04.04.1942 No. 485 Squadron Spitfire Vc P8724 P/O. Fox
Operation: Circus 119
Date: 04th April 1942 (Saturday)
Unit: No. 485 Squadron
Type: Spitfire Vb
Base: RAF Kenley, Surrey
Location: St. Omer, France
Pilot: P/O. Thomas Tristram 'Dene' Fox NZ/411392 RNZAF Age 21. Killed
REASON FOR LOSS:
Taking off at 09:40 hrs on an operation to escort 12 Boston's taking part in an operation to bomb the railcards at St. Omer in France.
After the raid was completed they were attacked by around 40 enemy fighters. Two Spitfires were lost. P/O. Fox is understood to have come down in the target area with 24 year old P/O. Chandler flying Spitfire BM231 coming down over the coast at Boulogne.
Plaque was placed near the spot where he lost his life and unveiled in August 2016 (courtesy Jocelyn Leclercq)
Sadly the body of P/O.Chandler was never recovered and he is commemorated on the Runnymede memorial. The body of P/O. Fox was recovered and buried at Longuenesse Souvenir Cemetery however, after the war his grave could not be identified so he has a special memorial within the cemetery (marked 'buried near this spot') and also commemorated on the Runnymede memorial.
P/O. Thomas Tristram Fox. Longuenesse Souvenir Cemetery (St. Omer) Special Memorial. Plot 9. Row A. Son of Thomas and Marion Agnes Fox and husband of Doreen Fox, of Minnedosa, Manitoba, Canada. P/O Fox undertook his advanced flying training on the Harvard at No.10 Service Flying Training School (SFTS) at RCAF Dauphin in Manitoba, Canada. Whilst here he met and married Doreen. A total of 259 flying hrs. logged and on his 5th operational sortie.
Others mentioned within this report:
P/O. Edward Fred Chandler. Runnymede Memorial. Panel 115, Son of Edward Fred Chandler, and of Evelyn Marguerite Chandler, of Tapu, Auckland, New Zealand. A total of 273 flying hours logged. His brother, Fl/Sgt. John Lincoln Chandler also lost, believed killed - a pilot with 131 Squadron. Further details can be read here.
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. Thanks to Aaron Fox, the half cousin to Plt.Off. Fox for his 'nickname' and additional information, other sources as quoted below: