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I.D. a crew from the 268th squadron

Discussion in 'Information Requests' started by Erich, Jan 9, 2003.

  1. Erich

    Erich Alte Hase

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    Guys, need some help if anyone has access to RAF files ? F/L A.D. Mercer shot down a Ju 88G-6 of 9./NJG 1, flying as one of the lead pathfinders for an Fw 190 unit on 1-1-45 during Operation Bodenplatte in the Ardenne. Mercer was flying a Mustang MK I along with his wingman(?) F/L J.B. Lyke.

    anyone have info on the Mustang MK I, and the 268th squadron ? Not sure if it was RAF or Aussie or Canadian, and the Mustang type.....

    thanks guys !

    E
     
  2. urqh

    urqh Tea drinking surrender monkey

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  3. urqh

    urqh Tea drinking surrender monkey

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  4. Stevin

    Stevin Ace

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    These links might help:

    History of No. 268 Squadron.


    Motto: "Adjidaumo" (Chippeway Indian) ("Tail in the air")
    Badge: A swallow soaring, holding in the claws a tomahawk

    No 268 Squadron was formed in August 1918 from the seaplane station at Calafrana, Malta from Nos.433 and 434 Flights for anti-submarine patrols in the Central Mediterranean. On 11 October 1919, it was disbanded.

    On 30 September 1940, No.268 reformed at Bury St.Edmunds with Lysanders as an army co-operation squadron and during October absorbed A Flight of No.2 squadron and B Flight of No.26 Squadron to form its basis. Dawn patrols along the coast of East Anglia began to be flown in order to locate any traces on enemy landings but the Lysander was obselete for tactical reconnaissance duties and in May 1941 some Tomahawks were received. Though inadaquete as a fighter, these could be used for low-level reconnaissance with a greater chance of survival than the multi purpose Lysanders and in October 1941 missions over northern France began to be flown. In March 1942, Mustangs began to replace both Tomahawks and Laysanders and by August it was fully equipped with Mustangs. Tactical reconnaissance missions increased in numbers and in June 1943, No.268 joined the newly-formed Second TAF in preparation for the invasion of Europe. After being given a course in spotting for naval bombardment in the Clyde, the squadron undertook this task during the landings in Normandy. In July 1944, some Typhoons were added to its strength and in August the squadron moved to France where it provided tactical reconnaissance for the Army arriving in the Low Countries at the end of September. In April 1945, it converted to Spitfires and flew reconnaissance and ground attack missions for the remaining weeks of the war, becoming No.16 Squadron on 19 September 1945. On the same day, No.487 Squadron at Cambrai-Epinoy was renumbered 268 Squadron and flew Mosquito fighter-bombers until disbanded on 31 March 1946.
    http://www.raf.mod.uk/history/h268.html


    There has been a certain amount of confusion in various publications between Nos 168 and 268 Squadrons at the time of D-Day; there is no doubt that at that time 168 had the Mk.I Mustangs and 268 had Mk.IA. Although 268 Sqn kept some Mustangs, including a few Mk II's until 1945, these were supplemented by Typhoons between July and December 1944 and the unit converted entirely to Spitfire XIV's in April 1945. (pretty vague - Stevin)

    http://www.ipmsstockholm.org/magazine/2000/01/stuff_eng_profile_mustang4.htm

    Found on the net that Colin Ford in Australia is writing a book or maybe has finished writing a book about 268 in ww2. His e-mail address is stated as: cbford@cyberone.com.au
     
  5. urqh

    urqh Tea drinking surrender monkey

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  6. Erich

    Erich Alte Hase

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    The two pilots left at 8.32 hours and flew over the coast towards Utrecht, the scene of the engagement and IP of the German force, at about 5-6,000 feet and spotted 3 Ju 88G's and Fw 190's-formation- following them right on the deck. Mercer dived down and shot out one of the Ju 88's right engine, which caused the a/c to wing over into the ground in the woods, the pilot was killed but the other two crewmen bailed out wounded.......ouch at that altitude !......the two pilots I gather were flying armed recon duties, if I understand the link info provided....thanks !

    E
     
  7. urqh

    urqh Tea drinking surrender monkey

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  8. Stevin

    Stevin Ace

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    So that Ju88 was shot down in the vicinity of Utrecht, Erich?

    At the time they were stationed in teh Low Countries, the RAF link says. I wonder how they can fly along/over the coast towards Utrecht. Utrecht is nowhere near the coast.

    Do you know Ron Putz and John Manhro? They have written a book on Bodenplatte which has not yet been published. They might have info on this...
     
  9. Stevin

    Stevin Ace

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    Don't bow, Urgh!

    That link was a coincidence...One of the first to come up in Google! all the other links are different!
     
  10. Stevin

    Stevin Ace

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    Erich,

    They are also pretty busy with this Q on the TOCH message boards...

    S
     
  11. Erich

    Erich Alte Hase

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    Stevin :

    The reason I posted here. I answered David before John got word to him, by private mail and he replied with the info I posted, but I did not have a thing until you guys piped up with those links......also one other tidbit, there was another Ju 88G-6 of 9./NJG 1 shot down in the vicinty of Hook in Holland. Stevin is that near Utrecht ?
    Yes I have been in correspondace with both guys the last three years about their book but they remain sketchy as they want their work a big surprise, so it is real tough to get any info from either one......and that is ok as I look forward to their excellent title via Hikoki pubs when available. This year I hope !!!!!..please !

    E
     
  12. Stevin

    Stevin Ace

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    I think that should be HOLK, which lies appr. 25 km North East of Utrecht. Which ties in with the 'Utrecht or north of Utrecht' mentioned on TOCH.

