Lancaster JB600
460 SQUADRON RAAF

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Aircraft code: AR-Q

Date: 9/10 April 1944

Mission: Mining in Baltic off Danzig.

Crash Site: Torrild, east part of Jutland.

Crew:

P/O Robert William Burke DFC * RAAF Pilot KIA
F/Sgt James Lennox Brooks RAAF KIA
F/Sgt Paul Stuart Fleming RAAF KIA
P/O Andrew Henry RAAF KIA
F/Sgt John Stanley Hosier DFM RAAF KIA
Sgt E. H. Stedmann RAF KIA
F/Sgt Sydney William Cooper ? POW

Remarks: JB600 was attacked by a nightfighter while over the Kattegat. After a fierce battle the Lancaster started burning. Just before crashing one wing broke off. One of the Gunners F/Sgt Cooper managed to escape by parachute. He was captured near the crash site. The rest of the crew was buried at the Esbjerg Cemetery on 15 April 1944.

 

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JB600 near Torrild April 10th 1944.

 

* P-O R.W. Burke, DFC, 420438
He initially served with 625 Squadron RAF before joining 460 Squadron RAAF.  He was a shop assistant in Sydney, New South Wales, Australia before the war.  He was born in Newtown, NSW, Australia on 12 Feb 1922and was killed in action on 10 April 1944.

The following is an excerpt from "Air War Against Germany & Italy 1939 - 1943" by John Herington:-

"When the February (1944) moon period was over, the largest force yet sent against the German capital was routed across the North Sea and down through the Baltic.  A very meticulous timetable was observed by all aircraft and most Australians spent the time on the long seas courses ensuring that they were correctly positioned.  Some air opposition was met between the Baltic coast and Berlin, but the stream arrived in good order and completed its task within thirty-eight minutes, a rate better than one aircraft every three seconds.  One Lancaster fell out of the stream when damaged by two fighters before reaching the target, but its pilot, Warrant Officer Burke, claimed that his gunners shot down one Ju-88 and damaged an Me-110.  He successfully jettisoned his bombs near Rostock and returned on three engines."

 

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This page first produced 10 January 1998

This page last updated 08 December 2017