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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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No. 467 RAAF Squadron
15/16.07.1944 No.467 Squadron Lancaster I ME851 F/L Murphy

Operation:Nevers

Date: 15/16 July1944 (Saturday/Sunday)

Unit: No. 467 Squadron (RAAF)

Type: Lancaster I

Serial: ME851

Code: PO-B

Base: RAF Waddington, Lincolnshire.

Location: Marnay near Lignieres-de-Touraine, Indre et Loire, France.

Pilot: Fl/Lt. William Joseph Bernard Murphy J/28935 RCAF Age 27. Killed

Fl/Eng: Sgt. Edmund Charles William Goode 1705245 RAFVR Age 19. Killed

Nav: P/O. Wilson Harry Emanuel Wright AUS/422342 RAAF Age 35. Killed

Air/Bmr: F/O. James Alwyn Ewen AUS/423689 RAAF Age 25. Killed 

W/Op/Air/Gnr: Fl/Sgt. William Paul AUS/423870 RAAF Age 20. Killed (1)

Air/Gnr: Fl/Sgt. David Alastair Paterson AUS/427726 RAAF Age 21. Killed 

Air/Gnr: Fl/Sgt. Arthur Hedley Jenkins AUS/424764 RAAF Age 20. Killed (1)

REASON FOR LOSS:

Bomber Commands operational plan called for simultaneous raids on railway marshalling yards in France. The raiding force, which was comprised of 222 Lancasters and 7 Mosquitoes, would split once over the French coast, one half headed for Nevers 130 miles to the south of Paris and the other to Châlons sur Marne 90 miles to the east. 

Above: P/O. Wilson Wright and Fl/Sgt. William Paul (courtesy of Michel Gaillard)

Fl/Lt. Murphy and crew took off from their base at Waddington at 22:19 hours just five minutes after F/L Jones piloting Lancaster ME807 of 207 Squadron had taken off from Spilsby both destined for Nevers.

At 03:00 hours the two Lancasters collided in mid-air, crashing and exploding in flames at Marnay in the Commune of Lignieres.

                                   

Back Row: Sgt. E.C.W. Goode, Fl/Sgt. W. Paul, Fl/Sgt. D.A. Paterson, Fl/Sgt. A.H. Jenkins.
 Front Row: D. Stevenson (not present on raid), P/O. W.H.E.Wright, F/O. J.A. Ewen, Fl/Lt. W.J.B. Murphy.
 (courtesy Pierre Vandervelden, 'Inmemories')

 (1) It would seem that Fl/Sgt. Paul and Fl/Sgt. Jenkins must have know each other prior to service - they lived in the same street in Australia.

The crews of both ME851 and ME807 are buried side by side at Lignieres de Touraine. (courtesy Pierre Vandervelden, 'Inmemories')

Burial Details:

Fl/Lt. William Joseph Bernard Murphy, Lignieres de Touraine Communal Cemetery, Row B Grave 4. Son of John James and Elizabeth Charlotte (née Joyce) Murphy of Ottawa, Ontario, Canada.

Sgt. Edmund Charles William Goode, Lignieres de Touraine Communal Cemetery, Row A Grave 7. Son of Charles James Goode and Dorothy Ella Goode of Cardiff.

P/O. Wilson Harry Emanuel Wright Lignieres de Touraine Communal Cemetery. Row A Grave 9. Born 30th May 1909 in Mosman, New South Wales. Son of William Martin Wright and Bertha Wright, husband of Joan Wright of Bellevue Hill, New South Wales, Australia. 

F/O. James Alwyn Ewen Lignieres de Touraine Communal Cemetery. Row B Grave 3. Born 17th July 1918 in Suva, Fiji. Son of James Alwyn Ewen and Margueretta Gertrude Ewen, husband of Gwenyth Alexandra (nee Whittaker) Ewen of Concord, New South Wales, Australia.

Fl/Sgt. William Paul Lignieres de Touraine Communal Cemetery. Row A Grave 4. Son of William and Ruby Amelia Paul of Southampton Road, South Grafton, New South Wales, Australia.

Fl/Sgt. David Alastair Paterson, Lignieres de Touraine Communal Cemetery, Row A Grave 3. Born 05th February 1923 in Edinburgh, Scotland. Son of Thomas and Isabella Paterson of Victoria Park, Western Australia.

Fl/Sgt. Arthur Hedley Jenkins, Lignieres de Touraine Communal Cemetery, Row A Grave 1. Born 25th February 1924 in Ulmarra, New South Wales. Son of William Walter and Francis ‘Fanny’ (née Lawrence-Arnold) Jenkins of Grafton, New South Wales, Australia.
Further details: After enlisting in October of 1942, Jenkins was awarded his Air Gunners badge in May of the following year. Arriving in the UK on 31 July 1943, he spent the first six months at 27 OTU until he was posted to 51 Base and attached to RAF Battle School, Scampton. From there Jenkins was at 1660 HCU until 20 May 1944 when he joined 467 Squadron.

Researched by Aircrew Remembered, researcher and RCAF specialist Colin Bamford for relatives of this crew of Lancaster ME851. With thanks to Michel Gaillard who contacted us in September 2015 - his grandfather found the photo shown above at the time of the crash.

KTY 09.09.2015 New photo 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: 09 September 2015, 13:51