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Archive Report: Allied Forces

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19/20th June 1942 37 Squadron Wellington IC DV669 F/O. Kauter

Operation: Benghazi, Libya

Date: 19/20th June 1942 (Friday/Saturday)

Unit: No. 37 Squadron (motto: 'Wise Without Eyes'). 231 Wing. 205 Group

Type: Wellington IC

Serial: DV669

Code: LF-W

Base: LG 09 - Bir Koralyim, Egypt

Location: Benghazi, Libya

Pilot: F/O. William Lynn Kauter NZ/405281 RNZAF Age 26. Killed

Pilot: P/O. William George Duncan Thurston NZ/41376 RNZAF Age 27. Killed

Obs: P/O. Ivan Peter Duxbury 106248 RAFVR Age 29. Killed

W/Op/Air/Gnr: Fl/Sgt. Lorenzo Richard Feasey NZ/403572 RNZAF Age 20. Killed

W/Op/Air/Gnr: Sgt. Francis Victor Bretherton 1058752 RAFVR Age 21. Killed

Air/Gnr: Sgt. Victor George Frederick Walklin 624970 RAF Age 23. Killed


Took off from LG 09 (Bir Koralyim) at 20:00 hrs detailed to attack the harbour and shipping at Benghazi.

A stricken aircraft (thought to be DV669) was seen going down steadily near the target. All are buried in Benghazi War Cemetery.

Burial details:

F/O. William Lynn Kauter. Benghazi War Cemetery. Grave 6.G.9. Born on the 26th October 1915 at Napier. Worked as a clerk for Levin and Company at Wanganui. Enlisted on the 21§st December 1940 at Levin. Trained with No. 2 Elementary Flying Training School on 08th February 1941. Pilots badge awarded on the 05th May 1941 and commissioned on the 14th June 1941. Embarked for England on the 22nd July 1941. Further training with 11 and 15 Operational Training Units. Flew a Wellington to Egypt via Gibraltar and Malta on the 30th March 1942. Joined 37 squadron on the 23rd April 1942. Son of Stephen Kauter and of Clara Harriet Clarendale Kauter (née Steed - died 04th November 1924, age 37), of Napier, Hawkes Bay, New Zealand. A total of 321 flying hours logged and on his 11th operational sortie.

P/O. William George Duncan Thurston. Benghazi War Cemetery. Grave 6.G.7. Born on the 02nd June 1915 at Heriot. Worked as a wool classer for Williams and Kettle Ltd at Napier. Enlisted at Levin on the 18th January 1941. trained at No. 3 Elementary Flying Training School. Pilots badge awarded on the 25th May 1941 and commissioned on the 05th July 1941. Embarked for England on the 22nd July 1941. Further training with 20 and 15 Operational Training Units before joining 44 squadron on the 23rd December 1941. Flew a Wellington to Egypt via Gibraltar and Malta on the 30th January 1942. Crewed a Wellington flown by F/O. Kauter to Egypt via Gibraltar and Malta on the 30th March 1942. Joined 37 squadron on the 23rd April 1942. Son of Frederick John Brooks Thurston and of Mary Thurston (née Crossan), of Heriot, Otago, New Zealand and husband of Hazel White Thurston (née McCallum), of Rangiora, Canterbury, New Zealand. A total of 340 flying hours logged and on his 11th operational sortie.

P/O. Ivan Peter Duxbury. Benghazi War Cemetery. Grave 7.C.16. Son of George Carr Duxbury and Gracie Elizabeth Duxbury and husband of Eileen Mary Duxbury, of Upton, Berkshire, England. Grave inscription: 'Resurgam'.

Fl/Sgt. Lorenzo Richard Feasey. Benghazi War Cemetery. Grave 6.G.8. Born on the 02nd January 1922 at Wellington. Worked as a telegram sorter for P and T Department at Wellington. Enlisted on the 29th September 1940 at Levin. Embarked for Canada on the 05th November 1940. Air gunners badge awarded on the and promoted to sergeant on the 26th May 1941. Embarked for England on the 18th June 1941. Further training with No. 11 Operational Training Unit. crewed a Wellington flown by F/O. Kauter to Egypt via Gibraltar and Malta on the 30th January 1942. Son of Richard George Feasey (died 18th March 1940, age 62) and of Rachel Eleanor Feasey (née Bradley - died 30th August 1938, age 50), of Petone, Wellington, New Zealand. On his 11th operational sortie.

Sgt. Francis Victor Bretherton. Benghazi War Cemetery. Grave 7.C.13. Son of John and Anne Bretherton, of Anfield, Liverpool, England. Grave inscription: 'Our Dearly Loved Son. Always In Our Thoughts R.I.P. Mum, Dad And Brothers'.

Sgt. Victor George Frederick Walklin. Benghazi War Cemetery. Grave 7.C.15. Son of Victor George and Laura Maud Walklin, of Devonport, England. Grave inscription: 'He Is Dear To Us Yet. We Loved Him Too Dearly To Ever Forget. Mum, Dad, Brothers, Sister'.

Researched and dedicated to the relatives of this crew with 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, other sources as quoted below:

KTY 23-11-2021

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