15.05.1943 No. 403 Squadron Spitfire IX BR986 KH-Z P/O. William T. Lane
Operation: Circus 297
Date: 15th May1943 (Saturday)
Unit: No. 403 Squadron
Type: Supermarine Spitfire MkIX
Base: RAF Duxford
Location: Baromesnil France
Pilot: F/O. William Thompson Lane J/16198 RCAF Age 21. Killed
REASON FOR LOSS:
Taking off at 16:15 hrs with 11 other aircraft from the squadron to provide cover to 12 Bostons that were to bomb Poix. BR986 flown by P/O William Lane of 403 Squadron crashed in the garden of the farm of Baron de Baulieu’s castle in Baromesnil after being shot down by Oblt Kurt Goltzsch (1), Staffelkapitan of 5./JG2 in a dogfight at around 17:00 hrs. The remainder of the squadron landed at 17:55 hrs.
Apparently another brother, Gordon, serving with the Royal Canadian Engineers was visiting him at the time and watched him take off - never to return.
Above left with 'friend Lucy'.
The squadron also lost Fl/Lt. Lyn Bertram Madden J/4555 RCAF who had only joined the squadron on the 04th May 1943 - flying Spitfire IX BS246.
(1) After a total of 43 claims Oblt Kurt Goltzsch was himself shot down on September 04th 1943. Despite hospital care he succumbed to his injuries a year later.
Left: Oblt Kurt Goltzsch (courtesy Kracker Archive)
F/O. William Thompson Lane. Dieppe Canadian War Cemetery, Seine-Maritime, France. Grave H18. Son of Frederick Carleton Lane and Doris Thompson Lane, of Sudbury, Ontario, Canada. His older brother, 25 year old P/O. Carleton Thompson Lane J/4777 was killed 2 years previously. On the 08th November 1941 whilst flying as an observer with 58 Squadron on Whitley V Z6972 GE-P on an operation to Berlin when lost believed to be over the sea.
Researched by Michael Beckers for Aircrew Remembered January 2016. Photographs courtesy Michel Beckers collection. Grave photo courtesy John Stephens.