Help regarding Lancaster LM367 crash at Lautenthal, Germany. 14.1.1944

Discussion in 'The War In The Air' started by Smudger Jnr, Jul 22, 2017.

  1. Smudger Jnr

    Smudger Jnr Our Man in Berlin

    A friend of mine who has a property in Lautenthal, Germany, was talking to a neighbour who, at the age of 10, witnessed a Lancaster Bomber in flames, crash into a nearby field.
    Is anyone able to provide me with details from Chorley or other records regarding the crew etc.
    All crew were buried by the locals with due respect in the local church but were re buried by the CWGC, possibly at Hanover or Berlin. The target was thought to be Braunschweig.
    Any help would be appreciated.

    Regards
    Tom
     
  2. CL1

    CL1 116th LAA and 92nd (Loyals) LAA,Royal Artillery Patron

    Last edited: Jul 22, 2017
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  3. CL1

    CL1 116th LAA and 92nd (Loyals) LAA,Royal Artillery Patron

    ROWLAND, THOMAS WILSON
    Rank:
    Flight Lieutenant
    Service No:
    127942
    Date of Death:
    14/01/1944
    Age:
    32
    Regiment/Service:
    Royal Air Force Volunteer Reserve
    101 Sqdn.
    Awards:
    D F C
    Panel Reference:
    Panel 203.
    Memorial:
    RUNNYMEDE MEMORIAL
    Additional Information:
    Son of Mr. and Mrs. F. R. Rowland; husband of Margaret Mary Rowland, of Cuddington, Northwich, Cheshire.

    ALLISON, ROBERT ALEXANDER
    Rank:
    Sergeant
    Service No:
    570541
    Date of Death:
    14/01/1944
    Regiment/Service:
    Royal Air Force
    101 Sqdn.
    Panel Reference:
    Panel 224.
    Memorial:
    RUNNYMEDE MEMORIAL
    Additional Information:
    Son of Robert Alexander Allison and Helen Allison, of Renton, Dunbartonshire.

    HIGGS, DOUGLAS GEORGE JOSEPH
    Rank:
    Flying Officer
    Service No:
    133333
    Date of Death:
    14/01/1944
    Regiment/Service:
    Royal Air Force Volunteer Reserve
    101 Sqdn.
    Awards:
    D F C
    Panel Reference:
    Panel 206.
    Memorial:
    RUNNYMEDE MEMORIAL
    Additional Information:
    Son of Harold and Ellen Higgs, of West Hampstead, London.


    LAMPREY, PETER HENRY
    Rank:
    Flight Sergeant
    Service No:
    1384535
    Date of Death:
    14/01/1944
    Age:
    36
    Regiment/Service:
    Royal Air Force Volunteer Reserve
    101 Sqdn.
    Panel Reference:
    Panel 219.
    Memorial:
    RUNNYMEDE MEMORIAL
    Additional Information:
    Son of Peter William and Annie Lamprey; husband of May Lamprey, of Padworth, Berkshire.


    YUILL, WILLIAM HOUSTON
    Rank:
    Flight Sergeant
    Service No:
    1436512
    Date of Death:
    14/01/1944
    Age:
    22
    Regiment/Service:
    Royal Air Force Volunteer Reserve
    101 Sqdn.
    Panel Reference:
    Panel 223.
    Memorial:
    RUNNYMEDE MEMORIAL
    Additional Information:
    Son of James and Clara Alice Yuill, of Birmingham.


    BATEMAN, ROBERT
    Rank:
    Sergeant
    Trade:
    Air Gunner
    Service No:
    632703
    Date of Death:
    14/01/1944
    Regiment/Service:
    Royal Air Force
    101 Sqdn.
    Grave Reference:
    1. G. 1.
    Cemetery:
    HANOVER WAR CEMETERY


    CLEMENTS, HOWARD GLEN
    Rank:
    Sergeant
    Trade:
    Air Gunner
    Service No:
    1573051
    Date of Death:
    14/01/1944
    Age:
    20
    Regiment/Service:
    Royal Air Force Volunteer Reserve
    101 Sqdn.
    Grave Reference:
    1. G. 2.
    Cemetery:
    HANOVER WAR CEMETERY
    Additional Information:
    Son of Edward Joshua Wyse Clements and Margaret Clements, of Dumbreck, Lanarkshire.

    Also B.N.Wilkesman RCAF J20110
     
    Last edited: Jul 22, 2017
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  4. Tricky Dicky

    Tricky Dicky Don'tre member

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  5. nicks

    nicks Very Senior Member

    Chorley BCL Vol 5 lists Sgt R S Cornwell as the specialist operator on this ABC aircraft and not B.N.Wilkesman RCAF J20110.

    CORNWELL, REGINALD SYDNEY
    Rank: Sergeant
    Trade: Wireless Op./Air Gunner
    Service No: 1330214
    Date of Death: 14/01/1944
    Regiment/Service: Royal Air Force Volunteer Reserve 101 Sqdn.
    Grave Reference: 1. G. 3.
    Cemetery: HANOVER WAR CEMETERY

    Airborne Cigar (A.B.C.) – ARI TR3549 radar jammer carried by 101 Sqn Lancasters based at Ludford Magna, and from March 1945 by 462 Sqn RAAF, operating from RAF Foulsham.[3] These aircraft carried an 8th crew member to monitor and then jam Lichtenstein radar of German night fighters.[4]
    Source
     
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  6. Smudger Jnr

    Smudger Jnr Our Man in Berlin

    Thanks all for the details which I have now passed on.
    Any further information posted will also be forwarded on. Mission details would be a bonus.:)

    Regards
    Tom
     
  7. nicks

    nicks Very Senior Member

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  8. Rich Payne

    Rich Payne Rivet Counter Patron 1940 Obsessive

    The concentration report seems to show some initial confusion on the crews as it lists a B.V. Howard first with service number 1573061 amended to 1322132. He was also a 101 Squadron casualty but buried at Berlin under the 1322132 number. By 1948 the error seems to have been corrected and the body in I G 5 redesignated as 'Unknown' .

    doc2944426.JPG


    doc2944525.JPG




    doc3388898.JPG
     
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  9. alieneyes

    alieneyes Senior Member

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  10. Peter Clare

    Peter Clare Very Senior Member

    The following from Chorley......

    14-15 January 1944

    101 Squadron
    Lancaster III LM367 SR-C
    Op. Braunschweig

    Took off from Ludford Magna on ABC duties. Shot down by a night-fighter crashing into (or near) a slate quarry at Lautenthal, 10 km south west of Goslar. Sgt. Cornwall was the specialist operator.

    Crew.

    F/L. T W. Rowland DFC +
    Sgt. R A. Allison +
    F/O. D G J. Higgs DFC +
    F/S. W H. Yuill +
    F/S. P H. Lamprey +
    Sgt. R S. Cornwell +
    Sgt. R. Bateman +
    Sgt. H G. Clements +


    A brief explanation of ABC

    A system code named "Airborne Cigar" or ABC for short, was devised to jam the VHF frequencies used by the German controllers. The equipment consisted of a panoramic receiver and three transmitters, which enabled the frequency being used by the fighter controller to be identified and then jammed. An 8th crew member, the Special Operator, who was a German-speaker, operated the equipment and listened in for the controller's transmissions. When he was sure that he was listening to the master controller, he jammed that frequency and if the Germans changed frequency he had to find the new frequency and jam that within seconds.
     
  11. Smudger Jnr

    Smudger Jnr Our Man in Berlin

    Peter/Alieneyes,
    Thank you for the extra information which I have passed on.

    Nigel (retired ex Major with Royal Scots Dragoon Guards) is extremely grateful for your help.

    Regards
    Tom
     
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  12. KevinBattle

    KevinBattle Senior Member

    As per the original post:
    QUOTE: All crew were buried by the locals with due respect in the local church but were re buried by the CWGC, possibly at Hanover or Berlin. UNQUOTE
    yet it seems that 5 have No Known Grave, only a panel at Runnymede.
    Whilst it sometimes happened that some of the crew could bale out, either their bodies were later found or they were captured as PoW's or evaded. But 5 disappearing seems a little unusual.
    The pilot (and possibly some if not all of his crew) was on their 30th Op.......
    The Loss Card goes on to state that Bateman, Cornwell, Clements and 2 unknowns were buried 16 Jan at Lautenthal.
    The CWGC Concentration Report for Lautenthal shows that the man identified as B V Howard was a Sergeant, so presumably sufficient of his uniform was recognisable as to his rank.
    The only other unidentified crew member who was a Sergeant was Allinson

    ALLISON, ROBERT ALEXANDER. Rank: Sergeant. Service No: 570541. Date of Death: 14/01/1944
    Regiment/Service: Royal Air Force. 101 Sqdn.
    Panel Reference: Panel 224. Memorial: RUNNYMEDE MEMORIAL
    Additional Information: Son of Robert Alexander Allison and Helen Allison, of Renton, Dunbartonshire.

    ROWLAND, THOMAS WILSON. Rank: Flight Lieutenant. Service No: 127942. Date of Death: 14/01/1944/ Age: 32.
    Regiment/Service: Royal Air Force Volunteer Reserve. 101 Sqdn. Awards: D F C.
    Panel Reference: Panel 203. Memorial: RUNNYMEDE MEMORIAL
    Additional Information: Son of Mr. and Mrs. F. R. Rowland; husband of Margaret Mary Rowland, of Cuddington, Northwich, Cheshire.

    HIGGS, DOUGLAS GEORGE JOSEPH. Rank: Flying Officer. Service No: 133333. Date of Death: 14/01/1944.
    Regiment/Service: Royal Air Force Volunteer Reserve. 101 Sqdn. Awards: D F C.
    Panel Reference: Panel 206. Memorial: RUNNYMEDE MEMORIAL
    Additional Information: Son of Harold and Ellen Higgs, of West Hampstead, London..

    LAMPREY, PETER HENRY. Rank: Flight Sergeant. Service No: 1384535. Date of Death: 14/01/1944. Age: 36.
    Regiment/Service: Royal Air Force Volunteer Reserve. 101 Sqdn.
    Panel Reference: Panel 219. Memorial: RUNNYMEDE MEMORIAL
    Additional Information: Son of Peter William and Annie Lamprey; husband of May Lamprey, of Padworth, Berkshire.

    YUILL, WILLIAM HOUSTON. Rank: Flight Sergeant. Service No: 1436512. Date of Death: 14/01/1944. Age: 22.
    Regiment/Service: Royal Air Force Volunteer Reserve. 101 Sqdn.
    Panel Reference: Panel 223.. Memorial: RUNNYMEDE MEMORIAL.
    Additional Information: Son of James and Clara Alice Yuill, of Birmingham.

    The Service No: originally used to identify B V Howard was 1573061 but that doesn't appear to be an RAF serial.
    It may have been the enlisted Service Number for a subsequently commissioned officer, but Howard was a Sergeant.
    I wonder what Service No. Higgs had, before being commissioned?
    No doubt those attempting to identify the men had difficulty as Allinson was a regular RAF enlistee; not RAFVR which the Unknown Sjt was identified as.
    So could Lamprey or Youill be the other Unknown?

    As Howard was also 101 Sqdn, is it possible that some part of his kit could have been picked up by mistake, or how else would he have been thought as part of the crew? Howard is shown as Navigator on ME566 SR@X and Higgs was the Nav on LM367.
    Lancaster Archive http://www.lancaster-archive.com/lanc_uknowncrashsites.pdf indicates ME566 had only been delivered on 6th Jan and shows serial as SR@S (but may have been changed if X had been lost after 6 Jan).
    Where were the remains of the ME566 recovered from?
    More questions than answers as we still have 3 missing men.
     
