UK Korean War MIA recovered.

Discussion in 'Military History and Militaria' started by chippymick, May 4, 2011.

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  1. Yes possibly FAA, however the USAF had a number of RAF exchange pilots throughout the war.
    RAF only supplied transport aircraft if I've read correctly.
  2. According to the Armed Forces Memorial site he was a Ft Lt in the RAF and had been awarded a DFC
  3. Sounds like FAA but then I know that your more of an expert in the south east asia field than I am.

    actually stratch that I think jamdoughnut has got it

    excerpt taken from here In memory of Ft Lt Desmond Hinton DFC « Ibisbill’s blog

    "Flight Lieutenant Desmond Frederick William Hinton (August 13, 1922-January 2, 1952) was a Royal Air Force fighter pilot who died in the Korean war flying for the United States Air Force and is buried in North Korea. I am extremely grateful to his brother David who shared his memories of Desmond with me and told me the remarkable story of how he located Desmond’s grave near Pyongyang and visited it in 2004."
  4. Well if it turns out to be him, it's a result for his family and he won't be disturbed in his new grave by hoards of kimchi munching jackboot monkeys all trying on the new official state smile.
  5. The RAF supplied detachments from 3 Flying Boat Squadrons, based at Iwakuni and under the operational control of the local CTG for ASW. They also supplied the spotter flight for the UK Brigade involved on the peninsula. The RAF and RAAF transport aircraft maintained the link between Japan and Hong Kong, with some flights going into Korea, mainly for MEDEVAC. The RAF did provide the instructors to 77 Sqd RAAF when they converted to Meteors. Those instructors took the opportunity to log a little combat time with the Aussies, both in the Mustang and the Meteor. There were also exchange officers, both regular and specially arranged, flying in a lot of the US units, especially the F-86 wing.

    The funny part was that while the RAAF and SAAF supplied fighter squadrons and the RN and RAN maintained one carrier continuously in Korean waters, the senior Commonwealth officer assigned to MacArthur’s staff was an RAF Air Vice Marshal. Apparently they had been friends during WWII, so the British expected MacArthur to feed him with the real information.
  6. Besides the original four instructors to convert the Aussies to Meteors, quite a few other RAF pilots were seconded to 77 Sqn, there were 29 or 32 in total (sources vary), a few arrived too late to see much action. 6 were killed and 1 captured. Like the Aussies they generally did 6-month tours flying between 100 and 140 sorties.

    British Military Aviation in 1951

    The Air War

    AFAIK 17 RAF pilots flew Sabres with the USAF in Korea and a few more flew B-26s and F-84s.
  7. This story is not true until the US forensic services confirm the man's identity. It is not unknown for the North Koreans to hand over a random collection of bones from an MIA that turn out to be Chinese or non human.
  8. I take your point Pterandon,

    I assume that the experts at JPAC in Hawaii will be involved.

    It is obvious from the link provided by JVB1988 that this has taken a long while to come about. In spite of the time taken, what a great gesture on the part of the North Koreans. This sort of thing goes a long way towards humanising the regime.

    I understand that more than 4,000 US sevicemen are still MIA in Korea. Does anyone have the numbers for the Commonwealth?

    I had forgotten about the Sunderlands and the other RAF contribution. Confirmation that most of the interesting stuff happens on the margins.

  9. Good one, that gave me a laugh, what tosh.

    The so called 'spotter flight' (1903 Air OP Flt) was part of the RAF because there was no AAC, during WW2 and after there were AOP Sqns, basically one per corps or theatre. While it was an RAF unit its commander and all pilots were artillery officers, mostly RA but a few RAA, always a RCA officer, not sure about RNZA, obviously pilots rotated throughout the war.

    The ground crews were mix of army (mostly RA) and RAF. The flight was part of the Commonwealth Division and supported all three brigades.
  10. Andy_S

    Andy_S LE Book Reviewer

    Just saw this.

    It is a pretty magnanimous move by the Norks, given that Hinton went down near Sunan (today, the airfield serving Pyongyang); by the end of the war, there were a grand total of two buildings standing in the city, courtesy of UN air strikes.

    The remains have gone to Hawaii. This was apparently a suprise to Hinton's brother, who had visited the grave at Sunan, which was well maintained by the Norks, and, AFAIK, wanted him to rest there.

    Contrary to Pteranadon's comment above, the Norks have historically been pretty good about preserving UN remains and handing them over. Sure, there have been cases of bad bones, but IMHO, these are cases of mistaken ID. If you visit the UN Cemetery in Busan, South Korea, and see the number of remains down there that were repatriated after the ceasefire - well.

    They include not just the RM Commandos KIA at Hellfire Valley/Chosin Reservoir in Northeast Korea, but also (for Chippymick) those of Lt. Col. Charles Hercules Green, 3 Royal Australian Regt - arguably the finest UN battalion commander of the war - KIA outside Chongjum Northwest Korea, in Oct 1950.

    I'd add that the joint US Army-North Korean People's Army joint recovery operations of the 1990s were halted, NOT due to Nork instransigence, but due to the Bush Administration.

    IMHO - and in the opinions of at least one US Korean War VIP (he was a US naval officer aboard the "Meredith Victory" aka "The Ship of Miracles" in Christmas 1950 - look it up, it is one of the most extraordinary stories of modern warfare;you will find it in the Guinness Book of Records) I have interviewed - this was a mistake by the Bushies.