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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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83 Squadron Crest
11/12.03.1943 83 Squadron Lancaster I ED313 OL:B Flt Lt. Norman A.J.B. Mackie

Operation: Stuttgart

Date: 11th/12th March 1943 (Thursday/Friday)

Unit No: 83 Squadron

Type: Lancaster I

Serial: ED313

Code: OL:B

Base: RAF Wyton, Cambridgeshire

Location: Sogny-En-L’Angle, Marne, France

Pilot: Flt Lt. Norman Alexander John Buist Mackie DSO, DFC and Bar, 88410 RAFVR Age 21. PoW/Evader (1)

Flt Eng: Sgt. Ralph Henderson DFM, 156121 RAFVR Age 33. Evader (2)

Nav: Flt Lt. Alan McPherson ‘Joe’ Ogilvie DFC and Bar. MiD. Croix de Guerre with Bronze Star, 120865 RAFVR Age 21. Evader (3)

Bom Aimer: Flt Sgt. William Eric Barrett DFM, 751810 RAFVR Age? PoW No: 886 * (4)

WOp/Air Gnr: Flt Sgt. Lewis Edward James Humber 1181464 RAFVR Age 22. PoW No:1006 *

Air Gnr (Mid Upp): Flt Sgt. Alexander Lynch DFM 1001787 RAFVR Age 30. KiA (5)

Air Gnr (Rear): Sgt. Kenneth William Chipchase 1105193 RAFVR Age 21. KiA

* Stalag 357 Kopernikus at Thorn (Toruń) in Poland. Moved in September 1944. The camp was commonly referred to as Stalag 357 Fallingbostel, however, it was officially designated as Stalag 357 Oerbke.

REASON FOR LOSS:

Above: Photo clip from video of Lancaster ED313 OL:B 83 Squadron. Scampton June 1942. (Courtesy of Brian Gibbs)

A mixed force of some 314 Lancasters, Halifaxes and Stirlings were sent to bomb Stuttgart between 22:45 hrs - 23:51 hrs. One of a total of 53 raids that after the war left the centre of Stuttgart almost completely destroyed with 4,477 people dead.

This raid was not a success as far as damage was concerned with only a small packing sore at the Bosch factory destroyed. Most of the bombing fell in open country but some fell on two small towns killing 112 people and injuring 386. Mostly houses were hit with 186 destroyed. The reason for the poor bombing is felt that although the pathfinders did drop accurate markers the main force arrived late and were also subject to German decoy markers in use for the first time.

This operation cost 13 aircraft lost with the deaths of 42 aircrew, 25 being made PoW and 13 aircrew evading capture. 3 civilian maids were also killed when an abandoned severely damaged Halifax DT492 MP:H from 76 squadron crashed onto High Beeches, Handcross, the residence of Colonel Loder at Slaugham, Horsham West Sussex.

All the crew parachuted out safely and the pilot, Tom Gallantry, attempted to put the aircraft on a course for the coast, hoping that it would crash in the sea, but unfortunately it came down on the house instead.

Lancaster ED313 was intercepted and shot down whilst on the homebound trip in the early hours of the morning of 12th March at 00:47 hrs. by Fw. Gerhard Rase of 6./NJG4 in an Me110, combat taking place at some 3000 metres, his first claim of the war. (see Kracker Luftwaffe Archive on this site)

Fw. Gerhard Rase this his only claim of the war from which he survived. Fw Gerhard Rase, his bordfunker was Uffz Rolf Langhoff. On the night of 16/17th April 1943, they were involved in a combat with Halifax JB910, ZA:R of 10 Sqn. During this combat, the rear gunner of the Halifax shot down the Me110. Rase parachuted to safety whilst Langhoff was killed. Flt Sgt. Hill the rear gunner in the 10 Sqn Halifax JB910 opened fire with 5 or 6 bursts shooting off the port wing which then crashed at Ste. Menehould near Chalons sur Marne. Rase was transferred at some point to 10./NJG6 which operated in the Balkans/Romania where the opportunities for night fighter 'trade' must have been much lower than the nightly crowded skies of France, Belgium, the Netherlands and Germany so this probably accounts for his single victory - and his survival! He finished the war as an Oberleutnant (Flying Officer). (see Kracker Luftwaffe Archive on this site)

