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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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15 Squadron crest
12.06.1940 No. 15 Squadron Blenheim IV R3747 P/O. Alexander Takideli

Operation: Le Bourget

Date: 12th June 1940 (Wednesday)

Unit: No. 15 Squadron

Type: Blenheim IV

Serial: R3747

Code: LS-?

Base: RAF Wyton

Location: Malleville-les- Grès, France

Pilot: P/O. Alexander Takideli 42368 RAF Age 20. Killed

Obs: Sgt. Frank Vivian Gunning 580613 RAF Age 19. Killed

W/Op/Air/Gnr: Sgt. David Hilary Peuleve 614230 RAF Age 21. Killed (1)


Taking off at 11:30 hrs to attack motor transport columns reported to be in the Le Bourget area.

The aircraft was hit by ground fire and crashed in area shown at 12:45 hrs - killing all there crew members.

(1) Sgt. Peuleve survived an earlier incident when on the 22nd February 1940 whilst with 23 Squadron. Blenheim I-F L8400 during a searchlight cooperation sortie the crew: Sgt. Ian Nicholson Macrae 565633, AC 2 Reginald Walter Cullen 75242 and AC David Hilary Peuleve 614230 - abandoned the aircraft which went on to crash on houses in Tunbridge, Kent - causing civilian casualties. (No additional information)

Mr Tom Payne, cousin of the observer Sgt. Frank Gunning, informed us that St. Mary’s Church in Walditch, Bridport plan to unveil a marble tablet to him and others killed during service in WW2. He has also visited the  graves of the crew on a number of occasions. He advises us that during his research he established that the crew were recently transferred from 21 Squadron prior to their loss. Mr Payne was a former Lancaster pilot with the RAF 90 and 15 Squadron 1945-1946.

Burial details:

P/O. Alexander Takideli. Malleville-Les-Gres Churchyard. Son of Gregory John and Grace Maud Takideli. Understood to be a Greek national.

Sgt. Frank Vivian Gunning. Malleville-Les-Gres Churchyard. Son of Frank Victor and Florence Gunning, of Bridport, Dorsetshire, England.

Sgt. David Hilary Peuleve. Malleville-Les-Gres Churchyard. Son of Auguste Albert and Alice Florence Peuleve, of Castle Bromwich, Warwickshire, England.

Researched by and for Mr Tom Payne and dedicated to the relatives of this crew with thanks to sources quoted below. With thanks to Groeten van Titia for church photo.

KTY 24.07.2015

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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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