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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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150 Squadron Crest
14.05.1940 150 Squadron Fairey Battle I K9483 Plt.Off. Arthur F. Posselt

Operation: Sedan France

Date: 14th May 1940 (Tuesday)

Unit: 150 Squadron

Type: Fairey Battle Mk I

Serial: K9483

Code: JN-

Base: RAF Ecury-sur-Cole, France

Location: South of Bulsont, France

Pilot: Plt.Off. Arthur Francis Posselt 41319 RAF Age 21. Killed

Obs: Sgt. Donald Joseph Bowen 581262 RAF Age 22. Killed

WOp/Air Gnr: AC2. Norman Victor Vano 630788 RAF Age 18. Killed


During an attack on a pontoon bridge across the Meusee just south of Sedan during the early afternoon when attacked by Bf 109s.

The above photograph of the crash site were taken looking south from Bulson

Thought to have been probably shot down by Uffz. Willi Ghesla of 2./JG53. The aircraft came down at 15:20 hrs at le Petit Pont.

(Left) Pilots of 1/JG53 taken in September 1940 - Left to Right: Uffz. L. Reibel, Lt. A. Zeis, Uffz. H. Ruehl, Hptn. H.K. Mayer, Uffz. W. Ghesla, Oblt. H. Ohly, Lt. E. Schulz.

The nephew of Sgt. Donald J. Bowen, Tom Bowen, has extensively researched his uncle and made the results available here. The research shows never before seen photographs of the crash site and other information about the squadron and the crew of the aircraft.

Also lost from the Squadron on the same operation:

Fairey Battle I L4946 Flown by Fg.Off. John Ing 39987 RAF - killed with all crew.
Fairey Battle I P2182 Flown by Plt.Off. John Boon 40597 RAF - killed with all crew.
Fairey Battle I P5232 Flown by Flt.Sgt. George Thomas Barker 563835 RAF - killed with 1 other crew member - LAC Alan Summerson evaded capture, despite being badly burnt and wounded in the leg.

Burial details:

Plt.Off. Arthur Francis Posselt. Choloy War Cemetery Lorraine, France. Coll. grave 1A.A.10-12. Son of Mr. And Mrs. F.W.T. Posselt, Of Mbabane, Swaziland. Grave inscription reads: “Was It For This The Clay Grew Tall? Earth, Receive An Honoured Guest”

Sgt. Donald Joseph Bowen. Choloy War Cemetery Lorraine, France. Coll. grave 1A.A.10-12. Son of David J. Bowen And Annie Bowen, of Belfast, Northern Ireland. Grave inscription reads: “Of Your Charity, Pray For His Soul. My Jesus Mercy.”

(Left) A photograph taking in the mid 1930s of a young Donald J. Bowen, 1st from the right, with his father and brother. (Courtesy Tom Bowen, the nephew of Sgt. Bowen)

AC2. Norman Victor Vano. Choloy War Cemetery Lorraine, France. Coll. grave 1A.A.10-12. Son of Norman And Florence V. Vano, of Liverpool, England. Grave inscription reads: “A Life Given In The Bloom Of Youth. No More Can Mortal Give.”

Researched for Aircrew Remembered by Michel Beckers - July 2016. With thanks to Gordon Poultney Plumtree School for pilot photo, Ben for grave photographs, others from the Michel Beckers collection. Thank to Tom Bowen for sharing his research on his Uncle, Sgt. Bowen.

RS 07.06.2020 - Editorial update

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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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