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Archive Report: Allied Forces

Compiled from official National Archive and Service sources, contemporary press reports, personal logbooks, diaries and correspondence, reference books, other sources, and interviews.
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298 Squadron Crest
05/06.08.1944 298 Squadron Halifax V LL334 8A:Q Fg Off. Charles E. Anderson

Operation: "Diplomat 9", SOE (Special Operations Executive)

Date: 5th/6th August 1944 (Saturday/Sunday)

Unit: 298 Squadron

Type: Halifax V

Serial: LL334

Code: 8A:Q

Base: RAF Tarrant Rushton, Dorset, England

Location: Essoyes, France

Pilot: Fg Off. Charles Edward Anderson J13450 RCAF Age 22. Killed

Flt Eng: Sgt. Cyril Muskin RAFVR - Evader (1)

Nav: Plt Off. Elliot Annon 178837 RAFVR - Evader

Bomb Aimer: Flt Sgt. Jack Threlkeld 1508714 RAFVR - Evader

WOp/Air Gnr: Flt Sgt. David E. Lewis 1294559 RAFVR - Evader (1)

Air Gnr: Plt Off. Ronald Frederick Reader 413792 RNZAF- Evader (2)

"Diplomat 9" was the code name for a Tactical Bombing Mission.

REASON FOR LOSS:

Several variations exist on the loss of this aircraft and crew members and details - we decided to publish the story to the crew and wait for further evidence from readers of this site.

LL334 took off from RAF Tarrant Rushton at 23:42 hrs on a "Diplomat 9" Mission. The target was located at a position about 3½ km NNW of Fontette, 2 km WNW of Saint-Usage and 1½ km NE of Noé-les-Mallets.

Claimed by Uffz. Heinz G. Siebert, his 10th Abschuss, from 2./NJG5, 5-15 km SW of Chaumont at 50m, at 02:10 hrs. (Nachtjagd Combat Archive (24 July 1944 - 15 October 1944) Part 4 - Theo Boiten)

It is believed that he was injured returning from an operation on the 16th March 1945 during a landing at Bayreuth airfield. Understood to have survived the war

The aircraft made a forced landing at Essoyes killing Fg Off Anderson.

(1) Sgt. Muskin and Flt Sgt. Lewis was hidden by a Monsieur Trubert at Essoye and returned safely to the UK.

(2) Plt Off. Reader was found wounded in the rear turret of the aircraft. He was treated in a German Hospital for his injured Pelvis where he was visited by Mademoiselle Fortier of Essoyes, known as "Tante Louise". Plt Off. Reader later escaped from his escorts after they left him in the car when they stopped for a drink at a cafe. He returned to England and was interviewed on the 20th October 1944.

Burial details:

Rosemary Deans contacted us in August 2021 who told us that Fg Off. Anderson was the maternal uncle of William Charles Kitson, the husband of Rosemary Deans. They were able to visit Fg Off. Anderson’s grave in 2006, shortly before his sister passed away. While she was very happy to see where her brother rested, she never did learn the details of his heroism.

Above William Charles Kitson on his visit to Fg Off. Anderson’s grave in 2006 (Credit: Rosemary Deans)

Mr. David Pugh visited the grave of the pilot on Remembrance Sunday 2015 - placing a British Legion cross.

Above: Photograph of Fg Off. Anderson from his Service Record.

Fg Off. Charles Edward Anderson. Essoyes Communal Cemetery. Born on the 26th August 1921 in St. Boniface, Manitoba. Son of Charles Edward and Miranda (née Hutchison) Anderson from Winnipeg, Manitoba. Husband of Viola Elaine (née Rothwell) Anderson and father to Linda Joyce Anderson from Garrick, Saskatchewan, Canada.

With thanks to David Pugh who visited the grave of the pilot in November 2015 and sent in the photographs. Also to Colin Cummings “Though Without Anger’ - which describes transport and special duties aircraft losses 1940 - 1945. Additional research and updated narrative including image of Fg Off. Anderson carried out by Aircrew Remembered (Aug 2021). Thanks to Rosemary Deans for additional photograph of the visit by William Charles Kitson (Aug 2021).


Mr. David Pugh is conducting further research into this and hope to add more once he has visited the Mayor and other locals who may recall the crash.


RS 11.08.2021 - Additional of 2006 graveside visit photograph

Acknowledgements: Sources used by us in compiling Archive Reports include: Bill Chorley - 'Bomber Command Losses Vols. 1-9, plus ongoing revisions', Dr. Theo E.W. Boiten and Mr. Roderick J. Mackenzie - 'Nightfighter War Diaries Vols. 1 and 2', Martin Middlebrook and Chris Everitt - 'Bomber Command War Diaries', Commonwealth War Graves Commission, Tom Kracker - Kracker Luftwaffe Archives, Michel Beckers, Major Fred Paradie (RCAF) and MWO François Dutil (RCAF) - Paradie Archive (on this site), Jean Schadskaje, Major Jack O'Connor USAF (Retd.), Robert Gretzyngier, Wojtek Matusiak, Waldemar Wójcik and Józef Zieliński - 'Ku Czci Połeglyçh Lotnikow 1939-1945', Archiwum - Polish Air Force Archive (on this site), Anna Krzystek, Tadeusz Krzystek - 'Polskie Siły Powietrzne w Wielkiej Brytanii', Franek Grabowski, Norman L.R. Franks 'Fighter Command Losses', Aircrew Remembered Databases and our own archives. We are grateful for the support and encouragement of CWGC, UK Imperial War Museum, Australian War Memorial, Australian National Archives, New Zealand National Archives, UK National Archives and Fold3 and countless dedicated friends and researchers across the world.
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Last Modified: 11 August 2021, 06:55

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