12/13.06.1943 No. 408 Squadron Halifax II JB790 EQ-V Fl/Lt. Large
Date: 12/13th June 1943 (Saturday/Sunday)
Unit: 408 Squadron (Goose)
Type: Halifax II
Base: RAF Leeming, Yorkshire
Location: North West of Burgsteinfurt, Germany
Pilot: Fl/Lt. George Russell Large J/9688 RCAF Age 25. PoW No: 1502. Camp: Stalag Luft Sagan and Belaria (1)
Fl/Eng: Sgt. Thomas Leith-Ross 1487121 RAFVR Age 19. Killed
Nav: Sgt. Albert Frederick Rayment R/121901 RCAF PoW No: 230 Camp: Stalag Lemsdorf
Air/Bmr: F/O. Francis Lloyd Milburn J/20816 RCAF Age 23. Killed (2)
W/Op/Air/Gnr: Sgt. Norman Bainblatt R/133514 RCAF PoW No: 25 Camp: Stalag Lemsdorf
Air/Gnr: Sgt. Joseph Elland Forest R/96860 RCAF PoW No: 30 Camp: Stalag Luft Sagan and Belaria
Air/Gnr: Sgt. David Hester Hutchinson R/137936 RCAF PoW No: 174 Camp: Stalag Lemsdorf
REASON FOR LOSS:
Took off at 23:39hrs. from RAF Leeming, Yorkshire to join a massive attack of 503 aircraft on Bochum. Weather conditions were favourable (small amounts of cloud, moderate visibility and a half moon). Some 24 aircraft failed to return home.
Halifax JB790 was shot down by Hptm. Egmont Prinz zur Lippe Weissenfeld of III./NJG1 at 01.22 at 15,000 ft over Sellen, 3 km North West of Burgsteinfurt. He was killed later in the war on 12th March 1944 along with his crew in the Belgian Ardennes during a transit flight in bad weather. Credited with 49 kills.
We have recently been contacted by the daughter of the pilot, Fl/Lt. Large, Mrs. Marilyn P. Tompkins. She wrote:
"Sadly my mother never told me any details having remarried when I was 3, but I did "find" lots of family members on a visit in the 80's and retain good contact with them. My 2 sons also have some contact.
I think he was born in Winnipeg and grew up in Makaroff, Manitoba, he had completed 2 years in the agriculture faculty at the university of Manitoba. He joined the R.C.A.F. arriving in england October 1942. My father met and married Isabelle Kathleen Primevere Page in Woodhall Spa, Lincolnshire, where his officer's mess was the Petwood Hotel, which is now much visited for it's connection with the Dambusters squadron.
Canadians from Manitoba Canada, Fl/Lt. George Russell Large is shown on this remarkable photograph. middle row, far right. (courtesy Bill Anderson - see foot of page for full description)Qualified as a first pilot on 13th May 1943, Bochum was only his 4th operational flight. I have a wonderful copy of a diary which Sq/Ldr. John E. Mahoney R.C.A.F. kept while he was in Stalag Luft 3 alongside my father. He continued it during the march to Lubeck and up to such time as they arrived home. He describes how my father was taken by ambulance from the march to Hamburg with a suspected strangulated hernia, not to be seen again.
As you record, his grave is at Adagem and there is a lake named after him in Manitoba, for which I have a commemoration certificate. I was in Woodhall Spa today, living only 30 minutes away near Lincoln. His surviving sister, Helen McGregor lives in Brandon, Manitoba, and his surviving brother John Large lives in Victoria."
Mrs. Marilyn P. Tompkins
It is likely that due to the recent visit of relatives to the crash site and the great assistance provided by German researchers further information may well be added to this and other articles.
(1) PoW - Sadly on the 13th April during the 'Long March'' he reported sick and then taken to a German hospital. He died despite treatment on the 18th April 1945. The cause of death is listed as a strangulated hernia with weakness of the circulatory system.
Amazing photographs recently supplied to relatives on a visit to the crash site. (courtesy Hazel Ross-Hughes)
Scene of the crash site 2010. (courtesy Hazel Ross-Hughes)
Hazel Ross-Hughes (left) with eye witness of the crash Herr Werdeling.
Left: Police report - translation shown below (courtesy Hazel Ross-Hughes) Right: Egmont Prinz zur Lippe Weissenfeld
Police report (Kindly translated by Rüdiger Kaufmann - a great researcher based in Germany):
Burgsteinfurt, the 13th of June 1943
Concerns: Shooting down of an enemy aircraft
'On 13.6.43, at about 13.30 hrs an enemy airplane was shot down over the city area. This plane crashed near the House side Werding at Stellen No. 101 and burned almost completely out.
Our Fire fighters came immediately to the crash site and fought the fire. Also the Police, Gendamerie, Stadtwacht and Landwacht (Local organisations in City and Country like the Volkssturm in1945) were used for a barrier and searching for jumped out flyers. The airplane dropped their bombs shortly before the crash at farmland near Veltrup in the grounds of farmer Schulze-Veltrup. One of these bombs exploded near the high voltage power line (50000 and 10000 Volts) and cut them out of service. Apart from this there was a unexploded LB30 and other unexploded Bombs at the ground near the Power line.
The VEW (Electricity Company) is still waiting with there until all bombs are eliminated. The bomb squad from Münster was informed immediately. The dangerous area is protected by a guard of the Stadtwacht and signs.
Three enemy flyers were captured at the city area of Emsdetten. A further flyer landed with parachute at the Bauernschaft (area) Hollich near the House side of farmer Tetenborg. Some flyers still not captured. Additionally one flyer was burned in the plane. One dead flyer was found in the woods between Werdeling and Palstring at Stellen.
There must be 7 flyers in this plane. Therefore two flyers are missing. The local Police stations at Borghorst, Neuenkirchen and Wettringen were asked for support. Alerts to the authorities were made by Police officer Husken from Sch. D. R. (Schutzpolizei des Reiches).
Master of the Schutzpolizei
F/O. Milburn Commemorative headstone in Canada
(1) Large Lake in Manitoba is named after Fl/Lt. Large
(2) Milburn Lake in Manitoba is named after F/O Milburn
Fl/Lt. Thomas Leith-Ross. Reichswald Forest Cemetery. 24.D.16. Son of James Alexander and Margaret, of Carclinty, Co. Antrim, Northern Ireland. Grave inscription: 'He Died That We Might Live. Ever In Fond Remembrance. Carclinty, N. Ireland'.
F/O. Francis Lloyd Milburn. Reichswald Forest Cemetery. 24.D.15. Son of Frank and Bena Milburn, of St. Vital, Manitoba, Canada. Grave inscription: 'Our Memories Of Him Are Keepsakes With Which We Will Never Part'.
Fl/Lt. George Russell Large. Adegem War Cemetery. X1.H.4. Son of Alexander Russell Large, and of Florence Lillian Large, of Makaroff, Manitoba, Canada, husband of Isabelle Kathleen Large. Grave inscription: 'Greater Love Hath No Man Than This, That He Lay Down His Life For His Country'.
O.R.B. Copy and photo of Sgt. Thomas Leith-Ross kindly supplied to Aircrew Remembered by his niece, Hazel Ross-Hughes. Mrs. Marilyn Primevere Tompkins for the photo of her father, Fl/Lt. George Russell Large and other information. Dave Champion for details. With thanks to the following for additional details, Bill Chorley - "Bomber Command Losses Vol 3", Dr. Theo E.W. Boiten and Mr. Roderick J. Mackenzie - 'Nightfighter War Diaries Vol's. 1 and 2', Martin Middlebrook "Bomber Command War Diaries". The Commonwealth War Graves Commission. Tom Kracker - 'Kracker Luftwaffe Archives'.
