05.11.1943 No. 414 Squadron Mustang I AMIII Sq/Ldr. Herbert P. Peters DFC
Operation: Ranger - South Holland / Belgium
Date: 5th November 1943
Unit: No. 414 Squadron
Type: Mustang I
Base: RAF Gatwick, England
Location: English Channel off the Dutch coast
Pilot: Sq/Ldr. Herbert Peter Peters DFC J/3512 RCAF Age 25. Missing
REASON FOR LOSS:
Taken from the ORB’s for the Squadron:
‘The squadron were called out on 12 operational sorties this day. Weather was described as cloudy and foggy for the entire day with visibility between 500 - 1000 yards. Sq/Ldr. Peter and F/O. Wonnacott carried out a ranger in the area described above. They damaged trains and several pylons. When leaving the Dutch coast
Left: Sq/Ldr. Herbert Peter Peters DFC (courtesy Christopher Clarke and Esther Jones - daughter of Sq/Ldr. Peters)
Sq/Ldr. Peters attacked a small vessel just off-shore. He encountered heavy flak and was hit in several places. The aircraft started to burn - climbed steeply and then lost height quickly. Sq/Ldr. Peters was seen to jettison the hood and jump from about 20 ft from the mud bank into which his aircraft also crashed.
F/O. Wonnacott circled the spot and saw the body of the C.O in the mud. He was not sure if he was alive or dead, but since the report he was classed as ‘missing - believed killed’. The C.O was very popular with the boys and everyone had hoped for the best and that he had been made a PoW.
A bad day for the squadron!’
Sq/Ldr. Herbert Peter Peters DFC. Runnymede Memorial Panel 172. Son of Peter and Esther Peters, of Edmonton, Alberta, Canada, husband of Joan Peters (née Rowell)
With thanks to Mr Christopher Clarke in Canada and also Esther Jones (née Peters), the daughter of Sq/Ldr. Peters DFC for the supply of information and photographs.