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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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102 Squadron Crest
28/29.06.1944 No. 102 Squadron Halifax IIII MZ644 DY-V Sgt. Basil R. Jardine

Operation: Railway yards, Blainville, France

Date: 28/29th June 1944 (Wednesday/Thursday)

Unit: No. 102 Squadron

Type: Halifax III

Serial: MZ644

Code: DY-V

Base: RAF Pocklington

Location: Foret de Wassy, France.

Pilot: Sgt. Basil Robinson Jardine 178781 RAFVR Age ? Killed

Fl/Eng: Sgt. Douglas Frank Dales 1623580 RAFVR Age 20. Killed

Nav: Sgt. E.J.D Merrill 1579444 RAFVR Evaded capture (1)

Air/Bmr: Sgt. J.A. Waugh 1591662 RAFVR Evaded capture (2)

W/Op/Air/Gnr: Sgt. J.M. Reid 1195235 RAFVR Evaded capture (3)

Air/Gnr: Sgt. William Shepherd Whyte 1569858 RAFVR Age 23. Killed

Air/Gnr: Sgt. B. Crayden 1131987 RAFVR Evaded capture (4)


Took off at 22:02 hrs. from RAF Pocklington part of a group made up of 202 Halifaxes and a further 28 Pathfinder Lancasters to attack railway yards at both Blainville and Metz. Both targets were hit.

Above: Frank and Elsie May Dales visit the grave marker for their son (courtesy Janet Sale)

This Halifax III MZ646 was shot down by night fighters over the Foret de Wassy area no positive night fighter claims have been established for this loss.

A disastrous raid for 102 Squadron, losing 5 aircraft on this operation!

Halifax III LW143 DY-O Fl/Sgt. Nigel Campbell killed with 2 others and 4 being made PoW
Halifax III LW159 DY-Q Flown by 31 year old, P/O. Henry Rogers 173133 RAFVR - killed with 5 other crew members, 1 being made PoW
Halifax III MZ646 DY-W Flown by 21 year old, P/O. Keith Robinson 178794 RAFVR from London, England - killed with 4 other crew members, 2 being made PoW
Halifax III NA502 DY-S Flown by P/O. J.G.J. Mulvaney RAAF - evaded capture along with 3 other crew members, 2 killed, another being made PoW.

Photographs taken of the Blainville railway station and yard - target for this raid on 28/29th June 1944 by Jeff Boyling June 2009

(1) Sgt. E.J.D Merrill - Details not known - interrogated back in England, September 1944.
(2) Sgt. J.A. Waugh - Details not known.
(3) Sgt. J.M. Reid - Returned on RAF Dakota on 28th August 1944.
(4) Sgt. B. Crayden - Returned on RAF Dakota on 28th August 1944.

Left: Jeff visited the crash site of 102 Squadron LW143 and also the graves of other 102 Squadron graves during his visit. He placed a plaque made by the webmaster for this crew by the graves.

Burial details:

Sgt. Basil Robinson Jardine. Wassy Communal Cemetery. Coll. Grave 1 - 3. No further details - are you able to assist?

Sgt. Douglas Frank Dales. Wassy Communal Cemetery. Coll. Grave 1 - 3. Son of Frank and Elsie May Dales, of Brant Broughton, Lincolnshire, England.

Sgt. William Shepherd Whyte. Wassy Communal Cemetery. Coll. Grave 1 - 3. Son of Joseph Whyte and of Mary Whyte (née Innes), husband of Agnes Whyte, of Bedworth Heath, Bedworth, Warwickshire, England.

Researched for Janet Sale (Niece of Sgt. Dales) and all the relatives of the crew. Further sources as quoted below.

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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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