Autore Topic: Hello and looking for a Douglas Boston crash site  (Letto 9124 volte)

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Offline siliconwombat

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Hello and looking for a Douglas Boston crash site
« il: 06 Dic 2014, 10:12:18 »
Hi,
Thanks for such an amzing forum! Wish my italian was sufficient to communicate better :)

Im searching for the crash site of my Grandfathers Douglas Boston. It crashed after a radar directed raid on a power station in the north of Italy, I suspect in the area of Udine. Possibly Centrale Idroelletrica A. Pitter but not confirmed. The plane was hit by tracer fire  at 300m and caught fire crash landing in a field shortly after. The aircraft was either BZ618 or BZ628 (confusion in the records as BZ618 was reported missing 2 days earlier [attack on marshalling yards at Germona] but this is the aircraft noted as in use by my grandfather for the raid) of 114 Squadron.
The Crew were: S/L G. Hampton DFC (pilot), F/Sgt D. Whateley (Navigator/Bomb Aimer My Grandfather),F/S R.WestGarth (Wop/Ag), F/Sgt W.Woakes (Ag). All four survived the crash, two were caught after two days including S/l Hampton. The ther two were caught at some point. My grandfather was helped by the partisans and was sheltered at a farm for some time before eventually being caught but exact deatils are unknown.

Any help on their operating base, target or eventual crash site would be amazing, also any knowledge of what else might have happened! We spend time near Venezia every summer so have passed by the area many times whithout ever knowing we were. We shall be in Italia again this summer and would love to make a visit to the appropriate areas :)

We still have my Grandfathers log book and the squadron record book so have details of many ops in the area around that time if theres any questions I could help with :)

Thanks in advance,

Tom whateley



Offline lanco67

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Re:Hello and looking for a Douglas Boston crash site
« Risposta #1 il: 06 Dic 2014, 13:59:56 »
Hi Tom,
Excuse for my bad English. I’m looking for notices about the night intruders for a long time. It’s very hard to find notices about those planes. I’ve read the operation records book of all night intruders Sqn. I'm working of a complete list of night intruders crash site. In particular, about 114° Sqn, I have the Records of events of February 45 and the summary of events from may to tecember 45. In February the plane is named BZ618 but surely there is a mistake. In the summary of events, pag 8, you can read: “Boston BZ658 missing since take off on the night 26th February 1945 (...) S/L Hampton DFC made a perfect crash landing, now he and his crew Watheley, Westgarth and Woakes are now rimpatriated. I think BZ658 is the correct code. In fact BZ618 is actually missing with his crew and BZ628 was demolished in 1946.
Those are the notice from USAAF serial number production
774 to RAF as Boston V BZ618.  Missing from night intruder mission Feb 23, 1945
784 to RAF as Boston V BZ628.  SOC Jul 25, 1946
814 to RAF as Boston V BZ658.  Missing from night intruder mission Feb 26, 1945

About the target, in ORB you can read “radar bombing of a power station at M3382”. Using “Italian Nothern Grid” with Lambert Coordinates, the same used by Allied during war, the target was at TRESIGALLO, est of Ferrara. I think that plane crashed from Tresigallo to SouthEst. Soon I hope to will give you some notice.
Enzo

Offline Fabio

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Re:Hello and looking for a Douglas Boston crash site
« Risposta #2 il: 06 Dic 2014, 14:18:24 »
TRESIGALLO is near my house...

Offline lanco67

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Re:Hello and looking for a Douglas Boston crash site
« Risposta #3 il: 06 Dic 2014, 15:07:35 »
I put an abstract from summary of events may/dec 45 of 114°Sqn
« Ultima modifica: 06 Dic 2014, 15:47:37 da lanco67 »

Offline mazwork

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Re:Hello and looking for a Douglas Boston crash site
« Risposta #4 il: 06 Dic 2014, 17:20:22 »
"may/dec 45"?
Ad augusta per angusta

