13/14.09.1942 156 Squadron Wellington III BJ600 Plt Off. Brough
Date: 13th/14th September 1942 (Sunday/Monday)
Unit No: 156 Squadron
Type: Wellington III
Base: RAF Warboys, Cambridgeshire.
Location: Loozen, Netherlands.
Pilot: Plt Off. George Valentine Brough 39082 RNZAF Age 21. KiA
Pilot U/T: Sgt. Phillip Stevenson Hammond 1331531 RAFVR Age 19. KiA
Obs: Sgt. William Chippendale Massey 1031306 RAFVR Age 31. KiA
Bomb Aimer: Sgt. Jack Herring 1213839 RAFVR. Age 21. KiA
WOp/Air Gnr: Sgt. Thomas Cuthbert Dewar 988654 RAFVR Age 30. KiA
Air Gnr: Sgt. William Herbert 644484 RAF Age 21. KiA
REASON FOR LOSS:
Taking off at 22:45 hrs with eleven other aircraft from the squadron to join 332 other aircraft on an operation to bomb Bremen.
LAC. Brough taken during aircrew training and his Medals (Courtesy Phillip Brough)
Observer for Wellington BJ600 Sgt. Jack Herring (courtesy Liz Hampton)
It is reported that the raid was heavy with 848 houses destroyed and Bremen industry suffering considerable damage with the Lloyds dynamo works put out of act for some two weeks and various parts of the Focke-Wulf factory for up to 8 days. 5 nearly completed aircraft were destroyed and 3 more damaged. 70 people on the ground were killed and a further 371 injured.
15 Wellingtons, 2 Lancasters 1 Halifax, 1 Hampden, 1 Stirling and 1 Whitley were lost, with 87 aircrew killed, another 28 being made PoW.
Above and below what is believed to be some of the crew and aircraft from the Squadron. Top left: Sgt. Phillip Stevenson Hammond with who we believe to be Sgt. Thomas Cuthbert Dewar. Right: Sgt. Phillip Stevenson Hammond with who we believe to be Sgt. William Chippendale Massey - perhaps you can assist? (courtesy Paul Stevens)
BJ600 was claimed by Uffz. Rudolf Frank, his 7th Abschuss, from 1./NJG3, 10 km north-east of Herdenburg at 03:10 hrs.
Note: This is the same claim as Maj. Hülshoff and flak 03:13 hrs. The victory for Uffz Frank was confirmed on the 19th June 1944. (Nachtjagd Combat Archive (30 May - 31 December 1942) The Early Years Part 3 - Theo Boiten)
Final letter home from Sgt. Jack Herring (courtesy Liz Hampton)
Above: Taken at RAF Aberystwyth in August 1941. No. 2 Squadron, 'C' Flight. (Sgt Herring is highlighted below)
Rear Row: Duncan, Howarth, Blee, Keeble, Chessells, Harrison, Jones, Carpenter, Wood, Smith, Brown, Hill, Howe, Sundrey, Coupland. Centre: Knight, Murray, Cave, Hill, Nash, Skea, Dyson, Highsted, Denslow, Chalmers, Davies, Craddock, Young, Whitley, Baxter, Ashcrofts, Day. Seated: Chambers, Huntley, Young, Pomroy, Perry, Brownhill, Sgt. Williams, Plt Off. Gillings, Flt Lt. Coaten, Sgt. J. Herring, Gosden, Morris, Lewis, Pullen, Holloway, Anderson. Front Row: Hebden, Williams, Bailey, Stephens, Stanley, Jarman, Oldfield, Williams.
Above left, Sgt. Massey prior to operational service and right, his wedding to Leila at Thorner near Leeds, 1934. (courtesy Nigel Dedross)
Further information supplied by Nigel Dedross: "A farmer buried him near their cottage and wrote to our family, adding they would place fresh flowers on his grave regularly. After the war the body was exhumed and taken to Gramsbergen General Cemetery for re-burial.
The two photos are of him in his uniform and him (right) with my father, Jack and his parents George and Selina (née Chippindale) Massey. My father, who has now passed away also, was very close to his Aunt Selina and Cousin Will." Prior to service worked as a milkman, his father worked at Leeds Post Office.
Niece of Sgt. Herring, Geraldine Beaumant, visiting his and crews graves. Geraldine recalls remembering Jack throwing her in the air as a child! (courtesy Liz Hampton)
Plt Off. George Valentine Brough. Gramsbergen General Cemetery. Plot 3. Coll. Grave 5-7. Son of Louis Brough and of Myrtle Brough (née Page), of Takaka, Nelson, New Zealand. 365 flying hours logged and on his 17th operation.
Sgt. Phillip Stevenson Hammond. Gramsbergen General Cemetery. Plot 3. Coll. Grave 5-7. Son of Dudley Victor and Simone Margueite Hammond, of Newdigate, Surrey, England.
Sgt. William Chippendale Massey. Gramsbergen General Cemetery. Plot 3. Grave 8. Son of George Henry and Selina Massey, of Leeds, Yorkshire, England. Husband of Leila Annie Massey, (née Skinner) of Leeds, England.
Sgt. Jack Herring. Gramsbergen General Cemetery. Plot 3. Coll. Grave 5-7. Son of Ernest and Edith Annie Herring, of Sandal, Wakefield, Yorkshire, England.
Sgt. Thomas Cuthbert Dewar. Gramsbergen General Cemetery. Plot 3. Grave 9. Son of James Mcl. C. Dewar and Annie Kempie Cuthbert Dewar. Stepson of Susan R. W. Dewar.
Sgt. William Herbert. Gramsbergen General Cemetery. Plot 3. Coll. Grave 5-7. Son of William and Elsie Clemantina Herbert, of Wakefield, Yorkshire, England.
Researched by Kelvin Youngs (Webmaster) and dedicated to the relatives of this crew with thanks to Liz Hampton, relative of Sgt. Herring, also to Paul Stevens, nephew of Sgt. Phillip Hammond who contacted us in January 2017. Paul was born to his sister in 1952. Also to Nigel Dedross, relative of Sgt. William Massey who contacted us in April 2017. Thanks to Phillip Brough for the images of his Great Uncle, Plt Off. George Valentine Brough (Apr 2020). Update to German night-fighter claim by aircrew remembered (Mar 2023).
Other sources as quoted below: