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Archive Report: Allied Forces

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427 Squadron Crest
27/28.05.1944 No. 427 Squadron Halifax III LW365 ZL-W P/O. Scobie

Operation: Bourg-Leopold

Date: 27/28th May 1944 (Saturday/Sunday)

Unit: No. 427 Squadron

Type: Halifax III

Serial: LW365

Code: ZL-W

Base: RAF Leeming, Yorkshire

Location: Lovenjoel south east of Leuven

Pilot: P/O. Benjamin Cyrus Scobie J/19588 RCAF Age 21. Killed

Fl/Eng: Sgt. James Henry (Harry) Rudge 1834880 RAFVR Age 29. Killed

Nav: F/O. Alan Gorrie Smith J/24727 RCAF Age 27. Killed

Air/Bmr: F/O. Norman Gilbert Nahu J/27584 RCAF Age 27. Killed

W/Op/Air/Gnr: Sgt. Thomas John Whiteside 1513141 RAF Age 22. Killed

Air/Gnr: P/O. Joseph Jacques Bruno Cardinal C/87643 RCAF Age 24. Killed

Air/Gnr: P/O. Gerard Frederick Vinett J/90950 RCAF Age 23. Killed


Taking off from RAF Leeming in Yorkshire at 23:27 hrs to bomb the military camp at Bourg-Leopold. 331 aircraft taking part, 267 Halifaxes, 56 Lancasters with 8 Mosquitoes. Oboe aimed target indicators fell right on the target resulting in very accurate bombing with extensive damage to the camp.

Halifax LW365 was intercepted and shot down by Lt. Kirk Matzak (1) of 12./NJG1 at 02:04 hrs. with the aircraft crashing at Lovenjoel south east of Leuven.

Also lost from the Squadron on this operation Halifax III LV831 ZL-P Flown by 22 year old P/O. Frank Gerrard Devereaux J/19592 RCAF from Seaforth, Ontario, Canada - killed with all other 6 crew.

(1) This was the 9th claim for the Luftwaffe ace Lt. Kirk Matzak - he survived the war with 19 claims.

Burial details:

P/O. Benjamin Cyrus Scobie. Heverlee War Cemetery. Grave 12.B.11. Understood to be from Edmonton Alberta, Canada.

Sgt. James Henry (Harry) Rudge. Heverlee War Cemetery. Grave 12.B.7. Son of Charles William and Florance Ann Rudge and husband of Elsie Margery Rudge of West Heath, Birmingham, England. Grave inscription reads: ‘God Had His Pick And Took The Best Of The Bunch.”

F/O. Alan Gorrie Smith. Heverlee War Cemetery. Grave 12.B.8. Son of Sydney Harold and Agnes Grace Smith of Toronto and husband of Eleanor Margaret Smith of Toronto, Ontario, Canada.

F/O. Norman Gilbert Nahu. Heverlee War Cemetery. Grave 12.B.6. Son of Norman Frank and Edith Agnes Nahu of North Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada.

Sgt. Thomas John Whiteside. Heverlee War Cemetery. Grave 12.B.9. Son of James N. and Sarah Whiteside of Belfast, Northern Ireland.

P/O. Joseph Jacques Bruno Cardinal. Heverlee War Cemetery. Grave 12.B.10. Son of Olivier and Cecile Cardinal of Montreal, Quebec, Canada.

P/O. Gerard Frederick Vinett. Heverlee War Cemetery. Grave 12.B.5. Son of Joseph Tellesphore and Gertrude Vinett of Richmond, Ontario, Canada.

Researched for Aircrew Remembered by Linda Ibrom - June 2017. Photo of Sgt. Rudge provided by Judith Rudge.

LI - 02.06.2017

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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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