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[103 Squadron RAF]
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Sgt Colin Evan Bayliss RAAF and crew

103 Squadron Bayliss and crew 1

  Colin Bayliss was born in August 1921 in Perth, Western Australia and joined the RAAF at the age of 19. He trained as a pilot and was eventually posted to 103 Sq in the summer of 1942 with his crew where he flew operations on Halifaxes and Lancasters until being shot down on the night of the 21/22nd Dec 1942 during a raid on Munich.

  Bayliss Tour

  15-Oct-42 - Cologne - Halifax - BB223 - Sgt CE Bayliss
24-Oct-42 - Milan - Halifax - DT506 - Sgt CE Bayliss - ER
22-Nov-42 - Stuttgart - Lancaster - W4364- Sgt CE Bayliss
06-Dec-42 - Mannheim - Lancaster - W4338 - Sgt CE Bayliss
08-Dec-42 - Helsingborg/Kullen Sound - Lancaster - W4364 - Sgt CE Bayliss
09-Dec-42 - Turin - Lancaster- W4788 - Sgt CE Bayliss
20-Dec-42 - Duisburg - Lancaster - W4820 - Sgt CE Bayliss
21-Dec-42 - Munich - Lancaster - W4820 - Sgt CE Bayliss - FTR

  Colin's Lancaster was attacked by a night fighter and exploded. He was thrown clear by the explosion and survived, landing by parachute in the French countryside.

  

21/12/1942

Munich

W4820

Sgt

CE

Bayliss

 

 

RAAF

POW

21/12/1942

Munich

W4820

Sgt

GG

Nichols

21

Haverfordwest, Pembrokeshire.

RAFVR

K

21/12/1942

Munich

W4820

F/S

JM

Jefferies

23

Wynnum, Queensland, Australia.

RAAF

K

21/12/1942

Munich

W4820

P/O

IGA

Faulk

29

Malvern, Worcestershire

RAFVR

K

21/12/1942

Munich

W4820

F/S

RI

Robb

23

Canterbury, Victoria, Australia

RAAF

K

21/12/1942

Munich

W4820

Sgt

A

Jeffreys

21

Thornton, Blackpool, Lancashire

RAFVR

K

21/12/1942

Munich

W4820

Sgt

GH

Kitchen

 

Leeds, Yorkshire.

RAFVR

K

  The 6 members of his crew are all buried at Vavincourt Communal Cemetery, Meuse, France. With the help of some courageous French civilians he was able to evade but was eventually captured and spent the rest of the war as a POW.

  42 - 103 Sq - Bayliss crew graves

  Post war he studied medicine in Adelaide, qualifying in 1951 and returned to Western Australia as a resident medical officer at Fremantle Hospital followed by 13 years as a GP in Bunbury.

  Colin was later to specialise in rheumatology during a 2 year stint in Edinburgh and this specialisation culminated in his rise to head of the Royal Perth Hospital Rheumatic Diseases Department, a post which he held until he retired. He was able to maintain contact and later visit the French families who had helped him whilst he was on the run in France. He was pre deceased by his wife Janet, a Clinical Psycologist. David Fell

  John Keith Douglas DFC AFCJ K Douglas investiture - 103 Sqn

  F/L J. K. Douglas with his uncle and aunt, Dr and Mrs Randolph Douglas of Greenock Scotland, pictured outside Buckingham Palace after being presented with the DFC.

  One of the brightest young stars of the RAAF. W/C John Keith Douglas, DFC, AFC was born in Tamworth, NSW, Australia the son of a local doctor of Scottish descent. Douglas was one of the RAAF's outstanding leaders, having seen extensive service with 103 and 166 Squadrons. Whilst with 103 Sqn he completed 26 ops from the 28th August 1942 to the 28th January 1943 - 12 on Halifaxes and 14 on Lancasters. John and his crew were screened at this time.

  He became OC 460 Sq, RAAF in early 1944.  Aged just 22, he became the youngest Australian squadron commander and one of the youngest in Bomber Command.

