30/31.03.1944 No. 166 Squadron Lancaster III ND798 AS-C P/O. Walter H. Burnett
Date: 30/31st March 1944 (Thursday.Friday)
Unit: No. 166 Squadron
Type: Lancaster III
Base: RAF Kirmington, Lincolnshire
Location: Griesenbach, Germany
Pilot: P/O. Walter Henry Burnett 171640 RAFVR Age 20. Killed
Pilot2: P/O. V.W.R. Park 172302 RAFVR PoW No: 4110 Camp: L1 - Stalag Luft Barth Vogelsang
Fl/Eng: Sgt. J. Toole 1684897 RAFVR PoW No: 3427 Camp: L3 - Stalag Luft Sagan and Belaria
Nav: WO2. L.E. Edmunds J/87093 RCAF PoW No: 3488 Camp: L1 - Stalag Luft Barth Vogelsang
Air/Bmr: Fl/Sgt. R.H. Bannister R/145314 RCAF PoW No: 3428 Camp: L6 - Stalag Luft Heydekrug
W/Op/Air/Gnr: Sgt. Albert Binder 1146522 PoW No: 3426 Camp: L1 - Stalag Luft Barth Vogelsang
Air/Gnr: Sgt. Peter Henry Brown 1305927 RAFVR Age ? Killed
Air/Gnr: Sgt. Frank Storer 1085739 RAFVR Age ? Killed
REASON FOR LOSS:
Taking off from RAF Kirmington, Lincolnshire at 22:02 hrs on the city of Nuremberg. Part of a huge raid of over 795 aircraft, mainly Lancasters, also one of the costliest in the history of Bomber Command in a single operation with 105 aircraft lost (including accidents on take off and landing) with over 500 aircrew killed. 4 lost from this squadron alone. They began their bombing run at around 01:28 hrs. on the morning of the 31st. March over Nuremberg.
Above area of loss with insert P/O. Walter Henry Burnett (courtesy Sherborne School Archives)
The majority of the bomber stream were intercepted during the outbound flight (over 80 lost during this phase) Lancaster ND798 was part of this group, possibly brought down by Lt. Hermann Labue (1) of Stab II./NJG3 at 00:29 hours, his 12th abschüsse of the war. The aircraft crashed at Griesenbach, Germany.
The others lost from this squadron this night:
Lancaster 1 ME624 AS-X Flown by 22 year old Roy Barton Fennell 1318683 RAFVR from Bromham, Wiltshire - Killed with 5 members of his crew, 1 taken PoW.
Lancaster I ME638 AS-B Flown by Fl/Lt. F. Taylor 136464 RAFVR taken PoW with 5 crew members, 2 others killed.
Lancaster I ME686 AS-V Flown by Fl/Lt. Gordon Arbuthnot Procter 114400 RAFVR killed with all other 7 crew, 1 flying as second dickie (2).
(1) The Luftwaffe ace Lt. Hermann Labue went on to claim 20 more, prior to his death on the 28/29th December 1944 following a crash landing after combat.
(2) Second Dickie - as second pilot obtaining operation experience prior to taking his own crew on operations.
Left: A detailed account of this operation has been described in Martin Middlebrooks publication ‘The Nuremberg Raid’ ISBN-13: 978-1844158751 (Also available in softcover)
Sherborne School, Dorset
- Any further information that you are able to assist them with fallen former pupils from all wars, we would be pleased to pass onto them.
P/O. Walter Henry Burnett. Rheinberg War Cemetery. Grave 9.F.17. Further information (courtesy Sherborne School Archives): Born in 1922, son of Frank Norman Burnett and Catherine Burnett, of Hayward's Heath, Sussex (formerly of Hatherleigh, Hadley Wood, Barnet, Hertfordshire). Attended Sherborne School (Lyon House) 1938-1940. The younger brother of 26 year old Fl/Lt. Norman Whitmore Burnett 70101 RAFVR, who was killed on the 11th June 1941 serving with 46 Squadron in the defence of Malta.
Sgt. Peter Henry Brown. Rheinberg War Cemetery. Grave 9.F.18. Next of kin details currently not available - are you able to assist completion of these and any other information?
Sgt. Frank Storer. Rheinberg War Cemetery. Grave 9.F.19. Next of kin details currently not available - are you able to assist completion of these and any other information?
Sgt. Binder also flew on these operations (courtesy bombercrew.com forum posting):
29.12.43 Berlin (with Lindley crew)
20.01.44 Berlin (mission abandoned)
30.03.44 Nurnberg-Failed to return
Sources as shown below. With thanks to Sherborne School Archives for additional information.