Six newspaper cuttings



Six newspaper cuttings


Top left - riddled plane won dual. Story of recovery of damaged bomber pilot Flt Sgt F E Mathers RAF awarded Conspicuous Gallantry Medal. Wireless operator and rear gunner (Sgt G E French) awarded Distinguished Flying Medal.
Middle left - Regiment of Bombers. Account of return from Duisburg. Bottom left - Award of Distinguished Flying Medal to Flight Sergeant Ernest Charles Fryer 77 Squadron. Wireless operator who displayed courage over large number of sorties.
Centre - Stettin Blazing 10 hours after, bombers so thick that two collided. Account of operation to Stettin Rostock involving Halifax, Stirling and Lancaster. Mention of Mosquito, Typhoons, Beaufighter and Whirlwind taking part in offensive against enemy transport.
Top right - Chased by fighter 77 Squadron aircraft pilot Sergeant J Rank hit by anti-aircraft fire then attached by night-fighter.
Bottom right - Award of Distinguished Flying Cross to Wing Commander A E Lowe who was originally a corporal on squadron he now commands. First air gunner squadron commander.



Temporal Coverage



Six newspaper cuttings mounted on an album page


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Riddled by flak, with two engines out of control, and three petrol tanks leaking, a bomber was limping back from Mulheim last month when a German fighter swooped upon it.

All movable equipment, including the mid-upper turret gun and ammunition, had been jettisoned, but while the pilot struggled with the controls the rear gunner shot the attacker down into the sea.

By then the bomber had dropped to 500 feet, but the pilot, by superb airmanship, reached a coastal airfield and crash-landed.

The pilot, Flt.-Sgt. F.E. Mathers, R.A.A.F., a Sydney man, has been awarded the Conspicuous Gallantry Medal, while Sergt. W.F. [missing letters]pedic, the rear-gunner, of Kirk-[missing letters]ldy, and Sgt. G.E. French, the [missing letters]eless operator, of London, each [missing letters]eive the D.F.M.

“REGIMENT [missing word] BOMBERS”
A Halifax [missing words] in, Flt.-Lieut. D.P. P[indecipherable letters] [missing letters]rom Brighton, said, “We arr[missing letters] [missing letters]t the beginning and watched [missing word] bursts of bombs making a continuous pattern.

“There seemed to be a thundering regiment of bombers behind and around us. We could see dozens of them.

“As we turned away the place was filling up with fires, and when we were over the Zuider Zee on the way home, about 150 miles from Duisburg, [missing letter]he rear-gunner could still see the [missing word] blazing.

“I shall never forget all those coloured lights – the explosions, flares and fires. And there was those things we [missing letter]all scarecrows which Jerry seems to be sending up to frighten us. They burst with a dirty red explosion, and then red and green stars pour out. They have often burst near a bomber and done no harm.”

A Stirling pilot, Sergt. R. van Eupen, of Wellington, New Zealand, said that at the time he bombed, towards the end of the

Continued Back Page B

800645 Flight Sergeant Ernest Charles Pryor, A.A.F., No. 77 Squadron, whose home is at Tottenham, has been awarded the Distinguished Flying Medal. Born in 1920 at Islington, he was a stock keeper in civil life. He enlisted in 1939 and is now wireless operator/air gunner. During the course of a large number of operation sorties, states the citation, Flt. Sgt. Pryor has consistently displayed courage and devotion to duty of a high order, setting an admirable example to all with whom he came in contact. A wireless operator of exceptional ability, this airman’s work has, at all times, inspired the utmost confidence and has frequently been the subject of the highest praise by his captain.

[inserted] 20/4/43. [indecipherable word] [/inserted]
[inserted] 2 missing. [/inserted]

Bombers So Thick That Two Collided

Ten hours after Tuesday nights raids on Stettin and Rostock [missing word] pilot of a reconnaissance aircraft saw huge clouds of smoke o[missing letter]er both towns. Over Stettin a pall of smoke was 15,000 feet in height and was visible from Rostock, 80 miles away.

Many large fires were still burning in Stettin. At Rostock there were at least eight great columns of smoke.

But the raids on Stettin and Rostock were only part of a most-raided night of the war for the Germans from both West and East.

Berlin itself reveals that Tilsit, the important manufacturing and communications centre on the borders of East Prussia and Lithuania, was “heavily” raided. The Berlin correspondent of Aftonbladet says the raid was by Russian planes.

Meanwhile, this is what the R.A.F. was doing:-


Halifaxes, Lancasters and Stirlings, the four-engined giants, made a “very heavy” attack on Stettin on the Baltic.

Over 150 4,000lb. bombs were dropped in about 40 minutes, as well as tens of thousands of incendiaries and hundreds of other high explosive bombs.

Stirlings alone “heavily bombed” nearby Rostock, home of the Heinkel works, which had three devastating raids in three successive nights a year ago.

A Lancaster captain said there were so many bombers flying to Stettin and Rostock that pilots had to keep a sharp lookout to avoid collisions. His machine hit the fin of a Stirling, but there was only minor damage and both carried on.

Mosquitos went to Berlin, still beflagged for Hitler’s birthday celebrations.

Other bombers laid mines in enemy waters.

From all these activities 31 bombers are missing.


Mosquitos, Typhoons, Beaufighters and Whirlwinds took part in one of the largest offensives against enemy transport ever made by Fighter Command.

They attacked trains and barges in various parts of France, Belgium, Holland, Germany, and shipping off the Belgian coast.

All our aircraft returned safely from these many sorties.

[Missing words] [missing letters]age and [missing words] circumstances [missing words] the citation [missing word]

[Missing letters]ased by Fighter

[Missing letter]ergeant J. Rank, of South [missing letters]elds, attached to No. 77 squadron, [missing letter]as captain of a bomber also [missing letter]etailed to attack Wupperthal. When [missing letter]earing the target the aircraft was hit by flak, and the damage made it difficult to control.

Then the rear gunner reported the approach of an enemy aircraft, and in most harassing circumstances Sergeant Rank was compelled to take evasive action.

Although pursued he pressed on to Wupperthal and made a successful and determined attack. Photographs showed that his bombs fell on the aiming point.

During the attack the enemy aircraft was evaded and course was set for base, where a difficult landing was made with superb skill. Sergeant Rank displayed high courage and great determination to complete his task successfully.

Wing Commander A.E. Lowe, who has just been awarded the D.F.C., was a corporal in the same bomber squadron five years ago. He is the first air gunner to be given command of a squadron.


“Six newspaper cuttings,” IBCC Digital Archive, accessed April 19, 2024,

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