22.06.1944 No. 315 Squadron Mustang III FZ157 PK-J W/O. Tamowicz
Date: 22nd June 1944 (Thursday)
Unit: No. 315 Squadron (Polish)
Type: Mustang III
Base: RAF Coolham
Location: Cherbourg Beachhead, France.
Pilot: W/O. Tadeusz Tamowicz 793839 PAF Age ? Survived, injured
REASON FOR LOSS:
12 Mustangs from 315 squadron took off from RAF Coolham at 12.10 hrs with aircraft from 129 and 306 squadrons.
During one of the runs PK-J was hit by several 20mm. shells from ground forces, the pilot was forced to try and land as the engine had been severely damaged. He called to advise what he was doing, then managed to crash land his Mustang in the marshes. Another Mustang FB398 PK-A, that of 26 year old Fl/Lt. Henryk Stefankiewicz was also hit, killing the pilot.
After W/O. Tamowicz had landed he managed to crawl out of his aircraft and started bandaging his wounds on his legs. His Sq/Ldr. Eugebiusz Horbaczewski circled and they acknowledged one another.
Amazingly, the Sq/Ldr landed a few kilometres from the downed Mustang on an emergency American airstrip - the Americans lent him a jeep and he collected Tadeusz - drove back to the airstrip - placed him in the cockpit - used him as a cushion and flew back to base in his Mustang!
Above left: Sgt. W/O. Tadeusz Tamowicz taken during training at 58 OTU Right: Sgt Slon (taking the place of W/O.Tamowicz who was receiving treatment of his injuries) with Sq/Ldr. Horbaczewski - showing how they did it! (courtesy I.W.M)
Left: Sadly Sq/Ldr. Horbaczewski DFC. DSO. VM. was killed on the 18th August 1944, shot down by Fw 190's near Beauvais airfield.
Course 25-1, 58 O.T.U. Grangemouth, Scotland: Front row: Sgt. McLaren, F/O. Sanders, Fl/Lt. Zweigbergh, Sq/Ldr. Robinson, F/O. Siekierski, P/O. Czernecki - Middle row: Sgt. Tamowicz, Sgt. Syperek, Sgt. Pomielarz, Sgt. Sliwinski, Sgt. Blazejczyk, Fl/Sgt. Banys - Rear row: Sgt. Dunajewski, Fl/Sgt. Chute, Sgt. Hyde, Sgt. Bielicki, Sgt. Ballantyne, Sgt. Bedowski
None, W/O. Tadeusz Tamowicz survived the war, settling in Australia. No further details available.
Researched for relatives of the pilot. With thanks to the following for further information supplied to Norman L.R. Franks 'Fighter Command Losses' Vol. 3, Polish Squadron ORB 'website'. The 1333 (Grangemouth Spitfire) Squadron and the Grangemouth Spitfire Memorial Trust who provided me with so much information and assistance during my visit,