Date: 03rd October 1940 (Thursday)
Unit: No. 600 Squadron (motto: Praeter sescentos - More than six hundred').11 Group
Type: Blenheim IVF
Base: RAF Redhill, Surrey
Location: Broadstone Warren, Forest Row, Sussex
Pilot: P/O. Colin Anthony Hobson 42566 RAF Age 21. Killed.
Obs: AC.2. Charles Frederick Cooper 1003497 RAFVR Age 20. Killed
W/Op/Air/Gnr: Sgt. David Ernest Hughes NZ/40920 RNZAF Age 27. Killed
REASON FOR LOSS:
Taking off at 03:25 hrs on an operational patrol. After reading the patrol line the pilot called stating that an engine was not running well but that he would contuse with the patrol.
At 03:45 hrs he reported the the engine had failed and he was returning to base. Ten minutes later in heavy rain the aircraft ploughed through some tree tops on high ground with the Blenheim crashing at location shown. Just 13 miles from their base. All three crew lost their lives.
P/O. Colin Anthony Hobson. Banstead Churchyard (All Saints). West of Church. Born on the 25th October 1918 at Monxton. Awarded his wings on the 03rd November 1939. Son of George Colin and Mary Victoria Hobson, of Monxton, Hampshire. Grave inscription: 'Son Of May & Colin Hobson Brother Of Olive & Guy. Never Was So Much Owed By So Many To So Few - Churchill'.
AC.2. Charles Frederick Cooper. Heath Town Churchyard (Holy Trinity). Old ground. Row 38. Grave 63. Born on 28th January 1920, worked in a Grocers prior to service. Enlisted in June 1940. Son of Enoch and Amelia Cooper, of Heath Town, Wolverhampton. Grave inscription: 'Happy And Smiling Always Content Loved And Respected Wherever He Went'.
Sgt. David Ernest Hughes. Whyteleafe Churchyard (St Luke). Row G. Grave 32. Born on the 20th October 1912 at Dunedin. A Farmer on his fathers farm at Riverlea prior to service. Enlisted at Levin on the 09th April 1940. Joined 600 squadron on the 21st September from 50 operational Training Unit.Awarded air gunners badge and promoted to sergeant on the 27th May 1940. Son of David Alfred Hughes, and of Jimima Jane Hughes (nee Watson), of Kaponga, Taranaki, New Zealand. A total of 29 flying hours logged and completed 3 operational sorties.
Researched and dedicated to the relatives of this pilot with thanks to Jenifer Lemaire and to the extensive research by Errol Martyn and his publications: “For Your Tomorrow Vols. 1-3”, Auckland Library Heritage Collection, AWMM, Weekly News of New Zealand, other sources as quoted below: