23/24.09.1942 No. 102 Squadron Halifax II W1055 DY-F P/O. Richard C.E. Bassom
Date: 23/24th September 1942 (Wednesday/Thursday)
Unit: No. 102 Squadron
Type: Halifax II
Base: RAF Pocklington, Yorkshire
Location: Baltic Sea of Flensburg
Pilot: P/O. Richard Charles Edgar Bassom 132605 RAFVR Age 25. Killed
Fl/Eng: Sgt. John Bennett 573729 RAF Age 20. Missing
Nav: Sgt. Sydney Cooper 1186699 RAFVR Age 26. Missing
Air/Bmr: Robert John Gould NZ/405483 RNZAF Age 24. Killed
W/Op/Air/Gnr: Fl/Sgt. William Douglas Reynolds R/62684 RCAF Age 26. Killed
Air/Gnr: Sgt. Arthur Graham Sherrard-Smith 924232 RAFVR Age ? Killed
Air/Gnr: Sgt. Charles Stainton 954283 RAFVR Age 22. Killed
REASON FOR LOSS:
Taking off from RAF Pocklington in Yorkshire at 00:16hrs to bomb Flensburg with 28 other Halifaxes from 4 group.
Just 16 managed to find and bomb the target due to poor weather conditions. No nightghter claims for this Halifax and is thought to have been hit by ant-aircraft fire, crashing into the Baltic off the target area.
Left: Pilot, P/O. Richard Charles Edgar Bassom (courtesy John Bassom)
Five bodies were recovered, the remaining two are commemorated on the Runnymede Memorial in Surrey.
102 Squadron lost another aircraft on this operation:
Halifax II DT517 DY-G Flown by 26 year old F/O. George Mee NZ/402559 RNZAF from Wellington City, New Zealand. Killed with all the other 7 crew members.
Initially buried at Friedenshugel Cemetery in Flensburg, reinterred after war end.
P/O. Richard Charles Edgar Bassom. Kiel War Cemetery. Grave 4.A.8. Brother to Enid, now residing in the Bay Court Nursing Home, Budleigh, Salterton, Devon, England. Born at Billericay, Essex, England 23rd December 1913.
Sgt. John Bennett. Runnymede Memorial. Panel 78. Son of Thomas Harold and Violet Mary Bennett, of Long Compton, Warwickshire, England.
Sgt. Sydney Cooper. Runnymede Memorial. Panel 80. Son of Christopher and Beatrice Cooper, husband of Florence Elizabeth Cooper, of Sheldon, Warwickshire, England.
Robert John Gould. Kiel War Cemetery. Grave 1.G.10. Son of Hubert John and Mary Gould, of Pleasant Point, Canterbury, New Zealand. This was his 7th operaration. although he had a total of 209 hrs flying time.
Fl/Sgt. William Douglas Reynolds. Kiel War Cemetery. Grave 1.G.11. From Granby, Quebec, Canada. Next of kin details not available, are you able to assist?
Sgt. Arthur Graham Sherrard-Smith. Kiel War Cemetery. Grave 4.A.9. Next of kin details not available, are you able to assist?
Air/Gnr: Sgt. Charles Stainton. Kiel War Cemetery. Grave 1.G.12. Son of Mr. and Mrs. A. Stainton, of Woodhall Spa, Lincolnshire, England.
Page placed for Graham Price, second cousin to Sgt. John Bennett. Thanks also for details on the pilot to John Bassom, his nephew. For further details our thanks to the sources as quoted below.