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Wellington HE239/NA:Y, of No 428 Squadron at West Mailing on 9 April 1943

(Rus)  Many a Wellington returned from operations minus parts of its fabric skin through enemy action. A direct hit from flak when approaching Duisburg on 8/9 April 1943 blasted away the rear turret with gunner and caused other severe damage to this No 428 Squadron aircraft. The pilot, Sgt L. F. Williamson, found that he could still control the aircraft, so he continued to the target. After bombing it was found that hydraulic power had been lost and that the bomb doors could not be closed. Despite this difficulty and the near-naked rear end, HE239/NA:Y was brought back for a safe landing at West Mailing. The Wellington was repaired and pensioned off to fly with OTUs for the rest of its life. (IWM CH9867)


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