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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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486 Squadron Crest
16.04.1943 No. 486 Squadron Typhoon Ib R8881 SA-R Fl/Lt. Sweetman

Operation: Ramrod

Date: 16th April 1943 (Friday)

Unit: No. 486 Squadron (motto: Hiwa hau Maka - 'Beware of the Wild Winds')

Type: Typhoon Ib

Serial: R8881

Code: SA-R

Base: RAF Tangmere, West Sussex

Location: Selsey

Pilot: Fl/Lt. Harvey Nelson Sweetman NZ/40992 RNZAF Age 21. Survived


During a ramrod in the morning engaged fighters over Le Havre.

Understood that the aircraft suffered engine damage but the pilot managed to nurse the crippled Typhoon over the English Channel, cleared the cliffs at 100 ft and force landed his aircraft in a potato field at Selsey, (see map).

The following month he was awarded the DFC.

Went on to become one of the most successful fighter pilots against the V-1 flying bomb, accounting for 11 of them during the autumn of 1944.

Above: 485 Squadron members, Redhill 1941. Front sitting L-R: Fl/Sgt. John Donald Rae, Fl/Lt. Richard Barrett, Fl/Sgt. Harvey Sweetman. Centre: P/O. Henry Wallace Macleod RCAF, Sgt. Ellis Arthur Gilbert Cochrane, Sgt. Lyndon Poynton Griffith, P/O. William Vernon Crawford-Compton, Sq/Ldr. Marcus William Bower Knight, Sgt. Andy S. Kronfeld, P/O. David Thomas Clouston. Rear on Aircraft: Fl/Lt. Robert Harold Strang, Sgt. Arnold George McNeil, Sgt. Lindsay Jack Frecklington, Sgt. Francis, Fl/Sgt. William Max Krebs. (see notes below)


F/O. John Donald Rae DFC and bar NZ/402896 - Survived as a PoW.
Fl/Lt. Richard Barrett NZ/391324 - killed on the 17th May 1944.
Fl/Lt. Harvey Nelson Sweetman DFC NZ/40992 - survived the war - Died 15 January 2015 Age 93
P/O. Henry Wallace Macleod J/4912 RCAF - killed 27th September 1944.
P/O. Ellis Arthur Gilbert Cochrane NZ/403950 - Missing - believed killed on the 02nd March 1943.
Fl/Lt. Lyndon Poynton Griffith DFC. 501133 - survived the war - no further information.
Air Vice Marshall William Vernon Crawford-Compton 65500 - Died 02nd January 1988 Age 73.
Sq/Ldr. Marcus William Bower Knight - survived the war - Died 1993.
Fl/Lt. Andrew Samuel Kronfeld NZ/402523 - survived the war - no further information.
Fl/Lt. David Thomas Clouston MiD. NZ/404337 - survived the war - Died 24th March 1998 Age 80.
Fl/Lt. Robert Harold Strang 79515 - Missing - believed killed on the 25th January 1942.
Sgt. Arnold George McNeil NZ/41484 - killed on the 25th February 1942.
Fl/Lt. Lindsay Jack Frecklington NZ/401261 - survived the war - no further information.
Sgt. Francis - survived the war - no further information.
Fl/Sgt. William Max Krebs NZ/402194 - Missing - believed killed on the 26th March 1942

Burial details:

None - survived the war passed away on the 15th January 2014. See obituary here.

Researched and dedicated to the relatives of this pilot with thanks to the research by Errol Martyn and his publications: “For Your Tomorrow Vols. 1-3”, Auckland War Memorial Museum, Weekly News of New Zealand, other sources as quoted below:

KTY 07.08.2019

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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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