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Aikens, Stanley John (Pilot Officer)

Prisoner of War 1945-01-05

Male Head

Birth Date: 1917-07-11 (age 27)

Service
RCAF
Unit
432 (B) Sqn- Squadron
Saeviter Ad Lucem (Ferociously toward the light)
Base
RAF East Moor
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
Bomb Aimer
Service Numbers
R/77762 - J/93973
7712

Halifax B.Mk.VII NP759

Bombing Hanover Germany 1945-January-05 to 1945-January-05

664 aircraft - 340 Halifaxes, 3IO Lancasters, 14 Mosquitoes - of 1, 4, 6 and 8 Groups. 23 Halifaxes and 8 Lancasters lost, 4ยท7 per cent of the force.

This was the first large raid on Hannover since October 1943. Bombs fell all over the city and the local report, based on messages from 16 of the 18 police districts, shows that 493 buildings, containing 3,605 flats/apartments, were destroyed and that approximately 250 people were killed. No further details are available

432 Leaside Squadron (Saeviter ad Lucem) RAF East Moor. Halifax BVII aircraft NP 759 QO-C, named "Canada Kid" failed to return from an operation against targets in Hannover, Germany. The bomber was most likely lost to flak and exploded in mid-air, killing two crew members. The bomber crashed at Lichtenhorst-Steimbke, near Hoya, Germany

Flight Lieutenant JE Sales (RCAF) and Pilot Officer CH McLinnes (RCAF) were killed in action

Flying Officer JL Marcille (RCAF), Pilot Officer SJ Aikens (RCAF), Pilot Officer JF Charles (RCAF), Pilot Officer RJP Young (RCAF) and Sergeant J Dalton (RAF) survived to be taken as Prisoners of War

There were two 432 Squadron Halifax VII aircraft lost on this operation. Please see aircraft serial NP 817 QO-D for further information on this aircraft and crew

source: The Bomber Command War Diaries, Martin Middlebrook and Chris Everitt

RAF & RCAF Aircraft Nose Art in World War II by Clarence Simonsen, pages 75, 79

Metal Canvas, Canadians and World War II Aircraft Nose Art by Stephen M Fochuk, page 142,

General [Royal Air Force Serial and Image Database]...

General Aviation Safety Network

General Canada Kid - Bomber Command Museum of Canada

General Daily Operations

General 628a3cc80f64b64a34c08407_1945 NachjagdCAsamplepages.pdf

Pilot Officer Aikens was safely back in the UK 1945-05-13

Footprints on the Sands of Time, RAF Bomber Command Prisoners of War in Germany 1939-45 by Oliver Clutton-Brock page 233

Took off from East Moor at 16:48 on an operation to Hannover Germany.

Crashed near Merringen at 19:30.

Killed: P/O Colin Harvey McInnes RCAF J/95355 KIA Hanover War Cemetery grave 3. G. 2. F/Lt James Ernest Sales RCAF pilot J/22024 KIA Hanover War Cemetery grave 3. G. 1.

POWs includes Aikens: Sgt John Dalton RAF POW camp not listed. WO2 Robert John Pearte Young DFM RCAF R/174426 POW Stalag Luft L1 Barth Vogelsang. F/O J Marcille RCAF J/number POW camp not listed. F/Sgt J Charles RCAF R/number POW camp not listed.

Crew on Halifax B.Mk.VII NP759

Handley Page Halifax

(RAF Photo, 1942)(Source Harold A Skaarup Web Page)A Royal Air Force Handley Page Halifax Mk. II Series I (Serial No. W7676), coded TL-P, of No. 35 Squadron, RAF, based at Linton-on-Ouse, Yorkshire in the UK, being piloted by Flight Lieutenant Reginald Lane, (later Lieutenant-General, RCAF), over the English countryside. Flt Lt Lane and his crew flew twelve operations in W7676, which failed to return from a raid on Nuremberg on the night of 28/29 August 1942, when it was being flown by Flt Sgt D. John and crew.

The Handley Page Halifax is a British Royal Air Force (RAF) four-engined heavy bomber of the Second World War. It was developed by Handley Page to the same specification as the contemporary twin-engine Avro Manchester.

