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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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Polish roundel
13.09.1943 No. 152 Squadron Spitfire IX ED112 UM-U Fl/Lt. Wladysaw M. Drecki

Operation: Patrol

Date: 13th September 1943

Unit:No. 152 Squadron

Type: Spitfire IX

Serial: ED112

Code: UM-U

Base: Milazzo East, Sicily.

Location: At base

Pilot: Fl/Lt. Wladysaw Maciej Drecki P-0213 PAF Age 27. Killed


Polish fighter pilot credited with 4 kills and another probable. 

The squadron moved to Milazzo East airfield on the north coast of Sicily to cover the allied forces on the Salermo landings in Italy. 

On the 11th September in the late afternoon Fl/Lt. Drecki in Spitfire MA289 UM-T met 2 x Bf109's. One of which was attacking a USAAF Lightning, Wladysaw Drecki managed to manoeuvre onto its tail and shot it down. 

The pilot, Oblt. Rudolf Stevens of JG 53 managed to bale out and was picked up by American soldiers.

Two days later Fl/Lt. Drecki was taking off in Spitfire ES112 UM-U when a tire burst, due to heat build up and the aircraft served and hit another Spitfire parked to close to the runway - his aircraft was carrying a full 90 gallon long range fuel take and this exploded - killing him instantly.

Left: Fl/Lt. Wladysaw Maciej Drecki (archives)


152 Squadron Spitfire in Sicily, 1943 (archives)


Burial details: 

Fl/Lt. Wladysaw Maciej Drecki. Catania War Cemetery Sicily, Italy (shown above right). Plot 1. Row K. Grave 48. Commemorated on the Polish War Memorial, Northolt and also the superb War Memorial Warsaw, Poland (shown above left). Born 19th May 1915 in Slupia.

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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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