Operation: Essen, Germany
Date: 09/10th January 1943 (Saturday/Sunday)
Unit: No. 57 Squadron
Type: Lancaster I
Base: RAF Scampton, Lincolnshire
Location: Haarzuilens, Holland
Pilot: Sgt. David Stanley Warlow NZ/414705 RNZAF Age 26. Killed
Fl/Eng: Sgt. Vincent John Mervyn Donaldson 574813 RAF Age 20. Killed
Nav: Sgt. Alexander Jacobsen 1318066 RAFVR Age 19. Killed
Air/Bmr: Sgt. Robert Elwyn Roberts 1389926 RAFVR Age 31. Killed
W/Op/Air/Gnr: Sgt. Jack Webber 1377524 RAFVR Age 31. Killed
Air/Gnr: Fl/Sgt. William Albert Gillen R/135059 RCAF Age 23. Killed
Air/Gnr: Sgt. George Roe 1576603 RAFVR Age 21. Killed
REASON FOR LOSS:
Taking off from RAF Scampton in Lincolnshire at 17:22 hrs to join 2 Pathfinder Mosquitoes and 50 Lancasters from 5 Group to attack Essen.
Reports from the city stated that the bombing was concentrated in or near the centre with 127 buildings destroyed or seriously damaged - 28 people killed on the ground. 20 allied aircrew killed with just one surviving as a PoW from 3 Lancasters lost during this operation.
During the inbound flight over Holland the bomber stream encountered Luftwaffe night fighters. Lancaster ED319 was intercepted by Lt. Erich Richter (1) of 2./NJG1 his 2nd claim of the war and shot down at 20:02 hrs - the aircraft crashing at Haarzuilens in the Netherlands with the loss of all the crew.
(1) Lt. Erich Richter was killed the following week on the 17/18th January 1943 after baling out south of Houten with his Bordfunker Karl Pöttker in his Bf110-4 G9+GK Wnr. 4752. (see Kracker Luftwaffe Archive on this site)
Sgt. David Stanley Warlow. Amersfoort General Cemetery (Old Leusden) Plot 13. Row 5. Grave 78. Son of John and Mary E. Warlow, of St. Martins, Christchurch, Canterbury, New Zealand. A total of 386 flying hours logged, thought to be his 8th operation
Sgt. Vincent John Mervyn Donaldson. Amersfoort General Cemetery (Old Leusden) Plot 13. Row 5. Grave 79. Son of Robert and Alfreda Anna Donaldson, of Harrow, Middlesex, England
Sgt. Alexander Jacobsen. Amersfoort General Cemetery (Old Leusden) Plot 13. Row 5. Grave 80. Son of Sam and Kitty Jacobsen, of Stamford Hill, London, England.
Sgt. Robert Elwyn Roberts. Amersfoort General Cemetery (Old Leusden) Plot 13. Row 5. Grave 76. Son of David E. and Jane A. Roberts, of Rhyl, Flintshire, North Wales.
Sgt. Jack Webber. Amersfoort General Cemetery (Old Leusden) Plot 13. Row 5. Joint grave 77. Son of Leslie A. and Edith Webber, husband of Dorothy Rose Webber.
Fl/Sgt. William Albert Gillen. Amersfoort General Cemetery (Old Leusden) Plot 13. Row 5. Joint grave 77. Born on the 23rd February 1917 the son of Mary A. Gillen, of Rumford, Rhode Island, USA.
Sgt. George Roe. Amersfoort General Cemetery (Old Leusden) Plot 13. Row 5. Grave 75. Son of George William and Alice Roe, of Northampton, England.
Researched and dedicated to the relatives of this crew with thanks to Neville Warlow - nephew of the pilot who contacted us in October 2016. Further sources as quoted below.
At the going down of the sun, and in the morning we will remember
them. - Laurence
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