17/18 August 1943
Lancaster Mk II - DS630 KO-H
Crew on 3rd operation. Crashed at 0214 hours at Ostersoen 1 mile SE of Gedser, Denmark.
Source: 115 Squadron Roll of Honour by D. Bruce, W. R. Chorley, J. G. J. de Haan.
596 aircraft - 324 Lancasters, 218 Halifaxes, 54 Stirlings.
This was the first raid in which 6 (Canadian) Group operated Lancaster aircraft.
426 Squadron dispatched 9 Lancaster IIs, losing 2 aircraft including that of the
Squadron commander, Wing Commander L. Crooks, DSO, DFC.
This was a special raid which Bomber Command was ordered to carry out against the German research
establishment on the Baltic coast where V2 rockets were being built and tested.
The raid was carried out in moonlight to increase the chances of success.
There were several novel features:- there was a Master Bomber controlling a full-scale Bomber Command raid for the first time;
there were three aiming points - the scientists' and workers' living quarters, the rocket factory and the experimental station.
The Pathfinders employed a special plan with crews designated as 'shifters', who attempted to move the marking from
one part of the target to another as the raid progressed; Crews of No 5 Group; bombing in the last wave of the attack,
had practised the 'time-and-distance' bombing method as an alternative method for their part in the raid.
The Pathfinders found Peenemünde without difficulty in the moonlight and the Master Bomber controlled the raid successfully throughout.
A Mosquito diversion to Berlin drew off most of the German night-fighters for the first 2 of the raid's 3 phases. (one loss).
The estimate has appeared in many sources that this raid set back the V-2 experimental programme by at least
2 months and reduced the scale of the eventual rocket attack.
Bomber Command's losses were 40 aircraft - 23 Lancasters, 15 Halifaxes and 2 Stirlings.
This represents 6.7 per cent of the force dispatched but was judged an acceptable cost for
the successful attack on this important target on a moonlit night.
Most of the casualties were suffered by the aircraft of the last wave when the German night fighters arrived in force.
This was the first night on which the Germans used their new schräge Musik weapons;
these were twin upward-firing cannons fitted in the cockpit of Me 110s.
Two schräge Musik aircraft found the bomber stream flying home from Peenemünde and are believed to have
shot down 6 of the bombers lost on the raid.
Source: nationalarchives.gov.uk - Bomber Command - Campaign Diary August 1943. (last update 26/1/2019)
ORB. 17th Aug., 1943.
12 aircraft took off between 21.38 hours & 21.50 hours to attack PEENEMUNDE.
11 of them identified the target by means of green target indicator markers in which they
dropped their bombs from heights ranging between 7,800 feet & 12,000 feet.
Many concentrated fires with smoke rising to 8,000 feet were seen as well as a
large explosion at 00.24 hours. Photographs were attempted.
One aircraft failed to return from Operations.
04.40. 11 aircraft had returned safely to Base after Operations.
Route: 5510N 0700E - 5520N 0829E - PEENEMUNDE - MANO - 5510N 0700E.
F/O - Service No 120587
Son of Frederick William and Ethel Henrietta Pusey, of Wotton-under-Edge, Gloucestershire.
Runnymede Memorial - panel 129
*He was one of a small number of RAF personnel entitled to wear both RAF and USAF wings
as he trained in the US and then stayed to train both RAF and USAF pilots hence he had to
have his American qualification and earned there wings as well.
Source: CWGC - *info via Graham Sturrock, photo via his mum, Diana Margaret Sturrock
(maiden name Pusey, born 14/1/1925 - died 24/8/2011) sister of Frederick.
Sgt - Service No 1678529
Son of Thomas Phillips Leonard and Dorothy Leonard, of Prudhoe, Northumberland.
Runnymede Memorial - panel 156.
F/O - Service No J22495
Son of Roy and Lilian Bruton of Waterdown. Youngest of seven children.
Runnymede Memorial - panel 173.
His brother died of his wounds on 01/11/1944 in Belgium,
serving in the 3 Anti-Tank Regt. Royal Canadian Artillery.
Sgt - Service No 1029361
Husband of Winifred F. Howard, of Tue Brook, Liverpool.
Runnymede Memorial - panel 154.
P/O - Service No 139683
Son of Eric Grant Cable and Nellie Margaret Cable, of Radlett, Hertfordshire.
Runnymede Memorial - panel 131.
Sgt - Service No R129152
Son of William Edward and Nellie McKibbon,
of Toronto, Ontario, Canada.
Runnymede Memorial - panel 186.
Sgt - Service No 1321331
Son of Florence Ellen Corbett and stepson of Richard Alfred Thurston, of South Lopham, Norfolk.
Runnymede Memorial - panel 146.