20/21.07.1941 No. 10 OTU Whitley V N1527 P/O.Gray
Date: 20/21st July 1941 (Sunday/Monday)
Unit: No. 10 Operational Training Unit (6 Group)
Type: Whitley V
Code: Not known
Base: RAF Abingdon, Berkshire
Location: Marcham, South of airfield
Pilot: P/O. Peter Maxwell Gray NZ/403444 RNZAF Age 24. Killed
Pilot: P/O. Harry Gordon Compton Fooks NZ/40966 RNZAF Age 23. Killed
Obs: Sgt. Roy Harley 964594 RAFVR Age 21. Killed
W/Op/Air/Gnr: Sgt. Kenneth Lunn 1169553 RAFVR Age 21. Killed
W/Op/Air/Gnr: Sgt. Albert Edward Williams 934369 RAFVR Age 21. Killed
REASON FOR LOSS:
Taking part in night take off and landings practice when at 01:30 hrs the Whitley struck some trees and crashed, killing all 5 crew members.
The brother of P/O. Looks was also sadly killed. On the 07th January 1944 32 year old, F/O. Ernest Berjeu Fooks 146328 RAFVR flying 180 Squadron Mitchell FR396 collided in the air with another Mitchel FL682 from 98 Squadron. All eight crew from both aircraft were killed.
P/O. Peter Maxwell Gray. Brookwood Military Cemetery. Grave 2.E.7. Son of Thomas and Ety Violet Gray, of Kelburn, Wellington, New Zealand. A total of 164 flying hours logged.
P/O. Harry Gordon Compton Fooks. Brookwood Military Cemetery. Grave 2.F.7. Born on the 02nd July 1918, the son of Alfred Augustus Fooks, and of Adele Catherine Fooks, of Christchurch, Canterbury, New Zealand. A total of 198 flying hours logged.
Sgt. Roy Harley. Nottingham Southern Cemetery. Sec. Q.28. Grave 92. Son of Frank and Edith Harley, of West Bridgford, Nottingham, England.
Sgt. Kenneth Lunn. Reading Cemetery (Henley Road). Block 8. Grave 13665. Son of Clifford Rudkin Lunn and Maria Lunn, of Newcastle-on-Tyne, England. Grave inscription reads: "Greater Love Hath No Man Than This, That A Man Lay Down His Life For His Friends".
Sgt. Albert Edward Williams. Tottenham Cemetery. Gen. Sec. Grave 1 0362. Son of Alfred John and Edith Williams of Tottenham, England.
F/O. Ernest Berjeu Fooks. Brookwood Military Cemetery. Grave 2.E.7. Son of Alfred Augustus Fooks, and of Adele Catherine Fooks, of Flat 17, Belvedere Maisonettes, Salisbury Street, Christchurch, New Zealand. A total of 518 flying hours logged, of these 222 solo on the Mitchell. Had flown on 29 operational sorties.
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: