Personnel Index - Detail
Geoff's first operation was a baptism of fire against Nürenburg on the 31st March 1944 with F/O Cornish (an Australian who went on to complete 60 operations). He then rejoined his own crew (F/O W R Green) and did a further 23 trips.
In June 1944 Geoff was injured in a motorcycle accident and this proved to be a "lucky break" as F/O Green and crew were lost on operations shortly afterwards.
He joined F/O George Lee's crew in October and successfully completed his tour on the 11th December 1944.
Unknown, Ken Read, David Hytch, Geoff Brunton, Tom Scott, "Blondie" Broadbent" and "Unknown" rear gunner.
This post war photograph was taken at Mepal in 1945 where PB917 (D-Dog) arrived in September.
New Zealand skipper, William Green and crew fresh out of HCU and now bound for operations with 49Sqn at Fiskerton.
L -R Back row:
Mid upper Gunner Sgt Allan Ansell age 20 from Bournemouth
Flight Engineer Sgt Geoff Brunton
Navigator Sgt Reg Neal age 32 from Stanmore, Middlesex
Bomb Aimer F/Sgt Mervyn Hollard age 21from Opotik, Auckland
L -R Front row:
Wireless Operator Colin Davison age 23 from Totley, Yorkshire;
Pilot F/Sgt William Raeburn Green age 28 from Pokeno, Auckland;
Rear Gunner Sgt Gordon Hands age 19 from Hendon.
Geoff Brunton at the 2010 Remembrance Day lunch at Fiskerton
Additional details taken from 'The Dog at War' by John Ward.
Geoff's crew commenced operations on 10 Apr 1944 and during the following two months were to suffer fighter attacks, a smashed windscreen and engine failures. On their 22nd operation, to Wesseling, they were attacked twice by fighters, losing their rear turret and port-inner motor. For his flying skills this night, Bill Green received the DFC.
Shortly after this raid, the crew’s regular Flight Eng., Geoff Brunton, broke his leg in a motor cycle accident. His place in the crew was taken by 22 year-old Frank Seymour from Leyburn in Yorkshire. On the trip to Revigny 18/19 July 1944, their 27 op, the crew again tangled with a night fighter… this time the outcome was both tragic and fatal…. U for Uncle fell to earth at Herbisse near Arcissur-Aube in France. All of the crew perished.
Geoff Brunton, with leg repaired, carried on to complete his tour on 49 Sqn. But he has never forgotten ‘his’ crew and each year, on the anniversary of their deaths, in the company of his son Michael, Geoff attends a commemoration service conducted by the local villagers at the graves of his long lost friends. How many can say they owe their lives to a motor cycle crash.
"Posted Out" 2011