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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
05.09.1943 No. 20 O.T.U. Wellington X HE467 ZT-N P/O. Donald R. Moon DFM

Operation: Training

Date: 05th September 1943

Unit: No. 20 OTU. "A" Flight (Operational Training Unit)

Type: Wellington X

Serial: HE467

Code: ZT-N

Base: RAF Elgin, Scotland.

Location: Nr. Airfield at Elgin

Pilot: P/O. Donald Reading Moon DFM 145662 RAFVR Age 30. Killed

Pilot 2 U/T: Sgt. Sidney James Richardson 1481205 RAFVR Age 27. Killed

Pilot 3 U/T: Sgt. Henry Edmund Rolfe 1601535 RAFVR Age 20. Killed

W/Op/Air/Gnr: Sgt. Terence Anthony Walkden 1530950 RAFVR Age 21. Killed

W/Op/Air/Gnr 2: Sgt. William Edwin Frederick Lavender 1578703 RAFVR Age 21. Killed

Air/Gnr: Sgt. Maurice Paul De Sachy 1571654 RAFVR Age 19. Killed

REASON FOR LOSS:

Took off at 21:32 hrs to carry out training exercises when shortly after taking off, an engine cut out and within minutes the Wellington dived into the ground. HE467 exploded on impact and was destroyed by fire - killing all the crew instantly.

P/O. Moon received his DFM during service with 148 Squadron in the Middle East where he had served a tour of operations.

RAF Elgin: Referred to as Bogs O’Mayne, was an airfield situated 3 miles (4.8 km) to the south west of Elgin, Scotland, to the east of the B9010, in the area bounded by Pittendreich in the North, Wester Manbeen in the west, Easter Manbeen to the south and the River Lossie to the east.

The airfield was built as a satellite to RAF Lossiemouth, and was completed in early June 1940. As an early war airfield, it had no hard runways, but otherwise had all of the facilities and dispersed sites of similar later stations in other parts of Britain. Twenty circular hard-standings were spaced around the perimeter track, some connected to it, with others simply circles on the grass. On its completion, due to the threat of invasion, the field was obstructed by the Royal Engineers, to prevent enemy landings. As 20 OTU at Lossiemouth expanded, it was cleared and became available for use on 30 June 1940.

Above and right (detail): memorial at RAF Elgin, Scotland

Burial details:

P/O. Donald Reading Moon DFM. Heston (St. Leonard) Churchyard Long Walk. Grave 61C. Son of Leonard and Edith Moon, husband of Hettie Edith Moon, of Cranford, England.

Sgt. Sidney James Richardson. Lossiemouth Burial Ground. Grave 985. Son of Sidney Charles and Rose Richardson, of Nottingham, England.

Sgt. Henry Edmund Rolfe. Lossiemouth Burial Ground. Grave 986. Son of Henry William and Ida Mary Rolfe, of Northchurch, Berkhamsted, Hertfordshire, England.

Sgt. Terence Anthony Walkden. Pleasington Priory (SS. Mary and John the Baptist) R/C. Churchyard Sec G. Row E. Grave 15. Son of William Anthony and Margaret Teresa Walkden, of Blackburn, Lancashire, England.

Sgt. William Edwin Frederick Lavender. Birmingham (Lodge Hill) Cemetery. Plot B. Grave 8460. Son of Frederick Harris Lavender and Edith Emily Lavender, of Birmingham, husband of Kathleen Joan Lavender, of Quinton, Birmingham, England.

Sgt. Maurice Paul De Sachy. Glasgow (St. Kentigern's) R/C Cemetery Sec 5. Grave 1831. Son of Paul and Isabella De Sachy, of Glasgow, nephew of Alice Bloomer, of Glasgow, Scotland.

Researched for Michael Banks - nephew of Sgt. Richardson. Also for Lynn Whiteside - relative of Sgt. Walkden who contacted us in March 2016. For further details our thanks to the following sources.

KTY 10.05.2016 Further photographs added.

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 and Fred Paradie - Paradie Archive (both on this site), 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', Norman L.R. Franks 'Fighter Command Losses', Aircrew Remembered Databases and our own archives. We are grateful for the support and encouragement of UK Imperial War Museum, Australian War Memorial, Australian National Archives, UK National Archives and Fold3 and countless dedicated friends and researchers across the world.
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Last Modified: 10 May 2016, 19:41

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