467 Squadron Lancaster III ED543 PO-H P/O. Kevin E. Mahoney
Date: 13/14th May 1943 (Thursday/Friday)
Unit: No. 467 Squadron (RAAF)
Type: Lancaster III
Base: RAF Bottesford Leicestershire.
Location: Kemphausen Nr. Damme, Germany.
Pilot: P/O. Kevin Eugene Mahoney AUS/416223 RAAF Age 21. Killed
Fl/Eng: Sgt. Bernard George Hickling 1185786 RAFVR Age 23. Killed
Nav: F/O. Edwin Francis Hamilton Heard 128665 RAFVR Age 21. Killed
Air/Bmr: Sgt. Maurice Brian Squires 1388828 RAFVR Age 19. Killed
W/Op/Air/Gnr: Sgt. William Glover Berry 1368760 RAFVR Age 19. Killed
Air/Gnr: Sgt. 'Harry' Henry William Cox 1586740 RAFVR Age 28. Killed
Air/Gnr: Fl/Sgt. Byron Leo Haley R/131435 RCAF Age 20. Killed
REASON FOR LOSS:
Taking off at 21:37 hrs from RAF Bottesford Leicestershire to join 155 other Lancasters and 12 Halifaxes to bomb the Skoda works (1) at Pilsen (Plzen).
The target was deep inside German held territory and was well defended. Most of the bombers found the target difficult to find with the majority of the bombs released over open country, to the north of the works between 01:55 hrs and 02:43 hrs.
Shortly after this operation, a further 442 heavy bombers also bombed Bochum, to the south.
Lancaster ED543 was shot down by the Luftwaffe ace in a cloudless moonlit night by Hptm. E. Prinz zur Lippe-Weissenfeld (2) of Stab 1./NJ3, his 40th abschüss of the war. The engagement took place at 01:11 hrs flying at 3,000 m.
(1) The Skoda works were at this time producing gun turrets for the German Navy as well as the Panzer 35T tank.
Left: Hptm. Egmont Prinz zur Lippe-Weissenfeld
(2) Hptm. Egmont Prinz zur Lippe-Weissenfeld went on to claim a total of 49 abschüsse.
He was killed on the Sunday,12th March 1944 along with his crew in the Belgium Ardennes during a transit flight in poor weather conditions.
The crew were initially buried in a single coffin at the Town Cemetery in Diepholz. Following exhumation and identification that this was the crew of ED 543 by a team from No. 4 Missing Research and Enquiry Unit on the 29th August 1946 the remains were re-interred in Hanover War Cemetery.
P/O. Kevin Eugene Mahoney. Hannover War Cemetery. Coll. Grave 8.J.8-14. Born on the 08th August 1921 in Berri, South Australia, the son of Patrick and Amy Winifred Mahoney, of Berri, South Australia
Sgt. Bernard George Hickling. Hannover War Cemetery. Coll. Grave 8.J.8-14. Son of Albert Edward and Edith Hickling and husband of Mary Elizabeth Hickling, of Middle Marwood, Devon, England.
F/O. Edwin Francis Hamilton Heard. Hannover War Cemetery. Coll. Grave 8.J.8-14. Son of Richard Hamilton Heard, and of Lily Frances Heard, of Croydon, Surrey, England.
Sgt. Maurice Brian Squires. Hannover War Cemetery. Coll. Grave 8.J.8-14. Son of Sydney David and Elsie Squires, of Maidstone, Kent, England.
Sgt. William Glover Berry. Hannover War Cemetery. Coll. Grave 8.J.8-14. Son of Thomas and Isabella Glover Berry, of Methil, Fife, Scotland.
Sgt. 'Harry' Henry William Cox. Hannover War Cemetery. Coll. Grave 8.J.8-14. Born on the 12th February 1915 in Hackney, the son of George Henry John and Maria Cox (nee Boswell). Henry married Florence Le'Nora Hocking in March 1942, Tavistock, Devon. Currently no known children.
Left: Fl/Sgt. Byron Leo Haley (Courtesy Veterans Affairs Canada)
Fl/Sgt. Byron Leo Haley. Hannover War Cemetery. Coll. Grave 8.J.8-14. Born 15th October 1920, Ingersoll, Ontario. Son to Edward Leslie Haley & Myrtle Viola (née Jenvey) of Woodstock, Ontario Canada. Enlisted at 10 Recruit Centre (RC) Hamilton on the 16th October 1941. Failed his elementary flying training at No. 4 Service Flying Training School (SFTS), Saskatoon and re-mustered to Air Gunner on the 28th May 1942.
Researched for Stewart Alexander whose mother was brother to Sgt. Squires and dedicated to all the relatives of this crew, also to Julie Gilmore, great niece of Sgt. Henry William Cox who contacted us in November 2017. Thanks to Graham for the Next of Kin details for Flt.Sgt. Haley. Other sources as quoted below.