31.12.1942 No. 409 Squadron Beaufighter X8192/EL184 F/O. H. Brooks / W/O. B.H. Barber
Date: 31st December 1942 (Thursday)
Unit: No. 409 Squadron (Nighthawk - RCAF)
Type: Beaufighter VI.F
Serial: X8192 / EL184
Base: RAF Coleby Grange, Lincolnshire
Location: Near Gainsborough, Lincolnshire
Pilot: X8192 - F/O. Harry Brooks J/15588 RCAF Age 28. Killed
Pilot: EL184 - W/O.II. ‘Bernie’ Bernard Higson Barber R/101359 RCAF Age 22. Killed (1)
Nav: X8192 - F/O. William Bertram Mosley J/15368 RCAF Age 21. Killed
Nav: EL184 - W/O.I. Henry Hare R/78451 RCAF Age 21. Killed
REASON FOR LOSS:
Very little information on this loss. Both collided mid-air over Gainsborough killing both crews.
A mid-air collision between two 409 Squadron Beaufighters X8192/EL184 while training, resulted in one plane crashing onto houses in Noel Street, Gainsborough. Three houses were demolished and at least twenty others were damaged. The crew of the Beaufighter perished along with three year old Margaret Ann Eames who was found at 11am on New Year's Day. The second Beaufighter and dead crew were discovered the next morning near the Water Tower in the General Cemetery on Cox's Hill. The tail section and part of one wing of the aircraft were found at Park Springs.
(with thanks to Adrain Oates for this updated information - December 2016 - see acknowledgments)
Above left: W/O.II. ‘Bernie’ Bernard Higson Barber Right: W/O.I. Henry Hare.
(1) ‘Bernie’ Barber had been a very close friend and pilot for Sgt. Donald Procter RCAF (shown above).
F/O. Harry Brooks. Scopwick Church, Lincolnshire. Row 4. Grave 31. Son of George Percy Brooks and of Caroline Emily Brooks (née Bain), of Verdun, Province of Quebec, Canada. Grave inscription reads: “They Never Die Who Living Give Of Life That Others May Live In Peace.”
W/O.II. Bernard Higson Barber. Scopwick Church, Lincolnshire. Row 4. Grave 27. Son of Alfred Higson Barber and Frances Barber, of Vernon, British Columbia, Canada. Grave inscription reads: “He Died For His Country. That We Might Live Gone But Never Forgotten. Mother, Dad And Joan."
F/O. William Bertram Mosley. Scopwick Church, Lincolnshire. Row 4. Grave 29. Son of Matthias and Leila Mosley of London, Ontario, Canada, husband of Susannah Mosley, of Lenton, Nottinghamshire, England. Born on 11th March 1922. Grave inscription reads: “Much Loved Greatly Missed”
W/O.I. Henry Hare. Scopwick Church, Lincolnshire. Row 5. Grave 40. Son of Thomas and Susan Hare, of Toronto, Ontario, Canada. Grave inscription reads: “Henry Was Loved By All Who Knew Him.”
Margaret Ann Eames, age 2. Daughter of Guy and Ivy Florence Eames, of 27 Acacia Avenue. Died at 4 Noel Street.
Researched and dedicated to the relatives of these crew with thanks to the son of Donald Procter, Dudley for photographs and information. Also many thanks to Adrian Oates of the Axholme - the heart of Lincolnshire, Yorkshire and Nottinghamshire Website for additional information - December 2016. Also to Find A Grave for information and grave photographs.