06/07.09.1941 No 10 Squadron Whitley V Z6478 ZA-S Sgt. Poupard
Date: 06/07th September 1941 (Saturday/Sunday)
Unit: No. 10 Squadron
Type: Whitley V
Base: RAF Leeming, Yorkshire
Location: Oldebroek, Netherlands
Pilot: Sgt. Aubrey Poupard 934286 RAFVR Age 21. Killed (1)
Pilot: P/O. John Forbes Laurie-Dickson 68720 RAF Age 25. Killed
Obs: Fl/Sgt. Robert Hector Wilson R/54053 RCAF Age 23. Killed
W/Op/Air/Gnr: Sgt. Pine Tenga Takarangi NZ/39586 RNZAF Age 23. Killed
W/Op/Air/Gnr: Sgt. Robert John Garrod 910169 RAFVR Age 26. Killed
REASON FOR LOSS:
Taking off from RAF Leeming in Yorkshire at 19:49 hrs to bomb a chemical factory - 86 aircraft taking part. 41 Whitleys, 27 Wellingtons and 18 Hampdens taking part in the operation that was reported to be a success with good results claimed.
The elite unit of NJG1 night fighters that intercepted the bomber stream and shooting down eight of the allied bombers, 7seven of these over the Netherlands.
Whitley Z6478 was intercepted by Oblt. Ludwig Becker (2) of 4./NJG1 - his 6th claim of the war. Intercepted at 2,300 mts. and shot down at 23:00 hrs with the aircraft coming down in the outskirts of the village of Oldebroek on an artillery range used by the Germans. All the crew were killed.
(1) Sgt. Aubrey Poupard Had an earlier incredible escape. On the 13th June after an operation to Schwerte the Whitley that he was second pilot on, Z6721 had to turn back due to engine problems. The aircraft was then forced to ditch at 01:35 hrs. in the North Sea. The crew launched their dingy, but this capsized in the heavy seas, eventually they did manage to right it and crawl aboard. At 07:00 hrs. a Luftwaffe He111 flew over the crew and saw that they were in trouble. The German pilot flew off and found a RAF air sea rescue launch and directed them to the crew, all the 5 crew landed at Great Yarmouth in Norfolk - exhausted but safe.
(2) Ludwig Becker was a Luftwaffe ace, but not just any Luftwaffe ace. After his 25th victory his was awarded the Knight's Cross of the Iron Cross on July 1st 1942. He was an important developer of the German night fighter tactics, and he also designed a piece of night fighting equipment. After his 46th victory (all at night) he was awarded the Oak Leaves to his Knight's Cross on February 26th 1943. At the same day he left for his 165th sortie. However this time it was a daylight attack with a Messerschmitt Bf 110G-4 on a group of American Boeing B-17 bombers. The Me110, Ludwig Becker, and his radar operator sergeant (Oberfeldwebel) Josef Straub were reported missing in action over the North Sea, north of the island of Schiermonnikoog. The portrait shows Ludwig Becker with the Oak Leaves to his Knight's Cross. That picture is a bit of an enigma, because it was made in Munich! How that could have been made there on the same day the medal was awarded, and knowing that he was shot down at that day 700 kilometres to the north is a bit of a mystery! He was posthumously promoted to captain (Hauptmann) of the reserve.
Pine Tenga Takarangi performing the Haka on arrival in Can ada.
Sgt. Aubrey Poupard. Oldebroek General Cemetery. Grave 2. Son of Mr. William E. Poupard and Mrs. Mary Poupard (née Clarke), Margate, Kent, England. On his 30th operational sortie.
P/O. John Forbes Laurie-Dickson. Oldebroek General Cemetery. Grave 4. Adopted son of Mr. William Kennedy and Mrs. Margaret Helen Laurie-Dickson (née Gordon) Husband of Pauline Ruth (née Monteith).
Fl/Sgt. Robert Hector Wilson. Oldebroek General Cemetery. Grave 3. Born on the 04th October 1917, Westmeath, Renfrew County, Ontario, Canada. Son of Mr. Hugh Wilson and Mrs. Martha Jean Wilson (née Eckford) Epitaph reads: "And They Shall Renew Their Life Even As The Flowers In Spring".
Sgt. Pine Tenga Takarangi. Oldebroek General Cemetery. Grave 5. Born on the 06th March 1918, the son of Tenga Hore Takarangi and Rangitaamo Takarangi, of Pa Road, Putiki, Auckland, New Zealand. 80 Flying hours logged and on his first operational sortie.
Sgt. Robert John Garrod. Oldebroek General Cemetery. Grave 1. Son of George and Jessie (née Wright) Garrod, of Tuddenham, Suffolk, England.
Above: Oldebroek General Cemetery (courtesy Dick Breedjik)
For further details our thanks to the following sources as shown below. Also to Teunis Schuurman WW2 Researcher from the Netherlands for some crew details. Also to Dick Breedjik for grave photographs.