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Jackie? Turner, 178 Sqn, missing 14 Aug 1944?

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10 years 1 month ago #44 by Matt_Poole
Matt_Poole created the topic: Jackie? Turner, 178 Sqn, missing 14 Aug 1944?
I noticed this query in Gary's guestbook:

I'm currently researching my uncle, Jackie? Turner who was a wireless operator who flew with 178 Squadron and it is alleged died when his plane went into the Danube river ? (Not sure if that's true). However I now have his flying log book and his last entry appears to be dated 14 August 1944 when he flew in 'P' Liberator (Pilot was F/S Ansell) over Warsaw in a "Special operation" (whatever that was).

If anyone has any information or even pictures of Jackie I would be eternally grateful !!!

Great website -Thanks

Bill Turner


I may have some info on this loss, maybe not. Perhaps others can add to it? I don't have the 178 Sqn Operations Record Book.

Liberator EV961 (original US serial 42-100384), was a Mk VI of 178 Sqn with fuselage letter code "C". Per the Oughton book, EV961 failed to return from a low-level supply drop to the Polish Home Army, Warsaw on the night of 13/14.08.44. No other Liberator losses around this time match up.

On a google search of "EV961" and "warsaw" I found this fascinating tidbit, written by a woman named Anne (user name aestorm) whose father's crew, I know, went missing on another 178 Sqn op:

A bombaimer of 178 RAF was thrown clear of Liberator EV961, which broke up in flight after being hit by anti aircraft fire over Warsaw, 14th August 1944. The crew were on a supply mission to the Polish Home Army.

The airman, who is known to me, landed on reeds on an island in the Vistula River. He was captured & made a POW.


I'll send her a personal message via the RAF Commands website, as I'm sure she will have some great info. The Warsaw story of resupply by Liberators is well known, and possibly there is a book on the subject. In the main menu of Gary's website (to the left), in the RAF Squadrons section, there is excellent background about the Warsaw story and Liberator involvement.

The problem with a link between "Jackie" Turner and EV961 comes in doing a Commonwealth War Graves Commission "Debt of Honour Register" search on all Turners who died in 1944. I get only one possible match, and it was not a 178 Sqn airman, or a wireless operator:

Name: TURNER, JOHN ALFRED
Initials: J A
Nationality: United Kingdom
Rank: Flying Officer (Nav.)
Regiment/Service: Royal Air Force Volunteer Reserve
Unit Text: 101 Sqdn.
Age: 29
Date of Death: 13/08/1944
Service No: 139703
Additional information: Son of John George and Annie Turner, of Chesterfield, Derbyshire.
Casualty Type: Commonwealth War Dead
Grave/Memorial Reference: 8. K. 5.
Cemetery: HANOVER WAR CEMETERY

Also, Hanover War Cemetery doesn't fit for an airman shot down over or near Warsaw.

Bill Turner mentioned the pilot's name, as well: Ansell. The CWGC register's Ansell listings in 1944 have no clear links to 178 Sqn or to a death on 13/14 Aug '44 near Warsaw. And the historical info in the 178 Sqn section of this website gives the EV961 skipper as F/O McRae, not Ansell.

Maybe the 178 Sqn ORB would clear this one up fast. Possibly we can get Bill Turner to provide some more details. He may need to send away for his uncle's RAF records for more basics.

I'll leave a guestbook note for Bill Turner to check the forum for additional findings.

Cheers,

Matt

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10 years 1 month ago #405 by Matt_Poole
Matt_Poole replied the topic: Jackie? Turner, 178 Sqn, missing 14 Aug 1944?
I noticed this query in Gary's guestbook:

I'm currently researching my uncle, Jackie? Turner who was a wireless operator who flew with 178 Squadron and it is alleged died when his plane went into the Danube river ? (Not sure if that's true). However I now have his flying log book and his last entry appears to be dated 14 August 1944 when he flew in 'P' Liberator (Pilot was F/S Ansell) over Warsaw in a "Special operation" (whatever that was).

If anyone has any information or even pictures of Jackie I would be eternally grateful !!!

Great website -Thanks

Bill Turner


I may have some info on this loss, maybe not. Perhaps others can add to it? I don't have the 178 Sqn Operations Record Book.

Liberator EV961 (original US serial 42-100384), was a Mk VI of 178 Sqn with fuselage letter code "C". Per the Oughton book, EV961 failed to return from a low-level supply drop to the Polish Home Army, Warsaw on the night of 13/14.08.44. No other Liberator losses around this time match up.

On a google search of "EV961" and "warsaw" I found this fascinating tidbit, written by a woman named Anne (user name aestorm) whose father's crew, I know, went missing on another 178 Sqn op:

A bombaimer of 178 RAF was thrown clear of Liberator EV961, which broke up in flight after being hit by anti aircraft fire over Warsaw, 14th August 1944. The crew were on a supply mission to the Polish Home Army.

