25.01.1942 No. 11 Squadron Blenheim IV V5899 Frederick Britain Borrett
Operation: Army Co-operation
Date: 25 January 1942 (Sunday)
Unit: No. 11 Squadron Motto: Ociores acrierosquaquilis - 'Swifter and keener than eagles'
Badge: Two eagles volant in pale - approved by King George VI in May 1937. The badge commemorates the unit's First World War operation of two-seater fighter-reconnaissance aircraft, eagles being chosen to symbolise speed and strength
Type: Bristol Blenheim IV
Base: Landing Ground 147, Bu Amud, Cyrenaica, Libya
Location: Near Mechili Landing Ground, Libya
Pilot: F/Sgt. Frederick Britain Borrett Aus/402104 RAAF - Safe but injured (1)
Obs: F/Sgt. Jack Richmond DFM MiD 550946 RAF Age 22 - Killed (2)
W/Op/Air/Gnr: Sgt. Hugh Lister Mackey Aus/402180 RAAF - Safe but injured (3)
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REASON FOR LOSS
Took off at 15.18 hours on an operation to bomb motor transport along the Antalat-Agedabia road. On the return flight engine failure occurred probably as a result of enemy action and a forced crash landing ensued near Mechili Landing Ground, Libya at 16.00 hours.
Sgt. Frederick Britain Barrett suffered laceration and foreign bodies in his right hand and Sgt. Hugh Lister Mackey was seriously injured receiving lacerations to his left and right buttocks and a contused back. Both airmen were admitted to No. 62 British General Hospital, Tobruk, Libya.
The Observer F/Sgt. Jack Richmond was killed.
BIOGRAPHICAL DETAILS OF THE CREW
(1) F/Sgt. Frederick Britain Borrett was born on 16 November 1914 at Bunbury, Western Australia the son of Harry Britain Borrett and Emily Eliza Borrett later of 17 Wasley Street, Mount Lawley, Perth, Western Australia. His father died on 14 November 1938 at Subiaco, Perth, Western Australia.
He enlisted at 2 RC Sydney on 27 May 1940 and embarked for the UK on 16 April 1941.
He was killed on 19 August 1942 when his aircraft, Blenheim V BA597 crashed north of Oshogbo, Nigeria. He is buried at Oshogbo Cemetery. For details of the crash see www.aircrewremembered.com/borrett-frederick-britai...
His brother Arnold Harvey Borrett Aus/406769, the rear gunner of the crew of Stirling BF378 of No. 15 Squadron died aged 25 when his aircraft was shot down over Holland on an operation to bomb Wilhelmshaven. He lies in Vredenhof Cemetery on the Dutch island of Schiermonnikoog. For details of the loss see www.aircrewremembered.com/crawford-bernard.html
Frederick Britain Borrett and his brother Arnold Harvey Borrett are both commemorated on the Australian War Memorial, Canberra - Panel 119 and on the War Memorial at Perth, Western Australia.
(2) F/Sgt. Jack Richmond DFM, MiD was born on 6 January 1920 at Bradford the son of Frederick Richmond and Doreen Edna Richmond nee Lang, of West Bowling, Yorkshire.
On 25 July 1941 it was promulgated in the London Gazette that whilst serving with 211 Squadron he had been awarded the Distinguished Flying Medal "For gallantry and devotion to duty in the execution of air operations". The citation reads:
“This senior NCO has taken part in 58 raids which have included Libya, Greece and Palestine since 1938. He was the Commanding Officer’s Observer for quite a while. He is an exceptionally keen man and a brilliant Bomb Aimer and Navigator. He has been in No 211 Squadron for 3 years 10 months and has always shown the greatest determination and courage. He is a very determined type.”
On 24 September 1941 it was published in the London Gazette that he had been Mentioned in Dispatches.
Recorded by CWGC as a member of No. 211 Squadron it seems that F/Sgt. Jack Richmond was attached to No. 11 Squadron at the time of his death though the circumstances are unknown.
(3) Sgt. Hugh Lister Mackey born on 23 August 1914 at Canterbury, Victoria, Australia the son of Sir John Emanuel Mackey and Zella Watson Mackey nee Bates.
He had two brothers and two sisters. Sir John Mackey was a renowned Australian politician who on his death in 1924 was granted a state funeral. Hugh Lister Mackey enlisted on 23 June 1940 and embarked for the UK on 9 April 1941. His mother, Lady Mackey lived at 24 Narong Road, Caulfield, Victoria.
Hugh Mackey survived the war and on 12 October 1946 he married Joan Florence Beckman at Melbourne Grammar School Chapel.
He is believed to have died at Victoria Australia in 1983 aged 69.
F/Sgt. Jack Richmond DFM MiD - Having no known grave he is commemorated on the Alamein Memorial Column 250
Researched by Aircrew Remembered researcher Roy Wilcock for all the relatives and friends of the members of this crew -
With thanks to the sources quoted below.