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Trying to find all info on the following RAF personel.

Discussion in '☆☆ New Recruits ☆☆' started by Lancaster Bomber, May 18, 2010.

  1. Lancaster Bomber

    Lancaster Bomber Member

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    To all you experts I am trying to find out all information on the following two RAF guys, The first chap is a late cousin of mine, going by the name of Raymond Algernon Reeves Smith, he flew in Lancasters and was killed on 15/02/1944 just before I was born, he was in 166 Squadron based in North Lincs, he was I think a bomb aimer and was married & lived & worked in maidstone, he was member of the RAFVR. He is buried with his crew in Berlin WW11 cemetry.

    The other chap I am researching is a cousin of my Mother in Law, his name was Gerald Yeates DFC & Bar, he flew Mosquitos from Boyndie near to Banff, he was killed in a flying accident in 1947. His claim to fame was that he clipped the ships mast in the Kattegat Sea off Denmark, on landing safely at his base it was found that he had collected a fragment of the mast and a pendant with German markings which had been flying from it.
    These two artefacts have been loaned to the RAF Banff Association by Mr Yeates daughter.
    If any one can help with more info on either or both these guys I would be very gratefull to hear from them, photos would be great as we dont have any. thank you for reading our story.
    Regard sfrom
    Richard Smith & Family. (Lancaster Bomber)
     
  2. alieneyes

    alieneyes Member

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    From Chorley's 1944 Bomber Command losses:

    166 Squadron Lancaster III ED841 AS-L

    T/o 1730 from Kirmington. Shot down by a night fighter, crashing 2030 with great force into a forest some 2 km N of Freudenberg, 4 km SE of Ribnitz - Damgarten. F/O Wright is named on Panel 210 of the Runnymede Memorial; the rest are buried in the Berlin 1939 - 45 War Cemetery.

    F/O R.J.Robinson +
    Sgt H.K.Harrison pow
    Sgt G.F.Clark +
    F/S R.A.R.Smith +
    F/S D.J.Stokes +
    Sgt N.O.Jones +
    F/O B.O.Wright +


    CWGC :: Casualty Details

    CWGC :: Casualty Details

    CWGC :: Casualty Details

    CWGC :: Casualty Details

    CWGC :: Casualty Details

    CWGC :: Casualty Details

    From "Footprints on the Sands of Time - RAF Bomber Command Prisoners of War in Germany 1939 - 1945" by Oliver Clutton - Brock (page 312):

    Sgt H.K. Harrison, the Flight Engineer, was blown out of the aircraft. He spent the remainder of the war in Stalag Luft VI and Stalag 357.

    From RAF History - Bomber Command 60th Anniversary

    From the 26 October, 1944 issue of Flight:

    Distinguished Flying Cross Citation for Flying Officer G.N.E. Yeates, DFC, RAFVR, No 248 Squadron:

    Within recent months this officer has completed many reconnaissances and has participated in numerous successful attacks on enemy shipping. He is a gallant and tenacious fighter and has set a fine example in pressing home his attacks in the face of heavy opposing fire. In August, 1944, F/O Yeates attacked a medium sized merchantman, inflicting much damage. Afterwards he attacked two anti-aircraft gun positions on the mainland

    sqn | wing cdr | fit | 1944 | 2221 | Flight Archive

    CWGC :: Casualty Details

    I am sure that some Mosquito experts will be along shortly to provide you with further information on Yeates.

    Hopefully, some of this is of some assistance to you.
     
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  3. revbucky

    revbucky Member

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    Welcome Richard. Glad you've joined us. You will find much help here.
     
  4. DUKW

    DUKW Member

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    Hello Richard!
    I hope these guys will be in much help to you as to me. I'm also searching for the data about my Grandpa's division in Eastern Europe. These lads are truly doing their best, as I saw around forum!
    Good hunt!
     
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  5. Icare9

    Icare9 Member

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    Another pilot was also killed with Yeates, in the adjacent grave.
    Name: DRIVER, KENNETH WEEKS
    Initials: K W
    Nationality: South African
    Rank: Major (Pilot)
    Regiment/Service: South African Air Force
    Age: 28
    Date of Death: 03/02/1947
    Service No: P/102646V
    Awards: D F C
    Additional information: Son of Arthur and Minnie Driver, husband of Margaret A. Driver, of Pretoria, Transvaal, South Africa.
    Casualty Type: Commonwealth War Dead
    Grave/Memorial Reference: Plot 39. Sec. H. Row F. Grave 258.
    Cemetery: BATH (HAYCOMBE) CEMETERY