The airman, who is known to me, landed on reeds on an island in the Vistula River. He was captured & made a POW.


I'll send her a personal message via the RAF Commands website, as I'm sure she will have some great info. The Warsaw story of resupply by Liberators is well known, and possibly there is a book on the subject. In the main menu of Gary's website (to the left), in the RAF Squadrons section, there is excellent background about the Warsaw story and Liberator involvement.

The problem with a link between "Jackie" Turner and EV961 comes in doing a Commonwealth War Graves Commission "Debt of Honour Register" search on all Turners who died in 1944. I get only one possible match, and it was not a 178 Sqn airman, or a wireless operator:

Name: TURNER, JOHN ALFRED
Initials: J A
Nationality: United Kingdom
Rank: Flying Officer (Nav.)
Regiment/Service: Royal Air Force Volunteer Reserve
Unit Text: 101 Sqdn.
Age: 29
Date of Death: 13/08/1944
Service No: 139703
Additional information: Son of John George and Annie Turner, of Chesterfield, Derbyshire.
Casualty Type: Commonwealth War Dead
Grave/Memorial Reference: 8. K. 5.
Cemetery: HANOVER WAR CEMETERY

Also, Hanover War Cemetery doesn't fit for an airman shot down over or near Warsaw.

Bill Turner mentioned the pilot's name, as well: Ansell. The CWGC register's Ansell listings in 1944 have no clear links to 178 Sqn or to a death on 13/14 Aug '44 near Warsaw. And the historical info in the 178 Sqn section of this website gives the EV961 skipper as F/O McRae, not Ansell.

Maybe the 178 Sqn ORB would clear this one up fast. Possibly we can get Bill Turner to provide some more details. He may need to send away for his uncle's RAF records for more basics.

I'll leave a guestbook note for Bill Turner to check the forum for additional findings.

Cheers,

Matt

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10 years 1 month ago #406 by Matt_Poole
Matt_Poole replied the topic: Jackie? Turner, 178 Sqn, missing 14 Aug 1944?
I just found what appears to be a crew listing for EV961 for 13/14 Aug '44, and Turner was not aboard. From a Polish website:

www.warszawa.pl/stara/news/view,4698.html

Pierwszy wielki zrzut dla Powstania Warszawskiego. W?r

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10 years 1 month ago #407 by Matt_Poole
Matt_Poole replied the topic: Jackie? Turner, 178 Sqn, missing 14 Aug 1944?
I just found that F.J. Ansell was an air gunner on 178 Sqn around this time. His son, I think, submitted photos of him, and crew, now posted in the 178 Sqn section of this website. He wrote a guestbook entry a while back, as well, posted below. I'm guessing that the Ansell that Bill Turner links to Jackie Turner's crew is this man, but there could have been a pilot named Ansell at the same time on 178 Sqn, for all I know.

Matt

Guestbook Entry No. 323
Author. Neil Ansell
Email Address. This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it
Homepage.
Message. What an interesting site. My Father, Frederick James Ansell flew with 178 sqdn in 1944. His pilot was P/O Peter Raw. I have a crew photograph taken with the aircraft in Italy. Also have a press cutting titled'Flak wrecked lib gets back with 166 Holes' detailing damage sustained to liberator H during a raid on Verona marshalling yards. Have his log book detailing missions whilst attached to squadron. F J Ansell killed in road accident in December 1960.

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10 years 1 month ago - 10 years 1 month ago #409 by PeterClare
PeterClare replied the topic: Jackie? Turner, 178 Sqn, missing 14 Aug 1944?
I've come up with the following for the loss of EV961 on 14 August 1944

The aircraft failed to return from a supply sortie to Polish Home Army units in the Warsaw area.

Crew.

F/O. George Dougal Macrae RCAF - Pilot
Lieutenant Percy Gordon Coutts SAAF Navigator.
Sgt. John Edward Porter Wop.
Sgt. Richard Herbert Charles Scott Flight Engineer.
Sgt. Arthur Sharp Ag.
F/S. Hugh Valance McLanaghan Ag.

Regards
Peter.

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10 years 1 month ago #410 by Gary
Gary replied the topic: Jackie? Turner, 178 Sqn, missing 14 Aug 1944?
Hi Bill
J.J. Turner and the Ansell crew were lost on Ops on the 27th August not the 14th. They were flying in EW160 (I need to update EW160's details as it's listed as missing on 28th).
They called this a Gardening mission as they were laying "cucumbers" at least this is what Maurice Lihou of 40 Squadron once told me.









This is the Malta Memorial


The first picture I found happened to have the 1944 RAF Panel facing.


With a bit of Photoshop magic I was able to pull off and find the entry for J J Turner.



Thanks for reposting this Matt
Gary

'Yea, Though I Fly Through the Valley of the Shadow of Death, I Shall Fear No Evil. For I am at 50,000 Feet and Climbing.'

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