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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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23.06.1941 No. 303 Squadron Spitfire II P8330 RF-D P/O. Gładych VM DFC

Operation: Circus 20

Date: 23rd June 1941 (Monday)

Unit: No. 303 Squadron (Polish)

Type: Spitfire II

Serial: P8330

Code: RF-D

Base: RAF Northolt, Middlesex

Location: Near Ramsgate, Kent

Pilot: P/O. Boleław Michał Gładych VM. DFC.  Polish Air Force Survived - injured


The squadron left RAF Northolt, Middlesex at 19.37 hrs to escort six Blenheims who were to attack Mardyck aerodrome. Over the target area they were met by fierce A/A. fire with a great number of Luftwaffe fighters also engaging in combat - confusion took place - Sgt. Szlagowski, Wunsche, Wojciechowski and  F/O Strzembosz each destroyed a 109 and Sgt. Adamek got two. P/O. Bondair a probable.

P/O. Boleław Michał Gładych VM. DFC (courtesy Roy Fowler, Kijek Bachmatiuk via Michel Beckers)

P/O. Gladych also shot down one at 12,000 ft. During the furious dog fight he made a very steep dive to avoid an attacker and crashed into another Me109 severing the tail plane. 

He was injured but managed to fly his Spitfire back to England where he crash landed near Ramsgate, hitting a telegraph pole in the process which totally destroyed P8330. He recovered and taken to Ramsgate hospital where he received treatment for facial injuries, broken collar bone and a skull fracture. (Other sources state that he rammed the 109)

Burial Details:

None - P/O. Boleław Michał Gładych survived and went on to serve and survive the war. No further details available. We would like to invite others who may have information on his post WW2 career. We understand that after the war he settled in the United States of America.

Researched for relatives of the pilot with thanks to the following for further information, Franek Grabowski, Norman L.R. Franks 'Fighter Command Losses' Vol. 1, N/A.AIR 27/1663, Aircrew Remembered own archives. Michel Beckers, Roy Fowler, Kijek Bachmatiuk.

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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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