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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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625 Squadron Crest
20/21.02.1945 No. 625 Squadron Lancaster I NG412 CF-M F/O. Cooper

Operation: Dortmund

Date: 20/21st February 1945 (Tuesday/Wednesday)

Unit: No. 625 Squadron

Type: Lancaster I

Serial: NG412

Code: CF-M

Base: RAF Kelstern, Lincolnshire

Location: Over target

Pilot: F/O. J. Jamieson RAFVR

Fl/Eng: Sgt. E.J. Cuthill RAFVR

Nav: F/O. F.W. O'Reilly RAFVR

Air/Bmr: F/O. David Norman Anthony Cooper 154093 RAFVR Age 21. Killed

W/Op/Air/Gnr: Fl/Sgt. D.E. Smith RAFVR

Air/Gnr: Fl/Sgt. H.W. Elliot R/220226 RCAF

Air/Gnr: Sgt. E. Wilson RAFVR


F/O. Cooper was posted from No. 71 Base to 625 Squadron RAF Kelstern on the 14th February 1944. It appears that he was posted in as a spare bomb aimer and not a member of a fixed crew. He flew on his first operation as a member of Fl/Lt. G.H. Reynolds’s crew on the 28th December 1944. For the next twelve raids he was the regular bomb aimer for F/O. Fl/Lt. J.C. Wilson. For his fourteenth and last operation he was the ‘spare bod’ bomb aimer of F/O. J. Jamieson’s crew to Dortmund.

Additional Information from 625 Squadron ORB's:

20/2/45 Operations. 25 aircraft were detailed for an attack on a German target which was later changed to Dortmund. This Ruhr target was again battered by 625. The weather was good on the way to the target but 10/10 ths cloud covered the target area preventing the crews from seeing the T.I.s burning on the ground. However, the cloud was thin enough to see the glow of the T.I.s through it and many crews bombed on the glow. Some Wanganui were also dropped: Heavy flak was fairly intense but the searchlights were unable to operate owing to the cloud. Fighters were active. F/O. Maloney in “Y” failed to return from this operation. F/O. Cooper, Bomb Aimer, with F/O. Jamieson’s crew in “M” was unfortunately killed by an explosive missile shortly after leaving the target. The rest of the crew returned to Base safely.

The Squadron lost another complete crew on this operation:

Lancaster I NG267 CF-Y Flown by F/O. William Patrick Maloney DFC J/29566 RCAF of Sudbury, Ontario, Canada - Killed with all 6 other crew.

For acts of valour, courage or devotion to duty: Suggested decorations, F/O. David Norman Cooper 154093 RAFVR - DFC. KIA, eyewitness account.

Burial details:

F/O. David Norman Anthony Cooper. Cambridge City Cemetery. Grave 15921. Son of Norman Aldred Cooper and of Olive Beatrice Cooper, of Chelsea, London, England. Grave inscription reads: "To The World You Were One Of Many To Us You Were All The World".

Researched by Jack Albecht for Aircrew Remembered and Nic Lewis - February 2018 and dedicated to the relatives of this crew member. With thanks to further sources indicated.

KTY - 13.02.2018

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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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