Wellington X3593 29/30 April 1942

Wellington Mk III - X3593 - KO-C

T/O Marham 2118. Target: Gennevilliers, France.
Crashed at Bievres (Seine et Oise), 12 km SE Versailles, France.
The above location is incorrect, please read below.

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

88 aircraft - 73 Wellingtons, 9 Hampdens, 6 Stirlings -
to the Gnome & Rhone aero-engine factory.
The main factory was not hit but other industrial buildings in the nearby Port de Paris on the Seine were.
The local report says that 1 industrial building was destroyed and 3 more damaged with no casualties
being suffered by French people.

3 Wellingtons lost.

Source: nationalarchives.gov.uk - Bomber Command - Campaign Diary April 1942.

ORB. 29th. April, 1942.
15 aircraft including 1 freshman (7 from "A" Flight and 9 from "B" Flight)
took off between 2114 and 2221 hours to attack target GENNEVILLIERS
and found weather over the target to be good.
The target was identified visually and bombing from heights ranging between 6000
and 10500 feet dropped their bombs and observed many bursts in target area all factories receiving hits.
Several good fires were started, one of these being reported on the opposite bank of the river.
Leaflets were dropped in the PARIS area and many photographs attempted.

The aircraft (A/C. Z.X.3344 - Captain Sgt. WILLIAMS) attacking OSTEND
brought all its bombs back as they hung up.

A/C. C.X.3593 - Captain Sgt. REYNOLDS) failed to return from Operations.

0341. All the remaining aircraft had returned safely to Base after Operations.

May 2nd 2023.

Dear Sirs,

I am writing to you after noticing an error on your Web site concerning Squadron 115 Wellington Mk III – X3593 – KO-C ;
you state that the aircraft crashed in Bièvres which is incorrect :

The Île-de-France Branch of the Royal Air Forces Association has participated in the ceremony commemorating the lives of the
crew members of Squadron 115 Wellington Mk III – X3593 – KO-C and Squadron 57 Wellington Mk III – X3640 -DX since the
creation of our branch in 1946.

The crash resulted from a mid-air collision of these aircraft on 29th of April 1942 over the town of Maisons-Laffitte, France.
It is thought that X3640 was hit by flak and then collided with X3593.

Both aircraft fell in the area known as the "Parc de Maisons-Laffitte" and the debris was spread in 3 or 4 areas – see the map attached.
X3593/Crash Site Location.pdf

The bodies of the crew of X3640 were severely charred but those of X3593 were intact.
All were collected by the personnel of the German HQ, which was also in the Park, and were laid out on the ground before being
transferred for burial to Bièvres.
On the 2nd of May the residents in the Park placed two small flags, one French and one British, at each spot where a body was found
and laid a bouquet of branches of Lilac bearing a tri-colour ribbon.

The ceremony always takes place at the monument in Avenue Eglé, situated nearby the crash site in the Park, on the last Sunday of April
each year and is organised by the Mayor of the town, currently Jacques MYARD.

He usually makes a very moving speech recalling the history of the laying of the bouquets of lilac.

The monument unfortunately bears an error in the inscription, as it cites 157 Squadron instead of 57 Squadron.

The monument was modified later to commemorate the crew of an American B-26 Marauder 42-96127 of the USAAF that crashed in the
Park on the 24th of June 1944, a short distance away in Avenue La Fontaine.

I have attached some photos showing the monument, taken last Sunday after the ceremony.

Kind regards,

Michael CLOSE – RAFA Île-de-France Events Organiser.

Wellington X3593

Wellington X3593Reynolds Walter Frank Reynolds Walter Frank - Pilot

Sgt - Service No 1190187

Age: 25

RAFVR

Son of Walter Reynolds, and of Winnifred Adelaide Reynolds,
of Burbage, Wiltshire.

Bievres Communal Churchyard, Essonne - Coll. grave 1-11.

Source: CWGC - photo via Find a grave, by Freerob

Wellington X3593Male David Tawelfryn Male David Tawelfryn - 2nd Pilot

Sgt - Service No 1204858

Age:

RAFVR

Son of David Arnold and Elizabeth Ann Male.
Husband of Novello Male, of Ebbw Vale, Monmouthshire.

Bievres Communal Churchyard, Essonne - Coll. grave 1-11.

Source: CWGC - photo via Find a grave, by Freerob

McGrath Dennis BrienMcGrath Dennis Brien McGrath Dennis Brien - Observer

W/O Class I - Service No R/59351

Age: 25

RCAF

Son of John and Isabella McGrath, of Long Lake, Manitoba, Canada.
Four brothers.

Bievres Communal Churchyard, Essonne - Coll. grave 1-11.

Source: CWGC - photo and more info on Canadian virtual war memorial -
Find a grave by freerob.

Wellington X3593Wilkes Bernard Wilkes Bernard - W.Op./Air Gnr

Sgt - Service No 1150279

Age: 26

RAFVR

Son of Bernard Charles and Florence Wilkes.
Husband of Lola Mary Wilkes, of Dorking, Surrey.

Bievres Communal Churchyard, Essonne - Coll. grave 1-11.

Source: CWGC - photo via Find a grave, by Freerob

Wellington X3593Harries John Howard Harries John Howard - Air Gnr

Sgt - Service No 1258385

Age: 20

RAFVR

Son of Sydney Hermann Harries and Daisy Harries.
Husband of Mary Josephine Harries, of Cowley, Middlesex.

Bievres Communal Churchyard, Essonne - Coll. grave 1-11.

Source: GWGC - photo via Find a grave, by Freerob

Wellington X3593Jones Eric Hampton Jones Eric Hampton - Air Gnr.

Sgt - Service No 1062370

Age: 20

RAFVR

Son of Thomas George Jones, and of Annie Jones,
of Burchetts Green, Berkshire.

Bievres Communal Churchyard, Essonne - Coll. grave 1-11.

Source: CWGC - photo via Find a grave, by Freerob