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Bettridge, Oliver Augustus (Flight Sergeant)

Killed in Action 1943-08-11

Birth Date: 1921-04-07 (age 22)

Born: Southampton Ontario

Son of Henry A. Bettridge and Caroline Bettridge, of Cornwall, Ontario.

Home: Cornwall, Ontario

Service
RCAF
Unit
115 (B) Sqn- Squadron (RAF)
Despite The Elements
Rank
Flight Sergeant
Marshal
Air Chief MarshalA/C/M
Air MarshalA/M
Air Vice MarshalA/V/M
Air CommodoreA/C
Group CaptainG/C
Wing CommanderW/C
Squadron LeaderS/L
Flight LieutenantF/L
Flying OfficerF/O
Pilot OfficerP/O
Warrant Officer 1st ClassWO1
Warrant Officer 2nd ClassWO2
Flight SergeantFS
SergeantSGT
CorporalCPL
Senior AircraftmanSAC
Leading AircraftmanLAC
Aircraftman 1st ClassAC1
Aircraftman 2nd ClassAC2
Position
Air Gunner
Service Numbers
R/161867
115 Squadron (Despite The Elements), Little Snoring, England. Lancaster II aircraft DS 665 KN-O broke up in air and crashed at East Hill Farm, Chart Sutton, near Maidstone, Kent, England, while returning from a sortie. The aircraft was shot down by Feldwebel Johann Trenke of the 16/KG 2, flying an Me 410 A-1 from Merville airfield, France. F/S OA Bettridge (RCAF), F/O JFH Erwin (RAFVR), Sgt LP Fannan (RAFVR), F/O RE Chesser (RAFVR), F/O NP Gardner (RAFVR), Sgt GE Oliver (RAFVR) and Sgt FH Merritt (RAFVR) were killed.

Canada Source Canadian Virtual War Memorial

Canada Primary Source Library and Archives Canada Service Files (may not exist)

Avro Lancaster

Avro Lancaster Mk. X RCAF Serial FM 213
Canadian Warplane Heritage Museum

The Avro Lancaster is a British Second World War heavy bomber. It was designed and manufactured by Avro as a contemporary of the Handley Page Halifax, both bombers having been developed to the same specification, as well as the Short Stirling, all three aircraft being four-engined heavy bombers adopted by the Royal Air Force (RAF) during the same wartime era.

The Lancaster has its origins in the twin-engine Avro Manchester which had been developed during the late 1930s in response to the Air Ministry Specification P.13/36 for a capable medium bomber for "world-wide use". Originally developed as an evolution of the Manchester (which had proved troublesome in service and was retired in 1942), the Lancaster was designed by Roy Chadwick and powered by four Rolls-Royce Merlins and in one version, Bristol Hercules engines. It first saw service with RAF Bomber Command in 1942 and as the strategic bombing offensive over Europe gathered momentum, it was the main aircraft for the night-time bombing campaigns that followed. As increasing numbers of the type were produced, it became the principal heavy bomber used by the RAF, the Royal Canadian Air Force (RCAF) and squadrons from other Commonwealth and European countries serving within the RAF, overshadowing the Halifax and Stirling. Wikipedia

YouTube Lancaster Bomber

Wkikpedia Wikipedia

General Harold A Skaarup Web Page

CASPIR Aircraft Groups:
RCAF On Strength (234), RCAF 6 Group (5), RCAF 400 Squadron (7), Canadian Aircraft Losses (1732)
last update: 2021-09-18 14:32:33

Lancaster Mk.II DS665


115 (B) Sqn- Squadron (RAF) Despite The Elements

No. 115 Sqn was originally formed on Dec 1, 1917 as a heavy bomber squadron and joined the Independent Air Force of the RAF in August 1918. It was disbanded in 1919, then re-formed in June 1937. It formed part of RAF Bomber Command No. 3 Group in WWII. Starting with Handley Page Harrow aircraft, it transferred to Vickers Wellingtons in 1939, which it flew until March 1943, when it transferred to Avro Lancaster B. Mk. II and later B. Mks I and III. Between April 1940 and September 1942 the squadron was seconded to Coastal Command and based at Kinloss, Scotland. It rejoined Bomber Command and flew from Mildenhall, East Wretham and Little Snoring in 1942 and 1943 before settling at Witchford, Cambridgeshire from November 1943 until the end of hostilities.

In April 1940 the squadron made the RAF's first bombing attack on the mainland of Europe, at Stavanger in Norway. In August of 1941 it participated in the service trials of the new navigational aid, GEE, and as a result of its report the device was put into mass production. Overall, in WWII the squadron flew 5392 sorties and dropped about 23,000 tons of bombs. This was the second-highest tonnage of bombs in Bomber Command. The squadron was 3rd in the number of raids in the course of the war. Since it was active over the whole span of WWI, it lost the greatest number of aircraft of any squadron in Bomber Command: it was the only squadron to lose more than 200 aircraft.

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