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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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301 Squadron Crest
02/03.06.1942 No. 301 Squadron Wellington IV R1615 GR-G P/O. W. Głowacki

Operation: Essen

Date: 02/03rd June 1942 (Tuesday/Wednesday)

Unit: No. 301 Squadron (Polish)

Type: Wellington IV

Serial: R1615

Code: GR-G

Base: RAF Hemswell, Lincolnshire

Location: Turnhout area, Belgium.

Pilot: P/O. Wincenty Głowacki 783450 PAF Age 25. Killed

Pilot: F/O. Stefan Leopold Alojzy Praschill P-0877 PAF 35. Age Killed

Obs: F/O. Rajmund Kiwacz P-1447 PAF Age 30. Killed

W/Op/Air/Gnr: Sgt. Jarosław Zalewski 784574 PAF Age 30. Killed

W/Op/Air/Gnr: P/O. Jan Halastra P-1661 PAF Age 28. Killed

Air/Gnr: Sgt. Wacław Żeligowski 781872 PAF Age 22. Killed


Taking off from RAF Hemswell in Lincolnshire at 23:53 hrs. A relatively small force of 195 Aircraft took part - 97 Wellingtons, 38 Halifaxes, 27 Lancasters, 21 Stirlings and 12 Hampdens in the second night in succession bombing Essen. The attack was widely scattered and records show that only 3 high explosive and 300 incendiary bombs hit the city with no serious damage or injuries.

The RAF however lost 14 aircraft! 68 crew members were killed with a further 15 made prisoners of war. It is thought that they were hit by anti-aircraft fire coming down in the Turnhout area of Belgium.

Above L-R-top: P/O. Wincenty Głowacki, F/O. Stefan Praschill, F/O. Rajmund Kiwacz, L-R-lower: Sgt. Jarosław Zalewski, P/O. Jan Halastra, Sgt. Wacław Żeligowski.

Memorial to crew (courtesy Wim Govers - see credits below)

Burial details:

P/O. Wincenty Głowacki. Lommel Polish Military Cemetery. Born on the 04th September 1917 from Inowrocław, Poland. Next of kin details not yet available - are you able to assist?

F/O. Stefan Leopold Alojzy Praschill. Lommel Polish Military Cemetery. Born on the 01st September 1907 from Krakow, Poland. Next of kin details not yet available - are you able to assist?

Obs: F/O. Rajmund Kiwacz. Lommel Polish Military Cemetery. Born on the 28th July 1912, from Morszańsk, Russia. Next of kin details not yet available - are you able to assist?

W/Op/Air/Gnr: Sgt. Jarosław Zalewski. Lommel Polish Military Cemetery. Bon on the 01st November 1912, from Wilno, Poland (now Lithuania) Next of kin details not yet available - are you able to assist?

W/Op/Air/Gnr: P/O. Jan Halastra. Lommel Polish Military Cemetery. Born on the 07th October 1910, from Mnich, Cieszyn, Poland. Next of kin details not yet available - are you able to assist?

Air/Gnr: Sgt. Wacław Żeligowski. Lommel Polish Military Cemetery. Born on the 28th November 1920, from Łódź, Poland. Next of kin details not yet available - are you able to assist?

For further details our thanks to Wim Govers and his work on the memorial and research on this crew. Other sources shown below.

KTY 17.09.2017

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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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