03/04.06.1942 No. 101 Squadron Wellington III X3473 SR-S Fl/Lt. Edwards
Date: 03/04th June 1942 (Wednesday/Thursday)
Unit: No. 101 Squadron (3 Group)
Type: Wellington III
Base: RAF Bourn, Cambridgeshire
Location: Delmenhorst, Germany
Pilot: Fl/Lt. Norman John Edwards 79510 RAFVR Age 28. Killed (1)
Obs: P/O. Laurence Alan Edward Osbon 82725 RAFVR PoW No: 554 Camp: Stalag Luft Sagan
W/Op/Air/Gnr: Sgt. Frederick Ralph Arthan 1108989 RAFVR Age 22. Killed
W/Op/Air/Gnr: Sgt. William George Cormack 985764 RAFVR Age 21. Killed
Air/Gnr: P/O. Kenneth Edward Steel Muggleton 121536 RAFVR PoW - No further details available (2)
REASON FOR LOSS:
Taking off in the late evening to raid Bremen along with 169 other aircraft from various squadrons.
Mr. Ian Carswell submitted this information January 2020:
'Laurie told me verbally and in writing that he had moved forward and was in the bomb-aimers position having just opened the bomb doors when there was a huge explosion! S-Sugar rolled on her back then righted herself. Norman said get out if you can, then she fell from the sky. 'Laurie was of course lying over the main entry hatch. He released the bombs, opened the hatch and dived out'.
Coned by Flak Scheinwerfer 'Casar' of 4./Res Flak Abt.222 and hit by 3./Res.Flak Abt.222 (IV.Zug), crashed at Bremen - Blockland at 01:35hrs. (courtesy Theo Boiten and Rod Mackenzie)
Above: 101 Squadron in front of Wellington X3670 SR-F - Missing on the 31st May 1942 with all five crew.
Rear row: Air/Gnr. John Skipsey, W/Op/Air/Gnr. Rogers, W/Op/Air/Gnr. Mullin, Air/Gnr. Tracey, W/Op/Air/Gnr. Skinner, A/G. Sundberg, W/Op/Air/Gnr. William Harry Armold, Obs. Mullan, Obs. Downer, Air/Gnr. Ferguson.
Middle Row: W/Op/Air/Gnr. Matheson, Air/Gnr. Sime, Pilot. Foxcroft, W/Op/Air/Gnr. Kilwyn, Pilot. Keen, Pilot. Richards, W/Op/Air/Gnr. Garland, Pilot. Llewelyn, Obs. Baker, Obs. Clark, Obs. Calhoune, W/Op/Air/Gnr. Sibbald, W/Op/Air/Gnr. Sauve, Pilot. Machin, Air/Gnr. Spooner, W/Op/Air/Gnr. Brace.
Front Row (sitting): W/Op/Air/Gnr. Hart, Pilot. Marney, Air/Gnr. Wigham, Air/Gnr. King-Scott, W/Op/Air/Gnr. Ward, Obs. Menage, W/Op/Air/Gnr. Young, Pilot. Diemer, W/Op/Air/Gnr. Artham, W/Op/Air/Gnr. Jones, Air/Gnr. Angelo, W/Op/Air/Gnr. Pollock, W/Op/Air/Gnr. Oakley, W/Op/Air/Gnr. Cormack, W/Op/Air/Gnr. Bott, Air/Gnr. Mackay, Pilot. Early, Pilot. Williams, W/Op/Air/Gnr. Tattoh, W/Op/Air/Gnr. Woodgate, Air/Gnr. Urwin, Obs. Pearson, Air/Gnr. Charles, Pilot. Attwood, Pilot. Brown, Air/Gnr. Murray, W/Op/Air/Gnr. Burgess, W/Op/Air/Gnr. Jaggers, W/Op/Air/Gnr. Stewart, Air/Gnr. Wade, Air/Gnr. Symonds.
Left: Fl/Lt. Norman John Edwards from New Zealand - attached to the RAF.
(1) Fl/Lt. Norman John Edwards lost his brother just 4 days previously. 22 year old, Sgt. Denis Henry Edwards NZ/405515 RNZAF killed whilst with 22 Operational Training Unit.
(2) Fl/Lt. Kenneth Edward Steel Muggleton relinquished his commission on account of medial unfitness for the RAF on the 08th November 1947 (retaining his rank)
Mr. Ian Carswell published a book about the Edwards Brothers in 1997. He is currently updating the book for a possible future new edition.
Crew were originally buried in a collective grave at Delmenhorst - reinterred after the end of the war.
Fl/Lt. Norman John Edwards. Becklingen War Cemetery. Collective grave 14.B.4-8. Born on the 11th April 1914 at Dannevirke, the son of Henry Norman and Laura Gertrude Ellen Edwards (née Beale), of Hastings, Hawke's Bay, New Zealand. An accounts clerk for the Public Trust Office of Napier prior to enlisting on the 23rd October 1939. 832 flying hours logged and on his 25th operational sortie.
Sgt. Frederick Ralph Arthan. Becklingen War Cemetery. Collective grave 14.B.4-8. Son of Frederick and Gertrude A. Arthan, of Heaton Chapel, Stockport, Cheshire, England. Grave inscription reads: "Through Death To Life Eternal".
Sgt. William George Cormack. Becklingen War Cemetery. Collective grave 14.B.4-8. Son of John Craig Cormack and Mary Roberts Cormack, of Dumfries, Scotland.
Researched and dedicated to the relatives of this pilot with thanks to the research by Errol Martyn and his publications: “For Your Tomorrow Vols. 1-3”, Auckland War Memorial Museum, Weekly News of New Zealand, Mr. Ian Carswell, other sources as quoted below: