No. 463 Squadron Lancaster I LL844 Freak accident on operations
Operation: Gilze Rijen, Holland (Airfield)
Date: 15th August 1944 (Tuesday)
Unit: No. 463 Squadron
Type: Lancaster I
Base: R.A.F. Waddington
Location: Gilze Rijen, Holland
Pilot: Fl/Lt. Eric LePage Langlois 416685 R.A.A.F. Returned
Fl/Eng: Sgt. John Scott. 1591065 R.A.F. Returned
Nav: F/O. Alan Frank Reid. 421050 R.A.A.F. Returned
Air/Bmr: F/O. Lloyd E.W. Baines. J35083 R.C.A.F. Returned
W/Op/Air/Gnr: F/O. Evan Charles Patten. 409437 R.A.A.F. Returned
Air/Gnr: F/O. Charles Jackson Cameron. 434868 R.A.A.F. Returned
Air/Gnr: F/O. Mervyn Edgar Hamilton. 414232. R.A.A.F Age 22. Missing
REASON FOR LOSS:
Lancaster LL844 took off from R.A.F. Waddington at 09.21hrs on a day light raid to Gilze Rijen airfield.
The pilot reported that in the run up to the target area aircraft from another Squadron became mixed up with his own and these aircraft took up a position slightly above them. Visibility was good and the bomb load was successfully dropped at 12.10hrs.
The pilot was holding the aircraft steady to obtain a bomb damage photo when he felt a severe bump. It was thought that the aircraft had been hit by flak but the Mid Upper Gunner F/O. Cameron reported that the aircraft had been hit by a bomb from one of the aircraft flying above us and that he thought that the rear turret had been knocked off.
Still photo taken from a film of the raid on the Luftwaffe Night-fighter base at Gilze Rijen, Holland, 15th August 1944 (courtesy I.W.M.)
After clearing the target area the Bomb Aimer was sent back to report on the damage to the aircraft and reported that F/O. Hamilton was missing from the turret. The aircraft completed the mission and returned to base at 13.21hrs. Seventeen aircraft from the Squadron took part in this raid and all returned safely.
Left: Rear Gunner, F/O. Mervyn Edger Hamilton. right: Pilot, Fl/Lt Eric Le Page Langlois.
F/O. Mervyn Edgar Hamilton, Runnymede Memorial, Panel 257. Son of Edward Leslie Hamilton and Ellen Jane Hamilton of Bulimba, Queensland, Australia.
Researched by Aircrew Remembered, researcher and specialist genealogist Kate Tame for relatives of this crew. Peter Powe (Brother of Mervyn Edger Hamilton) and Dianne Le Page Dunn nee Langlois (Niece of Eric Le Page Langlois) With thanks to the Commonwealth Graves Commission, I.W.M., Bill Chorley – “Bomber Command Losses Vol. 5”,