30/01/1943 No. 105 Squadron Mosquito IV DZ367 GB-J Sq/Ldr. Darling D.F.C.
Operation: Berlin, Germany (Nazi rallies)
Date: 30th January 1943 (Saturday)
Unit:No. 105 Squadron
Type: Mosquito IV
Base: RAF Marham, Norfolk
Location: Altengrabow, Germany
Pilot: Sq/Ldr. Donald Frederick William Darling DFC. 40368 RAF Age 24. Killed
Nav: F/O. William Wright 116695 RAFVR Age 34. Killed
REASON FOR LOSS:
Took off at 13.25 hrs from RAF Marham, Norfolk for a very dramatic and daring raid into Berlin to interrupt large rallies addressed by Nazi leaders in Berlin on this day. The raid was in two formations with 3 Mosquito's on each. The first 3 reached Berlin and bombed at mid morning - the exact time that Goering was due to speak.
Sq/Ldr Darling with, we assume, his girlfriend. Also shown, his uniform - photos kindly supplied by Julian K. Mitchell
Above Mosquito DZ367 in flight and below, bombing up!
The speech was delayed for an hour - these 3 Mosquitos returned all safe. In the afternoon the next formation of 3 arrived at the time that Goebbels was due to speak and all again bombed at the correct time.
German defences however had been alerted and DZ367 was shot down by the defensive flak and both crew members were killed. The other 2 returned safe.
Left: Sq/Ldr. Darling DFC. grave (courtesy Bart Baeyens)
Donald Frederick William Darling DFC. Berlin 1939-1945 War Cemetery Joint grave 2. A. 8-9. Son of Frederick William and Winifred May of Balham, London, England.
F/O. William Wright. Berlin 1939-1945 War Cemetery Joint grave 2. A. 8-9. Son of William Smith Wright and Lizzie, husband of Beatrice Mary of Bedford, England.
With thanks to the following: Bart Baeyens, Lembeek, Flanders for the grave photo. Julian K. Mitchell for uniform photo and the photo of Sq/Ldr. Daring, Bill Chorley - "Bomber Command Losses Vol 3", Martin Middlebrook "Bomber Command War Diaries". Commonwealth Graves Commission.