    I met Ron at the memorial service for the 8 crew-members of the 91st BG B17 MAN-O-WAR that are buried in Opijnen, a few years back. They are 8 out 10 US servicemen that are not being buried in Margraten but elsewhere in Holland.

    I am also looking forward to their book. Should be great. Pitty that publication got delayed.
     
  13. urqh

    urqh Tea drinking surrender monkey

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    Sorry Stevin, not sulking, just went off, didnt go to bed for hours after reading this thread, revisiting RAF squadron number site, went through em all, good research page, and then onto the RAAF and RCAF pages too, glad Eric raised that question.

    Use a laptop at home so bit of a job moving scanner round room to room, but going to concentrate and put some stuff up maybe this weekend on various threads which might interest you guys...Do you know, I thought I was pretty boring at work constantly reading about military matters especially ww2, and maybe a bit more on present day stuff, thats the fault of being a recent serviceman, thought people were thinking I was a train spotter, especially since looking on net, although some good sites, and found a few forums around, none of the fourms contained people who were that interested, mostly just people searching relatives or students looking for someone to do their work for em..this place is a real find for me, not a historian, writer of in the business just interested in people at war, from Waterloo, Zulus to present day with a special interest in ww2 and this place is God send....
     
  14. redcoat

    redcoat Ace

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    May I join in :D

    In "Battle of the Airfields, Operation Bodenplatte" by Norman Franks. It has details of the combat involving Flight Lieutenants A.D. Mercer and Flight Lieutenant J.B.Lyke of 268 Squadron RAF.
    It appears they took off from their base at Gilze-Reijen at 8.32 a.m. and headed towards Utrecht in their Mustangs, at 9.15 they spotted what they identified as three Ju 188s escorted by five FW 190s over Utrecht at zero feet, they dived into the attack and Mercer shot down one of the 188s(?) they then broke off the attack( no point in hanging around with FW 190s after us , as Mercer put it to the author).
     
  15. Erich

    Erich Alte Hase

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    Thank you gentlemen for your searches......

    Stevin, I am in touch with Colin ford right now and he has replied with info's for next week by e-mail to me. He also thought from his memory that the a/c downed was a Ju 188. I have found as mentioned two possiblities and they are both from 9./NJG 1 bei Utrecht/Holk. Both JU 88G-6 and of course attacking from the rear identification would be very hard in such a quick state of zoom shoot and fly away. From the brief info I have in my night fighter losses book it may well be the a/c downed by Holk as it does not mention the cause.....beim einsatz über Frontgebiet nicht zurückgekehrt.......JU 88G-6 coded G9+?T
    Uffz. Ingomar Mayr, Uffz. Hartmut Woll, Uffz. Wilhelm Ehret all killed.

    more to come !

    E
     
  16. Stevin

    Stevin Ace

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    Excellent, Erich! Glad to be able to help. How far is Mr. Ford with his book?

    I am very interested in any info about this shootdown you might be able to put on the forums here. Utrecht is not too far away from where I live. I am sure Ron and John will have this story in their book.

    Now I remember that a 109 crashed in the vicinity of Amsterdam on 1-1-45....I always doubted that it had anything to do with Bodenplatte, but now I am not so sure....I have no more info on this crash though. Will visit the Amsterdam city archives one of these days and see what they have in their files.

    Did you guys know that S/L Trent, from New Zealand, crash-landed his Halifax in one of the canals in the centre of Amsterdam? My uncle's father was with the Amsterdam Fire Brigade then and was called to that fire. My uncle told me that story recently. Trent survived the crash and was made POW.He wrote a book, which I don't have yet. And I corresponded with a 75 sqn vet, who was a friend of his.

    I think I am going to post some Air stories that feature Amsterdam soon. I have some lying around...Attacks on Amsterdam targets...

    Oh...and 'my' installment in the thread "What Happened Today" is coming up.....

    Oh...and I read an interesting tidbit today when I was researching my own little niche...But wait...I put that in a thread of its own tomorrow....
     
  17. Erich

    Erich Alte Hase

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    sehr Kühl my friend ! I wonder does Holk have woods around it ? could be some crashed pieces to discover too..... ;) Yes John Manhro wrote me this morn stating nicely that we must wait since he has the encounter all recorded in the book and that he awaits impatiently for the book to be published as there manuscript was sent to the publsihers last fall.......so where is the book !!!!
    keep us posted Stevin !

    E
     
  18. Stevin

    Stevin Ace

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    There should be a lot of forrest around Holk...Well, for Dutch standards. I can't find much on the town of Holk itself, so I guess it is part of another town/municipality now. I'll look into it and maybe I can find somebody who knows the crashsite.
     
  19. Erich

    Erich Alte Hase

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    Stevin : Most likely they removed whomever of the crew.....the Germans and then left the wreckage for the locals to haul off. Maybe the a/c is depicted in the Holk archiv's ?, or as you mentioned maybe one does remember the date, how could they not !, and knows more about just what happened. See my other post to you on Deutschland about that missing Ju 88G-6 in Holland. ;)

    E
     
  20. Erich

    Erich Alte Hase

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    a little extra.......yes, F/L JB Lyle was flying as wingman to Mercer. Lyle watching and covering Mercer as he shot down the closest Ju 88G-6, this being one of the 9./NJG 1 birds leading elements of IV.Sturm/JG 3's Fw 190A-8/R-8's near Einhoven. As soon as Mercer flew over the formation they beat it out quick as they were then being pursued by the rest of the Fw 190 gruppe. In so doing JG 3 did rip up the fields it was assigned probably with the only "real" German success for 1-1-45. As friend and ex-Sturm pilot of JG 3 Oskar Bösch said " It was bloody hell" and what a mess with all the flak and chaos of burning a/c everywhere on and over the airfields......

    E
     

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