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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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217 squadron badge
11.08.1940 No. 217 Squadron Anson I K8813 P/O. Gordon-Peiniger

Operation: Patrol S.A.12

Date: 11th August 1940 (Sunday)

Unit: No. 217 Squadron (Coastal Command)

Type: Avro Anson I (1)

Serial: K8813

Code: MW-V

Base: RAF St. Eval, Cornwall

Location: Castelo Branco, Portugal

Pilot: P/O. Anthony Gordon-Peiniger 40904 RAF Age 26. Missing

Nav: P/O. Richard Maxwell Coulman 41557 RAF Age ? Missing

W/OP: Sgt. Eric Kendrick Mellody 969831 RAFVR Age ? Missing

W/OP: Sgt. Edgar Hopperton 625352 RAF Age 20. Missing


Took off from RAF St. Eval, Cornwall for a patrol at 12:15 hrs.

At 16:57 hrs a message received indicating that they required assistance. Believed to be under attack from enemy aircraft.

Blenheims from 236 Squadron were scrambled to search the last known area (2) of Anson K8813, but sadly no trace of aircraft or crew were found.

217 Squadron Anson (courtesy I.W.M)

(1) 6,688 Mk I's were built. Powered by two 350 hp (261 kW) Armstrong Siddeley Cheetah IX or 395 hp (295 kW) XIX engines.
(2) Reported to be 40'40"N, 07'35"W - approximately 4.0 km (2.5 miles) SSE of Penha Garcia, Castelo Branco, Portugal.

Burial details:

P/O. Anthony Gordon-Peiniger. Runnymede Memorial Panel 8. Further information: Son of Lt.-Col. Frank Peiniger, R.A., and of Margaret Peiniger (nee Renwick), husband of Margaret Elspeth Gordon-Peiniger (nee Mackenzie). Granted short service commission as Acting Pilot Officer on probation 9th July 1938 then 16 May 1939 to Pilot Officer on probation,

P/O. Richard Maxwell Coulman. Runnymede Memorial Panel 7. No further details available as yet.

Sgt. Eric Kendrick Mellody. Runnymede Memorial Panel 17. No further details available as yet.

Sgt. Edgar Hopperton. Runnymede Memorial Panel 15. Son of Christiana Sarah Jane Hopperton, of Flaxton, Yorkshire, England.

Researched for and with the assistance from Owen J. Vaughan who is compiling a database for aircrew lost from Pembrokeshire Wales. With thanks to Ross Mcneill - "Coastal Command Losses". Commonwealth Graves Commission.

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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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