  In October 1944 he was posted to command 467 Sq RAAF, again flying Lancasters. He was awarded the DFC in 1943 and the AFC in 1944. Douglas was shot down and killed near Munster, Germany, after attacking the Dortmund-Ems canal on 8 Feb 1945. He is buried at Reichswald Forest War Cemetery, near Kleve in Germany. Photo courtesy of Australian War Memorial Archive. David Fell

  Ken Winchester DFC RAFVR – 103 Sqn

  

103 Squadron Winchester

Kenneth Frederick John Winchester ( pictured to the right of Ken Wallis ) was a pilot with 103 Squadron. He was son of Percy Talbot Winchester and Leonora Winchesters of Battersea, London and husband of Madge Mary Winchester, of Battersea.

  I know very little about him other than he flew a number of ops as co-pilot with his pal |Ken Wallis. He was Ken Wallis’ best man at his wedding. Ken Winchester was made captain in April 42 and completed 14 ops being lost on his 15th. He must have flown about 10 as a co-pilot I reckon he had done around 25. He was awarded a DFC which was Gazetted 21st Aug 1942.

  As captain of his own crew Ken completed 7 ops on Wellingtons and 7 on Halifaxes.

  His loss must have been keenly felt by the Squadron as he was one of the few experienced pilots they had at this time Obviously destined for bigger things but sadly that was not to be.

  

15/10/1942

Cologne

W7850

F/L

KFJ

Winchester

25

Battersea, London

RAFVR

K

15/10/1942

Cologne

W7850

Sgt

HL

Pitchforth

22

Leeds, Yorkshire

RAF

K

15/10/1942

Cologne

W7850

Sgt

WH

Whitwham

 

 

 

POW

15/10/1942

Cologne

W7850

Sgt

R

Brooker

25

Shepherds Bush, London.

RAFVR

K

15/10/1942

Cologne

W7850

Sgt

R

Wilson

20

Burnley, Lancashire

RAFVR

K

15/10/1942

Cologne

W7850

Sgt

NR

Sedgwick

22

Newcastle-on-Tyne

RAFVR

K

15/10/1942

Cologne

W7850

Sgt

BW

Vaughan

35

 

RAFVR

K

  Sgt Bernard William Vaughan DFM RAFVR

  Bernard William Vaughan ( mentioned above ) was 35 years of age at the time of his death and not 43 as shown on the CWGR. However 35 is still old for aircrew duties. Bernard was born in 1907 in Kingston-on-Thames and later lived in Margate with his parents and 3 siblings.

  Sadly his father died in 1912 and his mother in 1916. As a young man he worked in an office in Birmingham and then went to Australia. He later returned to England and settled in the Birmingham area. At this time he married his wife Elizabeth in 1932 and they had 2 children - Marjorie Elizabeth and Ian Frederic. Tragically his wife and children were killed in bombing in December 1940. Also his brother Reginald was killed a year later. Reginald was a commissioned air gunner with 144 Squadron and had been awarded a DFC.

  It is not clear at what stage Bernard joined the RAF. By October 1942 he was a very experienced air gunner having been on ops since early 1942 and had regularly flown with P/O J F Brookes plus a few others. By the time he was killed he must have been approaching the end of his tour. Bernard was awarded a DFM which was gazetted on the 6th November 1942.

  David Fell - I had a photo of Sgt Vaughan but it has gone missing. I will put it on when it turns up.

  P/O Harry B Smith RAFVR103 Squadron Smith

  Harry Smith ( pictured left ) was a Yorkshire man and husband of Mary of Cross Gates Leeds. He was posted to 103 Sqn in the spring of 1942 as a Sgt pilot and completed 21 sorties ( including 2 Early Returns ) being shot down on his 22nd.