Above photographs of the crash - courtesy of J. Lelongt via Brian Gibbs

(1) Flt Lt. Mackie DSO, DFC and Bar remained in the RAF after the war, retired on 22nd December 1967. He then became bursar at Highgate School, and later worked as a personnel administrator in the City. He retained his links with the RAF through the Pathfinders' Association and the RAF Escaping Society. He also made occasional visits to France to meet members of the families who had helped him evade capture, he also managed to trace the remains of his crashed Lancaster. Norman Mackie married, in 1958, Thelma Vallis, who survived him with their daughter, after his death age 80 in 2003.

(2) Sgt. Henderson DFM (shown above) was later killed on the night of 22nd/23rd November 1943. Flying Lancaster III JB424 O:-B on an operation to Berlin. All 7 crew were KiA over the target area, probably by the radar predicted anti-aircraft fire through the 10/10ths cloud. 23 heavy bombers were claimed by the flak divisions with only 4 claimed by night fighters. Son of the late Robert William Henderson (died 18th November 1926) and Mary Jane Henderson (died 29th August 1962) of 53 North Avenue, Blyth, Northumberland. Husband of Muriel C. L. Henderson, of Headington, Oxford.


14th August 2017 Barry Gibbs had just returned from visiting the crash site:

"Well this weekend I went to see his grave in Sogny-en-l'angle. It was a little emotional to see his grave. I placed flowers on both of them. It's a small village with about 40 people in it. I then left the church and went to see if I could find the crash site.
On my way I flagged down a farmer on his tractor, Michelle was his name, so I explained to him why I was here, (I can speak French). He knew about the history of the two airmen and told me about when he was a child his mother used to take him and show him where ED313 came down and that his mother went with the villagers to see the crash site when it happened.
Well, incredibly he took me to the exact spot, the trees have gone now and there is still a slight hole in the ground where it came down. I spent over an hour in the field and was amazed to find fragments of the aircraft, all that is left of ED 313, I couldn't believe it. So I brought them home - to be treasured.
"

(3) On an earlier mission two of his crew were badly wounded when his Manchester IA R5830 OL:L was attacked by a German night-fighter on the 28th/29th March 1942 on a mission to Lübeck, Germany.

On another mission his captain, Sqn Ldr. McClure, was severely wounded on a mission to Essen on the 6th/7th April 1942 aboard Manchester IA R5837 OL:R.

Flt Lt. Ogilvie DFC and Bar, MiD, Croix de Guerre with Bronze Star died on the 30th December 2000 leaving his wife, sister Ruby, his sons Steve, Robert and Donald, his daughters Claire and Jill, and seven grandchildren

His biography was published by Creative Publishers, Newfoundland and edited by John Parsons - ‘All the Luck in the World’ ISBN 1-895387-43-4.

His early training took him to Toronto, Ontario and Winnipeg, Manitoba during 1940-1941. He Joined 83 Squadron at Scampton, Lincolnshire in January 1942.

798537 Sgt. Ogilvie was appointed to a commission and promoted to 120865 Plt Off. on the 21st April 1942

The DFC awarded to acting Flt Lt. Ogilvie whilst with 83 Sqn. London Gazette 12th March 1943

A Bar to the DFC was awarded to acting Flt Lt. Ogilvie whilst with 83 Sqn DFC. London Gazette 27th July 1943. Citation: "Acting Flight Lieutenant Allan MacPherson OGILVIE, DFC (120865), Royal Air Force Volunteer Reserve, No. 83 Squadron. Flying Officer Gordon Charles CROWTHER (Can/J.12975), Royal Canadian Air Force, No. 420 (RCAF) Squadron. In air operations, these officers have displayed courage and fortitude worthy of the highest praise".

