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06.12.1942 No. 464 Squadron Ventura II AJ213 Sgt. Stanley Charles Moss
Operation: Eindhoven (Operation Oyster)
Date: 6th December 1942 (Sunday)
Unit: No. 464 Squadron
Type: Ventura II
Base: RAF Feltwell, Norfolk
Location: Vrouwenpolder (Zeeland)
Pilot: Sgt. Stanley Charles Moss AUS/408513 RAAF Survived/wounded PoW No: 27441. Camp: Stalag 344 Lamsdorf (1)
Obs: Sgt. Reginald Ambrose Wagner 1293901 RAF Survived/wounded PoW No: 952. Camp: Stalag Luft III Sagan and Belaria
W/Op/Air/Gnr: Sgt. John Albert Wallis 1377049 RAF PoW Survived/wounded PoW No: 954. Camp: Stalag 357 Kopernikus
W/Op/Air/Gnr: Sgt. Frederick George Lindsay AUS/411921 RAAF Survived PoW No: 935. Camp: Stalag 357 Kopernikus
REASON FOR LOSS:
Took off at 11:20 hrs from RAF Feltwell, Norfolk. A daylight raid on the Philips radio and valve factories in the Dutch town of Eindhoven. The first operation that 464 squadron took part in of the war.
The operation was carried out at very low level and little opposition had been encountered on route to the target. Once crossing the Dutch coast though, things changed quickly with a large amount of light flak. This due to the squadron being slightly off track and crossing an enemy emergency landing ground which was well defended.
Shots taken during the raid (IWM)
The operation was very successful and as the bombing had been planned for a Sunday, reduced civilian casualties were expected.
Severe damage caused to the factory during the raid but a few bombs fell in nearby streets killing some 148 Dutch citizens and a few German soldiers. The factory production was reduced for a further six months.
Left: Crew of Ventura II AJ213 Right: Stan Moss taken during training 1941(Courtesy Stan Moss)
464 Squadron Ventura 'Bombing up' at Feltwell, Norfolk (IWM)
AJ213 was one of the first aircraft hit, but the pilot, Sgt. Stan Moss could not give the order to bale out to the crew as the intercom was damaged. He managed to crash land the aircraft at 12.18 hrs, all the crew were quickly captured and taken P.o.W.
Ventura II AJ213 in a field at Vrouwenpolder (courtesy Hans van Dam - see link/credit)
A total of sixteen aircraft were lost or written off during this operation, the highest number of casualties from 2 Group in a single raid since the start of the war.
464 squadron lost 3 aircraft this day:
Ventura I AE702 SB-Q piloted by F/O. Maurice G. Moor RCAF killed with all four crew after being shot down by flak over the target. Ventura II AE945 SB-E piloted by Fl/Sgt. Beverly M. Harvey RCAF killed with all four crew after being shot down by flak over the target.
Researched for Stanley Charles Moss in preparation to his story on his PoW days, another one to be published by Aircrew Remembered.
With thanks to Stanley Moss, Fay and Gerald McPherson, Hans van Dam, Bill Chorley - 'Bomber Command Losses Vol's. 1-9, plus ongoing revisions', Imperial War Museum, Commonwealth Graves Commission.
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.