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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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486 crest
27th April 1945 486 Squadron Tempest V EJ584 P/O. Melles MiD

Operation: Patrol

Date: 27th April 1945 (Friday)

Unit: No. 486 Squadron (motto: Hiwa hau Maka - 'Beware of the Wild Winds') 124 Wing. 83 Group

Type: Tempest V

Serial: EJ584

Code: SA-D

Base: B.152 Faßberg, Germany

Location: North Hamburg

Pilot: P/O. Ross Alexander Melles MiD. NZ/422538 RNZAF Age 23. PoW


Hit by flak and baled out north of Hamburg. Taken PoW for the last days of the war but escaped and returned to his squadron on the 05th May 1945.

On Wednesday the 29th August 1945 whilst with 486 Squadron based at B-158 Lübeck in Germany and off duty, had a motor cycle accident on the Niendorf -Timmendorfer Strand. Collided head on with a RCAF sergeant also on a motor cycle. F/O. Melles died of his injuries later that day. The Canadian survived the accident.

Burial and personal details:

F/O. Ross Alexander Melles MiD. Hamburg Cemetery (Ohlsdorfer Friedhof). Grave 10A. N. 2. Born on the 21st April 1922 at Palmerston North. Prior to enlisting on the 18th April at Rongola worked as a warehouseman for John Burns and Company of Auckland. Awarded his pilots badge and promoted to sergeant on the 29th October 1943. Commissioned on the 25th February 1945. Son of Leonard and Lyla Contstance Melles (née Bryden), of Ponsonby, Auckland City, New Zealand. 528 flying hours logged and had carried out 72 operational sorties. Credited with 1 enemy aircraft destroyed.

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

KTY 23-02-2021

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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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