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  13. alieneyes

    alieneyes Senior Member

    1397547. Commissioned P/O 30 November 1942. Gazetted 29 December 1942.
     
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  14. KevinBattle

    KevinBattle Senior Member

    Thanks! Doh! I now realise who's Service Number that was!
    CLEMENTS, HOWARD GLEN. Rank: Sergeant. Trade: Air Gunner. Service No: 1573051. Date of Death: 14/01/1944. Age:20.
    Regiment/Service: Royal Air Force Volunteer Reserve. 101 Sqdn.
    Grave Reference: 1. G. 2. Cemetery: HANOVER WAR CEMETERY
    Additional Information: Son of Edward Joshua Wyse Clements and Margaret Clements, of Dumbreck, Lanarkshire.

    Somehow his Service Number (slight misread as 1573061) was initially given for the body buried in Grave 1 but no connection was made that the body identified as Clements with 1573051 was the "same" man.
    The possibility is that Grave 1 is Clements, leaving 3 Unknowns still.
    It doesn't take much imagination that any remains after a high velocity impact of a bomber laden with fuel and possibly munitions including incendiaries would make any identification extremely hit and miss and which was what.
    Therefore it may be that all 8 crew died in the wreck, but insufficient was left for all to be accounted for easily.
     
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  15. Smudger Jnr

    Smudger Jnr Our Man in Berlin

    Kevin,
    This has happened a lot before regarding identification.
    Unless positve ID the bodies are classed as Known only to God.
    The CWGC do not allow for the bodies to be dug up for DNA comparisons and it is only those bodies being recoverd now that the DNA samples can prove positive ID.
    Not good but have to live with the system.

    Regards
    Tom
     
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  16. Smudger Jnr

    Smudger Jnr Our Man in Berlin

    Kevin,
    From the then 10 year old witness, 4 crew were taken from the plane wreckage and another member with parachute was found several hundred meters away on a local hill.
    Probably too low when crew jumped.
    Nigel, not to mention his German friend who witnessed the crash, is over the moon with the information provided by all.
    He will endeavour to to identify the Lancaster crew and night fighter pilot relatives, with a view to holding a Memorial service at the crash site.
    It may take some time but will keep members informed.
    Regards
    Tom
     
  17. KevinBattle

    KevinBattle Senior Member

    Tom, no criticism of CWGC in my replies, intentionally or otherwise.
     
  18. Smudger Jnr

    Smudger Jnr Our Man in Berlin

    Kevin,
    I was just trying to clear up my ambiguous statement regarding all the crew being buried in the nearby church.
    It should have read all the found aircrew.
    No criticism noted as the CWGC had a hard time post war.
    Regards
    Tom
     
  19. Smudger Jnr

    Smudger Jnr Our Man in Berlin

    Nick's
    Apparently the RAF used two ABC Lancasters on raids and unfortunately both were shot down on this raid.
    It makes sense that this man was the 8th crew member operating the anti Lichtenstein radar device and as a German born Canadian he would be an ideal candidate for the job.
    It must have been confusing having both crashed for the record keepers.
    Regards
    Tom .
     
  20. alieneyes

    alieneyes Senior Member

    No. 101 Squadron put up 21 aircraft for this raid, 19 were ABC-equipped. Three aircraft FTR, F/Lt Rowland, F/Sgt Bruce and P/O Slater (crew of nine). 1 survivor out of 25 airmen.

    J20110 F/Lt Bernard Wilhelm Wilkesman, DFC (US), RCAF survived the war, retiring abroad 29 January 1946. Married Vera Hopkins at Chard in June 1949.

    The citation for his DFC (courtesy Hugh Halliday's Honours and Awards database):

    For extraordinary achievement during the Normandy campaign while participating in bombing attacks on some of the most heavily defended targets in Germany. Acting Flight Lieutenant Wilkesman has displayed outstanding ability as a Special Duties Operator and Signals Leader. His courage and devotion to duty reflect highest credit upon himself and the Armed Forces of his country.
     
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