Personnel Index - Detail
26/27 March, 1944; ESSEN:
Harris surprised the German night fighters when he suddenly switched his attention to the Ruhr. Over 700 bombers set out on this Sunday evening led by 'Oboe' equipped PFF Mossies, which marked the target well. Subsequent reports confirmed that the raid had been successful and the loss of 9 aircraft and crews, represented just 1.3 per cent of the force.
Of the 17 aircraft sent on this operation 15 made it safely home to Fiskerton although F/Lt Healey and crew were shot at by a fighter over the target, and P/O Dickinson (JB399) and crew had a large hole punched in the leading edge between the fuselage and starboard inner engine. P/O J. Jones (ND473) was slightly injured by a piece of shrapnel which pierced the perspex at the left of his cockpit.
One of the two overdue aircraft, P-Peter, failed to return and was presumed missing; in fact P/O Harold Hodgson age 22, and his crew had all been killed over Germany and are now buried in the Rheinberg War Cemetery. They were flying only their second trip having been to Aulnoye the night before.
Lancaster JB680 (EA-P)
P/O H.S. Hodgson Pilot (Killed)
Sgt R.W. Beresford F/E (Killed)
F/S P.H. Simonson RCAF NAV (Killed)
Sgt C. Bailey W/OP (Killed)
Sgt R. Millns A/G (Killed)
P/O G.E. Chute RCAF A/B (Killed)
Sgt W.P. Larvin A/G (Killed)
Crew on their 2nd operation
Courtesy of Wendy Flemming we have a comprehensive set of documents concerning Percy Simonson......click this link to view.