Personnel Index - Detail
Image courtesy of Trevor Arnold.
14/15 June, 1943: OBERHAUSEN:
An all Lancaster force of 197, guided by 6 Oboe Mosquitoes made an successful attack on Oberhausen. Despite the target being cloud-covered, accurate sky-marking enabled the bombers to do considerable damage. Twelve Lancasters lifted from Fiskerton's runway, the last one away by 22.32hrs. One aircraft returned early and the remaining 11 crews
found themselves engaged in a savage battle from both flak and fighters which resulted in Bomber Command losing 17 aircraft.
Sgt George Cole (ED432) and crew were caught by a night fighter and their aeroplane fell at Castle Doorwerth, west of Arnhem in Holland. Two of the crew survived; Sgt Arnold sustained shrapnel wounds to his legs and was thrown clear; both became POW's.
It has recently come to light, that the graves of the crew members who perished have been constantly tended by Geertruida Oosterhaar and was awarded the MBE in 1974. A schoolgirl at the time of the crash, Geertruida well remembers the night the Lancaster came down near her home. The crew lies at rest in Oosterbeek Cemetery near the many graves of the Airborne soldiers who died in the Battle for Arnhem. At the 1993 Squadron reunion held at Woodhall Spa, Geertruida Oosterhaar was a very special 'guest of honour'; the squadron veterans took this opportunity to show Geertruida their deeply felt appreciation for the devotion she has shown over the years to some of their fallen comrades.
Lancaster ED432 (EA-N)
Sgt G.S. Cole Pilot (Killed)
Sgt J.P. Harper F/E (Killed)
Sgt C.A. Barnett Nav (Killed)
Sgt J.F. Arnold W/AG (P.o.W.)
Sgt J.H. Bryan A/G (P.o.W.)
Sgt J.W. Deacon B/A (Killed)
Sgt H.R. Rhodes A/G (Killed)
Sgt H. Biggin Extra Nav (Killed)
Crew on their 8th operation
Read the story of this loss written by Sgt J Arnold (text opens in a new window)
'Posted Out' in 2009
A Dutch newspaper article and the English summary are shown below: