10.08.1943 No. 759 Squadron Sea Hurricane Z4550 Sub.Lt. John A. Brown
Date: 10th August 1943 (Tuesday)
Unit: No. 759 Squadron FAA
Type: Sea Hurricane IB
Code: Not known
Base: HMS Heron - Yeovilton, Somerset
Location: Bristol Channel
Pilot: Sub.Lt. (A) John Atkinson Brown RNZNR Age 22. Killed
REASON FOR LOSS:
During practice landing training on, understood to be HMS Pursuer, a former USA ship named USS St. George but assigned to United Kingdom under the Lend-Lease agreement and renamed on the 24th February 1942. The pilot suddenly dropped out of formation whilst flying in a formation of three.
Crashed in the Bristol Channel at about 09:15 hrs north of Lilstock. The Hurricane was not seen to descend but a Royal Observer Corp member noticed the splash and immediately alerted rescue services - no trace of the pilot was found or the aircraft - simply a patch of oil on the surface. It was 10 days before the body of the pilot was recovered from the sea near Clevedon, buried later the same day.
Sadly the family also suffered the loss of his older brother. Fl/Lt. George Brown NZ/413374 RNZAF was listed as missing on the 06th August 1944. Pilot of 51 Squadron Halifax III LM546 MH-R on an operation to Hazebrouck when the complete crew were lost without trace.
Sub.Lt. (A) John Atkinson Brown. Bristol Cemetery (Arnos Vale). Sec. TTT. Grave 954. Son of George and Jane Brown, of Carterton, Wellington, New Zealand.
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: