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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
22.12.1944 No. 486 Squadron Tempest V EJ715 Fl/Lt. Williams MiD

Operation: Armed reconnaissance

Date: 22nd December 1944 (Friday)

Unit: No. 486 Squadron (122 Wing, 83 Group)

Type: Tempest V

Serial: EJ715

Code: SA-?

Base: B80, Volkel, Netherlands

Location: Losser

Pilot: Fl/Lt. Stamford Seaton Williams MiD. NZ/412297 RNZAF Age 24. Killed


Research courtesy of Mr. Gerry Wright:

Taking off from Volkel in the Netherlands with 3 others from the Squadron at 14:40 hrs, on an armed reconnaissance operation in the Munster area of Germany. One of the section returned to base almost immediately with an oil leak. This was his 241st operational flight. When near Munster the weather became so bad that Bill instructed the section of aircraft to turn back. The section turned and set a course for the base. The visibility in the area had reduced to half a mile.

The section came upon a small village at 15:35hrs over which they were committed to fly as they were almost on top of it before it was sighted. Intense anti-aircraft fire was met from the town and the section took evasive action.

Bill's aircraft was hit by flak and was seen to crash in an apparently flat position, skid along, and then explode. The rest of the section returned to their base badly damaged. Bill was posted missing, believed killed in action.

Grave photo at Losser Roman Catholic Churchyard (courtesy Paul ten Broeke)

Burial details:

Fl/Lt. Stamford Seaton Williams MiD. Losser Roman Catholic Churchyard, Plot 5. Born on the 04th February 1920, the son of James Gordon Williams and Ethel Winifred Williams, of Orini, Waikato, New Zealand. Enlisted at Levin on 13 April 1941 and on completing his initial training was posted to No 2 Elementary Flying Training School at New Plymouth. On 22 July 1941 he embarked for Canada for further training. His logbook records 830 hours flying as a pilot and 241 operations. This was his 161 operational sortie with the squadron.

Researched by Gerry Wright 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 Cenotaph, Weekly News of New Zealand, Gerry Wright for his extensive research, Paul ten Broeke for grave photograph, other sources as quoted below:

KTY - 12.09.2017

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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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