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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.


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635 Squadron Crest
26/27.08.1944 No. 635 Squadron Lancaster III ND950 F2-M Fl/Lt. Wheble

Operation: Kiel

Date: 26/27th August 1944 (Saturday/Sunday

Unit: No. 635 Squadron (Pathfinder Force - 8 Group)

Type: Lancaster III

Serial: ND950

Code: F2-M

Base: RAF Downham Market, Norfolk

Location: South Schleswig, Germany

REASON FOR LOSS:

Pilot: Fl/Lt. Lionel James David Wheble (later DFC) 130648 RAFVR PoW No: 5392 Camp: Stalag Luft Barth Vogelsang (L1)

Fl/Eng: Fl/Sgt. Peter Burt 1551748 RAFVR Killed

Nav: Sq/Ldr. Herbert Cecil Lobb DFC. 104336 RAFVR Killed

Air/Bmr: F/Lt. J.S. Gordon J/18335 RCAF PoW No: 5384 Camp: Stalag Luft Barth Vogelsang (L1)

W/Op/Air/Gnr: W/O. G.T. Levick 1431244 RAFVR PoW No: 5292 Camp: Stalag Luft Barth Vogelsang (L1)

Air/Gnr: Fl/Sgt. Robert Charles Pitcon 1653141 RAFVR Killed

Air/Gnr: Fl/Sgt. Robert Cadman 1739534 RAFVR Killed

Taking off from RAF Downham Market in Norfolk at 20:16 hrs - 372 Lancasters and 10 Mosquitos of Nos 1, 3 and 8 Groups despatched to Kiel. 17 Lancasters lost, 4.6 per cent of the Lancaster force.

The Pathfinder marking was hampered by smoke-screens but the local report tells of a very serious raid with heavy bombing in the town centre and surrounding districts and widespread fires fanned by a strong wind. The Rathaus was completely burnt out and many other public buildings were destroyed or seriously damaged. Some 134 people on the ground were killed with a further 1,002 suffering various degrees of injuries.

The squadron lost two other aircraft during this operation:
Lancaster III ND355 F2-W Flown by Fl/Lt. R.J. Barker 124917 RAFVR taken PoW with 4 other crew, 2 others killed.
Lancaster III ND693 F2-B Flown by W/O. George Frederick C. Grandfield Shirley 1202160 RAFVR killed with 5 other crew, his flight engineer survived as PoW.

Lancaster ND950 was shot down by Fw. Gottfried Schneider his 14th claim of the war of 1./NJG3 South Schleswig 5,500 mtrs at 23:12 hrs. Schneider survived the war with a total of 18 claims.

Burial details:

Fl/Eng: Fl/Sgt. Peter Burt. Kiel War Cemetery. Joint grave 4.E.1-2. No records found - are you able to assist?

Nav: Sq/Ldr. Herbert Cecil Lobb DFC. Kiel War Cemetery. Grave 4.E.3. No records found - are you able to assist?

Air/Gnr: Fl/Sgt. Robert Charles Pitcon. Kiel War Cemetery. Grave 4.E.4. No records found - are you able to assist?

Left: as described (courtesy Valerie David)

Air/Gnr: Fl/Sgt. Robert Cadman. Kiel War Cemetery. Joint grave 4.E.1-2. Son of John and Ethel Cadman and husband of Margaret Mary Cadman, of West Heath, Birmingham, England.

Researched for relatives of Fl/Sgt. Robert Charles Pitcon, Valerie David via Josh Stewart and dedicated to the relatives of this crew with thanks to sources as shown.

KTY - 23.10.2017

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, Michel Beckers, Major Fred Paradie (RCAF) and MWO François Dutil (RCAF) - Paradie Archive (on this site), Jean Schadskaje, Major Jack O'Connor USAF (Retd.), 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', Franek Grabowski, Norman L.R. Franks 'Fighter Command Losses', Aircrew Remembered Databases and our own archives. We are grateful for the support and encouragement of CWGC, UK Imperial War Museum, Australian War Memorial, Australian National Archives, New Zealand National Archives, UK National Archives and Fold3 and countless dedicated friends and researchers across the world.
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Last Modified: 23 October 2017, 18:38

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