Acting Flt Lt. Ogilvie was mentioned in Despatches (MiD). London Gazette 1st January 1945

He relinquished his commission on the 31st May 1945 (London Gazette 17th July 1945) on appointment to the RCAF. It has been reported that he was commissioned as 20509 Colonel in the RCAF.

He was awarded the Croix de Guerre with Bronze Star on the 12th December 1947.

His Obituary also placed on our website with a great deal more personal details.

(4) Flt Sgt. Barrett - DFM awarded on the 29th December 1942 - retired from the airforce in 1945 as a WO. Finally moving to Australia, died in 2003. A Battle of Britain veteran with 25 Squadron flying the Blenheim.

(5) Flt Sgt. Alexander Lynch - DFM awarded 2nd January 1942. (Shown above - courtesy Brian Gibbs)


Above the award to Alfred Walz of the Wounded Badge. Alfred was just 13 and a student in Stuttgart he was also a volunteer firefighter.

On the night of 11 March 1943, in the wake of the Allied bombing, he received 1st/2nd-degree burns on his legs and hands, sustained during fire-fighting operations. His address was Möhringer Str. 32, 70199 Stuttgart, Germany, as well as the address at which he received medical treatment, Furtbachstraße 6, 70178 Stuttgart, Germany, being only 1/2 mile apart, give some indication of the city region which sustained direct damage that evening.

His father had died (1936) when Alfred was a young lad. Within a year of this air-raid, Alfred and his brother became orphaned, following a long illness of his mother. Alfred was born on the 29th October 1929 in Stuttgart, he died in 2017, age 88.

Submitted and translated by Dr. Steven Segletes (son-in-law of Alfred) April 2022.


Burial details:

Flt Sgt. Alexander Lynch DFM. Sonny-En-L’angle Churchyard. Grave 1. Son of Robert and Bessie Lynch, of Stranraer, Wigtownshire, Scotland. Grave inscription: 'Until The Day Break And The Shadows Flee Away (Song Of Solomon 2:17)'.

Sgt. Kenneth William Chipchase. Sogny-En-L’Angle Churchyard. Grave 2. Son of Harry and Frances Mary Chipchase, of Harrogate, Yorkshire, England. Grave inscription: 'In The Garden Of Memories We Meet Every Day'.

Later:

Sgt. Ralph Henderson DFM. Berlin 1939-1945 War Cemetery. Coll. Grave 1.G.10-15. Son of the late Robert William Henderson (died 18th November 1926) and Mary Jane Henderson (died 29th August 1962) of 53 North Avenue, Blyth, Northumberland. Husband of Muriel C. L. Henderson, of Headington, Oxford.

Researched for relatives of the crew. A great deal of information has been provided by Steve Ogilvie (son of Flt Lt. Ogilvie). Also Brian Gibbs (nephew of Flt Sgt. Alexander Lynch). With thanks to Uwe Jenrich for grave photographs. We also recommend 'RAF Evaders' written by Oliver Clutton-Brook and 'Footprints On The Sands Of Time' for further information. Thanks to Brian Gibbs for the image of ED313 (Mar 2023). Additional details added to Bio for Allan MacPherson Ogilvie (Sept 2023). Thanks to Clive Smith for the information and link to further information regarding the crash of DT492 (Jan 2024).

Other sources as quoted below.

RS 31.03.2023 - Addition of image for ED313

Pages of Outstanding Interest
History Airborne Forces •  Soviet Night Witches •  Bomber Command Memories •  Abbreviations •  Gardening Codenames
CWGC: Your Relative's Grave Explained •  USA Flygirls •  Axis Awards Descriptions •  'Lack Of Moral Fibre'
Concept of Colonial Discrimination  •  Unauthorised First Long Range Mustang Attack
RAAF Bomb Aimer Evades with Maquis •  SOE Heroine Nancy Wake •  Fane: Motor Racing PRU Legend
Acknowledgements
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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