15/16.04.1942 No. 149 Squadron Stirling I N6068 OJ-T P/O. Field
Date: 15/16th April 1942 (Wednesday/Thursday)
Unit: No. 149 Squadron (3 Group)
Type: Stirling I
Base: RAF Lakenheath, Suffolk
Location: South of Steene, Ostend, Belgium
Pilot: P/O. Max Lightfoot Field 119347 RAFVR Age 20. Killed
Pilot 2: P/O. Alexander Leslie Ellis NZ/41887 RNZAF Age 25. Killed
Fl/Eng: Sgt. Eric Austin Kirk 548297 RAFVR Age 22. Killed
Obs: Sgt. Peter Sydney Brunsdon 927161 RAFVR Age 24. Killed
W/Op/Air/Gnr: Sgt. Charles Moynes 931774 RAFVR Age 28. Killed
W/Op/Air/Gnr: Sgt. Gilbert Victor Phillips 1380948 RAFVR Age ? Killed
Air/Gnr: Sgt. Stanley Briggs 967594 RAFVR Age 27. Killed
Air/Gnr: Sgt. Norman Charles Hutson 986794 RAFVR Age 22. Killed
REASON FOR LOSS:
Taking off from RAF Lakenheath in Suffolk at 00:20 hrs to attack Dortmund. 152 aircraft taking part in this operation from which 3 Wellington and 1 Stirling bombers were lost - all 26 crew losing their lives.
The Luftwaffe Night fighters although directed to intercept were only responsible for 1 of these aircraft and even that one is disputed by a flak unit.
Thick cloud and icing were encountered. Only 88 aircraft claimed to have bombed Dortmund which reports 1 house destroyed and 13 seriously damaged, 2 people killed and 6 injured. Bombs falling in Dortmund were equivalent to eight aircraft loads.
P/O. Max Lightfoot Field. Oostende New Communal Cemetery. Plot 9. Row 4. Joint grave. Son of Henry and Ada Nellie Field, of Cambridge, England. Grave inscription reads: "God Bless You, Max, Wherever You May Be. Fondest Love. Mum, Dad, Marg. And Gordon".
P/O. Alexander Leslie Ellis. Oostende New Communal Cemetery. Plot 9. Row 4. Grave 26. Son of Alexander John Gow Ellis, and of Catherine Elizabeth Ellis, of Geraldine, Canterbury, New Zealand. 225 flying hours logged and on his 2nd operational sortie. (No grave inscription as directed for all New Zealand graves by the government of New Zealand)
Sgt. Eric Austin Kirk. Oostende New Communal Cemetery. Plot 9. Row 4. Grave 21. Son of Gilbert and Ada Kirk, of Finchley, Middlesex, England. Grave inscription reads: "Sadly Missed By All Who Loved Him".
Sgt. Peter Sydney Brunsdon. Oostende New Communal Cemetery. Plot 9. Row 4. Joint grave. Son of Mr. and Mrs. T.C.U. Brunsdon, of Leckhampton, Cheltenham, Gloucestershire, England. Grave inscription reads: "How Sleep The Brave".
Sgt. Charles Moynes. Oostende New Communal Cemetery. Plot 9. Row 4. Joint grave. Son of Edward Joseph and Margaret Sutherland Moynes and husband of Isobella McKay Moynes, of Burntisland, Fife, Scotland. Grave inscription reads: "Easy To Remember But Hard To Forget For Those Who Loved And Lost You".
Sgt. Gilbert Victor Phillips. Oostende New Communal Cemetery. Plot 9. Row 4. Grave 24. No further details - are you able to assist?
Sgt. Stanley Briggs. Oostende New Communal Cemetery. Plot 9. Row 4. Grave 20. Son of William T. and Hannah Briggs, of Darwen, Lancashire, England. Grave inscription reads: "He Made The Great Sacrifice And Gave His Life For Those He Loved".
Sgt. Norman Charles Hutson. Oostende New Communal Cemetery. Plot 9. Row 4. Joint grave 27-28. Son of James and Beatrice Hutson, of Dublin, Irish Republic and nephew of Eileen Spadaccini, of Dublin Ireland. Grave inscription reads: "Greater Love Hath No Man" His Loving Aunt Eileen".
Researched and dedicated to the relatives of this crew with thanks to Ian Martyn of Medals Reunited New Zealand, who manage to find a photograph for Michael Bennett who contacted us in April 2018 for the sister of P/O. Ellis, Lorna Dorothy Bennett. 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: