Clee Hill Shropshire B17 crash:Captain Priscilla Gotto Mechanised Transport Corps 25th November 1944

Discussion in 'War Cemeteries & War Memorial Research' started by CL1, Dec 14, 2019.

  1. CL1

    CL1 116th LAA and 92nd (Loyals) LAA,Royal Artillery Patron

  2. Robert-w

    Robert-w Well-Known Member

    Odd The Air War over Worcestershire and the Clee Hills has the crash on Brown Clee and not Titterstone Clee. It also records her as Patricia not Priscilla and a transport driver in the Ministry of Supply. All the other names match but it dates the crash as 28th Nov. The Author is local to Shropshire and visited all the crash sites in the area. There were 13 Allied and 2 German on the Clee Hills (note the plural), Brown Clee was the Killer

    I have a magnificent view of Titterstone Clee from my house Tittersone Clee is often called just Clee Hill (often pronounced Clay Hill). It was once a British fortress that fell to the Romans.
     
    Last edited: Dec 15, 2019
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  3. CL1

    CL1 116th LAA and 92nd (Loyals) LAA,Royal Artillery Patron

    Going over Clee Hill village the temp always drops a few degrees even in the summer and you can see how it was a marker for aircraft over the years
     
  4. Robert-w

    Robert-w Well-Known Member

    Clee Hill Village is on Titterstone Clee. It was not the hill that the crashes took place on. Titterstone Clee was home to a radar station that played a vital part in both WW2 defences and in providing early warning during the Cold War as it could look both East and West. The station is gone but the radar arrays remain - now remotely controlled. Aircraft from Valley sometimes fly over me doing exercises in flying under its radar and the SAS do what I take to be insertion/recovery by helicopter training in a wood about a mile away at periodic intervals
     
  5. CL1

    CL1 116th LAA and 92nd (Loyals) LAA,Royal Artillery Patron

    Bob I know that I was just commenting on the temp drop not doing a topography lesson
    I know the area very well
     
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  6. Robert-w

    Robert-w Well-Known Member

    Allied Aircraft lost on the Clee Hills include Wellingtons. Blenheims, Ansons, a Typhoon and a Mustang as well as the B17
     
  7. Robert-w

    Robert-w Well-Known Member

    My point was your remark of it having been a marker and yet the majority of crashes were on Brown Clee.
     
  8. CL1

    CL1 116th LAA and 92nd (Loyals) LAA,Royal Artillery Patron

    Yes I know
    during the War the whole area would have been a great lump of sod to avoid
     
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  9. Robert-w

    Robert-w Well-Known Member

    Not easy when surrounded by OTUs
     
  10. Robert-w

    Robert-w Well-Known Member

    Looking at a number of sources the whole story appears confused. Some attribute the crash to Titterstone and others to Brown Clee. Some say that the wing tip clipped the ground - others the tail. The dates even differ. The name is given as Priscilla and as Patricia. She is said to have worked for the MTC and for the Ministry of Supply - neither of these was military - like the Women's Land Army the MTC were civilian volunteers so the rank of Captain seems odd. One role of MTC volunteers was to provide drivers for senior officers in both the non combat elements of the military and the police and fire services - think Foyle's driver. Possibly she was the driver for one of the two officers who were passengers on the aircraft.
     
  11. CL1

    CL1 116th LAA and 92nd (Loyals) LAA,Royal Artillery Patron

    Robert not sure if you regularly read the said paper many but when they cover WW1 or WW2 they often have a few mistakes but at least they bother to cover those periods of time
     
  12. KevinBattle

    KevinBattle Senior Member

    B-17G-95 #43-38847
    Delivered Lincoln 28/9/44; Grenier 11/10/44; Assigned 8AF 12/10/44; Salvaged n/battle damaged 30/11/44.
    Source: Dave Osborne, B-17 Fortress Master Log* 43-38847 | B-17 Bomber Flying Fortress – The Queen Of The Skies

