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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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RAF Crest
19.07.1942 No. 5 Glider Training School Hotspur II HH232 Sgt. Fruchtl

Operation: Training

Date: 19th July 1942 (Sunday)

Unit: No. 5 Glider Training School

Type: General Aircraft (GAL.48) Hotspur II

Serial: HH232

Code: None

Base: RAF Bicester, Oxfordshire

Location: Mixbury Hill Farm, Bicester

Pilot: Sgt. John George Fruchtl R/101420 RCAF Age 26. Killed


The glider had been pre-loaded for dual training sortie when, for reasons unknown the pilot pulled off the tow prematurely at low height. The glider then turned, its nose dropping in a stall when it then dived into the ground at 16:10 hrs.

The pilot was recovered alive from the aircraft and was examined in the ambulance on the way to Sick Quarters, RAF Kidlington. He was unconscious but breathing. Sadly, died en route, despite artificial respiration being administered.

He had suffered a fracture at the base of the skull, facial injuries including fractured jaw, fractured nose, also fractures of the left and right ankle. Cause of death was stated as shock and the fracture of the base of the skull.

The initial report stated the accident was not due to negligence or misconduct but that a Court Of Enquiry was to take place to try and establish the reasons. Further research continues.

Fruchtl Lake north of Utik lake in Manitoba, Canada, named after Sgt. John George Fruchtl in 1994.

Burial details:

Buried on Thursday the 23rd July 1942 in the Churchyard as shown

Sgt. John George Fruchtl. Hethe Roman Catholic Cemetery (Holy Trinity). Grave 39. Born on the Saturday,5th August 1916 at Glenn Ellyn, Illinois, USA the son of John Fruchtl (a Lawyer born Warsau, Wisconsin USA) and Verna Fruchtl née Brandel (born Sheboygan, Wisconsin). The family lived at 127 North Dearborn Street, Chicago, Illinois when he enlisted in the RCAF and later at Killarney, Manitoba, Canada.

Researched by Roy Wilcock and webmaster for the daughter of the pilot, Jill Jones and dedicated to all the relatives with thanks to sources as quoted below:

(Note: Roy Wilcock (senior research editor for Aircrew Remembered) provided a great deal of personal and service details for his daughter - which has been prepared and sent direct to Jill)

KTY/RW - 06.05.2017

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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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