16.04.1941 No. 303 Squadron Spitfire IIa P8039 RF-R P/O. Mieczyslaw Waszkiewicz
Operation: Circus 8
Date: 16th April 1941(Wednesday)
Unit: No. 303 Squadron (Polish)
Type: Spitfire IIa
Serial: P8039 ("Hereward The Wake II - Presented by the Isle of Ely)
Base: RAF Northolt, Middlesex
Location: English Channel, near Dungeness, Kent
Pilot: P/O. Mieczyslaw Waszkiewicz P-0895 PAF Age 24. Missing
REASON FOR LOSS:
Providing close cover to bombers on a raid to Berck-sur-Mer engaged Bf109’s of JG53 over the Channel and shot down.
Above left: P/O. Mieczyslaw Waszkiewicz in light overalls and right. (courtesy Zbigniew Charytoniuk and Franciszek Kornicki collection via Peter Sikora)
A memorial had been placed to him and another 303 squadron pilot, P/O. Bogusław Mierzwa
, also lost this day in the Dungeness area. Another Polish pilot,from 303 Squadron was also hit, but P/O. W.S. Strzembosz (1) flying Spitfire IIa Z3090 survived, wounded. His aircraft was damaged but later repaired.
Left: Polish Memorial at Northolt - as visited by Aircrew Remembered in September 2014 - relatives who would like a high resolution copy of this image are invited to contact us.
Sadly, in January 2015 we have been informed that the memorial placed, is in a very bad state of repair - efforts are underway to build a similar memorial in a more visible area. Funds are of course needed for this - we would appreciate your help with these efforts. Aircrew Remembered have provided a donation.
(1) Wictor Stanislaw Strzembosz was killed just 3 months later on the 8th July 1941 in Spitfire IIb P8669 RF-M over Dunkirk, France. Buried at Merville.
P/O. Mieczyslaw Waszkiewicz has no known grave and is commemorated on both the Northolt Memorial and the Memorial for missing Airman in Warsaw, Poland. Born on 27th March 1917. Joined 307 Squadron 18 September 1940 - moved to 32 Squadron 9th October 1940 finally to 303 Squadron 26 March 1941.
303 Squadron members in front of Spitfire P8039 (see credits)
Researched and dedicated to the relatives of this crew with thanks to Peter Sikora, Dungeness UK
, 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', Jerzy Bogdan Cynk - 'The Polish Airforce At War' Vol's 1 and 2, Norman L.R. Franks 'Fighter Command Losses' Vol. 1-3. Also thanks to Nigel Denchfield who contacted us in December 2017. A small exhibition is being planned in March, Cambridgeshire on this aircraft.
Support the efforts from our friends direct at Dungeness UK
- send as much or as little as you are able.