Offline lanco67

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Re:Hello and looking for a Douglas Boston crash site
« Risposta #5 il: 06 Dic 2014, 17:40:31 »
si, maggio-dicembre 45. a volte con un po' di fortuna nei diari operativi trovi informazioni su quanto è successo agli equipaggi dispersi nei mesi precedenti. la guerra è finita e arrivano informazioni prima impossibili da ottenere. nel caso dei night intruder sono caduti quasi tutti in aree liberate dopo l'aprile 45 :biggrin:
« Ultima modifica: 06 Dic 2014, 17:43:28 da lanco67 »

Offline mazwork

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Re:Hello and looking for a Douglas Boston crash site
« Risposta #6 il: 06 Dic 2014, 17:50:18 »
Buono a sapersi, allora. Interessante che il crash sia dalle parti di Tresigallo...
Ad augusta per angusta

Offline siliconwombat

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Re:Hello and looking for a Douglas Boston crash site
« Risposta #7 il: 06 Dic 2014, 18:16:34 »
WOW! Thank you so much :)

I guessed that the number must be wrong but 618 "fitted" having crashed on a similar date. 658 is the one though :)

I've also found that at that time 114 sqn was operating from FALCONARA. I've found TRESIGALLO but can't pin point the power station, have you a road name?

6-7 weeks sounds about right for being POW too, though my grandfather was adamant he stayed on the run for a short time before capture.

Thank you again for so much more information already!

Offline lanco67

  • Post: 430
Re:Hello and looking for a Douglas Boston crash site
« Risposta #8 il: 06 Dic 2014, 19:58:49 »
Yes, in february 45 the 232° RAF WING was based at Falconara Airfield. The route to the targets in norh-east of Italy was over the Adriatic Sea. In middle March '45 the Wing moved to Forlì Airfield. Before Falconara, the Wing was based at Cecina, in Tuscany.
The BZ 618 of 114° Sqn was lost 23 february '45. the member crew were Cutts, Walden, McKirgan and Connor. This crew is still missing, is remembered at Malta Memorial. I put a picture from Australian Archives of a martin baltimore of 454° RAAF over the Falconara airfield.

 Forza ragazzi, c'è qualcuno che sa dirci se c'era una centrale elettrica nella zona di Tresigallo? forse in zona è rimasta notizia di un Pippo che ha fatto un crash landing e della cattura degli aviatori... :)

Offline Fabio

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Re:Hello and looking for a Douglas Boston crash site
« Risposta #9 il: 06 Dic 2014, 23:12:49 »
Ok cerco info.

Inviato da Samsung Mobile e Tapatalk


Offline Fabio

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Re:Hello and looking for a Douglas Boston crash site
« Risposta #10 il: 07 Dic 2014, 10:20:31 »
The power station was located Rero near Tresigallo.
A Tresigallo, as military targets, there was a factory for hemp, mechanical industries and a sugar mill.


Offline Fabio

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Re:Hello and looking for a Douglas Boston crash site
« Risposta #11 il: 08 Dic 2014, 00:47:03 »
Tresigallo is the native land of my parents but my mother does not remember the power ...
I confirm the position of the sugar mill.
I can call to relatives who live in the area.

Offline siliconwombat

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Re:Hello and looking for a Douglas Boston crash site
« Risposta #12 il: 08 Dic 2014, 13:32:43 »
From putting the coordinates into this site... http://www.echodelta.net/mbs/eng-translation.php

It shows the spot to be near the Mazzano site. Not sure either this is the centre or the corner of a 10 km square though.


Offline Manu

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Re:Hello and looking for a Douglas Boston crash site
« Risposta #13 il: 08 Dic 2014, 18:18:22 »
Ma non potrebbe essere che all'epoca sia stata confusa una Power station con un impianto Idrovora? O magari la loro missione era colpire appunto un Idrovora per far allagare il territorio e renderlo inospitale? Questa era e forse è Marozzo e può assomigliare ad una centrale elettrica dell'epoca..

Offline siliconwombat

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Re:Hello and looking for a Douglas Boston crash site
« Risposta #14 il: 08 Dic 2014, 18:24:45 »
Marozzo was what I meant :)

Certainly does look like a powers plant, probably even more so on air reconnaissance photos!