AR banner
search tips advanced search

Info LogoAdd to or correct this story with a few clicks.
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.


We seek additional information and photographs. Please contact us via the AddInfo button, or send us email from the Helpdesk.
Bomber Command Crest
21.10.1943 No 18 OTU Wellington III BK471 Sgt. M. Sołecki

Operation: Training

Date: 21st October 1943 (Thursday)

Unit: No. 18 OTU (Operational Training Unit)

Type: Wellington III

Serial: BK471

Code: ?

Base: RAF Bircotes

Location: 2 miles North Airfield, Bircotes

Pilot: Sgt. Mieczysław Sołecki 793230 PAF Age 34. Killed

Pilot (Obs): Fl/Lt. Stefan Karol Alberti P-0031 PAF Age 36. Killed (1)

Nav: Sgt. Jerzy Sawicki 793799 PAF Age 30. Killed

W/Op/Air/Gnr: Fl/Sgt. Roman Kot 780470 PAF Age 24. Killed

W/Op/Air/Gnr: Sgt. Zbigniew Antoni Marynowski 703890 PAF Injured - survived


We welcome any further information relatives are able to provide to add to this page of remembrance.


REASON FOR LOSS:

Yet another training tragedy, thousands of aircrew from all nationalities lost their lives preparing to join squadrons. (some 13 on this day - just within the Bomber Command OTU's)

Taking off from RAF Bircotes in Nottinghamshire at 1917 hrs for an evening navigational training exercise. Shortly after leaving the pilot, Sgt. Sołecki informed base that they had a problem with one of the engines and requested to return and land.

At 19.57 hrs. with the situation having worsened, the aircraft came down in some trees, 2 miles North of the airfield, bursting into flames.

Subsequent inspection established that a taper pin had sheared within one of the engines causing the catastrophic failure.
(1) Fl/Lt. Stefan Karol Alberti escaped serious injury during the German invasion of Poland on the 3rd September 1939. Flying with No. 21 (1) EB Eskadra Bombowa Lekka on a PZL-23B Karas D1/K98 when they were shot down.

Newark-Upon-Trent Cemetery in Nottinghamshire, where some 397 Polish aircrew rest today.

Burial details:

Sgt. Mieczysław Sołecki. Newark Cemetery. Grave 319A. Born 22nd October 1909 in Dabrowa Górnicza, Poland.

Fl/Lt. Stefan Karol Alberti. Newark Cemetery. Grave 319A. Born 23rd October 1907 in Wadowice, Poland.

Sgt. Jerzy Sawicki. Newark Cemetery. Grave 319A. Born 28th December 1913 in Dżubga Kaukazus, Poland.

Fl/Sgt. Roman Kot. Newark Cemetery. Grave 319A. Born 30th September 1919 in Szczebrzeszyn, Poland.

For further details our thanks to the following, Bill Chorley - 'Bomber Command Losses Vol's. 1-9, plus ongoing revisions', Robert Gretzyngier, Wojtek Matusiak, Waldemar Wójcik and Józef Zieliński - 'Ku Czci Połeglyçh Lotnikow 1939-1945’. Aircrew Remembered archives.

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.
Click any image to enlarge it

Click to add your info via ticket on Helpdesk •Click to let us know via ticket on Helpdesk• Click to buy research books from Amazon •Click to explore the entire site

At the going down of the sun, and in the morning we will remember them. - Laurence Binyon
All site material (except as noted elsewhere) is owned or managed by Aircrew Remembered and should not be used without prior permission.
© Aircrew Remembered 2012 - 2017
Last Modified: 14 February 2015, 00:45

Monitor Additions/Changes?Click to be informed of changes to this page. Create account for first monitor only, thereafter very fast. Click to close without creating monitor