Wellington X lost out of Foggia Main Italy

Discussion in 'The War In The Air' started by Collers, Mar 20, 2012.

  1. Collers

    Collers Member

    Cheers Steve

    According to your Bob Baxter reference An additional letter identified the individual aircraft, ie WS-A = aircraft 'A'

    So therefore it is BL-? but of course there are apparently no references to individual aircraft and therefore no way of telling the fusilage marking of LP127-P.

    Thanks for your help

  2. Red Goblin

    Red Goblin Senior Member

    Ah ... now it's my turn to say "Well spotted" having hastily missed that note at the top!

    So, brainstorming now, how about BL-P or was it just LP127-<letter4tonight> ?

  3. Collers

    Collers Member

    I have checked the aircraft number on 80 log entries and the suffix letter is without exception always used with the same prefix - therefore it is unique.

    Additionally a suffix letter is not duplicated on any other combination of prefix within the squadron. It is totally unique to a specific aircraft.

    Therefore I am as certain as I can be that the suffix letter would be the letter on the fusilage after the squadron designation of BL.

    Therefore LP127-P carried the fusilage insignia of BL-P

    If this analysis is incorrect, someone please correct me.

  4. Robynjanet

    Robynjanet Junior Member

    Very interesting!, welcome, Collers.

    I also found the wreck of a Vickers Wellington, LN466 from 142 Sqn, lost on the Western Alps at a great distance from its target, a ball-bearing factory in Turin. Reading the memories, books and essays about that night, and speaking with a direct witness (the navigator of an other Wellington who was able to come back alive), I have no doubt of the enormous error of navigation that a crew could take, especially in stormy and icy flights.

    If I may help you with the Italian language, don't hesitate to contact me.

    I may only suggest to read this nice book, "Out of the Italian Night" by Maurice G. Lihou, directly concerning the Wellington's operation in Italy, also from Foggia.

    Out of the Italian Night: Wellington Bomber Operations 1944-45 Airlife's Classics: Amazon.co.uk: Maurice Lihou: Books

    Pen and Sword Books: Out of the Italian Night by Maurice G Lihou

    Best regards,

    Re RAF Squadron 40, flying out of Foggia Main, Italy. Would appreciate details of the fatal crash of a cousin of a friend if anyone has access. Edward Charles Fitzgerald, RAAF, 436403, born 10/10/24. Reargunner. Killed on 20th birthday, 10/10/44. I believe that all the crew were killed. I can't find him at the Runnymede memorial. His records are digitized on the website of the Australian National Archives.
  5. alieneyes

    alieneyes Senior Member

    I believe that all the crew were killed. I can't find him at the Runnymede memorial.

    As your subject was lost in he Mediterranean Theatre his loss is commemorated on the Malta Memorial:

    CWGC - Casualty Details

    Rank:Flight Sergeant
    Service No:436403
    Date of Death:11/10/1944
    Regiment/Service:Royal Australian Air Force
    Panel Reference Panel 16, Column 2.

    CWGC - Cemetery Details

    The Malta Memorial commemorates almost 2,300 airmen who lost their lives during the Second World War whilst serving with the Commonwealth Air Forces flying from bases in Austria, Italy, Sicily, islands of the Adriatic and Mediterranean, Malta, Tunisia, Algeria, Morocco, West Africa, Yugoslavia and Gibraltar, and who have no known grave. The Memorial was unveiled by The Queen on 3 May 1954.


  6. Collers

    Collers Member

    You may recall this Thread running for quite a while last year during efforts to discover details of my uncle's loss in May 1944.

    After an enormous amount of help from very knowledgeable members on this forum who provided excellent tips and advice I believe I have uncovered as much as I can.

    I'm still hopeful of obtaining ORB's or similar detailing training at No. 76 OTU in Aqir, Palestine and hopefully the Aero-Archaeological group 1943Salerno might be able to pin-point the exact crash location when they resume their search in the coming spring.

    I have to accept the exact reason for the crash will never be known but an abundance of recorded information survives to point the finger at disastrous weather and an inexperienced crew.

    For those members who may be interested I have attached my final summary of events.

    Many thanks to all


    Attached Files:

  7. haxfilmmaker

    haxfilmmaker New Member

    Hi Everyone,

    My Father, Harry Hacker, who has just celebrated his 91st Birthday served on 40 Squadron at Foggia in 1944 & 45, as co pilot and bomb aimer.

    I am making a legacy film about him and would love to hear from anyone who had relative on the same squadron at the same time. He might also be able to answer any questions you have about the Squadron and the crews who served in it.

    Not sure is I am allowed to do this, but me email is mikehax@mac.com

    Many thanks

  8. Collers

    Collers Member

    Hi Mike,

    I haven't logged in for a considerable while but did so today because it's the 70th anniversary tonight of the loss of LP127-P and crew and thought I'd have a quick look at my old thread. Hence I belatedly spotted your post. All I know regarding 40 Squadron is contained within this thread and so I'm sorry I can't really help.

    You must be very proud of your father. They were hellish times for those men to live through. Brave and courageous doesn't really sum it up adequately.

  9. Tom Canning

    Tom Canning WW2 Veteran WW2 Veteran


    glad you are back as I have pondered the crash site especially the map on the Posting #11 where the direct line of flight from

    Foggia is straight to Valmontone - over many HIGH mountains - Now an experienced pilot would not travel that way in a Wellington

    but would head for the low lying land directly West of Foggia towards Salerno(Avilano) then turn North onto Highway 6 - straight

    through Cassino and the Liri valley to Valmontone at the head of the Liri valley then turnabout and come back the same way- alas

    something happened for them to be buried at Caserta - those mountains in bad weather are to avoided at all costs…

  10. Collers

    Collers Member

    Hi Tom,

    The route shown in post #11 was pure conjecture on my part early in my quest. Since then much evidence has come to light through this amazing site and the route taken did indeed avoid high ground as you suggest. If you haven't already done so, check my final summary of findings in the PDF on post #146. HQ 205 Group designated the route for them. The first leg was down the Volturno River valley to the coast thus avoiding the mountain areas. The return route should have been the same but the weather was so chaotic that aircraft ended up all over the place.

    Last summer the crash site was finally located by the Salerno 1943 Airfinders but all that was left were many fragments. The site was just a few metres short of the summit.

    Cheers Collers

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