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Archive Report: Allied Forces

Compiled from official National Archive and Service sources, contemporary press reports, personal logbooks, diaries and correspondence, reference books, other sources, and interviews.
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Bomber Command Crest
04/05.04.1945 No. 571 Squadron Mosquito XVI RV305 BK-A W/O. Alfred B. Clarke

Operation: Magdeburg

Date: 04/05th April 1945 (Wednesday/Thursday)

Unit: No. 571 Squadron

Type: Mosquito XVI

Serial: RV305

Code: BK-A

Base: RAF Oakington, Cambridgeshire

Location: SE Oebisfelde, Germany

Pilot: W/O. Alfred Bruce Clarke NZ/411565 RNZAF Age 24. Killed

Nav: Fl/Sgt. Alexander Collie Beaton 1063934 RAFVR Age 28. Killed


Taking off from RAF Oakington, Cambridgeshire mid evening on the 4th April joining another 30 Mosquitos on a diversionary operation to Magdeburg. The main operations were to Leuna and Harburg.

No details as to its loss (no nightfighter claims made on the Mosquitoes) but some reports state that after the Mosquito crashed the pilot survived and was taken away to be treated. He died from his wounds but the whereabouts of his grave is a mystery. Lack of cooperation with the occupying Russian Army failed to confirm his burial site.

We are unable to confirm this.

Burial details:

W/O. Alfred Bruce Clarke. Runnymede Memorial. Panel 285. Son of Harry and Ruth Augusta Clarke of Whakatone, Auckland, New Zealand and husband of Eve Ivy Clarke of Richmond, Surrey, England. 1704 hours logged - his 30th operation.

Fl/Sgt. Alexander Collie Beaton. Berlin 1939-1945 War Cemetery. Grave 9.E.20. Son of Malcolm and Jessie Ann Beaton of Glasgow and husband of Jean Druce Beaton of Mount Florida, Glasgow, Scotland. Chartered accountant.

Researched by Aircrew Remembered volunteer, researcher and specialist genealogist Linda Ibrom for relatives of this crew.

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Sources used by us in compiling Archive Reports include: Bill Chorley - 'Bomber Command Losses Vols. 1-9, plus ongoing revisions', Dr. Theo E.W. Boiten and Mr. Roderick J. Mackenzie - 'Nightfighter War Diaries Vols. 1 and 2', Martin Middlebrook and Chris Everitt - 'Bomber Command War Diaries', Commonwealth War Graves Commission, Tom Kracker - Kracker Luftwaffe Archives, Michel Beckers, Major Fred Paradie (RCAF) and MWO François Dutil (RCAF) - Paradie Archive (on this site), Jean Schadskaje, Major Jack O'Connor USAF (Retd.), Robert Gretzyngier, Wojtek Matusiak, Waldemar Wójcik and Józef Zieliński - 'Ku Czci Połeglyçh Lotnikow 1939-1945', Archiwum - Polish Air Force Archive (on this site), Anna Krzystek, Tadeusz Krzystek - 'Polskie Siły Powietrzne w Wielkiej Brytanii', Franek Grabowski, Norman L.R. Franks 'Fighter Command Losses', Stan D. Bishop, John A. Hey MBE, Gerrie Franken and Maco Cillessen - Losses of the US 8th and 9th Air Forces, Vols 1-6, Dr. Theo E.W. Boiton - Nachtjagd Combat Archives, Vols 1-13. Aircrew Remembered Databases and our own archives. We are grateful for the support and encouragement of CWGC, UK Imperial War Museum, Australian War Memorial, Australian National Archives, New Zealand National Archives, UK National Archives and Fold3 and countless dedicated friends and researchers across the world.
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