12.08.1944 No. 443 Squadron Spitfire IX ML303 F/O. Bentley
Operation: Armed Recce
Date: 12th August 1944 (Saturday)
Unit: No. 443 Squadron (Canadian)
Type: Spitfire LFIX
Base: Bazenville Airfield (Crepon) France.
Location: 5 miles North East of Bernay, France.
Pilot: F/O. William John Bentley J189228/R12780 R.C.A.F. Age 24, Killed
REASON FOR LOSS:
During an armed recce patrol in the morning of 12th August on moving targets or bridges, railway junctions, the Spitfire ML303 Merlin 66 engine developed a glycol leak and the pilot was forced to bale out. Sadly, his parachute caught in the canopy and he was dragged down with the aircraft, killing him.
Above and left: St. Valery-en Caux Franco-British Cemetery as photographed by our own Kate Tame durine her visit in 2012. Any relative who would like a higher resolution of these please contact us and we will send you one free of charge.
F/O. William John Bentley. St. Valery-en Caux Franco-British Cemetery. Grave B.10. Son of William Henry and Esther Bentley, of Willowdale, Ontario, Canada. He had a total of 582 hours flying experience, 475 on the Spitfire.
Researched for relatives of the pilot. With thanks to the following for further information supplied, Les Allison and Harry Hayward – ‘They Shall Grow Not Old’, Norman L.R. Franks ‘Fighter Command Losses’ Vol. 3. Commonwealth War Graves Commission.
Inscription: At the going down of the sun, and in the morning, we will remember him