The Halifax has its origins in the twin-engine HP56 proposal of the late 1930s, produced in response to the British Air Ministry's Specification P.13/36 for a capable medium bomber for "world-wide use." The HP56 was ordered as a backup to the Avro 679, both aircraft being designed to use the underperforming Rolls-Royce Vulture engine. The Handley Page design was altered at the Ministry to a four-engine arrangement powered by the Rolls-Royce Merlin engine; the rival Avro 679 was produced as the twin-engine Avro Manchester which, while regarded as unsuccessful mainly due to the Vulture engine, was a direct predecessor of the famed Avro Lancaster. Both the Lancaster and the Halifax would emerge as capable four-engined strategic bombers, thousands of which would be built and operated by the RAF and several other services during the War.

On 25 October 1939, the Halifax performed its maiden flight, and it entered service with the RAF on 13 November 1940. It quickly became a major component of Bomber Command, performing routine strategic bombing missions against the Axis Powers, many of them at night. Arthur Harris, the Air Officer Commanding-in-Chief of Bomber Command, described the Halifax as inferior to the rival Lancaster (in part due to its smaller payload) though this opinion was not shared by many of the crews that flew it, particularly for the MkIII variant. Nevertheless, production of the Halifax continued until April 1945. During their service with Bomber Command, Halifaxes flew a total of 82,773 operations and dropped 224,207 tons of bombs, while 1,833 aircraft were lost. The Halifax was also flown in large numbers by other Allied and Commonwealth nations, such as the Royal Canadian Air Force (RCAF), Royal Australian Air Force (RAAF), Free French Air Force and Polish forces. Wikipedia

YouTube Halifax Heavy Bomber WWII

General Harold A Skaarup Web Page

Wkikpedia Wikipedia Halifax Bomber

Museum National Air Force Museum of Canada

CASPIR Aircraft Groups:
RCAF On Strength (5), RCAF 6 Group (1596), RCAF 400 Squadron (1443), Canadian Aircraft Losses (1562), Canadian Museum(2)
last update: 2023-12-08 20:34:11

Halifax B.Mk.VII NP759

KURAF RoundelC


432 (B) Sqn- Squadron Saeviter Ad Lucem ("Leaside")

History of the Squadron during World War II (Aircraft: Wellington X, Lancaster II, Halifax III, VII)

The Squadron was the twelfth RCAF bomber squadron to be formed overseas in WWII. It was formed on May 1, 1943 at Skipton-on-Swale, Yorkshire, UK as a unit of No 6 (RCAF) Group of RAF Bomber Command: indeed, it was the first bomber squadron to be formed directly into No 6 Group. Using the squadron identification letters QO it flew Vickers Wellington Mk X medium bombers until it moved to East Moor, Yorkshire on 19th September 1943, when it re-equipped with Avro Lancaster Mk II aircraft. East Moor was part of No 62 (RCAF) Base. The squadron re-equipped with Handley Page Halifax Mk III aircraft in February 1944, and with Halifax Mk VII in July of that year, and continued with them until the squadron was disbanded at East Moor on May 15, 1945.

In the course of operations the squadron flew 246 missions, involving 3130 individual sorties, for the loss of 73 aircraft. 8980 tons of bombs were dropped. Awards to squadron members included 2 DSOs, 119 DFCs,1 Bar to DFC, 1 CGM, 20 DFMs and 1 Croix de Guerre (France). Battle Honours were: English Channel and North Sea 1943, Fortress Europe 1943-44, France and Germany 1944-45, Biscay Ports 1944, Ruhr 1943-45, Berlin 1943-44, German Ports 1943-45, Normandy 1944, Rhine, Biscay 1943.Moyes, Kostenuk and Griffin

Squadron History (Bomber Command Museum PDF)

Maps for Movements of 432 Squadron 1943-45

MAP 1: 432 Squadron Bases 1943-45 (marked in green). Right-click on image to display enlarged in new tab

432 Squadron History Summary 1943-45

History of the Squadron Post-WWII (Aircraft: Canuck)

The squadron was re-formed at Bagotville, Quebec as an All-Weather Fighter unit on 1 October 1954. The squadron flew Avro CF-100 Canuck aircraft on North American Air Defence until it was disbanded on 15 October 1961.

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