Remembering Today 18/8/43 Flt Lt:Stanley Mervyn Heard,J/5535,Royal Canadian Air Force 419 Sqdn.

Discussion in 'Canadian' started by CL1, Aug 18, 2017.

  1. CL1

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

    Flight Lieutenant
    Service No:
    Date of Death:
    Royal Canadian Air Force
    419 Sqdn.
    Panel Reference:
    Panel 172.
    Casualty Details

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  2. Peter Clare

    Peter Clare Very Senior Member

    Details of the above loss....

    17-18 August 1943

    419 Squadron
    Halifax II JD158 VR-D
    Op. Peenemunde

    Took off from Middleton St. George at 2127 hours. Crashed in the Baltic in the general area of Stralsund-Gross-Zicker.


    F/O. S M. Heard RCAF +
    Sgt. D M. Macpherson RAAF +
    Sgt. G. Blyth +
    Sgt. G S. Walter RCAF +
    Sgt. P O. McSween RCAF +
    Sgt. J J. Newbon +
    Sgt. D. Thornton RCAF +
    Sgt. J W. Dally RCAF +

    Source - RAF Bomber Command Losses Vol.4 - W R. Chorley

    During the course of 1943 RAF Bomber Command visited Peenemunde on one occasion. 597 aircraft were dispatched with 571 attacking the target (Research Establishment - Crossbow) 1641 tons of HE along with 297 tons of Incendiaries were dropped. 40 aircraft were missing or lost.
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  3. Tricky Dicky

    Tricky Dicky Don'tre member

    Stanley Heard from Saskatchewan, Canada - other files need greater access than I can afford

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  4. Pat Atkins

    Pat Atkins Patron Patron

    There's an account of 419's part in the raid here. The bombers successfully attacked Peenemunde in three waves, 419 Squadron were in the third (and hardest-hit) wave. 12 out of 57 RCAF aircraft despatched were lost, including 3 from 419 Sqdn. The other two were JD458 and JD163, with no survivors. This raid was notable for the first appearance of fighters armed with the upward-firing Schräge Musik armament.

    JD163 (lost over Baltic)
    F/S J. Batterton
    F/S G. Parker
    Sgt A. Dixon
    F/S H. Morris
    F/S L. Powers
    F/S J. Jerome
    Sgt D. Lloyd

    JD458 (5th op, lost over North sea)
    F/S S. Pekin
    F/O P. Spakes
    Sgt J. Gilvary
    Sgt H. Price
    Sgt H. Baker
    Sgt F. Davis
    Sgt E. Ramm

    In passing, the linked account above notes that the Heard crew were not flying "their" Halifax, JB859 known as Thundering Heard; the Canadians obviously liked their nose art - Thundering Heard had a picture of stampeding cattle on its nose, and JD158 (in which the Heard crew were killed) had this rather exotic three-headed dragon apparently:

    Cheers, Pat
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  5. Pat Atkins

    Pat Atkins Patron Patron

    The Australian in the Heard crew, Sgt Macpherson, was flying as 'second-dickie'; for some reason those casualties always seem to have an additional poignancy, somehow. Illogical, but there it is. Since we're talking nationalities, the Pekin crew were all Brits as it happens apart from F/S Pekin (Australian) and Sgt Gilroy (Irish); aircrew have a page here for them which has biographical and burial details, and a photo of Sgt Ramm (aged 21 when he was killed).

    While the causes of these three aircraft losses aren't known the third wave of the raid was subjected to heavy night fighter attacks, and with the introduction of Schräge Musik they had a real edge, so JD158 and JD163 may well have been shot down by them. The fate of the Batterton crew is even less clear, though: they made the long journey back across occupied Europe, and called in to request a navigational fix at 0426 on the 18th August: it was given as 55 57 N 03 02 E which was 20 miles from the coast. And then - nothing.

    RIP all three crews.

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  6. Deacs

    Deacs Well i am from Cumbria. Patron

    F/O. S M. Heard RCAF :poppy:
    Last edited: Aug 18, 2017
  7. Deacs

    Deacs Well i am from Cumbria. Patron

    Casualty enquiry file from Sgt. Gordon Stanley Walter RCAF service file.
    Walter 1.jpg
    Walter 2.jpg
  8. Deacs

    Deacs Well i am from Cumbria. Patron

    Sgt. Peter Oswald. McSween RCAF

    Mcsween headstone.jpg
  9. Deacs

    Deacs Well i am from Cumbria. Patron

    Sgt. David. Thornton RCAF,

    A letter from his mam who was hoping that David was a POW which included a newspaper clipping.
    Thornton 1.jpg
    Thornton 2.jpg

    Thornton 3.jpg
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  10. Deacs

    Deacs Well i am from Cumbria. Patron

    Sgt. James William Dally RCAF
    Dally 1.jpg
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  11. Harry Ree

    Harry Ree Very Senior Member

    The Peenemunde Master Bomber was Group Captain John Searby,an ex Halton Brat who had lost his father on the Somme in 1916.A Sergeant Pilot in 1940,by 1943 he was a Group Captain commanding No 83 Squadron in No 8 Group PFF. Still a Group Captain 10 years later he finished his RAF career as an Air Commodore.

    He was appointed as M.B, a new concept in coordinating attacks on special targets after being assessed in the role on a raid to Turin just before Peenemunde.(I think what turned out as the role of the Master Bomber was undertaken a few months before on the bombing coordination delivered by Guy Gibson above the Mohne Dam which saw its breaching.)

    One result of the Peenemunde raid was the upheaval in the management of the V weapon programme...the Luftwaffe was ousted by the SS and the project moved to the brutality of the hellhole that was Nordhausen,the location of which proved to be beyond Allied intelligence.

    I remember a few years ago there was a feature on TV of a Nottingham family who were tracing a family member's fate when shotdown in the known grave.His Lancaster was thought to have been shotdown and crashed into waters close to the Peenemunde site...I think it was a stretch of water not part of the Baltic
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  12. Harry Ree

    Harry Ree Very Senior Member

    I wonder if F/O Heard has been remembered by the one of the many Canadian lakes in his name....a policy by the Canadian government of naming lakes after their war dead.

    I would think that there must be a list of those so remembered.
  13. John Dickens

    John Dickens New Member

    This is my dad’s cousin - my grandmother was Avis Dally, brother of James’ father also called James.
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  14. John Dickens

    John Dickens New Member


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