  He graduated to full captain of his own crew and flew 5 ops on Wellingtons from the 3rd June 1942 to the 23rd June 1942. 103 Sqn converted to Halifaxes at this time and he flew 10 ops in that type from the 16th August 1942 to the 24th October 1942.  103 Sqn changed aircraft again to Lancasters at this point and Harry, now a Pilot Officer converted to the new type. He completed 6 ops on Lancasters and was shot down on the 7th.

  He was the only 103 Sqn pilot who had flown all 3 types of heavy bombers on operations during that period.

  The final operation was a strange duty being the only 103 Sqn crew tasked for this mining operation that night. Bomber Command sent 50 aircraft to lay mines in the sea around occupied Europe and the only one lost was this crew. It is thought to be a night fighter victim

  This crew was one of the most experienced crews left on the Squadron at that time and their loss was no doubt another serious blow to all at Elsham Wolds

17/12/1942

Baltic - Mining

W4786

P/O

HB

Smith

27

Cross Gates, Yorks.

17/12/1942

Baltic - Mining

W4786

Sgt

FR

Collins

 

 

17/12/1942

Baltic - Mining

W4786

F/O

ST

Hewitt

 

 

17/12/1942

Baltic - Mining

W4786

Sgt

GT

Canterbury

22

Shrewsbury, Shropshire.

17/12/1942

Baltic - Mining

W4786

Sgt

N

Frater

 

 

17/12/1942

Baltic - Mining

W4786

Sgt

JA

Hollingsworth

34

Long Branch, Ontario, Canada

17/12/1942

Baltic - Mining

W4786

Sgt

AD

MacDonald

 

 

The crew rest in the Aabenraa Cemetery. David Fell

F/L Ken Berry DFM RAFVR.103 Squadron Berry

  Ken Berry is shown as aged 20 when he was killed in Feb 1944 so when he joined 103 Sqn in Aug 1942 he must have only been just 19. Very young for a pilot. He was another outstanding skipper with the Squadron during the winter of 42/43.

  Ken and his crew completed 28 ops in his first tour from Sept 1942 to the end of January 1943 when he was screened along with the crews of Douglas, Newitt and Cook. 9 of these ops were on Halifaxes and 19 on Lancasters. There were no Early Returns which is interesting. He was awarded a very well deserved DFM at the end of his first tour.

  12th Feb 1943 – DFM Citation:
"This airman has completed many operational missions and has invariably pressed home - his attacks with great determination On one occasion, when attacking Kiel, his aircraft was hit and damaged by anti-aircraft fire Despite this, Sergeant Berry displayed great persistence and bombed his objective successfully On another occasion he displayed commendable skill and initiative during a flight to Turin In a recent attack on Essen, Sergeant Berry pressed home his attack with great spirit although his aircraft was damaged by opposing fire Throughout his operational career, this airman has set a fine example.

  Ken returned to 103 Sqn in Jan 1944 being shot down and killed on the 7th op of his second tour. On the 15 Feb 1944 Ken and his crew took part in a raid on Berlin and were shot down by a night fighter on return near Texel off the coast of Holland.

  

15/02/1944

Berlin

ND363

F/L

K

Berry

20

Walthamstow, Essex.

RAFVR

K

15/02/1944

Berlin

ND363

F/O

K

Wilcock

22

Gorse Hill, Stretford, Lancs.

RAFVR

K

15/02/1944

Berlin

ND363

S/L

HL

Lindo

27

Sligoville, Jamaica,

RCAF

 

15/02/1944

Berlin

ND363

F/S

J

Peacock

19

Westend, Southampton

RAFVR

K

15/02/1944

Berlin

ND363

F/O

KL

Atkins

 

 

RAFVR

K

15/02/1944

Berlin

ND363

W/O

WE

Mitton

23

Manchester.

RAFVR

 

15/02/1944

Berlin

ND363

F/O

JC

Southey

29

Selukwe, Rhodesia.

RAFVR

K

  David Fell - The excellent photo of Ken is courtesy of the Berry family

  Squadron Leader John H "Jake" Kennard RAF - 103 Sqn.

