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Lancaster R5700/ZN:G from No 106 Squadron at the USAAF base at Hardwick, 14 January 1943

(Rus)  Of some sixty Lancasters and Mosquitos involved in an experimental Oboe pathfinder attack over cloud-shrouded Essen on 13/14 January 1943, four bombers failed to return. Two of these were from No 106 Squadron, whose aircraft appear to have been intercepted by free lancing Wilde Sau FW 190s. Another of the squadron's Lancasters had a lucky escape thanks to the evasive action taken by pilot Sgt P. N. Reed. Soon after leaving the target the bomber was suddenly raked from tail to nose by cannon and machine-gun fire from an FW 190. The fighter made a second attack, scoring several strikes on the Lancaster. Rear gunner Sgt G. A. V. Twinn was severely wounded and the mid-upper gunner Sgt J. B. Hood killed by the enemy fire. Reed brought his crippled aircraft, R5700/ ZN:G, in for a crash-landing at the USAAF base at Hardwick. Repaired, the Lancaster was issued to No 9 Squadron, with whom it was lost in the Hanover raid of 22/23 September 1943. (IWM CE4)


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