12.05.1940 No. 15 Squadron L8847 F/O. Thomas G. Bassett
Date: 12th May 1940 (Sunday)
Unit: No. 15 Squadron (2 Group)
Type: Blenheim IV
Base: RAF Alconbury, Huntingdonshire
Location: Gemeente, Borgharen, Belgium
Pilot: F/O. Thomas George Bassett 40781 RAF Age 22. Killed
Obs: Sgt. Neville Craig Middlemass 580461 RAF Age 26. Killed
W/Op/Air/Gnr: LAC. William Timothy Cavanagh 542287 RAF Age 22. Killed
REASON FOR LOSS:
Taking off from RAF Alconbury in Huntingdonshire at 07:50 hrs to attack the bridges at Maastricht to slow down the rapidly advancing German army. Targets had to include housing in order to block roads, but the operation was a disaster for the Squadron losing some 6 aircraft.
Blenheim IV P6914 Flown by 27 year old, Sgt. Hubert Ronald Hall 564340 RAF from Suffolk, England - killed with all of his 2 other crew.
Blenheim IV P6911 Flown by 25 year old, F/O. Albert Edward Oakley 36132 RAF from NSW, Australia - killed with all of his 2 other crew.
Blenheim IV N6151 Flown by Sgt. F.R. Pepper 565103 RAF taken PoW with all of his 2 other crew.
Blenheim IV L8849 Flown by F/O. Peter Norman Douglass 39933 RAF - killed with his observer, air gunner taken PoW.
Blenheim IV P6912 Flown by 25 year old, P/O. Claude Randolph Frankish 40616 RAF from Wellington, New Zealand - killed with all of his 2 other crew.
Thought to have been shot down by Flak or Luftwaffe fighters at about 09:16 hrs.
F/O. Thomas George Bassett. Maastricht General Cemetery. Row 3. Joint grave 142-143. Born on the 12th October 1917, the son of John Leonard and Lena Bassett, of Te Kopuru, Auckland, New Zealand. Grave inscription reads: "His Duty Nobly Done. He Died For His Country, New Zealand". 475 flying hours logged and thought to have been on his 6 operational sortie.
Sgt. Neville Craig Middlemass. Maastricht General Cemetery. Row 3. Grave 141. Son of John and Doris Middlemass, of Sheffield, England. Grave inscription reads: "His Name Lives For Ever In The Book Of Remembrance".
LAC. William Timothy Cavanagh. Maastricht General Cemetery. Row 3. Joint grave 142-143. Son of Timothy and Annie Cavanagh. Grave inscription reads: "Until The Day Break And The Shadows Flee Away".
Researched and dedicated to the relatives of this pilot with thanks to the research by Errol Martyn and his publications: “For Your Tomorrow Vols. 1-3”, Auckland War Memorial Museum, Weekly News of New Zealand, other sources as quoted below: Des Philippet for grave photographs.