28.08.1942 No. 401 Squadron Spitfire IXb BR628 Fl/Lt. Whitham DFC
Operation: Circus 210
Date: 28th August 1942 (Friday)
Unit: 401 Squadron
Type: Spitfire IXb
Base: RAF Biggin Hill
Location: Near Amiens, France
Pilot: Fl/Lt. James Whitham DFC. J/15281 RCAF Age 23. Killed
We are extremely grateful to François Dutil (438 Squadron Archivist) for supplying photographs and information to Aircrew Remembered in October 2017. All photographs shown within this page are available to relatives at a higher resolution (as are most of those named within this page) - courtesy of François.
REASON FOR LOSS:
Circus 210 - the squadron were detailed to supply an escort to 12 Fortresses enrolee to bomb Meaute in France. They encountered opposition from Luftwaffe fighters over Amiens and engaged at 13:30 hrs.
It is thought probable that he was shot down during this encounter - JG2 placed a claim for him.
Another Spitfire was also hit on this operation:
Spitfire IXb BS180 Flown by Fl/Sgt. Andrew Lloyd Sinclair J/17656 RCAF - he managed to return to base with the aircraft suffering category B damage. Read more here.
Above L-R: Sgt. 'Tuck' Tucker, Fl/Lt. 'Jeep' Neal, Fl/Lt. Jim Tyre, Sgt. Hugh Pope, F/O. Don Blakeslee, Sgt. MacLennan DFM. Front kneeling: P/O. Jim Witham DFC.
Above L-R: Fl/Sgt. Jim Whitham, Fl/Sgt. Deane Macdonald (killed on the 30th November 1943), Fl/Lt. Hugh Merritt, P/O. George F. Newton, Fl/Sgt. Gerry Denancrede.
Above left: Jim Whitham. Right: Jim Whitham with P/O. Gerald Bickle Whitney J/15189 RCAF from Fort Worth, Texas USA. (Killed 28th April 1942)
Fl/Lt. James Whitham DFC. St. Pierre Cemetery, Amiens. Plot 1. Row B. Grave 12. Son of Charles and Lilian Whitham and husband of Margaret Craig Whitham, of Ottawa, Ontario, Canada.
Researched and dedicated to the relatives of this pilot with thanks to Francois Dutil, also to Len for the grave photograph. Other sources as quoted below: