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Pole 5


Enkweg/Spijkweg, Biddinghuizen


On the night of 12 to 13 September 1942, Bremen was the target of more than 400 British bombers. On the way back to home base, Vickers Wellington X9786, a twin-engined bomber, of 26 Operational Training Unit was intercepted at 05:45 at an altitude of 4 km by a German night fighter. Hauptmann Wilhelm Dormann of the III. Gruppe of Nachtjagdgeschwader 1 achieved its second victory. The Wellington crashed into the IJsselmeer at this location. Four crew members were killed, one managed to leave the aircraft by parachute. The night fighter was damaged by the counterfire from the Wellington, Dormann made a successful emergency landing at Twente Air Base.


  • Pilot: Robert Leo Hage, Pilot Officer, age 22

  • Observer: Kenneth David Jones, Sergeant, age 21

  • Bombardier: Alexander Knox Smith, Sergeant, age 27

  • Radio operator/gunner: Donald Fisher, Sergeant, age 33

  • Tail Gunner: John Alexander Gartlan, Sergeant, age 21

The four fallen were buried at the Nieuwe Oosterbegraafplaats in Amsterdam. Gartlan was taken prisoner. Hage was an American who had enlisted in the Royal Air Force.

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