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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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Bomber Command Crest
20.03.1944 No. 82 Operational Training Unit Wellington X LN181 KA-Z F/O. Floyd

Operation: Training

Date: 20th March 1944 (Monday)

Unit: No. 82 Operational Training Unit (OTU - 93 Group)

Type: Wellington X

Serial: LN181

Code: KA-Z

Base: RAF Ossington, Nottinghamshire

Location: Yardley Gobion, Northamptonshire

Pilot: F/O. Charles Richard Floyd J/25830 RCAF Age 22. Killed

Nav: F/O. Ronald Frank Calnan J/35111 RCAF Age 25. Killed

Nav: F/O. Ralph Northcliffe Macgillivray J/19367 RCAF Age 23. Killed

Nav: F/O. Daniel Louis Jacobs J/29518 RCAF Age 30. Killed

Air/Bmr: F/O. Melville Lloyd Fullerton J/28902 RCAF Age 20. Killed

W/Op/Air/Gnr: Sgt. Lorne Herbert Johnston R/154789 RCAF Age 20. Killed

Air/Gnr: P/O. Harry Charles Millen C/6073 RCAF Age 36. Killed

Air/Gnr: F/O. William James Mohring J/27960 RCAF Age 21. Killed

REASON FOR LOSS:

Taking off from RAF Ossington in Nottinghamshire at 19:44 hrs on a night navigation cross-country sortie.

They were briefed that the weather forecast was 10/10 cloud at between 1,000 - 1,500 ft. Visibility 8 miles, surface winds to be North West by West 15 mph - gusting to 25 mph. Freezing level was 3,000 ft - 6,000 ft. The Squadron Leader in charge of the training reported that the weather was suitable for this type of flight.

Above: area of loss with insert of pilot, F/O. Charles Lloyd.

During the exercise wireless communications were maintained with the final signal received at 22:44 hrs requesting a QDM which was sent back a QDM of 011 - on track. (QDM - Magnetic bearing to a station)

Shortly after this witnesses observed the Wellington with its engines backfiring and blue flames coming from the port engine.

Above L-R: F/O. Ronald Calnan, F/O. Melville Fullerton, F/O. Daniel Jacobs, P/O. Harry Millen (courtesy Veteran Affairs Canada via Kim LeBlanc)

The aircraft crashed at around 22:48 hrs diving steeply into the ground. The crash site was attended by a fire tender at 23:15 hrs but it found that all the crew were killed instantly but that all the crew's bodies were recovered.

Above: Official Accident Air investigators report.

Burial details:

The crew were buried with full military honours were buried at 15:00 hrs on Saturday the 25th March 1944.

F/O. Charles Richard Floyd. Brookwood Military Cemetery. Grave: 48.A.9. Grave inscription reads: “Lo, One We Loved The Loveliest And The Best Has Drunk His Cup .... And So Crept Silently To Rest”. Son of Dr. Stanley T. Floyd and Nellie Floyd, of Toronto, Ontario, Canada. A total of 170 hours flying hours logged with 42 of these on the Wellington.1

F/O. Ronald Frank Calnan. Brookwood Military Cemetery. Grave: 48.A.5. Grave inscription reads: “In Loving Memory Of A Dutiful Son. Mom And Dad”. Son of Frank Henry and May Gertrude Calnan, of Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada.

F/O. Ralph Northcliffe Macgillivray. Brookwood Military Cemetery. Grave: 48.A.7. Grave inscription reads: “Sincere And True In Heart And Mind Beautiful Memories He Left Behind”. Son of Andrew and Anna Rhoda MacGillivray, of Antigonish, Nova Scotia, Canada.

F/O. Daniel Louis Jacobs. Brookwood Military Cemetery. Grave: 48.B.2. Son of Jack L. Jacobs and Pauline Jacobs.

F/O. Melville Lloyd Fullerton. Brookwood Military Cemetery. Grave: 48.A.8. Grave inscription reads: “Someday We Hope To Meet Him Never To Part Again”. Son of Alexander William and Helen Wray Fullerton, of Toronto, Ontario, Canada.

Sgt. Lorne Herbert Johnston. Brookwood Military Cemetery. Grave: 48.A.20. Grave inscription reads: “Lo, I Am With You Alway, Even To The End”. Son of Robert Herbert and Marjorie Iona Johnston, of Moncton, New Brunswick, Canada.

P/O. Harry Charles Millen. Brookwood Military Cemetery. Grave: 48.B.1. Grave inscription reads: “Let Us Therefore Follow After The Things Which Make For Peace”. Son of Charles Henry and Mary Millen and husband of Hilda Isobel Millen, of Mattawa, Ontario, Canada.

F/O. William James Mohring. Brookwood Military Cemetery. Grave: 48.A.6. Grave inscription reads: “In Loving Memory Of Jim. Love's Greatest Gift, Remembrance. Merle”. Son of William and Nellie Mohring and husband of Merle Doreen Mohring, of Calgary, Alberta. Canada.

We would like to point out that The Bomber Command Museum of Canada has assisted Kim LeBlanc extensively with her research and that some details contained within this page has originated from that.

For further details our thanks to Kim LeBlanc - relative of Sgt. Lorne Herbert Johnston. To Charlie for grave photographs. To the archives of our Fred Paradie RCAF. Phillip Jackson for the memorial plaque. To Kevin of the great Airfield Research Group for photographs on F/O. William James Mohring. Plus the sources as shown below.

KTY - 17.10.2017

Pages of Outstanding Interest
History Airborne Forces •  Soviet Night Witches •  Bomber Command Memories •  Abbreviations •  Gardening Codenames
CWGC: Your Relative's Grave Explained •  USA Flygirls •  Axis Awards Descriptions •  'Lack Of Moral Fibre'
Concept of Colonial Discrimination  •  Unauthorised First Long Range Mustang Attack
Acknowledgements
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', 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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