02.02.1945 No. 74 Squadron Spitfire PV291 4D-P Fl/Lt. Hardman
Operation: Attack on HQ
Date: 02nd February 1945 (Friday)
Unit: No. 74 Squadron. 145 Wing. 84 Group. (motto 'Fear No Man')
Type: Spitfire LF.IX
Base: B70 - Deurne, Belgium
Location: Geldermalsen, Netherlands
Pilot: Fl/Lt. Frank Hardman NZ/414285 RNZAF Age 26. Killed
REASON FOR LOSS:
Taking off with five others from the squadron to bomb a German army headquarters west of Zaltbomml at 09:35 hrs.
Over the target Fl/Lt. Hardman was hit by the first burst of anti-aircraft fire and crashed just north of the bank of the river Waal, Buried locally by the Dutch and then reinterred after the end of the war.
Fl/Lt. Frank Hardman. Wadenoijen Protestant Churchyard Plot 1. Row A. Grave 2. Born on the 13th October 1918 at Auckland, the son of Ernest and Mary Alice Hardman, of Epsom, Auckland, New Zealand. Prior to service a Tailor cutter for Dominion Clothing Company. A total of 862 flying hours logged and having completed 55 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: