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ASN Wikibase Occurrence # 153396
Last updated: 23 November 2020
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Date:21-MAY-1941
Time:
Type:Silhouette image of generic SPIT model; specific model in this crash may look slightly different
Supermarine Spitfire Mk IIa
Owner/operator:609 (West Riding) Squadron Royal Air Force (609 (West Riding) Sqn RAF)
Registration: P7436
C/n / msn:
Fatalities:Fatalities: 1 / Occupants: 1
Other fatalities:0
Aircraft damage: Written off (damaged beyond repair)
Location:The Channel, between North Foreland and Gravelines -   United Kingdom
Phase: Combat
Nature:Military
Departure airport:RAF Biggin Hill, Kent
Destination airport:RAF Biggin Hill
Narrative:
Catastrophic structural failure in flight.

The Biggin Hill Wing was taking part in Circus No.10 by providing withdrawal support to Blenheim bombers returning after striking an oil refinery at Bethune.
German fighters were sighted and 609 Squadron dived to attack. During the dive F/L John Bisdee glanced into his rear-view mirror and saw the Spitfire of his No. 2, P/O de Grunne, disintegrating in the air and a parachute deploying.
Spitfires followed the parachute down but soon had to depart owing to shortage of fuel.
Crew:
P/O (82158) Count Rudolphe Ghislaine Charles de HEMRICOURT de GRUNNE (pilot) RAFVR - killed
Despite an ASR search pilot was not found and he is commemorated today on the Runnymede Memorial.

Sources:

'Fighter Pilot's Summer' by Wing Commander Paul Richey with Norman Franks.
RAF Casualties-1941.
Spitfire production list.


Related books:

Revision history:

Date/timeContributorUpdates
21-Feb-2013 01:09 angels one five Added
21-Feb-2013 13:49 angels one five Updated [Narrative]
02-Jun-2013 18:07 Nepa Updated [Aircraft type, Operator]
28-Aug-2013 09:07 angels one five Updated [Operator, Narrative]
01-Jun-2015 14:42 Opietz Updated [Operator, Departure airport]
01-Feb-2020 13:13 stehlik49 Updated [Narrative, Operator]

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