Halifax DT489 was one of six No. 35 Squadron aircraft detailed to attack Dortmund on the night of the 4th / 5th May 1943.
Its seven-man crew comprised:
- Joseph Albert George Cobb (Pilot)
- Samuel Albert Coles (Navigator)
- Stanton Eric Arthur Russell (Air Bomber)
- John Desmond Collinge (Wireless Operator)
- Charles Harold Fisher (Air Gunner)
- James Howden Robertson (Air Gunner)
- Frederick Ronald Beech (Flight Engineer)
The squadron’s Operations Record Book shows “Aircraft crashed on landing at Graveley aerodrome. All except rear gunner killed; no report to hand”
The Commonwealth War Graves Commission records show that the crew were buried as follows:
- BEECH, FREDERICK RONALD, Sergeant ‘1144928’ WREXHAM CEMETERY Sec. D. Grave 8653.
- COBB, JOSEPH ALBERT GEORGE, Pilot Officer ‘145671’ RINGWOOD CEMETERY Plot Z. Grave 284.
- COLES, SAMUEL ALBERT, Flying Officer ‘124952’ TALBOT VILLAGE (ST. MARK) CHURCHYARD Grave 988.
- COLLINGE, JOHN DESMOND, Sergeant ‘1026403’ CASTLETON MOOR (ST. MARTIN) CHURCHYARD Grave 150.
- FISHER, CHARLES HAROLD, Sergeant ‘1055777’ HOUGHTON AND WYTON BURIAL GROUND Grave 352.
- RUSSELL, STANTON ERIC ARTHUR, Sergeant ‘1183357’ DORKING CEMETERY Plot 1 Grave 5277.
WR Chorley (Bomber Command Losses of the Second World War)
Crashed on return to base, coming down to the west of Portland Gelling crossroads in Huntingdonshire.
JH Robertson (the only survivor) did not fly operationally with No 35 Squadron after this date