    The CWGC cemetery information strongly links it to RAF Colerne.
    There is also a 166 Sqdn Association. Contact details may not be current but: No. 166 Squadron Association,
    c/o J.W. Wright C.Eng, AMIME, MIE; 4 Park Way East, Kirby Park Merseyside L32 2BY England
     
  6. Lancaster Bomber

    Lancaster Bomber Member

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    Many thanks to all you kind like mided folks who have help me in my quest for info on the two airmen, I now am trying to find out about an Uncle of mine, his name was Major Jack Webb, and I believe that he was in REME out in Burma during WW11, thats all the info I have on him, apert from he survived the war and on returning home he and his wife lived in The Mumbles (near Swansea) and then on leaving there he got a job with the contruction company Costains, and they moved to a town just outside Great yarmouth, where Costains were building the new Power Station, I remember that he died quite young, so if there are any Army historians out there, can they help please. I dont think there are any more military personel in my family, asthey were all in reserved ocupations ie Chemist's my Father in Cheltenham & an Uncle in Worcester.
    Thanking you in advance, you lot are brilliant.
    Regards from Richard Smith
     
  7. Lancaster Bomber

    Lancaster Bomber Member

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    To all the experts. I have traced as much as possible the life and times of P/O Gerald Yeates, but am at a loss to know the following.
    Why was he awarded the DFC & bar?
    Why was he in RAF Colerne.?
    What Sqadron was he in?
    What planes would he have flown there?
    What plane did he meet his death in?
    Where was the crash site.?
    Why did the plane crash?.
    I have hunted high and low on the net for all or more info, but cant find it, nor can I find out much about P/O Kenneth Weekes (Weeks) Driver, apart from he might have been a Spitfire pilot with 10 or 12 kills to his name, he had also been awarded the DFC.
    Thanks for reading this & hopefully suppling even more info.
     
  8. alieneyes

    alieneyes Member

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    Please look at Posts 2 and 5 of this thread. Most of your questions are answered. If we don't know the answers we can't make them up.

    Hopefully others will come along who will be able to add more. Tis the nature of the 'net.
     
  9. Icare9

    Icare9 Member

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  10. Lancaster Bomber

    Lancaster Bomber Member

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    Thank you to all who have supplied information regarding Gerald Yeates and also Kenneth driver, I will look forward to hopefully finding out what happened aircraft they were flying when they crashed & why they crashed. we can but hope some body comes up with the info.
     
  11. Icare9

    Icare9 Member

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    My guess would be that as only 2 personnel seem to be involved that it could be a Mossie, given also that South Africa were buying a lot of ex RAF fighters etc at about that time. It was a bitterly cold winter so perhaps a snow or icing problem during an airtest?

    There may well be newspaper articles given that Major Ken driver was a SAAF "ace".
     
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  12. Lancaster Bomber

    Lancaster Bomber Member

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    I have just heard that I now have yet another member of our family who was engaged to a Charles Soden DSO, believe he was a Fighter Pilot, sorry lads, but that is all I have to go on. Would like to research this guy, but at present no idea where to look.
    Regards from
    Lancaster Bomber
     
  13. Spaniard

    Spaniard New Member

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    Welcome to WWII Forums, have an informative time Happy posting.
     
  14. Lancaster Bomber

    Lancaster Bomber Member

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    Thank you incare9. I hope I'm getting there, I have printed off quite a bit about Kenneth Weeks Driver, but not a lot about, Gerald Yeates.
    Thanks once again.
    dizzy-t

    If it aint bust dont touch it.
     
  15. Lancaster Bomber

    Lancaster Bomber Member

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    According to Mother in Law whose cousin I am researching, apparently it was foggy day & that the Mossy just flew into a hill, but its a long time ago 63 years ago, but I'm ever hopeful of a good result, so thanks to one and all for all the trouble you have taken over my quest, if I can be of assistance any time, please ask, you know where I am.
    Best wishes from
    Richard Smith
     
  16. Lisa Nyman

    Lisa Nyman recruit

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    My mother Mollie, was married to Ken Driver. I have also tried to find out re: the crash but no details from SAAF were forthcoming. I have a fair amount of information in the form of 2 scrap books - one of a personal nature and one detailing Ken's career. I have a few photos as well. I am not sure if you are still seeking information but I will assist of I am able to,
    Lisa
     
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  17. urqh

    urqh Tea drinking surrender monkey

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    Lisa, the original poster last posted May 2010. I've sent him an email hoping he will respond to you. Well done for posting your offer to him. The site works it seems...Good on you.
     
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  18. TD-Tommy776

    TD-Tommy776 Man of Constant Sorrow

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    And good on you, Urqh. Nicely done.
     

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