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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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126 crest

Operation: Patrol

Date: 19th November 1942 (Thursday)

Unit: No. 126 Squadron (motto: Foremost in attack)

Type: Spitfire VB

Serial: EP260

Code: V-?

Base: RAF Luqa, Malta

Location: Mediterranean Sea

Pilot: Sgt. Henry Roberts NZ/412269 RNZAF Age 23. Missing - believed killed


On Tuesday, the 08th September 1942 he was shot down by two enemy aircraft and baled out. He was rescued by an HSR launch in the incredibly fast time of 4 minutes. (Steve Blunt - logbook)

Taking off at 09:00 hrs with others and during the patrol on an incoming convoy some 100 miles south east of the island his engine failed. He was seen to abandon the Spitfire, sadly no trace of the young New Zealander was found.

Burial details:

Sgt. Henry Roberts. Malta Memorial. Panel 5, column 2. Born on the 04th September 1919 at Wellington. A clerk prior to enlisting at Levin on the 13th April 1941. Awarded his pilots badge and promoted to sergeant on the 07th November 1941. Son of Humphrey Joseph Roberts and of Helen Bertha Roberts (née Brittain), of Wellington City, New Zealand. Flew a Spitfire from HMS. Eagle to Malta on the 14th July 1942. 294 Flying hours logged and completed 52 operational sorties. Also served with 132 Squadron where he completed 5 operational sorties. He is credited with 1 confirmed enemy aircraft as damaged.

Researched and dedicated to the relatives of this pilot with thanks to Steve Blunt, 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 25-01-2021

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', Anna Krzystek, Tadeusz Krzystek - 'Polskie Siły Powietrzne w Wielkiej Brytanii', Franek Grabowski, Norman L.R. Franks 'Fighter Command Losses', 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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Last Modified: 25 March 2021, 12:11

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