21/22.07.1941 No. 44 Squadron Hampden I AD983 Sgt. Bruce
Date: 21st/22nd July 1941.
Unit: 44 Squadron.
Type: Handley Page Hampden I
Base: RAF Waddington
Location: Hampden AD983, England.
Pilot: Sgt. Donald MacDonald Bruce 1001163 RAF Age 28. Killed.
Obs: Sgt. William Robert Bain Relyea R/62627 RCAF Age 24. Killed.
W/Op/Air/Gnr: Sgt. James Aloysius Connolly 974039 RAFVR Age ? Killed.
Air/Gnr: Sgt. Peter Joseph Lynch 914965 RAFVR Age 24. Killed.
We welcome contact from any relative or any additional information
REASON FOR LOSS
This aircraft took off from its base at RAF Waddington 22.25 hrs to lay mines off the Frisian Islands. Crashed at 04.00 hrs. on the Greenstones, staff residence for Lindum Hill School for Girls at Lincoln. Miss Edith Catherine Fowle, the 49 year old senior French mistress, died after being trapped in the burning building.
Ground crews loading mines on to a 44 Squadron Hampden for a Gardening Operation.
The sad remains of AD983 the next morning, with the tail section still resting on the wall of the school. (courtesy Lincolnshire Echo)
Sgt. Relyea was buried here at Waddington, the other crew members were taken to their home towns as described below.
Sgt. Donald MacDonald Bruce. New Kilpatrick (or Hillfoot) cemetery. Sec. L. Grave 458. Son of Malcolm and Annie Macdonald Bruce, husband of Margaret McCubbin Bruce, of Glasgow, Scotland.
Sgt. William Robert Bain Relyea. Waddington (St. Michael) churchyard. Son of William O. Relyea, and of Edna Relyea, of Toronto, Ontario, Canada.
Sgt. James Aloysius Connolly. Edinburgh (Mount Vernon) roman catholic cemetery. Sec. N. Grave 73. N.o.K. details currently unavailable - Can you assist?.
Sgt. Peter Joseph Lynch. Streatham Park cemetery. Square 22. Grave 28845. Son of Peter and Bertha Lynch, husband of Monica Lynch, of South Lambeth, London, England.
With thanks to the following: Bill Chorley - 'Bomber Command Losses Vol 2', Martin Middlebrook "Bomber Command War Diaries". The CWGC.