    Lt Col H H Vereen Clipping from The Miami News - Newspapers.com
    Graduate of University of Alabama
    Bid to remember tragic Priscilla killed in one Shropshire air crash

    ".....Dad said he could hear the plane coming around the hill, the accident report states that the plane was 28 degrees off course and the pilot was trying to relocate himself. The plane then started to climb out of the valley but because of the low cloud the pilot did not see the quarry face until the last minute. Dad said he could heard the planes engines increase in noise (this must have been when the pilot saw the rock face and tried to rapidly climb). Sadly the left wing made contact with the rock face and part of it was ripped off, the plane then cartwheeled breaking into several parts. On hearing it crash near his house on Hill Top, he ran up the hill to the crashed plane. People from houses near by and quarry men had already pulled out three of the victims, and placed them against a wall, all three were bleeding from the mouth. The pilot and co-pilot were still hanging from their seat straps (the plane was up side down). The accident report recorded all on board were killed instantly except for Cpl. Bean, who died en-route to Ludlow Hospital....." BBC - WW2 People's War - Dad's story
     
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  13. KevinBattle

    KevinBattle Senior Member

    To add:
    Kenneth T Omley. United States Headstone Applications for U.S. Military Veterans, 1925-1949
    Name: Kenneth T Omley. Burial Place: Hackensack, Bergen, New Jersey. Death Date: 25 Nov 1944.
    Date of Birth 29 January 1920. Major USAAF #0415251. Application by father Theodore K Omley of 167 Sheffield Drive, Englewood NJ

    The Omley family appear to have arrived in America sometime after 1906. (with Kenneth named, that must be after 1920, so possibly born outside of America?)
    Theodore K Omley; Oline A Omley; Kenneth and Herbert Omley, all gave North Bergen, NJ as their address. Perhaps a Norwegian background?

    For a Gotto in Ireland, the closest I have is
    Name: Robert P C Gotto. Marriage Apr - Jun 1909. Belfast, Ireland
    Registration District: Belfast. Volume Number: 1
    and then to a possible connection
    Robert Vivian Gotto, Irish zoology educator. Leading aircraftman, Royal Air Force, 1944-1946, United Kingdom, India, Sri Lanka. Member Marine Biological Association Great Britain (life), Windsor Lawn Tennis Club Belfast (president 1989).
    For Ireland, Patricia is tempting, but as Gotto doesn't sound Irish, that remains uncertain.

    She must have been born after 1911
    1911 Census: Robert Porter Corey Gotto. timber merchant
    Olive Gotto wife; Beatrice Gotto, daughter
    Martha Adams McAlister, servant, Henrieatta Palmer, servant, Mary Lenton, servant
    Address: 65 MARLBOROUGH PARK, Windsor, Shankill

    BERTIE GOTTO Ireland. Full name Robert Porter Corry Gotto. Born January 20, 1881, Belfast
    Died August 5, 1960, Belfast, Northern Ireland (aged 79 years 198 days)
    Major teams Ireland
    Position Centre
    Rugby Test Career
    Span Mat Start Sub Pts Tries Conv Pens Drop GfM Won Lost Draw %
    All Tests 1906-1906 1 1 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 1 0 0.00
    Career Statistics
    Only Test Ireland v South Africa at Belfast, Nov 24, 1906

    https://www.thegazette.co.uk/Belfast/issue/2092/page/274/data.pdf
     
    Last edited: Dec 15, 2019
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  14. timuk

    timuk Well-Known Member

    Deleted duplicate post.
     
    Last edited: Dec 15, 2019
  15. timuk

    timuk Well-Known Member

    'Women in Uniform' by D Collett Wade has a table of equivalent ranks and shows a Captain (MTC) as being equivalent to a Junior Commander (ATS).

    Tim
     
  16. Mike Hermolle

    Mike Hermolle New Member

    Her death is registered at Bridgnorth Volume 6a page 679 and the name is recorded as Priscilla C.

    Mike
     
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