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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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570 Squadron crest
570 Squadron Stirling IV LK121 V8-H crew killed plus glider pilot

Operation: Market Garden

Date: 18th September 1944 (Monday)

Unit: No. 570 Squadron

Type: Stirling IV

Serial: LK121

Code: V8-H

Base: RAF Harwell, Berkshire

Location: Opheusden, Holland

Pilot: P/O. Charles William Culling 186749 RAFVR Age 29. Killed

Fl/Eng: Sgt. Vincent Williams 2211528 RAFVR Age 19. Killed

Nav: P/O. John Douglas Baker J/87670 RCAF Age 21. Killed

Air/Bmr: Fl/Sgt. Henky Ernest Browne 1518512 RAFVR Age ? Killed

W/Op/Air/Gnr: P/O. George Samuel Crawford Bell AUS/412361 RAAF Age 23. Killed

Air/Gnr: Fl/Sgt. Edward Philip Pope 1579644 RAFVR Age 21. Killed

Radar/Op: Cpl. John Redmond Coleman R/94226 RCAF Age 26. Killed


Taking off from RAF Harwell, Berkshire as part of the "Operation Market Garden" at12.08 hrs. Towing a Horsa glider HG453 Chalk number 5000 with members of the 6080 Light Warning Unit (Radar) on board.

Stirling LK121 was hit by heavy flak and crashed at Opheusden at around 15.00 hrs. killing all the crew.

The Glider pilot did manage to cut away the tow line which went on to crash land near the village of Hemmen. The pilot of the glider, Staff/Sgt. Bernard "Lofty" Cummins was shot dead by a sniper whilst trying to cross the Nijmegen Bridge and first buried in front of the Hotel Tafelber. His co-pilot, Sgt F. McInnes, was wounded and taken PoW.

Burial details:

P/O. Charles William Culling. Heteren General Cemetery. Plot 2. Row A. Coll. Grave 20-21. Son of Percival Franklin Culling and Grace Mildred Culling, husband of Molly Georgina Culling, of Handsworth, Birmingham, England.

Right: P/O. Charles William Culling

Sgt. Vincent Williams. Heteren General Cemetery. Plot 2. Row A. Coll. Grave 20-21. Son of Vincent Thomas Williams and Emily Williams, of Breightmet, Bolton, Lancashire, England.

P/O. John Douglas Baker. Heteren General Cemetery. Plot 2. Row A. Coll. Grave 20-21. Son of Douglas and Sarah J. Baker, of Montreal, Province of Quebec, Canada.

Fl/Sgt. Henky Ernest Browne. Heteren General Cemetery. Plot 2. Row A. Coll. Grave 20-21. No further details available as yet.

P/O. George Samuel Crawford Bell. Heteren General Cemetery. Plot 2. Row A. Coll. Grave 20-21. Son of Walter Arthur and Catherine May Bell, of Dubbo, New South Wales, Australia.

Fl/Sgt. Edward Philip Pope. Heteren General Cemetery. Plot 2. Row A. Coll. Grave 20-21. Son of Alice Louie Findlay, of Highley, Shropshire, England.

Cpl. John Redmond Coleman. Heteren General Cemetery. Plot 2. Row A. Coll. Grave 20-21. Son of William Francis and Annie Margaret Coleman, of Montreal, Province of Quebec, Canada.

Staff/Sgt. Bernard Arthur Cummins 14287144 Glider Pilot Regiment A.A.C. 1st Wing. Arnheim Oosterbeek War Cemetery. Grave 3.D.7. Son of Arthur and Ivy Cummins, husband of Joyce Barbara Cummins, of St. Leonards-on-Sea, Sussex, England.

Crew graves (courtesy Andy Baker)

Researched for relatives of the crew. With thanks to the many people that have contributed information to this page of remembrance including, Robert Culling - son of the Stirling pilot, Bob Wilton, McGill Remembers project, McGill University Archives, Andy Baker, Australian War Memorial Archives, Les Allison and Harry Hayward - "They Shall Grow Not Old", Commonwealth War Graves Commission. Also thanks to Suzanne Halton - relative of Cpl. John Redmond Coleman who contacted us in November 2917.

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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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