18/19.07.1944 No. 49 Squadron Lancaster III ND684 EA-V F/O. William D. Appleyard
Date: 18/19th July 1944 (Tuesday/Wednesday)
Unit: No. 49 Squadron
Type: Lancaster III
Base: RAF Fiskerton, Lincolnshire.
Location: Romilly-Sur-Seine, France
Pilot: F/O. William David Appleyard AUS/415716 RAAF. Age 22. Killed
Fl/Eng: P/O. Howard Ernest Turner 188991 RAFVR Age 24. Killed
Nav: Fl/Sgt. Dennis William Blumfield 1393228 RAFVR Age 21. Killed
Air/Bmr: Fl/Sgt. George Walter Jameson 1280638 RAFVR Age 31. Killed
W/Op/Air/Gnr: Fl/Sgt. Geoffrey John Perry 1312857 RAFVR Age 21. Killed
Air/Gnr: P/O. Everett Morley Matheson J/88476 RCAF Age 21. Killed
Air/Gnr: Sgt. Robert Frederick Henry Viollet 1226876 RAFVR Age 24. Killed
REASON FOR LOSS:
Taking part on operations to bomb the railway junctions at Revigny and Aulnoye in France, Lancaster took off at 22:49 hrs from RAF Fiskerton in Lincolnshire. 253 Lancaster with 10 pathfinder Mosquitoes taking part.
Reports state that both targets were hit with the railway lines to the front severed. Huge losses were taken by Bomber Command, with 24 Lancasters shot down by the intensive night fighter activity during the operation.
Crew of Lancaster ND684: Large: P/O. Matheson, L-R Top: F/O. Appleyard, Fl/Sgt. Blumfield, Fl/Sgt. Perry. L-R lower: Fl/Sgt. Jameson, P/O. Turner, Sgt. Viollet (courtesy Chris Beare)
49 Squadron suffered terrible losses on this operation. 3 other Lancaster crews were lost, the others:
Lancaster III JB178 EA-U Flown by 28 year old F/O. William Raeburn Green D.F.C. from Pokeno, New Zealand, killed with 6 other crew.
Lancaster III JB473 EA-W Flown by Canadian, F/O. R.M. Deacon R.C.A.F. P.o.W. - 5 others evading capture with 1 other killed.
Lancaster III PB231 EA-H Flown by 26 year old F/O. Clifford Lacy, from Layton, Blackpool, Lancashire, killed with 4 other crew, 2 taken P.o.W.
Left: Fw. Reinhard Kollak of 8.NJG4
Lancaster ND684 listed as 'probably' shot down by the nightfighter ace Ofw. Renhard Kollak (1) of 8./NJG4, with interception timed at 01.30 hrs at 2.800 Mts. The aircraft crashing at Romilly-Sur-Seine, France.
(1) Fw. Reinhard Kollak, pictured here, was already an ace at this time with 46 abschüsse. He survived the war with a total of 49 kills. See Kracker Luftwaffe Archive on this site.
F/O. William David Appleyard. Granges-Sur-Aube Churchyard. Coll. Grave 3. Son of Albert John and Jessie Margaret Appleyard, of Claremont, Western Australia.
P/O. Howard Ernest Turner. Granges-Sur-Aube Churchyard. Coll. Grave 3. Son of A. Turner, and of Edith Turner, of Loose, Kent, England.
Fl/Sgt. Dennis William Blumfield. Granges-Sur-Aube Churchyard. Coll. Grave 3. Son of William Smith Blumfield, and of Margaret Elizabeth Blumfield (nee Cameron), of Kingsbury, London, England.
Fl/Sgt. George Walter Jameson. Granges-Sur-Aube Churchyard. Coll. Grave 3. Son of Arthur Ollive Jameson and Eliza Jane Jameson, of New Malden. Surrey, England.
Fl/Sgt. Geoffrey John Perry. Granges-Sur-Aube Churchyard. Coll. Grave 3. Son of Frederick and Edith Bessie Perry, husband of Irene Lilian Perry, of Tottenham, England.
P/O. Everett Morley Matheson. Granges-Sur-Aube Churchyard. Grave 2. Son of Earl E. Matheson and Marion Matheson, of Vancouver British Columbia. Canada.
Sgt. Robert Frederick Henry Viollet. Granges-Sur-Aube Churchyard. Grave 1. Son of Frederick and Ellen Viollet, of Reigate, Surrey, England.
Researched and dedicated to the relatives of this crew with thanks to Chris Beare for crew photographs (Chris has spent many hours researching the loss and has visited the crash site), Bill Chorley - 'Bomber Command Losses Vol's. 1-9, plus ongoing revisions', Dr. Theo E.W. Boiten and Mr. Roderick J. Mackenzie - 'Nightfighter War Diaries Vol's. 1 and 2', Martin Middlebrook and Chris Everitt - 'Bomber Command War Diaries', Commonwealth War Graves Commission. Tom Kracker - 'Kracker Luftwaffe Archives'. Aircrew Remembered own Archives. Further details can also be found on the well researched, 49 Squadron website.