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He was unable to bail out before his fighter crashed at Eydelstadt.

During 'Operation Fuller' Bomber Command sustained awful losses.

49 Squadron's participation was prompted by a signal from Group received at 10.00hrs requesting 20 aircraft to attack the 'Scharnhorst' and 'Gneisenau' at sea.

The crews were briefed at about midday, their mission being to bomb the ships.

His courage and ability have been outstanding throughout.' P/O Melville Percy Griffiths was born in 1905, son of John Wyndham Griffiths and Sarah Jane Griffiths and was married to Eileen Mary Ethel Griffiths, of Sheldon, Warwickshire.

He was promoted from Leading aircraftman to Pilot Officer on 14 July 1940. Whitley Z6462 GE-D of 58 Squadron was lost the next night.

It appears to have been damaged by anti-aircraft fire, believed from a local radar-guided Marine unit, MFla A.808, based at Den Helder.

The second pilot, Sgt Howard Piper Shipley, was born in 1917, son of of Mr. Its last message was received by an RAF radio monitoring station near Lympne, Kent at 8.30pm when it was apparently OK.

His citation reads 'He was an wireless operator with 58 Squadron, flying Whitley bombers out of Linton on Ouse, in Yorkshire."As Wireless Operator, this airman has completed 19 operational flights including attacks on Berlin, Mannheim, Cologne and other parts of Germany and German occupied territories.

Sergeant Courser has not once failed in communicating with his base, and enemy opposition has no effect on his cheerful enthusiasm or his ability to carry out his duties.

His pilot was also taking evasive action but the night-fighter pilot's canons were focused on the bomber's fuel tanks and the aircraft was soon brought down in flames.

It crashed at 10.45 pm into a small lake called Zwanenwater at a nature reserve near Callantstoog. Initially three bodies were recovered on the frozen lake and a few months later a fourth, the 2nd pilot, was recovered.

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