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Stirling I W7615 shot down in the Baltic south of the
island of Ærø on 20/8 1942.
The Stirling belonged to RAF 218 Sqn. Bomber Command and was coded HA-M.
T/O 20:25 Downham Market OP: Gardening Forgetmenot (Kiel Harbour).
At 23:46 hours W7615 was hit by flak from 1./lei Flak Abt. 828 and crashed into
the Baltic Sea to the south of the island of Ærø. There were no survivors.
crew consisted of Pilot P/O George McAuley DFC, Flt Engr. Sgt George L.A. Neale,
Navigator F/S Stanley E. Stevens, Air Gnr. Sgt Eric Nettleton, W/Op F/S Brian W.
Roberts, Air Gnr Sgt Albert E. Burkitt and Air Bomber Sgt Hiley R. Davies.
Pilot P/O George McAuley DFC
The body of Sgt Hiley Davies was found drifted ashore near Fuglsbølle Sønderskov
on 27/9 1942 and placed in a coffin. This was by train taken to Odense and
placed in the chapel in Odense Assistenskirkegaard, covered with the English
flag, until the burial on 1/10 at 08:00 hours.
The body of Sgt Stanley Stevens was on the morning of 21/9 found on the beach of
Vemmingbund on the island of Als. It was taken to the chapel in Sønderborg
hospital, and the German Ortskommandanturen in Aabenraa was informed. Stevens
was laid to rest in Aabenraa cemetery on 22/9 1942.
Today Nettleton rests in Kiel, while the rest of the crew have no known
graves and are commemorated on the Runnymede Memorial.
Sources: BCL, BÅ, LBUK, CWGC, UA, FAF, EDIH.
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