Crew: Covington

Pilot: F/L W I Covington
Flight Engineer: F/S T Lancashire
Navigator: F/O J L N Canham
Bomb Aimer: F/S S Powell
W/Op: Sgt Samuel Smart Ramsden, RCAF, R/87930
PoW. killed 22/4/1945. 23 years old
Mid-Upper Gunner: Sgt F Jackson
Rear gunner: Sgt J McKnight


LANCASTER – JA716-V, 11 August 1943. Homebound shot down by a night fighter (Fw Otto Fires, V/NJG1) crashing 0243 at Hanzinelle (Namur), 6km NW of Florennes, Belgium.




Successful evaders were extremely rare.  For 97 Squadron, for the whole of 1943, only nine men escaped capture and eventually made their way back to England. Two of these were from this crew.

The very unfortunate Sgt Ramsden, who so very nearly survived the war, was killed on 22 April 1945 when an Allied aircraft straffed his prisoner of war column.
“Originally he was laid to rest at Schwerin, but since 1945 his remains have been exhumed and brought to France where he rests in Choloy War Cemetery.” Bomber Command Losses.

From the ORB
10.8.43        18 aircraft detailed for tonight’s operations.  Only 17 aircraft took off owing to a gunner in F/O de Wesselow’s crew refusing to fly because of domestic troubles.  The raid was against Nuremburg.  Only moderate flak which seemed ineffective was encountered.  Searchlights could not penetrate cloud which covered target area.  Visibility above cloud was good.  Two crews F/L Covington DFC  and P/O Baker are missing from this operation.  No news of them having been received since aircraft left base.  Lancaster JA715 P/O Brown was rendered CAT A.C. due to enemy flak.  The raid started off widely scattered.  Some markers believed to have fallen in the town and bombs were seen bursting in built up area.  12 aircraft were backers up and 5 nom-markers.

JA716V  F/L W.I.Covington, F/Sgt T.Lancashire, F/O J.L.Canham, F/Sgt S.Powell, Sgts S.S.Ramsden, Sgts F.Jackson, J.McKnight. 1 x 4000lb, 6 x 500lb.  Up 2137 – aircraft and crew missing.