AR banner
Search Tips Advanced Search
Back to Top

Info LogoAdd to or correct this story with a few clicks.
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.
Check our Research databases: Database List


We seek additional information and photographs. Please contact us via the Helpdesk.

51 Squadron Crest
18.12.1944 No. 51 Squadron Halifax III NP934 MH-V F/O. Bernard M. Twilley

Operation: Duisburg

Date: 18th December 1944

Unit: 51 Squadron

Type: Halifax III

Serial: NP934

Coded: MH-V

Base: RAF Snaith, Yorkshire

Location: South of Charleroi, Hainaut, Belgium

Pilot: F/O Bernard Mark Twilley 151201 RAFVR Age 24. Killed

Pilot: F/O Edgar Harold Baron 149632 RAFVR Age 22. Killed

Fl/Eng: Sgt. Roy Challinor Hitchen 2203456 RAFVR Age 20. Killed

Nav: Sgt. Richard Holden 1671139 RAFVR Age 27. Killed

Air/Bmr: F/O. Carl Winston Cassini 154240 RAFVR Age 22. Killed

W/Op/Air/Gnr: Fl/Sgt. Roberts Hall 1457899 RAFVR Age 23. Killed

Air/Gnr: Fl/Sgt. Hugh Brenton Jones 1866363 RAFVR Age 18. Killed

Air/Gnr: W/O. Harold William John Hildebrand 1383970 RAFVR Age 24. Killed


Took off 02:58 hrs Snaith. Crashed into a wood south of Charleroi, Belgium and all were killed. It is thought that this aircraft crashed following an explosion when two other aircraft collided, although this cannot be verified as yet. Fl/Sgt Jones is thought to be one of the youngest aircrew member to have been killed at 18.

The crew were all originally buried at Les Fosses US Military Cemetery but all have since been moved to Leopoldsburg War Cemetery.

L-R: F/O Bernard Mark Twilley, F/O Edgar Harold Baron, Sgt. Roy Challinor Hitchen, F/O. Carl Winston Cassini, Fl/Sgt. Hugh Brenton Jones, W/O. Harold William John Hildebrand, Sgt. Richard Holden (courtesy David Mole)

Some of this crew were also involved in a take off accident earlier in the year: Halifax III LV865 MH-Y. All crew escaped, except the rear gunner who was sadly killed.

Burial Details:

F/O. Bernard Mark Twilley. Leopoldsburg War Cemetery. Grave VIII.A.14. Son of William L. and Jessie G. Twilley of Grantham, Lincolnshire, England.

F/O. Edgar Harold Baron. Leopoldsburg War CemeteryGrave VIII.A.15. Son of Benjamin John and Edith May, husband of Joyce Pamela Baron of Tottenham, Middlesex, England.

Sgt. Roy Challinor Hitchen. Leopoldsburg War Cemetery. Grave VIII.B.3. Son of Cecil Wiliam and Constance Hilda of Upton, Cheshire, England.

Sgt. Richard Holden. Leopoldsburg War Cemetery. GraveVIII. A.16. Son of Richard and Sarah Ann of Rochdale, Lancashire, England.

F/O Carl Winston Cassini. Leopoldsburg War Cemetery. Grave VIII.A.17. (B.Sc (Edin), A.R.I.C.) Son of Peter F.R.S.A., M.B.S.D. and Iris of Bandra, Bombay, India

Fl/Sgt. Roberts Hall. Leopoldsburg War Cemetery. Grave VIII.A.19. Son of Robert and Alice of Irlams o'-th'-Height, Salford, Lancashire, England.

Fl/Sgt. Hugh Brenton Jones. Leopoldsburg War Cemetery. Grave VIII.B.5. Son of Frederick John and Dorothy Constance of Ilford, Essex, England.

W/O. Harold William John Hildebrand. Leopoldsburg War Cemetery. Grave VIII.B.4. Son of Harold Albert Edward and Rosamond of Streatham, London, England.

This great selection of photographs has been received by us from David Mole - further information follows on other losses by David - we would like to express our sincere gratitude for this information received. This way these people will never be forgotten and for the surviving relatives and aviation researchers we can now show the faces to the names placed on graves by the CWGC who carry out such tremendous work. Further sources as quoted below.

Pages of Outstanding Interest
History Airborne Forces •  Soviet Night Witches •  Bomber Command Memories •  Abbreviations •  Gardening Codenames
CWGC: Your Relative's Grave Explained •  USA Flygirls •  Axis Awards Descriptions •  'Lack Of Moral Fibre'
Concept of Colonial Discrimination  •  Unauthorised First Long Range Mustang Attack
RAAF Bomb Aimer Evades with Maquis •  SOE Heroine Nancy Wake •  Fane: Motor Racing PRU Legend
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.
Click any image to enlarge it

Click to add your info via ticket on Helpdesk •Click to let us know via ticket on Helpdesk• Click to buy research books from Amazon •Click to explore the entire site
If you would like to comment on this page, please do so via our Helpdesk. Use the Submit a Ticket option to send your comments. After review, our Editors will publish your comment below with your first name, but not your email address.

A word from the Editor: your contribution is important. We welcome your comments and information. Thanks in advance.

At the going down of the sun, and in the morning we will remember them. - Laurence Binyon
All site material (except as noted elsewhere) is owned or managed by Aircrew Remembered and should not be used without prior permission.
© Aircrew Remembered 2012 - 2024
Last Modified: 28 March 2021, 19:45

Monitor Additions/Changes?Click to be informed of changes to this page. Create account for first monitor only, thereafter very fast. Click to close without creating monitor