  

103 Squadron Kennard

  Above - 103 Sqdn Flight Commander, Squadron Leader John H "Jake" Kennard RAF, with his wife Joan and "Baby" Kennard pictured at Buckingham Palace. This was the 9th December 1942 on the day of Jake Kennard's DFC investiture.

   Jake Kennard is prominently featured in Don Chalwood's books No Moon Tonight and Journeys Into Night and was very highly thought of by all at Elsham Wolds during the winter of 42/43. He was a pre war RAF regular and there is some suggestion he had flown fighters at some stage. John and his crew completed 27 ops with one early return during their first tour. 13 of these were on Halfaxes and 14 ops on Lancasters. The DFC was an immediate award resulting from a very demanding operation in to Bremen on the 14th Sept 42.

  Citation Distinguished Flying Cross.

  Acting Flight Lieutenant John Herbert KENNARD (40715), Reserve of Air Force Officers, No. 103 Squadron. One night in September, 1942, Flight Lieutenant Kennard was captain of an aircraft detailed to attack Bremen. When about 15 miles from the target the bomber was attacked by an enemy fighter, the fire from which stunned the rear gunner and caused the bomber's aileron controls to jam. Displaying commendable courage and flying skill, Flight Lieutenant Kennard eventually evaded his attacker and flew on to his target which he bombed and photographed. While in the target area his aircraft was hit by fire from the ground defences which caused damage to the port fuel tanks. A serious amount of petrol was lost but despite this and the difficulty of controlling the aircraft, due to the jammed aileron, Flight Lieutenant Kennard reached this country and made a safe landing. His courage and determination to complete his allotted task were worthy of the highest praise.

  Kennard and his crew flew were screened in March 43, just prior to completing their first tour, because of the pressing need for instructors. Along with several members of his first crew he returned to Elsham Wolds in Sept 43 for a second tour. Sadly this tour lasted only four operations and the crew were all lost on their fifth on the night of the 27/28th Sept 43 on a raid to Hanover. They are buried at Hanover War Cemetery.

  

27/09/1943

Hannover

DV221

S/L

JH

Kennard

 

 

RAF

K

27/09/1943

Hannover

DV221

Sgt

JEG

Aston

 

 

RAFVR

K

27/09/1943

Hannover

DV221

F/O

SA

Morey

24

Bendeigh, Victoria, Australia.

RAAF

K

27/09/1943

Hannover

DV221

P/O

RN

Faulkner

22

Southgate, Middlesex.

RAFVR

K

27/09/1943

Hannover

DV221

P/O

TC

Latham

22

Bolby, Yorkshire.

RAF

K

27/09/1943

Hannover

DV221

P/O

A

Harrison

19

Cornwall, Ontario, Canada.

RCAF

K

27/09/1943

Hannover

DV221

Sgt

A

Davidson

23

South Shields, Co. Durham

RAFVR

K

  David Fell - Photo courtesy of Arthur Cook and John Dyer in Devon.

S/L S. H. Fox DFM RAFVR and F/S H J Spiller DFM RAF - 103 Sqn.

103 Squadron Fox and Spiller

Sidney Fox DFM left and Herbert Spiller DFM right

  Sidney Horace Fox was born in 1914 to James Richard and Annie Fox. The family moved to Woking when he was 3. He attended Woking Grammar School and later worked in accounting and banking. I believe he did learn to fly pre war. Sidney joined the RAF at the start of WW2 and volunteered for aircrew training as a bomber pilot. In September 1940 he married Bessie, a Woking girl.

  On 11 February 1941 whilst serving with 83 Sqn Sidney was awarded the DFM for distinguished flying, excellent leadership and devotion to duty whilst over Germany and German occupied territory.

  By 1942 Sidney was posted to 103 Sqn as a F/L and promoted to S/L soon after. Whilst with the Squadron he completed 2 operations and Wellingtons and 7 on Halifaxes being shor down on his 10th op. At that time he was a flight commander and one of he few experienced pilots on the Squadron. This was another grievous blow to the Squadron at an extremely difficult time.

