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13/10/1940 - Bristol Blenheim L6637

Type Serial No Unit Station  Duty Crew Passengers
Blenheim L6637 No 29 Squadron Tern Hill Patrol 3 -

On the  early evening of the 13th October 1940 Squadron Leader Ambrus, Flight Lieutenant Comerford and Sergeant Stehlik of No 312 (Czech) Squadron in a chain of unfortunate circumstances led to the three pilots to believe that the two aircraft sighted whilst on patrol over the Point of Ayr were enemy aircraft. Squadron Leader Ambrus opened fire on one of them and was followed by Flight Lieutenant Comerford who fired a short burst. Sergeant Stehlik also fired a short burst at about a distance of 1100 yards, but stated that he was sighting a testing of his guns. The attacked aircraft fired two red lights, the recognition signal of the day, but it was two late as at the same time one of the aircraft, Blenheim No L6637 of No 29 Squadron burst into flames and crashed into the sea at Hoyles Bank in the River Dee estuary killing the occupants at 18:20 hours, with Aircraftman Jackson's body washing ashore at a latter date.

The second Blenheim No L7135 was hit, but returned to base at Tern Hill safely after being escorted by the Hurricanes. This aircraft was one of 18 aircraft destroyed in a hanger when during an German attack on Tern hill on the 15th October 1940. The Blenheims had been patrolling the "Mersey Blue Line".

The resulting investigation determined that the "Incident was caused by a culmination of a succession of faults, each of minor character. Evidence disclosed a lack of team work and co ordination between Sector and squadron, the deficiencies were subsequently eliminated, with special attention paid to aircraft recognition".

Sergeant Robert Edward Stevens

Sergeant Robert Edward Stevens

Sergeant Robert Edward Stevens 742992 of the Royal Air Force Volunteer Reserve is remembered on the Runnymede Memorial, Surrey, panel 19. Sergeant Stevens who was from Croydon and was born in April 1920, he joined the RAFVR in 1938. He was posted to No 29 squadron at Digby in July 1940.

Sergeant Oswald Kenneth Sly 759093 of the Royal Air Force Volunteer Reserve was the Son of Frederick William and Blanche Curwood Sly, of Weston-super-Mare, Somerset, and is remembered on the Runnymede Memorial Surrey, panel 19. Sergeant Sly joined the RAFVR in August 1939 as an airman under training and was called up on the 1st September 1939 after completing his training at No 5 OTU he was posted to No 29 squadron at Digby on the 7th August 1940.

Aircraftman 2nd Class Arthur Jackson 1050666 of the Royal Air Force Volunteer Reserve was the son of Arthur and Rose Hannah Jackson, of Mexborough, and is buried in Section D Uncons. Mexborough cemetery, grave 642. Aircraftman Jackson joined the RAF as an aircraftsman in June 1940 and subsequently volunteered for flying duties and went to Yatesbury on a Radar course then he was posted to No 29 squadron at Digby on the 10th August 1940.

Position  Name  Rank Service No Age Status
Pilot Robert Edward Stevens Sergeant 742992 20 Killed - missing
Air Gunner Oswald Kenneth Sly Sergeant 759093 20 Killed - missing
AI Operator Arthur Jackson Aircraftsman 2nd Class 1050666 29 Killed

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