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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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2 SFTS Oxford II NZ951 LAC Morris Desmond Jurgens

Operation: Training

Date: 29th July 1941 (Tuesday)

Unit: No. 2 Service Flying Training School

Type: Harvard II

Serial: NZ951

Code: -

Base: RNZAF Woodbourne

Location: Omaka Riverhead

Pilot: LAC. Morris Desmond Jurgens NZ/411906 RNZAF Age 22. Killed


On a height training flight, he was seen going into a dive from 7000 ft, from which he recovered, but then began to lose height, finally crashing at 14:30 hrs.

The pilot had attempted to bale out but may have pulled the rip-cord too soon and the parachute fouled on the aircraft.

His body and with the torn parachute was later found at the Omaka Riverhead, about a mile southwest of Goulter Hill, 6 miles west of the base.

The aircraft totally destroyed so no reason for abandoning the plane could be established.

Burial and personal details:

LAC. Morris Desmond Jurgens. Marton Lutheran Church Cemetery. Born on the 01st February 1919 in Taihape. Educated at Taihape and South Makinkin Schools. A truck driver for O.A Dornbusch in Martin. Enlisted at Levin as a pilot under training 23rd March 1941. With No. 3 Elementary Flying Training School 04th May 1941. No. 2 Flying Training School 14th June 1941 flying the Harvard. Pilot badge was awarded on the 26th of July 1941. 93 flying hours logged with 42 of these on the Harvard.

Son of Herman Friedrick Wilhelm (died 05th December 1968, age 87) and Lena Wilhelmina Pauline Jurgens (née Johnsky - died 23rd February 1951, age 59) , of 46 Crofton Road, Marton, New Zealand.

Above L-R: Rear; Tanner, Thorpe, Preston, Kleimeyer, Jones, Gilbert, Baigent, Jacobsen, Jurgens, Crump, Dillon, Chapman, Everett, Goodall.

3rd row; Lucas, Tucker, Ninnes, Connor, Miller, Sara, Lloyd, Murdoch, Hinde, Rishworth, McCullough, Mullooly, Rayner, Marshall.

2nd row; Corby, Roberts, Wallace, Newlove, Nicol, Mildon, Murphy, McHugh, Leckie, Chancellor, Tolley, Melbourne, Jackson, Moon, Mulholland.

Front; Campbell, Sclater, Polkinghorne, Schrader, Horne, Tahiwi, Jenkins, Arkley, Browne, Blair, Barry, Fallows, MacKinnon, Hamilton (Courtesy Air Museum of New Zealand)

Researched and dedicated to the relatives of this pilot, thanks to the extensive research by Errol Martyn and his publications: “For Your Tomorrow Vols. 1-3”, Auckland Library Heritage Collection, Weekly News of New Zealand, Air Museum of New Zealand, Museum of Transport and Technology, Auckland, other sources as quoted below:

KTY 30-07-2022

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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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