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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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75 Squadron Crest
06/07.08.1943 No. 75 Squadron Stirling I BK614 JN-H Fl/Sgt. Mayo

Operation: Gardening

Date: 06/07th August 1943 (Friday/Saturday)

Unit: No. 75 Squadron (RNZAF) (3 Group)

Type: Stirling I

Serial: BK614

Code: JN-H

Base: RAF Mepal, Cambridgeshire

Location: Not known - North Atlantic Ocean

Pilot: Fl/Sgt. John Russell Mayo NZ/417085 RNZAF Age 21. Missing - believed killed

Fl/Eng: Sgt. Ronald Booth 1096896 RAFVR Age 21. Missing - believed killed

Nav: Sgt. Albert Edward Turner 1096896 RAFVR Age 21. Missing - believed killed

Air/Bmr: Fl/Sgt. Irvine Sydney Rothstein R/123638 RCAF Age 21. Missing - believed killed (1)

W/Op/Air/Gnr: Fl/Sgt. Thomas Henry Gittins 1067871 RAFVR Age 24. Missing - believed killed

Air/Gnr: Sgt. Stephen Tom Kitching 1215487 RAFVR Age 22. Missing - believed killed

Air/Gnr: Sgt. Raymond Henry Amstell 1455709 RAFVR Age ? Missing - believed killed


Taking off from RAF Metal in Cambridgeshire at 21:45 hrs with 4 others from the Squadron on a Gardening operation to the Girone Estuary area of France. Each aircraft carried mines of 1,500 lbs. All aircraft dropped their mines in the allocated areas - heavy anti-aircraft fire was reported. For detailed information on gardening areas.

Nothing further was heard from the aircraft and was classed as missing without trace.

Above: Air Crew Graduation May 1943. Back row L-R: 1.Louis Noel Lyndon Kerr R/135114. Late of No 76 Squadron KIA 22/23 September 1943. Lancaster V EB253. Operation Hanover. 2. Name ? R/119129. Lived at 192 Woodmount Ave, Toronto, Ontario. Are you able to identify this young man? 3. ? G. MacKinnon R/12248. Are you able to identify this young man? 4. Edward James Houston R/125556. Of No 426 Squadron POW No 1062 Camp Stalage Luft VI, Stalag Luft IV 27/28 January 1944. 5. Leonard Bruce Russell R/147158. Late of No 431 Squadron KIA 22/23 October 1943. Halifax LK639 SE-E. Operation Kessel. 6. Charles Grant Leatherdale J/19076. Late of No 156 Squadron KIA 30/31 March 1944. Lancaster ND476 GT-V. Operation Nurnberg. 7. Kenneth Douglas Wellwood R/107055. Late of No 106 (RAF) Squadron KIA 4 September 1943. Lancaster ED385 ZN-?. Operation Berlin. 8. Murray Clayton Craik R/110957. Late of No 467 (RAAF) Squadron KIA 23 September 1943. Lancaster EE135 PO-Y. Operation Mannheim. 9. Michael Costello R/123094. Late of No 75 (RAF) Squadron KIA 15 August 1943. Stirling EE891 AA-Q. Operation Gardening. 10. Lloyd Martin Stormer R/112684. Late of No 90 Squadron KIA 24 August 1943. Stirling EH937 WP-S. Operation Berlin

Front row L-R: 1. Martin Bailey R/119568. Late of No 75 (RAF) Squadron KIA 28 August 1943. Stirling EE955 AA-D. Operation Nurnberg. 2. Irvine Sydney Rothstein R/123638. Late of No 75 (RNZAF) Squadron KIA 6 August 1943. Stirling BK614 JN-H. Operation Gardening. 3. Herbert Kenneth Scott R/121944. Of No 207 Squadron POW No 27650 Camp IV-B 31 August 1943. 4. Donald Herbert Kelly R/113903. Late of No 24 OTU (Operational Training Unit) killed while training 2 June 1943. Whitley Z6639. Operation Training. 5. "Gerry" E. Wilson R/150588 from Edmonton, Alberta. Are you able to identify this young man? 6. Nelson Albert Noble R/119448. Late of No 9 (RAF) Squadron KIA 22 September 1943. Lancaster R5700 WS-N. Operation Hanover. 8. Gordon Ivan Williams J/119950. Late of No 97 (RAF) Squadron KIA 31 January 1944. Lancaster JB659 OF-J. Operation Berlin. 9, "Hal" Tole J/94224. Late of No 433 Squadron KIA 18 April 1944. Halifax LV971 BM-N. Operation Noisy-le-Sec.

(1) Rothstein Lake northeast of Sherridon Lake, Manitoba was named after Fl/Sgt. Irvine Sydney Rothstein in 1970.

Burial details:

Fl/Sgt. John Russell Mayo. Runnymede Memorial. Panel 199. Son of John Frederick and Emily Mayo, of Bulls, Wellington, New Zealand. A total of 430 flying hours logged but only on his 2nd operational sortie.

Sgt. Ronald Booth. Runnymede Memorial. Panel 143. Son of Charles Wilfred and Eva Booth, of Royton, Lancashire, England.

Sgt. Albert Edward Turner. Runnymede Memorial. Panel 167. Son of Edward Wallace Turner and Daisy Turner, of Redruth, Cornwall, England.

Fl/Sgt. Irvine Sydney Rothstein. Runnymede Memorial. Panel 185. Of Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada.

Fl/Sgt. Thomas Henry Gittins. Runnymede Memorial. Panel 136. Son of Arthur and Margaret Ann Gittins, of Hengoed, Glamorgan, Wales.

Sgt. Stephen Tom Kitching. Runnymede Memorial. Panel 156. Son of Gerald Currie Kitching and of Lily Kitching (née Copnell), of Leeds, Yorkshire, England.

Sgt. Raymond Henry Amstell. Runnymede Memorial. Panel 140. No further details - are you able to assist?

Researched and dedicated to the relatives of this crew with thanks to sources as quoted.

KTY - 10.10.2017

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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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