02.01.1943 No. 1658 Heavy Conversion Unit Halifax II R9388 Sgt. Watson
Date: 02nd January 1943 (Saturday)
Unit No: 1658 Heavy Conversion Unit
Type: Handley Page Halifax II
Code: Not issued
Base: RAF Riccall, North Yorkshire
Location: Cawood, North Yorkshire
Pilot: Sgt. Thomas Davis Watson 1340991 RAFVR Age 19. Killed
Fl/Eng: Sgt. Walter Frank Hewitt 1417486 RAFVR Age ??. Killed
Air/Bmr: Sgt. Jack Holder Atkinson 1391253 RAFVR Age 33. Killed
Air/Gnr: Sgt. Gordon Maxwell Lipsett R/113870 RCAF Age 23. Injured (1)
Reason for Loss:
Weather, according to Station Operational Record Book: Fine becoming cloudy with strong wintry showers. Visibility mainly good.
The aircraft was undertaking a daytime training flight when fifteen minutes after taking off from RAF Riccall at 10:00 hrs, the aircraft was flying with one engine stopped and propeller feathered.
The aircraft was seen to suddenly climb steeply, stall and then dive into the ground at 10:20 just south of Cawood, near the Tile Bridge. The aircraft had previously suffered a collapsed undercarriage at RAF East Moor in August 1942 but had been repaired.
(1) Sgt. Gordon Maxwell Lipsett of Woodstock, New Brunswick, Canada. Admitted to Selby Cottage Hospital and later transferred to RAF Hospital at Raucesby. He recovered and survived the war. Passed away on the 31st October 1974 age just 53. Buried at Brookside Cemetery, Winnipeg, Canada. His wife, Gladys Naomi Lipsett (née Windett) with whom he married in Bournemouth, England in 1943, passed away on the 20th September 2003 age 83, buried in the same cemetery.
Sgt. Thomas Davis Watson. Lanark Cemetery, St Leonard's Section B, Grave 23. Son of Thomas and Margaret Main Watson of Lanark, Scotland.
Sgt. Walter Frank Hewitt. Wellington Main Cemetery, Somerset, Div. 2, Grave 2156 B. Son of Harold Frank and Agnes Mary Hewitt. Husband of Florence May Hewitt, of Wellington, Somerset, England. Grave inscription reads: 'God Shall Wipe Away All Tears'.
Sgt. Jack Holder Atkinson. Charlton Cemetery, Greenwich, Section Q, 1st Cons. Grave 2. Son of Jack and Emily May Atkinson. Husband of Thelma Atkinson, of Charlton, Greenwich, England. Grave inscription (Family grave) reads: 'At The Going Down Of The Sun And In The Morning We Will Remember Them'.
Researched by Steve Hunnisett for Aircrew Remembered - April 2019. Extract from 1658 HCU Operations Record Book attached, which doesn't actually provide much detail. Other sources as quoted.