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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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158 Squadron crest
21/22.06.1943 No. 158 Squadron Halifax II HR735 NP-N P/O. Colin H. Robinson D.F.C.

Operation: Krefeld

Date: 21/22nd June 1943

Unit: No. 158 Squadron

Type: Halifax II

Serial: HR735

Code: NP-N

Base: R.A.F. Lissett, Yorkshire

Location: Kaathoven (noor Brabant), near Berlicum, Holland

Pilot: P/O. Colin Harben Robinson D.F.C. N/Z415786 RNZAF Age 25 Killed

Pilot 2: Sgt. Ernest Herbert Fisher 1332036 RAFVR Age 21. Killed

Fl/Eng: Sgt. Stanley George Benjamin Hayes 1269598 RAFVR  Age 24. Killed

Nav: Sgt. George Alexander Hill 1526249 RAFVR  Age 20. Killed

Air/Bmr: Sgt. Walter Thomas Dunning 1435865 RAFVR  Age 33. Missing

W/Op/Air/Gnr: Sgt. Harry Frederick Barham 1270788 RAFVR  Age 22. Missing

Air/Gnr: Sgt. David Duncan Cuthbert 1573822 RAFVR  Age 28. Killed

Air/Gnr: Sgt. George Beardmore Mycock 1078078 RAFVR  Age 20. Killed

REASON FOR LOSS:

Halifax II HR 735 took off from Lissett at 23.18 on an operation to Krefeld, Germany. 705 aircraft took part - 262 Lancasters, 209 Halifaxs, 117 Stirlings, 105 Wellingtons and 12 Mosquitoes.

Krefeld was hit very badly with the loss of 1,056 people on the ground killed, 4,550 injured, 72,000 people lost their homes. 47% of the city was burnt out following the dropping of 2,306 bombs.

This was not without huge losses to the RAF though, with 44 aircraft being lost, mostly due to German night fighters. 214 crew members were killed and a further 65 being made Prisoners of War.

                   

                   

Some of the crew, L to R: Top - P/O. Robinson DFC, Sgt. Fisher, Sgt. Hayes, Sgt. Hill, Lower - Sgt. Cuthbert, Sgt. Barham, Sgt. Mycock

After being shot down by a night-fighter flown by Hptm Hans-Dieter Frank (1), of 2./NJGI, with combat taking place at 01.37 hrs. at 5,500 mtrs, Halifax HR735 crashed at 01.58 hrs. at Kaathoven (noor Brabant), near Berlicum, Holland.

Earlier on June 12/13th, during a raid on Bochum, this crew was commended after being severely shot up by another night-fighter. This resulted in an immediate commissioning and award of the DFC for the New Zealand pilot.

(1) This was the 34th victory by Hptm Hans-Dieter Frank who went on to claim a massive 52 confirmed kills (plus a further 5 unconfirmed) before he was killed on the 27/28th September 1943. His aircraft was in collision with a Bf110 of stab 1./NJG1 - he managed to bale out but was strangled when he failed to disconnect the cable of his radio helmet before ejecting from his He219. The crew of the Bf110 were also killed during the collision.

                    

Burial details:

P/O. Colin Harben Robinson DFC. Bergen-Op-Zoom War Cemetery. Grave 25.B.2. Son of Walter Francis and Emily (nee Young) of Canterbury, New Zealand.

Sgt. Ernest Herbert Fisher. Bergen-Op-Zoom War Cemetery. Grave 25.B.4. Son of of Herbert Francis and Rosa Lydia Fisher. Newington Butts, Berks, England.

Sgt. Stanley George Benjamin Hayes. Uden War Cemetery. Grave 5.E.8. Son of Stanley Frederick and Minnie Amelia (nee Elliott) of Finsbury, London, England.

Sgt. George Alexander Hill. Runnymede Memorial. Panel 153. Son of Robert and Eleanor Hill of St. Pancras, London, England.

Sgt. Walter Thomas Dunning. Runnymede Memorial. Panel 148. Son of William and Emma Mary of Loughborough, Leicestershire, England.

Sgt. Harry Frederick Barham.  Runnymede Memorial. Panel 141. Son of Harry Ottawa and Florence Beatrice (nee Adams) Barham of Hastings, East Sussex, England.

Sgt. David Duncan Cuthbert. Bergen-Op-Zoom War Cemetery. Grave 25.B.1. Son of David James William and Isabella Dorothea (nee Dow). Further Information: Born on the 8th April 1915 in Edinburgh, Scotland and is believed to have followed his father, a master butcher, into the trade as an apprentice butcher before volunteering for the RAF.

Sgt. George Beardmore Mycock. Bergen-Op-Zoom War Cemetery. Grave 25.B.2. Son of Frederick Arthur and Olive Anne Mycock of Buxton, Derbyshire, England.

Researched by Aircrew Remembered, researcher and specialist genealogist Linda Ibrom and also Ken Cuthbert for relatives of this crew. With thanks to the following, Adrian van Zantvoort, 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.

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: 02 August 2014, 13:09

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