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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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149 Squadron Crest
15/16.04.1942 No. 149 Squadron Stirling I N6068 OJ-T P/O. Field

Operation: Dortmund

Date: 15/16th April 1942 (Wednesday/Thursday)

Unit: No. 149 Squadron (3 Group)

Type: Stirling I

Serial: N6068

Code: OJ-T

Base: RAF Lakenheath, Suffolk

Location: South of Steene, Ostend, Belgium

Pilot: P/O. Max Lightfoot Field 119347 RAFVR Age 20. Killed

Pilot 2: P/O. Alexander Leslie Ellis NZ/41887 RNZAF Age 25. Killed

Fl/Eng: Sgt. Eric Austin Kirk 548297 RAFVR Age 22. Killed

Obs: Sgt. Peter Sydney Brunsdon 927161 RAFVR Age 24. Killed

W/Op/Air/Gnr: Sgt. Charles Moynes 931774 RAFVR Age 28. Killed

W/Op/Air/Gnr: Sgt. Gilbert Victor Phillips 1380948 RAFVR Age ? Killed

Air/Gnr: Sgt. Stanley Briggs 967594 RAFVR Age 27. Killed

Air/Gnr: Sgt. Norman Charles Hutson 986794 RAFVR Age 22. Killed


Taking off from RAF Lakenheath in Suffolk at 00:20 hrs to attack Dortmund. 152 aircraft taking part in this operation from which 3 Wellington and 1 Stirling bombers were lost - all 26 crew losing their lives.

The Luftwaffe Night fighters although directed to intercept were only responsible for 1 of these aircraft and even that one is disputed by a flak unit.

Thick cloud and icing were encountered. Only 88 aircraft claimed to have bombed Dortmund which reports 1 house destroyed and 13 seriously damaged, 2 people killed and 6 injured. Bombs falling in Dortmund were equivalent to eight aircraft loads.

Burial details:

P/O. Max Lightfoot Field. Oostende New Communal Cemetery. Plot 9. Row 4. Joint grave. Son of Henry and Ada Nellie Field, of Cambridge, England. Grave inscription reads: "God Bless You, Max, Wherever You May Be. Fondest Love. Mum, Dad, Marg. And Gordon".

P/O. Alexander Leslie Ellis. Oostende New Communal Cemetery. Plot 9. Row 4. Grave 26. Son of Alexander John Gow Ellis, and of Catherine Elizabeth Ellis, of Geraldine, Canterbury, New Zealand. 225 flying hours logged and on his 2nd operational sortie. (No grave inscription as directed for all New Zealand graves by the government of New Zealand)

Sgt. Eric Austin Kirk. Oostende New Communal Cemetery. Plot 9. Row 4. Grave 21. Son of Gilbert and Ada Kirk, of Finchley, Middlesex, England. Grave inscription reads: "Sadly Missed By All Who Loved Him".

Sgt. Peter Sydney Brunsdon. Oostende New Communal Cemetery. Plot 9. Row 4. Joint grave. Son of Mr. and Mrs. T.C.U. Brunsdon, of Leckhampton, Cheltenham, Gloucestershire, England. Grave inscription reads: "How Sleep The Brave".

Sgt. Charles Moynes. Oostende New Communal Cemetery. Plot 9. Row 4. Joint grave. Son of Edward Joseph and Margaret Sutherland Moynes and husband of Isobella McKay Moynes, of Burntisland, Fife, Scotland. Grave inscription reads: "Easy To Remember But Hard To Forget For Those Who Loved And Lost You".

Sgt. Gilbert Victor Phillips. Oostende New Communal Cemetery. Plot 9. Row 4. Grave 24. No further details - are you able to assist?

Sgt. Stanley Briggs. Oostende New Communal Cemetery. Plot 9. Row 4. Grave 20. Son of William T. and Hannah Briggs, of Darwen, Lancashire, England. Grave inscription reads: "He Made The Great Sacrifice And Gave His Life For Those He Loved".

Sgt. Norman Charles Hutson. Oostende New Communal Cemetery. Plot 9. Row 4. Joint grave 27-28. Son of James and Beatrice Hutson, of Dublin, Irish Republic and nephew of Eileen Spadaccini, of Dublin Ireland. Grave inscription reads: "Greater Love Hath No Man" His Loving Aunt Eileen".

Researched and dedicated to the relatives of this crew with thanks to Ian Martyn of Medals Reunited New Zealand, who manage to find a photograph for Michael Bennett who contacted us in April 2018 for the sister of P/O. Ellis, Lorna Dorothy Bennett. 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, other sources as quoted below:

KTY - 15.05.2018

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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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