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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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75 Squadron crest
29/30.06.1942 No. 75 Squadron Wellington III X3539 P/O. Walter Monk

Operation: Bremen, Germany

Date: 29/30th June 1942

Unit: No. 75 Squadron

Type: Vickers Wellington MkIII

Serial: X3539

Code: AA-?

Base: RAF Feltwell, Norfolk

Location: Waddenzee off Holwerd, Friesland, 20km NNE of Leeuwarden, Holland

Pilot : P/O. Walter Jack Monk NZ/411432, RNZAF Age ? Missing

Obs: Sgt. Douglas Haig Randle NZ/405454, RNZAF Age 24. Killed

W/Op/Air/Gnr: Sgt. Ernest Francis Sydney Moncrief NZ/411087, RNZAF Age 25. Killed

W/Op/Air/Gnr: Sgt. John Gordon George Hegan NZ/411075, RNZAF Age 23. Killed

Air/Gnr: Sgt. Murdoch Gordon McGregor NZ/411079, RNZAF Age 23. Killed


Took off from RAF Feltwell joining 252 other aircraft (107 Wellingtons, 64 Lancasters, 47 Stirlings, 34 Halifaxes). This was the first time that 4-engined bombers made up more than half of the force on a major raid.

48 houses were destroyed and 934 damaged. “Extensive damage” was caused to 5 important war industries including the Focke-Wulf factory and the A.G. Weser U-boat construction yard. Also damaged were the local gas works, a museum and a merchant navy college. Most of this damage was caused by fire. The casualties in Bremen are not mentioned.


Above L-R: Sgt. Murdoch McGregor, Sgt. Ernest Moncrief (archives) 

4 Wellingtons, 4 Stirlings and 3 Halifaxes were lost. However the air gunners also did well with 4 confirmed Bf110s shot down during the raid. 

Left: Oblt. Egmont Prinze zur Lippe-Weissenfeld

Wellington X3539 was shot down after combat at 03.08 hrs by Oblt. Egmont Prinze zur Lippe-Weissenfeld of 5./NJG2 and crashed in the Waddenzee off Holwerd in Friesland, 20 km NNE of Leeuwarden, Holland. 

Oblt. Lippe-Weissenfeld was killed later in the war on 12th March 1944 along with his crew in the Belgian Ardennes during a transit flight in bad weather. He was credited with 49 kills.


Burial details:

P/O. Walter Jack Monk has no known grave but is commemorated on Panel 116 of the Runnymede Memorial, Cooper’s Hill, Englefield Green, Surrey.

Sgt. Douglas Haig Randle - Westdongeradeel Protestant Churchyard, Holwerd, Friesland, Netherlands, Row 43, Grave 12. Son of John Daniel and Elizabeth Cossar Randle of Dunedin, Otago, New Zealand.

Sgt. Ernest Francis Sydney Moncrief - Westdongeradeel Protestant Churchyard, Holwerd, Friesland, Netherlands, Row 43, Grave 10. Son of Ernest George Moncrief and of Amy Ellen Moncrief (nee Empson) of Morrinsville, Auckland, New Zealand.

Sgt. John Gordon George Hegan - Westdongeradeel Protestant Churchyard, Holwerd, Friesland, Netherlands, Row 43, Grave 13. Son of Joseph Leslie Edward Hegan and of Martha Edwards Hegan (nee Candlish) of Christchurch, Canterbury, New Zealand.

Sgt. Murdoch Gordon McGregor - Westdongeradeel Protestant Churchyard, Holwerd, Friesland, Netherlands, Row 43, Grave 11. Son of Evan and Flora Duff Wallace McGregor of Turakina Valley, Wellington, New Zealand.

These 4 graves are to be found near the north-west corner of the churchyard.

Researched by Jeremy Nicholson for Aircrew Remembered. With thanks to the following: Bill Chorley - "Bomber Command Losses", Theo Boiten - "German Nightfighter War Diaries", Martin Middlebrook "Bomber Command War Diaries". The work of the CWGC

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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', Archiwum - Polish Air Force Archive (on this site), 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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