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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
486 Squadron Typhoon Ib R8800 Fl/Sgt. Russell William Strode Penny

Operation: Patrol

Date: 18th December 1942 (Friday)

Unit: No. 486 Squadron 11 Group (motto: Hiwa hau Maka - 'Beware of the Wild Winds')

Type: Typhoon Ib

Serial: R8800

Code: SA-?

Base: RAF Tangmere, Sussex

Location: English Channel - 10 miles south east of Shoreham

Pilot: Fl/Sgt. Russell William Strode Penny * NZ/404937 RNZAF Age 26. Missing - believed killed


Taking off at 11:35 hrs. to attack enemy bombers which were flying very low at 500 ft. It is thought that he either collided with one of them or shot down by return fire.

The body of the pilot was never recovered.

Burial details:

Fl/Sgt. Russell William Strode Penny. Runnymede Memorial. Panel 117.

Born on the 20th May 1916 at Palmerston North. Son of William Alfred and Dorothy Margaret Strode-Penny (née Russell), of Levin, Wellington, New Zealand. Husband of Eileen Agnes Strode-Penny (née Bury), of Preston, Lancashire. Eileen was serving in the WAAF at the time. A farmer with his father prior to service. (Shown top left)

Tragically the parents also lost his brother, 24 year old Fl/Lt. Keith Stuart Strode Strode-Penny NZ/39932. On the 26th October 1942 whilst flying HarvardII NZ901 when it failed to recover from a diving turn near the airfield at Tauranga. At the time he was serving at the Central Flying School as an instructor. A total of 1991 hrs logged as solo with 1010 on the Harvard. (Shown bottom left)

Levin Cemetery (Tiro Tiro Road) Row 46, Plot 45. Born on the 5th May 1918 at Oamaru, Otago. Husband of Doris Ruby Strode-Penny (née Nicholson) of Palmerston North.

* note. the family were known as Strode-Penny, but all RAF documents list the brothers as Penny.

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:

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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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