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Old 25th January 2009, 10:06
fueryjones@grapevine.com. fueryjones@grapevine.com. is offline
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fate of Luftwaffe night-fighter pilot

Greetings everyone – this is my first post here. I’m looking for help with finding out as much as I can about a Luftwaffe night-fighter pilot who attacked, and was shot down by, a 76 Squadron Halifax piloted by my late father in June 1944.

My father died a few months ago, and I’m now trying to fill in some of the remaining gaps in my knowledge of his experience in Bomber Command – including, if possible, the identity and fate of the shot-down Luftwaffe pilot.

The attack occurred during an operation to Blainville sur l’eau (near Nancy in north-east France) on the night of 28-29 June 1944. My father’s account of the incident is published in Chris Blanchett’s book From Hull, Hell and Halifax (1992, p. 151):
We were flying at 8,000 feet some time before reaching the target. We had seen several bombers going down from fighter attacks so we were keeping a sharp look-out for trouble. When it came, we were surprised that it came from the moon lit side. Our rear gunner … reported seeing an Me109 closing from the port quarter. I ordered the flight engineer to keep a close watch on the dark side in case the attack from the light side was only a decoy (a not uncommon night fighter tactic). However, the Me109 pressed home his attack. During my evasive corkscrew manoeuvre, my two gunners were able to get a good concentration on the fighter and sent him down on fire. The action was later confirmed by another crew at de-briefing. We lost three crews that night on a target that was considered to be a ‘piece of cake’ …
Bomber Command lost a lot of aircraft on that operation: 11 Halifaxes and one Pathfinder Lancaster, so the night-fighters were obviously very active that night.

According to 76 Squadron records, my father took off from his base in Yorkshire at 22.01 on 28 June and was over the target at 01.34 on 29 June, so it’s likely the fighter attack occurred early on 29 June.

I’d welcome any advice as to where I might find Luftwaffe (or other) records relevant to this event.

Thanks in advance
Michael

Last edited by fueryjones@grapevine.com.; 25th January 2009 at 10:10. Reason: forgot to sign post first up
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