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Archive Report: Allied Forces

Compiled from official National Archive and Service sources, contemporary press reports, personal logbooks, diaries and correspondence, reference books, other sources, and interviews.


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Bomber Command Crest
15.03.1943 No 11 OTU Wellington IC X9792 KJ-O Sgt. Lawson

Operation: Training

Date: 15th March 1943 (Monday)

Unit: No. 11 Operational Training Unit (‘C’ Flight)

Type: Wellington IC

Serial: X9792

Code: KJ-Q

Base: RAF Westcott, Buckinghamshire

Location: At base - as above

Pilot: Sgt. John Henry Lawson NZ/415434 RNZAF Age 20. Killed

Nav: Sgt. John Brims NZ/416629 RNZAF Age 23. Killed

Air/Bmr: Sgt. David Richard Trigg 1194209 RAFVR Age 20. Killed (1)

W/Op/Air/Gnr: Sgt. Eric Stanley Evans 1162655 RAFVR Age 22. Killed

W/Op/Air/Gnr: Sgt. Arthur James Heppel Williams 1112414 RAFVR Age 28. Killed


If anyone has any further photographs of any of the crew, in particular Sgt. Evans - or if anyone is able to provide us with a higher resolution of the 11 OTU photograph shown, or has details of their names we would very much like to hear from you.


REASON FOR LOSS:

One of many training losses suffered by the hard pressed operational training units during the war, many of which are not remembered with their own page on the internet.

Taking off on a daylight cross country exercise when on return the aircraft landed askew, so the pilot opened the throttles to try and go round again.

They climbed normally with undercarriage up, but with the flaps still down, but after reaching just 120 ft the nose pitched up steeply with the aircraft stalling and fell back to the ground at 16:54 hrs - just off the end of the north east end of runway.

Note: The brother of Sgt. David Trigg, 23 year old, Sgt. Edgar John Alexander Trigg 659136 RAFVR was also to lose his life. On the 07th September in the same year whilst serving with 248 Squadron - he is remembered on the Runnymede Memorial. Panel 167 - we welcome further details on his loss.

Above: 11 OTU training at Westcott - sadly no names/description available.

Right: Sgt. Eric Stanley Evans (courtesy Phillip Evans)

Burial details:

Sgt. John Henry Lawson. Westcott Churchyard (St. Mary). Grave 8. Son of Harry and Moya Kathleen Lawson, of Featherston, Wellington, New Zealand. He had logged some 310 hrs with 24 of these solo on the Wellington.

Sgt. John Brims. Westcott Churchyard (St. Mary). Grave 7. Son of William and Lilias Aitken Brims, of Christchurch, Canterbury, New Zealand.

Sgt. David Richard Trigg. Westcott Churchyard (St. Mary). Grave 6. Son of Thomas Edgar Trigg, and of Florence Annie Trigg, of Wrotham, Kent, England.

Sgt. Eric Stanley Evans. Gravesend Cemetery. Plot B.16. Grave 1698. Born on the 19th March 1920, the son of George Thomas Evans and Gladys Mabel Evans, of Gravesend, Kent, England. Eric played a piano and was a member of an RAF band as shown below. (Courtesy Phillip Evans)

Sgt. Arthur James Heppel Williams. Conwy Churchyard (St. Agnes) Sec. C. Grave 81. Son of the Revd. Arthur Anderson Williams, M.A. and of Gertrude Williams, of Deganwy, Conwy, Wales.

Researched for Phillip Evans, relative of Sgt. Eric Evans and dedicated to the relatives of this crew with thanks to Bill Chorley for his detailed information and to sources as shown.

KTY - 17.07.2017

Acknowledgements: Sources used by us in compiling Archive Reports include: Bill Chorley - 'Bomber Command Losses Vols. 1-9, plus ongoing revisions', Dr. Theo E.W. Boiten and Mr. Roderick J. Mackenzie - 'Nightfighter War Diaries Vols. 1 and 2', Martin Middlebrook and Chris Everitt - 'Bomber Command War Diaries', Commonwealth War Graves Commission, Tom Kracker - Kracker Luftwaffe Archives, Michel Beckers, Major Fred Paradie (RCAF) and MWO François Dutil (RCAF) - Paradie Archive (on this site), Jean Schadskaje, Major Jack O'Connor USAF (Retd.), Robert Gretzyngier, Wojtek Matusiak, Waldemar Wójcik and Józef Zieliński - 'Ku Czci Połeglyçh Lotnikow 1939-1945', Anna Krzystek, Tadeusz Krzystek - 'Polskie Siły Powietrzne w Wielkiej Brytanii', Franek Grabowski, Norman L.R. Franks 'Fighter Command Losses', Aircrew Remembered Databases and our own archives. We are grateful for the support and encouragement of CWGC, UK Imperial War Museum, Australian War Memorial, Australian National Archives, New Zealand National Archives, UK National Archives and Fold3 and countless dedicated friends and researchers across the world.
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