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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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42 OTU Blenheim IV V5572 P/O. Alastair Fraser McTavish

Operation: Training

Date: 30th March 1942 (Monday)

Unit: No. 42 Operational Training Unit (Army co-operation command) 70 Group

Type: Blenheim IV

Serial: V5572

Code: -

Base: RAF Andover, Hampshire

Location: See details

Pilot: P/O. Alastair Fraser McTavish J/8174 (R/87809) RCAF Age 26. Killed

Obs: P/O. Norman Wolfenden 112760 RAFVR Age 22. Killed

W/Op/Air/Gnr: Sgt. Ronald Crawfurd Hunter NZ/403006 RNZAF Age 22. Killed

REASON FOR LOSS:

During a practice landings at satellite airfield after a landing attempt at 16:05 hrs the port engine failed to pick up and V5572 spun off a turn from 400 feet, crashing and catching fire a mile and half west of Andover.

All three crew were killed.

Burial and other details:

P/O. Alastair Fraser McTavish. Andover Cemetery. Plot H. Grave 31. Born on the 06th July in Folkestone, England. Worked as a licence inspector. Enlisted on the 02nd February 1941, Pilot badge awarded on the 17th October 1941.

Son of Alexander (died 25 July 1944, age 59) and Evangeline Mary McTavish (née Hogg - died 27th June 1960, aged 73). They both were born in Elgin, Scotland and all three were living in 2286 West 18th Avenue, Vancouver B C In 1941. Husband of Jean Ruth McTavish (née Mcurdey) 2 Brothers also served.

P/O. Norman Wolfenden. Oldham Cemetery (Hollinwood). Section G.10. Grave 174. Son of Wilfrid (died 25th July 1957) and Eliza Ann Wolfenden (died 21st March 1960), of Oldham, England.

Sgt. Ronald Crawfurd Hunter. Andover Cemetery. Plot H. Grave 29. Born on the 19th March 1920 in Taumaru. Employed by his father in general farm work. Enlisted at the Initial Training Wing, Levin, on the 0lst September, 1940. Embarked for Canada by the 'Aorangi' on the 8th October under the Empire Air Training Scheme. Awarded the wireless operator air gunner's badge on the 12th April 1941. Joined No. 42 Operational Training Unit at Andover, Hampshire on the 06th January 1942 and promoted to the rank of Sergeant. A total of 11 flying hours logged.

Son of James Steen Hunter (died 09th July 1946, age 73) and Hilda Hunter (née McKenze - 31st July 1973 93) of Tukutai Avenue, Bucklands Beach, Auckland, New Zealand. His 2nd name sometimes recorded as Crawford.

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”, New Zealand Cenotaph, Weekly News of New Zealand, Air Museum of New Zealand, Museum of Transport and Technology, Auckland, National Archive.

Other sources as quoted below:

KTY 03-10-2023

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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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