VIII Fighter Command

26 September 1942

Description

14 aircraft and pilots took off from Great Sampford for Bolthead, Devonshire, landing there at 1230 hours. At 1350 hours and after a very sketchy briefing, 12 aircraft of the Squadron took off together with 401 with orders to make rendezvous with a formation of Fortresses in mid-channel approximately half-way between Bolthead and Morlaix. It is yet doubtful to know what happened but some Fortresses were seen after 45 minutes flying, during which time the Squadron had probably the Bay of Biscay several times. One pilot and aircraft (P/O. Beaty) made the English coast and owing to shortage of petrol crash landed in a small field near Kingsbridge. Judging from his account and what he overheard over the R/T it is probable that the remaining 11 pilots force landed on the Island of Ouissant or on the French mainland. It is known on good authority that 5 pilots are now prisoners of war.

No further operational flying during the month.

Mission Details

Brest, France / Bolt Head, Salcombe, Devon / Great Sampford, Saffron Walden, Essex

Description: FIGHTER ESCORT

Aircraft Type: Spitfire

Notes: 133 Squadron RAF, soon to be absorbed by 4th Fighter Group, also was to provide escort and lost 11 Spitfire IXs during the escort. One RAF pilot credited with one enemy aircraft destroyed. Loss not in 8th Air Force.

Mission Statistics

  • People killed in action: 4
  • People evaded: 1
  • Prisoners of war: 6
  • Aircraft sent: 36
  • Aircraft missing in action: 11

Connections

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People

  • Military/Civilian/Mascot: Military
  • Nationality: American
  • Unit: 336th Fighter Squadron No 133 'Eagle' Squadron
  • Service Numbers: O-885113
  • Highest Rank: Flight Officer
  • Role/Job: Pilot
  • Military/Civilian/Mascot: Military
  • Nationality: American
  • Unit: 4th Fighter Group 336th Fighter Squadron No 133 'Eagle' Squadron
  • Highest Rank: Pilot Officer
  • Role/Job: Pilot
  • Military/Civilian/Mascot: Military
  • Nationality: British
  • Unit: No 133 'Eagle' Squadron
  • Service Numbers: 61053
  • Highest Rank: Squadron Leader
  • Role/Job: fighter Pilot/squadron commander
  • Military/Civilian/Mascot: Military
  • Nationality: American
  • Unit: 336th Fighter Squadron No 133 'Eagle' Squadron
  • Service Numbers: O-885112
  • Highest Rank: Captain
  • Role/Job: Pilot
A pilot, Domenic "Don" Gentile, of the 336th Fighter Squadron, 4th Fighter Group - Debden with his P-51 Mustang, nicknamed "Shangri-La"
  • Military/Civilian/Mascot: Military
  • Nationality: American
  • Unit: 4th Fighter Group 336th Fighter Squadron No 133 'Eagle' Squadron
  • Service Numbers: O-885109
  • Highest Rank: Major
  • Role/Job: Fighter Pilot

Aircraft

  • Aircraft Type: Spitfire
  • Unit: 4th Fighter Group 336th Fighter Squadron
  • Aircraft Type: Spitfire
  • Unit: No 133 'Eagle' Squadron
  • Aircraft Type: Spitfire
  • Unit: 4th Fighter Group 336th Fighter Squadron No 133 'Eagle' Squadron
  • Aircraft Type: Spitfire
  • Unit: 4th Fighter Group 336th Fighter Squadron
  • Aircraft Type: Spitfire
  • Unit: 4th Fighter Group 336th Fighter Squadron No 133 'Eagle' Squadron

Revisions

Date
ContributorWoodsterdog
Changes
Sources

Added Beaty who was 12th member of the mission from ORB

Date
ContributorWoodsterdog
Changes
Sources

Location Associations taken from ORB

Date
ContributorWoodsterdog
Changes
Sources

Taken from 133 Sqn Operational Record Book - Available at the National Archives

Date
ContributorLee8thbuff
Changes
Sources

Lee Cunningham 28-Oct-2014. Edit of mission description.

Date
ContributorLee8thbuff
Changes
Sources

Lee Cunningham 21-Oct-2014. Edit to Mission Title

Date
ContributorLee8thbuff
Changes
Sources

Lee Cunningham 21-Oct-2014. Description written by Mr Cunningham based on the "Mighty Eighth War Diary" Roger A. Freeman.

Date
ContributorAAM
Changes
Sources

Lee Cunningham, 8th Air Force missions research database / Stan Bishop's 'Losses of the US 8th and 9th Air Forces', the Combat Chronology of the US Army Air Forces and the work of Roger Freeman including the 'Mighty Eighth War Diary'.