From Top to bottom and left to right: The old Camphill Chief Mr Friedemann Liebeck his wife Lieselotte, Hermann Werdeling and Hazel Ross
Hermann und Irmgard Werdeling, Regina Hemker -Möllering -Deputy Mayor of Steinfurt
Mr. Reinhard Berger-chief of Camphill, Mrs . Leonie Frenkert-Ghazi - Organised the meeting on the Camphill Farm.
PoW Photograph details: (details courtesy Dave Champion - December 2019)
(1) P/O. Don MacDonald PoW No: 115 - sole survivor of 21 Squadron, Blenheim IV L9746. Shot down at St-Aubin-sur-Scie, France 11th June 1940.
(2) P/O. Hartley Frank Purvis J/19593 PoW No: 4237, of Holland - one of five taken PoW with the two rear gunners killed of 427 Squadron, Halifax III LV968 ZL-L. Suffered severe icing with all loss of control crew forced to bale out. East of Saarbrucken 24/25th April 1944.
(3) F/O. Gordon William Horace Venables J/24233, of Winnipeg PoW No. 5129 - one of three taken PoW, with four crew killed of 467 Squadron, Lancaster III DV240 PO-D. Shot down at Westum, 30/31st March 1944.
(4) P/O. Robert Allan Anderson R/191468, of Brandon PoW No. 4176 - one of two survivors taken PoW, with three missing, 2 killed of 420 Squadron, Halifax III LW692 PT-V. Hit by A/A fire, crashing at Scie River, Pourville, Dieppe, France 20/21st April 1944.
(5) P/O. John Sidney Acheson J/13840, of Winnipeg PoW No. 965 - sole survivor, six crew killed of 408 Squadron, Halifax II HR654 EQ-R. Shot down at Grossolt, 29/30th March 1943.
(6) P/O. John Thomson Glover 41843, Canadian in the RAF, of Winnipeg PoW No. 510 - one of five survivors taken PoW of 102 Squadron Whitley V N1376 DY-O. Hit by A/A fire and abandoned over Holland on 19/20th May 1940.
(7) F/O. Douglas Malcolm King J/24073, of Winnipeg PoW No. 4462 - one of three survivors taken PoW, with four others killed of 431 Squadron, Halifax III LK842 SE-N. Shot down over Belgium, 27/28th April 1944.
(8) P/O. James Plant MiD 40258, PoW No. 1126 Canadian in the RAF, Born Winnipeg, 1914, enlisted RAF 1937. MiD awarded for PoW escapade (dressed as a German) - one of five survivors taken PoW of 58 Squadron Whitley V N1442 GE-N. Aircraft lost on operation to Essen 20/21st June 1940.
(9) Charles Witcher R/59027 854th Street, Brandon, Manitoba. Born 11th August 1918 Bethany, Manitoba Died January 18th 2008, in Vancouver. R/59027 854th Street, Brandon, Manitoba. Born 11th August 1918 Bethany, Manitoba Died January 18th 2008, in Vancouver. No further details found.
(10) P/O. Kenneth Arthur Banks J/22091, of St. James PoW No. 2349 - one of three survivors taken PoW, four others killed 15 Squadron, Stirling III EF427 LS-A. Hit by A/A fire and crashing at Mannheim, 30/31st July 1943.
(11) Hubert Percival Clark 42106, DFC Canadian in the RAF, PoW No. 157, born Moose Jaw, SK, 1918. raised in Brandon, Manitoba, enlisted RAF 1939. No. 44 Sqn, shot down 14 August 1940, died Winnipeg 30 November 1987
(12) P/O. Edward Eggertson J/10894, of Winnipeg PoW No. 732 - one of six survivors taken PoW, one other killed of 405 Squadron, Halifax II W7763 LQ-C. Shot down and crashing at Prattenburg, Holland on 6/7th October 1942.
(13) P/O. Athol Bury Drummond-Hay J/21465, of Winnipeg PoW No. 1493 - one of two survivors taken PoW, three others killed of 429 Squadron Wellington X HF457. Shot down and crashing at Houthalen, Belgium on 22/23rd June 1943.
(14) Fl/Lt. Theodor Ross Kipp J/3514 PoW No. 3667 - one of six survivors taken PoW of 405 Squadron Wellington II W5483 LQ-J. Lost on an operation to Berlin 02/03rd August 1941. Of 2 Roselyn Place, Winnipeg.
(15) F/O. James William Murphy J/9664 was from Owen Sound, Ontario PoW No. 773 - one of five survivors taken PoW, three others killed of 10 Squadron, Halifax II W1058 ZA-S. Crashing at Duisdorf on 15/16th October 1942.
(16) W/O. George Horner Groves 652612, of Pine Falls, Canadian in the RAF PoW No. 24791 - one of four survivors taken PoW, two others killed of 12 Squadron Wellington Z8370 PH-Y. Shot down over Terschelling, Holland on 19/20th January 1942.
(17) P/O. Jean Baptiste Roger Joseph Camille Teillet J/7218, of St Boniface PoW No. 696 - one of five survivors taken PoW, two others killed of 35 Squadron, Halifax II W7765 TL-T. Shot down and crashing at St-Hilaire-au-Temple on 24/25th August 1942. Understood to have later served with Canadian government.
(18) F/O. William Gordon James Richardson J/17693, of Winnipeg PoW No. 2024 - one of three survivors taken PoW of 408 Squadron, Halifax II DT749 EQ-O. Shot down and crashing at Neumunster on 27/28th July 1943.
(19) Wilson Samuel Hunter J/17545, of Winnipeg PoW No. 1073.
(20) F/O. Leslie Stevens J/22843, of Rosser PoW No. 3510 - one of two survivors taken PoW, five others killed of 97 Squadron, Lancaster III ND478 OF-Q. Shot down and crashing at Faborg on 15/16th February 1944.
(21) F/O. George Russell Large J/9688, of Makaroff PoW No. 1502 - one of five survivors taken PoW, two others killed of 408 Squadron, Halifax II JB790 EQ-V. Shot down and crashing at Sellen on 12/13th June 1943.
(22) F/O. George Leslie Sinclair 41748, DFC, born St. Mary, Kent, home in Bagot PoW No. 2925 - pilot 3 Squadron Typhoon Ib JP755, Shot down by A/A fire at Overflakkee, Netherlands, 4th October 1943
(23) P/O. Douglas Scott McKay Sangster J/87047, of Hensall PoW No. 659 - one of six survivors taken PoW, two others killed of 419 Squadron, Lancaster X KB711 VR-C. Shot down and crashing at Gent-Rabot on 01/02nd May 1944.
(24) Alfred Neil Briggs J/15116, of Winnipeg PoW No. 544 Born 22nd Apr 1916, Died 2nd September 2000. Observer Coastal Command - 404 Squadron Z6245 26th May 1942.
(25) P/O. Stanley Gordon King J/7911, of Winnipeg PoW No. 290 - one of two survivors taken PoW, three others killed of 11 O.T.U. Wellington Ic R1078 TX-Q. Shot down and crashed near Rheine on 25/26th June 1942.
(26) Douglas Roseberry Thomson C/3555 of Winnipeg PoW No. 2676.
(27) Thomas Earl Jackson J/16939, of Prince Albert PoW No. 1267 - one of seven survivors taken PoW, one being killed of 419 Squadron Halifax II JB912 VR-B, shot down crashed south west of Stettin on 20/21st April 1943.
(28) Sq/Ldr. John Robert Beggs J/4422, of Winnipeg PoW No. 1775 - one of six survivors taken PoW, one other killed of 428 Squadron Halifax V LK969 NA-G. Shot down and crashing over Frankfurt on 25/26th November 1943.