Operation: Walcheren Island
Date: 30th October 1944 (Monday)
Unit: No. 627 Squadron (motto: 'At First Sight') 5 Group
Type: Mosquito IV
Base: RAF Woodhall Spa, Lincolnshire
Location: North Sea
Pilot: Fl/Lt. Anthony Garwyth St John NZ/404472 RNZAF Age 30. Killed
Nav: F/O. La Verne John Dick J/17187 RCAF Are 28. Missing - believed killed
REASON FOR LOSS:
Taking off at 11:01 hrs to mark a strongpoint for the 102 Lancasters and 8 Mosquitoes that were planning to bomb Walcheren Island.
They called another crew at 12:05 hrs that a target indicator bomb had exploded in the bomb bay and they were abandoning the aircraft.
Only the body of the pilot was recovered when it washed up near Ostend in Belgium.
Fl/Lt. Anthony Garwyth St John. Oostende New Communal Cemetery . Plot 9. Row 6. Grave 6. Born on the 31st December 1913 at Nelson. Worked as a clerk for the internal affairs Department of Wellington prior to service. 24th November 1940 enlisted in the RNZAF at Levin. Attached to No. 3 Elementary Flying Training School on the 27th December 1940 before embarking to Canada on the 27th February 1940. Further training with No. 6 Service Flying Training School joining on the 20th March 1941.
Pilots badge awarded on the 10th June 1941 and promoted to sergeant. Embarked for England on the 20th June 1941. Attended RAF College on the27th July 1941. Embarked for Canada late December 1941 to fly as a staff pilot with 41 Service Flying Training School flying Harvard and Ansons. After various posts embarked for England on the 15th February 1944.
After various postings joined 627 squadron on the 01st August 1944. Son of Francis Frederick (died 12th July 1957, age 77) and Fanny Cecil Doris St. John (née Lightfoot - died 14th October 1944, age 50)), of Nelson, New Zealand and husband of Margaret Elizabeth St. John (née Ross), of Regina, Saskatchewan, Canada. His brothers also served, Sq/Ldr. John Ramsey St John DFC 403476 RAF and Peter St John.
F/O. La Verne John Dick. Runnymede Memorial. Panel 245. Born on the 31st January 1916 at Brantford. Received his commission in December 1941. Son of William (killed 09th August 1918, age 36) and Myrtle Dick (née Sheldrake - died in 1946, age 61) and husband of Isobel L. Dick, of Brantford, Ontario, Canada.
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, Weekly News of New Zealand, Operation Picture Me, other sources as quoted below:
At the going down of the sun, and in the morning we will remember
them. - Laurence
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