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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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501 Squadron Crest
24.08.1940 No. 501 Squadron Hurricane I P3141 SD-W P/O. Pawel Zenker

Operation: Patrol

Date: 24th August 1940 (Saturday)

Unit: No. 501 Squadron

Type: Hurricane I

Serial: P3141

Code: SD-W

Base: RAF Gravesend

Location: North Sea off Dover

Pilot: P/O. Pawel Zenker 76714 PAF Age 26. Missing


On the 18th August 1940 he had been credited for shooting down the Luftwaffe ace Hptm. Horst ‘Jacob’ Tietzen (1) of 5./JG51, over the Thames estuary.

During a patrol to defend the fighter bases following previous overnight raid by the Luftwaffe with over 200 heavy bombers on the Dunlop Fort works in Birmingham.

Encountered Do17’s and Bf109’s over Dover. P/O. Zener was last seen at 10:15 hrs. to be chasing a Bf109 over the North Sea and failed to return.

501 Squadron lost another aircraft during the day, P/O. K.R. Aldridge broke his arm during baling out of his Hurricane I L1865 SD-R over West Kingsdon at 16:35 hrs.

(1) Born on the 19th July 1912. At the time of his loss, Hptm. Horst ‘Jacob’ Tietzen had been credited with 27 abschüsse. 7 during the Spanish Civil War, with a further 20 during WW2. His body was washed up on shore at Calais in France. Posthumously awarded the  Knight's Cross of the Iron Cross

Burial details:

P/O. Pawel Zenker remains missing. Commemorated on the Warsaw Memorial to the missing and also at the Polish memorial at Northolt, England. Born on the 25th December 1914 at Chocicza, Poland.

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, Michel Beckers, Major Fred Paradie (RCAF) and MWO François Dutil (RCAF) - Paradie Archive (both 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', 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 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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Last Modified: 14 April 2015, 13:10

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