  In his book ‘Ticket To Freedom’, his navigator, Herbert “Dizzy” Spiller described him as ‘the epitome of a bomber captain, keen, pugnacious and overtly fearless... the complete commander’.

  On the evening of 24 October, 27 year old Sidney was Captain aboard Halifax W1188 which took off from Elsham at 18.28. Their target that night was Milan, Italy.

  The aircraft was either intercepted by Luftwaffe night fighters or hit by flak over France. An ‘incandescent missile’ pierced the fuselage and bounced across the navigator's table. The port wing and engine caught fire. As Sidney wrestled with the controls and activated the fire extinguishers he gave the order to bale out. Spiller had to kick open the escape hatch which had jammed. Spiller, Maddocks and Wollerton parachuted to safety. Fitzsimmons may have parachuted too late as he followed the correct parachute drill. The remaining crew were killed.

  Sid Fox’s Halifax crashed between Nant-le-Grand and Ligny-en-Barrois 12 kms. south-east of Bar-le-Duc in France. Of the eight crew members of Halifax W1188 that night, five were killed. Two Halifaxes of 103 Sqn. were lost on this mission which was the last before being re-equipped with Lancasters.

  The crew details are as follows:

  Sqn. Ldr. Sidney Fox DFM (Pilot) - Aged 27 from Woking. KIA.

  Sgt. Henry Frederick Wood (Second pilot) - Aged 21 from Ockenden, Essex. KIA.

  Sgt. Lawrence  Fitzsimmons (Flight engineer) - Aged 22 from Leicester. KIA.

  Flt. Sgt. H. J. Spiller DFM ( Navigator ) - Survived and escaped to England.

  Flt. Sgt. Rowland Maddocks (Bomb aimer) - Taken prisoner.

  Pilot Officer Geoffrey Wollerton (Wireless operator) - Taken prisoner.

  Sgt. Philip Charles Heath (Mid-upper gunner) - Aged 27 from London. KIA.

  Flt. Sgt. Norman Alexander Mercer (Rear gunner) - Aged 22 from Aberdeen. KIA.

  Sidney Fox is buried with his crew in Nant-le-Grand Communal Cemetery, near Bar-le-Duc, France (grave 1). He is also remembered on the Woking County Grammar School roll of honour located in Christ Church, Woking.

  Herbert Spiller was able to evade capture thanks to the courage and dedication of numerous French civilians.

  Bert joined the RAF prewar and trained as an Air Observer in the UK. He was posted on 98 Sqn flying Fairey Battles and transferred to France in 1940. In late May he was posted to 12 Sqn, also on Battles, as a replacement and returned with the Sqn to Binbrook UK in July 1940. Here he continued with 12 Sqn flying a tour on Wellingtons when he was awarded a DFM. In Oct 1941 he was posted to 12 OTU at Warden and then to 103 Sqn at Elsham Wolds in May 42. Here he navigated for such Elsham notables as Holford, Constantine, Edwards and Sqdn Ldr Fox DFM.

  After his evasion from occupied Europe he was posted to 511 Sqn at Lyneham in Feb 1943 where he stayed till the end of the war. This unit was engaged solely in the long range transport of VIPs. Bert flew extensively in North Africa, Italy, the Middle East and even to Russia and the Indian sub continent. His log book ends in Nov 1945.

  David Fell - This item is an edited version of the piece about Sidney on the Woking County Grammar School Roll of Honour web site.

Sgt Sydney Claridge RAFVR and crew - 103 Sqn

103 Squadron Claridge funeral

  The same night that Sydney Fox and his crew were shot down another 103 Sqn Halifax was lost. This was Sgt Claridge and crew in W1223. They crashed at Moulinsous-Touvent and all are buried in the local Communal Cemetery. The crew was Sgt S.A.Claridge, Sgt B.D.Swain, P/O E.A.Wagstaff, Sgt S.V.Goodhew, Sgt R.W.Taylor RAAF, Sgt K.W.McAuliffe, F/Sgt J.Molesworth RCAF.

  Most unusually the Germans gave this crew a funeral with full military honours. This was recorded and photographed by a Swiss Red Cross representative who was visiting the area at the time. Several photos were taken and copies sent to the next of kin by the Red Cross. See photo right which shows the Honour Guard and local priest at the funeral. It is not known why the Germans should take this trouble as this was not usually the case, certainly not by 1942. It may have been something to do with the Red Cross representative who was clearly there on official business.

  Sidney and his crew completed 8 ops from the 8th Sept 1942 to the 24th October 1942 all in Halifaxes. They were lost on their 9th op. Probably a night fighter victim although possibly not. I seem to recall years ago it was suggested that this could have been a weather related loss.

  103 Squadron Wagstaff

  Ernest Wagstaff ( pictured above ) the Air Bomber in this crew was an interesting intelligent young fellow. A former university graduate from Nottingham I was told he was a chemist before the war whose interests included Norman castles and the writings of Chesterton and Belloc.

  David Fell - Many thanks to David Webster for sending scans of these photos. Also Kate Hopper for the info and photo re Ernest Wagstaff.

  F/O Neb Kujundzic RAFVR and crew - 103 Sqn

  103 Squadron Kujundzic

  Neb Kujundzic hailed from Belgrade and pre-war came to England to study Engineering at Leeds University. He graduated in 1941 and was a founder member of the Leeds University Air Squadron. Amongst the other cadets with the LUAS at this time was a future VC recipient, Louis Aaron, who was a student at the Leeds School of Architectur. He joined the RAF and trained as a pilot in the USA. On return he was posted from 1656 HCU at Lindholme to 103 Squadron at Elsham Wolds on the 3rd March 1943. Tragically he was killed on a daylight cross country flight the next day.
It is thought that Flying Officer Kujundzic’s crew consisted of:-
Flying Officer N Kujundzic RAFVR
Sergeant Bowen RAFVR
Sergeant E Weare RAFVR
Pilot Officer Marnock
Sergeant Petts
Sergeant S Mosley RAFVR
Sergeant Collins
On the morning of the 4th March Flying Officer Kujundzic and crew boarded Lancaster W4333 PM-B for a training flight from Elsham Wolds. During this flight one of the Lancaster’s engines caught fire causing serious damage and Neb  gave the order for his crew to bale out.  All did so successfully. Flying Officer Kujundzic remained at the controls and the aircraft crashed near Peterborough. It is thought that he stayed with his aircraft to prevent it crashing onto houses in the area below. The aircraft crashed in an orchard at Yaxley near Peterborough. Flying Officer Kujundzic was sadly killed and is buried at Peterborough Eastfield Cemetery.
His crew were devastated upset at the loss of their captain and were full of praise for the way he had handled the aircraft to enable them to escape. Neb’s father and brother were also killed during the war.
On the 4th March 2003 there was a service of commemoration at Neb’s grave attended by representatives of the Serbian community and Serbian and Montenegro Embassy in the UK and members of the RAF Elsham Wolds Association and the Peterborough Aircrew Association. A fitting tribute to a brave man who died far from his homeland
The surviving crew was broken up. The air bomber Sergeant Eric Weare flew 4 operations with Pilot Officer A S Cook and was then transferred to 156 Pathfinder Squadron. He was shot down over Belgium later in the war but baled out and with the help of the Belgian escape organisation evaded for several weeks. He was eventually moved to Paris where he was betrayed and captured by the Germans. He was taken to the notorious Fresnes prison in Paris for what must have been a very difficult interrogation. Later he was transferred to a normal prisoner of war camp.
He survived the war but passed away in 1990.
Sergeant S Mosley flew 1 operation as mid upper gunner with Sergeant S Burton and crew and 4 operations with Flight Lieutenant E C Lee-Brown. On his 5th with this crew to Spezia they were shot down and all killed. He is buried in the Le Mans Cemetery. David Fell

 

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