20th October 1942 236 Squadron Beaufighter VIC EL280 Sq/Ldr. Macdonald MiD
Date: 20th October 1942 (Tuesday)
Unit: No. 236 Squadron (motto: Speculate nuntiate - 'Having watched, bring word'). 16 Group
Type: Beaufighter VIC
Base: RAF North Coates, Lincolnshire
Location: South East of airfield
Pilot: Sq/Ldr. George Rodoway Macdonald MiD. 36191 RAF Age 23. Killed
Obs: Fl/Lt. Alexander Kerr 107056 RAF Age ? Killed
REASON FOR LOSS:
EL280 piloted by B flight's CO with Fl/Lt. Kerr from 16 Group HQ on a local flying exercise.
At 11:35hrs. whilst pulling out of a dive from 3000 feet at 500 feet above the sea, both of the aircraft's elevators were seen to detach from the aircraft which subsequently crashed onto North Coates beach where it caught fire.
The structural failure was attributed to two modifications having not been made to the airframe after a similar accident to another of the squadron's aircraft 3 months previously.
Burial and personal details:
Sq/Ldr. George Rodoway Macdonald MiD. Belfast City Cemetery. Sec.1. Grave 16. Born on the 20th November 1918 at Waikuku. Worked as a shepherd prior to service with J.A.P. Cameron of Ben Ohau, South Island. Accepted for RAF short service commission on the 23rd May 1938. RNZAF and Canty Aero Club as pilot under training on the 20th June 1938. Commission awarded on the 13th September 1938. 'A' licence obtained on the 10th October 1938. Pilots badge awarded on the 17th December 1938.
Embarked for England the 17th April 1939. Joined 48 squadron on the 03rd June 1939 flying the Anson and Hudson. Attached to 206 and then 502 squadron (no dates available). Joined No. 6 Coastal Operational Training Unit on the 21st January 1942 as an instructor. Then No. 21 (C) Operational Training Unit 07th September 1942. Finally joining 236 Squadron on the 14th September 1942.
Son of Ronald and Catherine Mabel Annie Macdonald (nee Scott), of Waikuku, North Canterbury, New Zealand. A total of 1790 flying hours logged and over 300 operations flown.
Fl/Lt. Alexander Kerr. Glasgow New Cemetery (Eastwood) . Sec. H. Grave 376. Husband of Catherine Beatrice Chatfield, of Glasgow, Scotland.
Above: L-R: Rear; James Alfred Paterson 36193 - Killed 27th September 1940, J.A Poulsen, M.J Hunter, Frank Hugh Long 36190 - Killed 13th March 1941, William John Farnsworth 1964 - Killed 21st March 1945, Albert Samuel Agar 1063 - Died 13th December 1985, I.L Gray.
Front; Arthur Mitchell Paape 36192 - Killed 03rd April 1943, T.A Stewart, Laurenc (401787) Hugh Edwards NZ/2341 PoW 05th September 1939, George Rodoway MacDonald 36191 - Killed 20th October 1942, Ernest William Tacon 36196 - Died 09th September 2003.
Researched and dedicated to the relatives of this pilot with thanks to the extensive research by Errol Martyn and his publications: “For Your Tomorrow Vols. 1-3”, Auckland Library Heritage Collection, Weekly News of New Zealand, other sources as quoted below: