according to records 2 Wellingtons of 149 Sqn were lost on night of 8/9 Sept.
  2. He is listed as missing here as Acting Sergeant 1940 | 2888 | Flight Archive

    Right hand column level with the words "AIR MINISTRY CASUALTY COMMUNIQUE NO. 48"

    He also appears on the Runnymede Memorial:

    Service No:751434
    Date of Death:08/09/1940
    Regiment/Service:Royal Air Force Volunteer Reserve
    149 Sqdn.
    Panel ReferencePanel 14.
    Additional Information:
    Son of Charles and Ada Lily Grant, of Seaford, Sussex.
  3. Thanks TFoT, got that on him. There is a list of all Wellingtons that were lost in 149 Sqn., but rather annoyingly it does not then link to crews.

    There is a book about all Bomber Command Losses but I do not have it and it has not been converted to a web index. Hoping that some kind sole on here may ahve that book and would look him up.
  4. No joy it will not let me look at page 138.
  5. Just says 'Target Boulogne, presumed lost over the sea''. Lists the crew as:

    PO J L Leeds - Pilot
    Sgt R A Jerritt
    Sgt S C Grant
    Sgt H G Gledhill
    Sgt W W Crooks
    Sgt A C Martin

    There are some Luftwaffe sites that may be able to help if it was a fighter that shot them down - I'll have a look.

    'Jack' Leeds was a Canadian - this from a defunct web forum:

    Regarding the Canadian Jack Leeds of 149 Squadron there doesn't appear to be anything on the net about his fateful Sept 8-9. 1940 flight and the seemingly disappearance of Wellington R3175. Chorley is relatively blank on this as well except for indicating that the crew were never found after the Boulogne raid. They were among the many others who sacrificed their lives during the Battle of Britain to keep Sealion at bay but never received their due recognition.

    My uncle was a WOP/AG on Wimpeys - survived the War to be killed flying a SAAF Harvard in '53.
  6. You might want to give this site a try .... linky ...
    Bomber Command Association

    which claims .....

    It does say it has info for Western Europe but mainly the Netherland but could still well be worth a punt ... it is free .
  7. Have given it a go thanks, will let you know if any joy.
  9. Have you contactd the archive at the RAF Museum Hendon? They can be very halpful and have some operational records etc.
  10. Not yet.

    Question; what happened to the log books of those KIA or MIA, this chap was Sgt. Navigator, did he have log book and if so where would it be?
  11. I think that Hendon must hold them, because i have seen Guy Gibson's and Douglas Bader's It wouldn't mke security sense to taken them on the aircraft on a mission.
  12. Most of the unclaimed RAF flying log books were destroyed after the war but a representative selection are kept at the National Archives, in record series AIR 4.

    149 Sqd's Operations Record Book should be available from TNA's Documents Online. The digitised ORBs cost £3.50 per download which might cover one month or several months from the book.

    Here are the links to September 1940:
    The National Archives | DocumentsOnline | Image Details (25 pages)
    The National Archives | DocumentsOnline | Image Details (4 pages)

  13. Gibson's log book is in the National Archives:
    Detecting your browser settings
  14. One thing - given that Sgt Grant died in August 1940, I wouldn't think he would have been designated "Navigator". At the time, most RAF night bombers (except the Hampden) flew with a Pilot (the ac captain) and a less experienced Second Pilot. The chap who dropped the bombs was classed as Air Observer. He and the Second Pilot were expected to do the navigation, but neither was very well trained in the task. One of the most significant contributions (often overlooked in favour of more "sexy" topics such as the Pathfinders) made to improving the efficiency of Bomber Command was the Training Needs Analysis made by AVM Foster MacNeece, a retired officer recalled at the outbreak of war to run Bomber Command training. He realised that if the RAF only trained one pilot per bomber crew, said pilot could have twice as many flying training hours given to him. Meanwhile, the chap who had previously been trained as a Second Pilot could now be trained to actually read a map, badged as a Navigator for the first time, and the bloke who had to drop the bombs could concentrate his training on just that. Changes came to fruition circa 1941 or early 1942. Before that, someone like Sgt Grant would be filling the "navigator" role, but not formally recognised (or really trained) as doing so. I suspect he was officially an Air Obs.