Lancaster DS663 25/26 June 1943

Lancaster Mk II - DS663 KO-C

T/O East Wretham 2250 - minelying operations in the Lorient area.
Crashed at Vern d'Anjou. All crew buried in Collective Grave.

Source: 115 Squadron Roll of Honour by D. Bruce, W. R. Chorley, J. G. J. de Haan.

33 aircraft were sent minelaying in the Frisians and off French ports.
1 Lancaster lost.

473 aircraft ordered to Gelsenkirchen - 214 Lancasters, 134 Halifaxes, 73 Stirlings, 40 Wellingtons, 12 Mosquitos.
This was the first raid to the city since 1941, when it had been one of Bomber Command's regular 'oil targets',
although, being in the middle of the Ruhr, this town had often been hit when other targets were attacked.
30 aircraft - 13 Lancasters, 7 Halifaxes, 6 Stirlings,
4 Wellingtons - were lost, 6.3 per cent of the force.

The raid was not a success. The target was obscured by cloud and the Oboe Mosquitos, for once,
failed to produce regular and accurate marking since 5 of the 12 Oboe aircraft found that their equipment was unserviceable.

Source: nationalarchives.gov.uk - Bomber Command - Campaign Diary June 1943.

ORB. 25th June, 1943.
2 aircraft took off on MINELAYING OPERATIONS (Area LA ROCHELLE) at 10.50 hours &
one of them failed to return from Operations.
The other successfully dropped its mines in the allotted area by pinpoint of POINT DE LA PAYRE from a height of 700 feet.

12 aircraft took off between 23.54 hours & 00.23 hours to attack target GELSENKIRCHEN.
1 aircraft Lancaster Mk II DS666 KO-J, 7 KIA, failed to return from Operations & another
(L.D.S.662 - Captain F/S. PEATE. R.)
was forced to abandon the sortie due to starboard outer engine trouble &
returned to Base early after jettisoning his 4,000 lb. H.C. safe but bringing back his incendiaries.
1 aircraft (D.D.S.629 - Captain F/L. J. B. STARKY) collided with a believed Lancaster aircraft over ENSHEDE &
jettisoned his bombs live, damage being sustained to starboard wing.
The remaining nine aircraft located the target by means of tracking flares & release point flares on which they
dropped their bombs from heights ranging between 18,000 feet and 21,000 feet.
Glow of fires could be seen through the clouds.
1 Captain (X.D.S.664 - Captain Sgt. WOLFSON. F.) reported a large explosion at 02.40 hours.
(Z.D.S.631 - Sgt. HOWELL. A. - Aircraft received 2 holes in nacelle due to fighter attack).

04.50. 12 aircraft had returned safely to Base.

Lancaster DS663Whitehead Frederick Alan Whitehead Frederick Alan - Pilot

Sgt - Service No 1317727

Age: 21

RAFVR

Son of Fred and Florence A. Whitehead, of Southsea, Hampshire.

Nantes (Pont-du-Cens) Communal Cemetery,
Departement Loire Atlantique, France -
Plot L. Row C. collective grave 2-6.

Source: CWGC - photo via francecrashes39-45.net, by D. Auzeau - Find a Grave.

Lancaster DS663Price Leslie Frederick Price Leslie Frederick - FE

Sgt - Service No 1454385

Age:

RAFVR

Son of

Nantes (Pont-du-Cens) Communal Cemetery,
Departement Loire Atlantique, France -
Plot L. Row C. collective grave 2-6.

Source: CWGC - photo via francecrashes39-45.net, by D. Auzeau - Find a Grave.

Lancaster DS663Glover Patrick Edward Glover Patrick Edward "Paddy" - Nav

Sgt - Service No 1321791

Age: 20

RAFVR

Son of Eric Arthur and Sarah Frances Glover, of Purley, Surrey.

Nantes (Pont-du-Cens) Communal Cemetery,
Departement Loire Atlantique, France -
Plot L. Row C. collective grave 2-6.

Source: CWGC - photo via francecrashes39-45.net, by D. Auzeau - Find a Grave.

Lancaster DS663Richardson Eric Ryder Richardson Eric Ryder - WOP

Sgt - Service No 1387194

Age: 20

RAFVR

Son of William Dormer Richardson and Lizzie Richardson,
of Hemel Hempstead, Hertfordshire.

Nantes (Pont-du-Cens) Communal Cemetery,
Departement Loire Atlantique, France -
Plot L. Row C. collective grave 2-6.

Source: CWGC - photo via francecrashes39-45.net, by D. Auzeau - Find a Grave.

Parry FrederickParry Frederick Parry Frederick - BA

F/O - Service No 131560

Age:

RAFVR

Son of

Nantes (Pont-du-Cens) Communal Cemetery,
Departement Loire Atlantique, France -
Plot L. Row C. collective grave 2-6.

Source: CWGC - photo via francecrashes39-45.net, by D. Auzeau - Find a Grave by Marms.

Lancaster DS663Baker Edward Gordon Baker Edward Gordon - MUG

Sgt - Service No 1177976

Age: 26

RAFVR

Husband of Frances Mary Baker, of Crayford, Kent.

Nantes (Pont-du-Cens) Communal Cemetery,
Departement Loire Atlantique, France -
Plot L. Row C. collective grave 2-6.

Source: CWGC - photo via francecrashes39-45.net, by D. Auzeau - Find a Grave.

Lancaster DS663McGowan William McIlwee McGowan William McIlwee - RG

Sgt - Service No 1551754

Age: 21

RAFVR

Son of Charles and Jane McGowan, of Port Glasgow, Renfrewshire.

Nantes (Pont-du-Cens) Communal Cemetery,
Departement Loire Atlantique, France -
Plot L. Row C. collective grave 2-6.

Source: CWGC - photo via Paul Galli, grand-nephew - francecrashes39-45.net, by D. Auzeau - Find a Grave.