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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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9 Squadron Crest
29/30.09.1942 9 Squadron Lancaster I W4237 Flt Sgt. Laurance W. Goalan

Operation: Gardening

Date: 29th/30th September 1942 (Tuesday/Wednesday)

Unit No: 9 Squadron

Type: Lancaster I

Serial: W4237

Code: WS:W

Base: RAF Waddington, Lincolnshire

Location: Crashed near Stettin, Poland.

Pilot: Flt Sgt. Laurance Walter Goalen 1386536 RAFVR Age 20. KiA

Flt Eng: Sgt. James Victor Redshaw 1011028 RAFVR Age 26. KiA

Nav: Sgt. Donald Patrick Shanley 1291832 RAFVR Age 20. KiA

Bomb Aimer: Sgt. Alan Gilbert Boughtwood 1376768 RAFVR Age 29. KiA

WOp/Air Gnr: Flt Sgt. David Bruce Paton 1176975 RAFVR Age 35. KiA

Air Gnr: Sgt. Vincent Joseph Louis Lebano R95574 RCAF Age 24. KiA

Air Gnr: Sgt. John Edwin Watts 962662 RAFVR Age 19. KiA

Above: Six of Flt Sgt. Goalen’s crew (courtesy of Jon Mullins / enhanced copy courtesy Brian Sidney Barnes )

Back Row left to right: Unknown, Flt Sgt. Laurance W. Goalen, Flt Sgt. David B. Paton. Front Row left to right: Sgt. John (Jack) Watts, Unknown, Sgt. Vincent J. L. Lebano.

Above: Left Flt Sgt. David B. Paton and right believed to be Sgt. John (Jack) Watts. Behind is a 500 lb Medium Capacity (MC) Bomb (courtesy of Jon Mullins)

Above: Flt Sgt. David B. Paton in flying kit at an unknown location (courtesy of Jon Mullins)

Update July 2018 - Informed that this aircraft may have been on an operation to drop supplies to the Polish Underground - Records then checked and the Squadron ORB state that it was on a mine laying operation. (With thanks to our Kate Tame for the ORB copy)


Tasked to carry our mine laying (Gardening) in the ‘Willows’ area of the Baltic and taking off from base in Lincolnshire.

14 Lancasters taking part with just the one loss. There was only one night fighter claim this night and that was for a Beaufighter claimed by Oblt. Hans Schmid, his 9th abschuss, from 6./NJG3. As there we no RAF Beaufighter, or for that matter any other twin engine RAF aircraft lost this night his claim remains a mystery.

Incidental research has determined that the core of this crew were serving with 9 Squadron flying Wellingtons. The core crew was:

Pilot: Sgt. Goalen, Observer: Sgt. Shanley, Wireless Operator/Air Gunner: Sgt. Paton, Wireless Operator/Air Gunner: Sgt. Lebano, and Air Gunner (Rear) Sgt. Watts were a constituted crew on 9 Squadron flying the Wellington in July and before.

The first operation recorded for this crew was on the 16th September 1942 with a Flight Engineer Sgt. Willis and Air Gunner Sgt. Lebano.

The first instance that Sgt. Redshaw’ s name was on the manifest for September was on the il fated mission on the 29th/30th September 1942.
This was only the second mission for the crew, and the first forSgt. Redshaw.

This was Sgt. Boughtwood second mission albeit his first was with another crew.

Above: Lancaster WS:C at RAF Waddington, Lincolnshire

Burial details:

Above: Crew grave markers at the Poznan Old Garrison Cemetery. (courtesy of Jon Mullins)

Flt Sgt. Laurance Walter Goalen. Poznan Old Garrison Cemetery. Coll. grave 2. AA. 7-10. Grave inscription: "IN TREASURED MEMORY OF OUR DARLING SON". Son of Walter Laurance and Elsie May Goalen, of East Cowes, Isle of Wight, England.

Above: The Goalen family (courtesy Brian Barnes)

Above: photo marked 'Mr and Mrs Goalen outside 68 Canadian Avenue, Gillingham Kent' - so was Fl/Sgt. Goalen married? (courtesy Brian Barnes)

Sgt. James Victor Redshaw. Poznan Old Garrison Cemetery. Coll. grave 2. AA. 7-10. Grave inscription: "ONE OF THE BEST". Son of James Victor and Kathleen Rose Redshaw, of Spring Bank, Hull, England.

Sgt. Donald Patrick Shanley. Poznan Old Garrison Cemetery. Coll. grave 2. AA. 7-10. Grave inscription: "REMEMBERED ALWAYS BY THOSE WHO LOVED HIM MOST. UNTIL WE MEET AGAIN. R.I.P.". Son of Patrick and Hilda Mary Shanley, of Slough, Buckinghamshire, England.

Sgt. Alan Gilbert Boughtwood. Poznan Old Garrison Cemetery. Grave 2. AA. 6. Grave inscription: "BRAVEST ARE THOSE WHO HAVE THE CLEAREST VISION OF WHAT LIES BEFORE THEM. Son of Thomas George and Gertrude Boughtwood, of Billericay, Essex, England.

Flt Sgt. David Bruce Paton. Poznan Old Garrison Cemetery. Coll. grave 2. AA. 7-10. Son of Hugh and Esther Paton, husband of Mary Howorth Paton, of Tilford, Surrey, England.

Above: Notification of loss of Sgt. Lebano: Courtesy of The Ottawa Citizen, dated 28th December 1942).

Sgt. Vincent Joseph Louis Lebano. Poznan Old Garrison Cemetery. Coll. grave 2. AA. 7-10. Born on the 16th May 1918 in Cornwall, Ontario. Son of Louis Joseph and Clara Marie (née Meron) Lebano. Husband to Marie Denise Rita (née Seguin) Lebano of Cornwall, Ontario, Canada.

Sgt. John Edwin Watts. Poznan Old Garrison Cemetery. Coll. grave 2. AA. 7-10. Born in 1912 in St. Pancras, Middlesex. Son of Joh Edwin George Dalton and Catherine (née Lydiard) Watts of St. Pancras, Middlesex. Husband to Jessie (née Symes) Watts of Bermondsey, London, England.

Researched for Brian Sidney Barnes by Kelvin Youngs (Web master) relative of the pilot and dedicated to all the relatives of the crew (Jun 2016). With thanks also to Kate Tame for checking the Squadron Operational Record Book (ORB) (Jul 2018). Update to the narrative and NoK details for Sgt. Watts by Ralph Snape - Aircrew Remembered (Sep 2022). Thanks to Jon Mullins, grandson of Flt Sgt. Paton, for the new crew photograph and those of his grandfather (Feb 2023).

Other sources as quoted below.

RS 27.02.2023 - Addition of new images and identification of crew

KTY 12.01.2024 New images added

Pages of Outstanding Interest
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CWGC: Your Relative's Grave Explained •  USA Flygirls •  Axis Awards Descriptions •  'Lack Of Moral Fibre'
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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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