16.05.1945 No. 3 SFTS Anson V 12478 Fl/Lt. Everett B. Allen
Operation: Ferry Flight
Date: 16th May 1945 (Wednesday)
Unit: No. 3 SFTS (Service Flying Training School)
Type: Avro Anson V
Base: RCAF Currie Field, Calgary, Canada
Location: 7.5 miles NNW Ponoka, Alberta, Canada
Pilot: Fl/Lt. Everett Brock Allen C/23502 RCAF Age 32. Killed
Pax 1: Fl/Lt. Thomas Bernard Akin C/4306 RCAF Age 37. Killed
Pax 2: Fl/Lt. Louis Lynde Aide C/16471 RCAF Age 31, Killed
Pax 3: F/O. George Joseph Sydney Overend C/23165 RCAF Age 51. Killed
Pax 4: Fl/Lt. Robert George Hodge J/27801 RCAF Age 29. Killed
Pax 5: Sgt. Ivan Rex Stacey NZ/4313188 RNZAF Age 20. Killed
This page is dedicated to the memory of Mr. Robert Hodge. Robert was the son of Fl/Lt. Robert George Hodge. He had contacted us in November 2015 with the promise to send additional information andphotographs of his father.
Sadly, Robert died in October 2016 - but prior to this he had asked his daughter, Jenny, to keep us updated and to send information and photographs as of course this was very important to him.
REASON FOR LOSS:
The Anson was authorised for the collection of F/O. Overend from Edmonton to 3 SFTS in Calgary. Whilst at Edmonton, two further passengers were collected, Fl/Lt. Louis Aide and Fl/Lt. Thomas Akin. These were not authorised although the pilot had the right to do so.
Whilst in the vicinity of Ponoka, Alberta the aircraft entered severe turbulence - eye witness reports state that the aircraft started to spun and then appeared to disintegrate - inspection at the crash scene revealed that the wings were the first to break off, despite witness report stating that the tail section had broken off first.
Left: USAAF Chest parachute.
During the final turn before impact at 15.30 hrs, Fl/Lt. Robert Hodge, F/O. George Overend and Sgt. Stacey were thrown out. The crash site was 7.5 miles NNW of Penoka.
The subsequent investigation showed that only four parachutes were carried - sufficient for the number of passengers that had been organised. The two extra passengers were allowed to board the aircraft without parachutes.
Right: USAAF Chest parachute.
At the time of the accident none of the passengers were wearing parachutes, which were of the seat type rather than that of the chest type which should have been carried by the Anson. (note: pilots, in general, preferred the seat type as it provided more freedom for head movement) None of the passengers were strapped in, even those in the cockpit.
Cause: Structural failure in the air due to undue stress set up by possible turbulent weather conditions. Possible contributory factors were listed as:
A: Undue stress placed aircraft by having dived at excessive speed or sudden pull out.
B: Overloading of the aircraft.
However, there is no evidence that the aircraft dived and the total weight of the aircraft/passengers was approximately 9,065 lbs - within the limit of 9,460 lbs.
Left: Sgt. Ivan Rex Stacey further Details (kindly supplied by Dianne Kaye):
Left: Waitaki Boys high School, Oamaru.
Born in Christchurch on the 21st May 1924, educated at the Cathedral Grammar School, Christchurch and later at the Waitaki Boys high School, Oamaru. After leaving school he worked as a draughtsman for Andersons Ltd in Christchurch. During his leisure time he enjoyed playing hockey for the Welwyn Club and table tennis for St. Lukes Club in Christchurch.
Entered the army serving as a Railway Transport Officer in the 33rd Field Company New Zealand until April 1943. June 1943 he applied for aircrew training and entered camp at Delta in October 1943.
Posted to Initial Training Wing, Delta in April 1944 when finally sent to Canada on the 6th July 1944 for training under the Empire Training Scheme as a wireless operator air gunner.
Right: Harvard Trainer, the type Sgt. Stacey would have trained on.
On arrival sent to No. 2 Wireless training School, Calgary. In March 1945 he was awarded his qualification badge and promoted to sergeant.
He was returning from leave in Edmonton following his graduation at the school when he was killed with all 6 crew/passengers.
Calgary (Burnsland) Cemetery (courtesy CWGC)
Fl/Lt. Everett Brock Allen. Calgary (Burnsland) Cemetery. Lot 20. Block 1. Sec. B. Son of Hector W. Allen, and of Isabel M. Allen, of Montreal, Province of Quebec, husband of Dorothy Eleanor Allen, of Banff, Canada. Born in 1923, enlisted at Calgary on the 27th February 1941. Graduated on the 5th February 1943 from 6 SFTS. Instructor at 3 SFTS.
Fl/Lt. Thomas Bernard Akin. Falmouth (Centre Falmouth) Cemetery. Family plot. Son of Thomas Bernard and Susan Amelia Akin, of Windsor, Canada.
Fl/Lt. Louis Lynde Aide. Hardisty Cemetery. Lot 10. Block A. Son of William Richard and Mary Margaret Aide, of Hardisty, husband of Joan Winifred Aide, of Hardisty, Canada.
F/O. George Joseph Sydney Overend. Calgary (Burnsland) Cemetery. Lot 130. Block 8. Sec. G. Son of George J. Overend and Anna M. Overend, of Orillia, Ontario, husband of Sarah Maude Overend, of Calgary, Canada.
Fl/Lt. Robert George Hodge. Calgary (Burnsland) Cemetery. Lot 128. Block 8. Sec. G. Born on the 16th April 1916, the son of John and Lillian Hodge, of Toronto, Ontario, husband of Evelyn M. Hodge, of Calgary, Canada. Further information: Prior to joining the Royal Canadian Air Force Robert (Bob) was working as an office clerk for Adams, Wood and Weiller Ltd., a livestock commission agent at the Calgary Stockyards. He was very athletic and played multiple sports, excelling at both baseball and badminton. After enlistment and training Bob reported to Botwood, Newfoundland on September 16, 1942. He was a part of the No. 116 Bomber Reconnaissance Squadron. This squadron flew on anti-submarine operations off the Atlantic Coast. He was stationed here until December of 1944. At the time of his death Bob was continuing his training in Edmonton and had recently completed the Flying Control Course. He was flying home to visit his family when the crash occurred. In addition to his parents, brother and wife, Evelyn, Bob left behind two children, Robert (Bobby) aged 5 and Wendie aged 2. He was, by all accounts, a loving and devoted husband and father with a fantastic sense of humour and an enthusiasm for life.
Sgt. Ivan Rex Stacey. Calgary (Burnsland) Cemetery. Lot 129. Block 8. Sec. G. Son of Arthur Francis and Florence May Stacey, of Christchurch, Canterbury, New Zealand. He had recently completed his wireless operator training at 2 Wireless Training School in Calgary, 22 flying hours logged.
Researched and dedicated to the relatives of this crew with thanks to Dianne Kaye relative of Sgt. Stacey for sending us the detailed information. Also to Jenny Plaquin the daughter of the son (also named Robert Hodge) of Fl/Lt. Robert George Hodge. New Zealand Cenotaph Archives. Bomber Command Museum of Canada. Commonwealth Graves Commission.