05/06.05.1944 No. 40 Squadron Wellington LP191 BL-R W/O. Royle
Operation: Cîmpina, Romania
Date: 5/6th May 1944 (Friday/Saturday)
Unit: No. 40 Squadron
Base: Foggia Main, Italy
Location: Valea Lunga, Romania.
Pilot: W/O. Donald Herbert Royle 640834 RAF Age 24. Killed
Nav: Fl/Sgt. James Arthur Smith 123112 RAFVR Age 22. Killed
Air/Bmr: Sgt. George Walter Ward 644866 RAF Age ? Killed
W/Op/Air/Gnr: W/O. Allen Brown 1354371 RAFVR Age ? Killed
Air/Gnr: Sgt. Alfred Richard Wood 1755414 RAFVR Age 18. Killed
REASON FOR LOSS:
48 Bombers set out to attack the Steaua Refinery. This plant was one of the largest in Romania and the marshalling yards were a vital part of the factory. The purpose of the raid was to destroy rolling stock and any installations at the marshalling yards.
Reports state that direct hits were made with the bombing in a concentrated area. Enemy aircraft taking to the defence consisted of Me210s and some single engine fighters were also observed.
Wellington LP191 was a victim of air combat with Me110s and was shot down over Valea Lunga - all the crew were killed.
Left and above, Bucharest War Cemetery as visited by Aircrew Remembered researchers in 2012
W/O. Donald Herbert Royle. Bucharest War Cemetery. Coll. Grave 1.E.2-5. Son of Alfred and Lucy Ann Royle, of Didsbury, Manchester, England.
Fl/Sgt. James Arthur Smith. Bucharest War Cemetery. Grave 1.E.2-5. Son of Mrs. E. A. Smith, of Foston, Derbyshire, England.
Sgt. George Walter Ward. Bucharest War Cemetery. Coll. Grave 1.E.2-5. No further details as yet.
W/O. Allen Brown. Bucharest War Cemetery. Coll. Grave 1.E.2-5. No further details as yet.
Sgt. Alfred Richard Wood. Bucharest War Cemetery. Grave 2.E.5. Son of Alfred William and Ethel Wood, of Liverpool, England.
Researched and dedicated to the relatives of the crew. With thanks to the following, Patrick Macdonald - 'Through Darkness To Light', Commonwealth Graves Commission.