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Rudolf Marko US Thunderbolt P47

Discussion in 'Allied Aviation Of WWII' started by Mutley, Dec 1, 2017.

  1. Mutley

    Mutley Active Member

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    Can anybody shed any light of this mans death, crashed near the village of St. Sever, Calvados, France.

    The villagers are unveiling a memorial next April and are hoping to find some descendants of his to attend the ceremony. Thank you.

    The RAF Crew story from the '41 crash. 149 Squadron Wellington IC T2897 OJ-O P/O. Morison
     
    Last edited: Dec 1, 2017
  2. Mutley

    Mutley Active Member

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    Sorry, found this on findagrave Lieut Rudolph L. Marko (1919 - 1944) - Find A Grave Memorial

    Edit: And this 397th FS Photo Album J - N
    Rudolph's brother Joseph Marco on the 1930 Census FamilySearch.org

    The original post on WW2talk. 5 of the 6 families involved in the April 1941 crash have been contacted. We're not far off hopefully finding the 6th.

    "A FRENCH village which suffered tragedy during the Second World War after a stricken Wellington bomber crashed into it is planning to build a lasting memorial to the plane’s doomed crew.

    The Wellington T2897 of 149 Squadron, which was on its way back from a bombing on a German airfield near Bordeaux on April 13, 1941, is thought to have developed engine trouble after being hit by flak. It crashed into the centre of St Sever Calvados, Normandy, killing 9 villagers and five of its six crew members.

    Before the aircraft came down, one of the crew, gunner Sgt Kenneth Rawlings was ordered to bail out in order to light a flare in a field to help guide the aircraft in to land, but it all came too late as the aircraft hit the village. He was subsequently captured by the Germans and put into a POW camp in Poland.

    Witnesses spoke of the horror of that night with Mme Bourgeois, who later recounted: “The plane crash was really frightening. I will never forget this dreadful event on Easter Sunday 1941, I still see the street on fire and the fire brigade coming from several towns around including Vire, Villedieu and Caen to help out and also the human chain of townspeople passing buckets of water,"

    Reports at the time suggest that despite losing members of their own families, hundreds of people turned out under the eyes of the Germans to pay tribute to the courage of the airmen who had been on a mission from RAF Mildenhall to destroy a Luftwaffe airfield in Merignac, the home of the FW 200 long range maritime bomber.

    Since then, the Union Jack has been proudly flown by villagers in the cemetery, but who now they have hatched a plan some 77 year later in 2018 to erect a lasting memorial to the crew’s courage and bravery on that dreadful night as they tried to steer the doomed plane away from the tiny village.

    The French village historian Andre Laroze said a plaque in the main street where the plane came down would remain but would be replaced by the memorial in the cemetery after agreement with the Mayor of St Sever Jean-Pierre Nourry.

    It will also include the names of other victims who died in the area from courageous actions to liberate France, including English pilot DH Clennell who crashed his fighter plane while attacking a German train in 1943 and American pilot Lt Rudolf Marko who crashed a US Typhoon on August 1, 1944.

    Mr Laroze explained: “The work on getting permission for the 1.5metre memorial has been undertaken by local people in their own time and expense and underlines the deep debt of gratitude that still exists among those liberated by the Allies, even though French families suffered casualties in the process.”

    He added: “My hope is that the descendants of the airmen who gave their lives may still live in the same areas of the UK, and while we have made contact with the relatives of the pilot Ronald Morison and D.H Clennell, we have no idea about the rest including Sgt Rawlings and hope that the newspapers TV and social media might help us track them down in time for next year’s unveiling.”

    The Wellington crew included: Pilot Officer Ronald Morison, 23; Pilot Sgt Ernest John Holland DFM, 22, who had been a poster boy for the RAF which encouraged people in Britain to volunteer to work in the aircraft industry during the Second World War, his parents Ernest and Emily Holland lived in Birmingham; Wireless operator Sgt Ronald Hutchinson, 23, son of Edmund and Margaret Hutchinson, of Sunderland, County Durham; Pilot Sgt John Leo Westley, 23, whose parents Alfred and Marie, lived in Sutton, Surrey; Gunner Sgt Walter Hugh Wilkinson, 21, whose parents Walter Henry and Bessie lived in Penrith, Cumberland.

    It is believed that after the war Sgt Rawlings lived at 240 School Road, Yardley Wood, Birmingham, marrying widow Peggotty Capell in Bournemouth in 1946 but no further details about the couple is known.

    If anybody has any information about the crew they can contact Andre Laroze by e-mail at andre.laroze at orange.fr "
     
    Last edited: Dec 1, 2017
  3. Jaap Vermeer MDE

    Jaap Vermeer MDE Active Member

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  4. Jaap Vermeer MDE

    Jaap Vermeer MDE Active Member

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    Ernest John Holland DFM
     

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  5. Jaap Vermeer MDE

    Jaap Vermeer MDE Active Member

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  6. Mutley

    Mutley Active Member

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    Many thanks Jaap for the additional information. I'll add these to the thread on WW2talk. Sure helps to build a fuller picture of them.

    Still struggling to find the family of Ernest. He was an only child according to photographs I was sent of his parents grave in Birmingham.

    I'm waiting on the General Register hopefully pinpointing the area his mother was born 21 Apr 1886. It's the only avenue left to check for extended family. Fingers crossed we can find some aunts and uncles on his mothers side.

    Are you OK with me sharing the information on WW2talk?
     
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  7. Jaap Vermeer MDE

    Jaap Vermeer MDE Active Member

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    Mutley send an requist to Shirley Holland in Birmingham UK at : pau1masters@hotmail.co.uk
    Probably she has more information.

    Jaap
     
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  8. Jaap Vermeer MDE

    Jaap Vermeer MDE Active Member

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  9. Mutley

    Mutley Active Member

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    Jaap, you are wonderful. I've just sent an email to that address. Fingers crossed they are connected. We've been searching since the beginning of November and were close to giving up.
     
  10. LRusso216

    LRusso216 Graybeard Staff Member Patron  

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    It's great to see the cooperation that members of the various forums have. Jaaps contributions to Mutley's thread here and at WW2Talk is amazing. To enable Mutley to ask a question here to fill data on another forum and to have an answer found in a different forum is quite unique, I'm sure.
     
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  11. Mutley

    Mutley Active Member

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    So true Lou. At WW2talk the input has been from members in England, Scotland, Gibraltar & France and now a lead from a Dutch member! Truly a global effort. I'm sure Ernest would be pleased.
     

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  12. Jaap Vermeer MDE

    Jaap Vermeer MDE Active Member

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  13. Jaap Vermeer MDE

    Jaap Vermeer MDE Active Member

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