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ASN Wikibase Occurrence # 225130
Last updated: 30 January 2021
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Date:19-AUG-1942
Time:11:25 LT
Type:Vickers Wellington Mk VIII
Owner/operator:172 Squadron Royal Air Force (172 Sqn RAF)
Registration: HX482
C/n / msn:
Fatalities:Fatalities: 5 / Occupants: 5
Other fatalities:0
Aircraft damage: Written off (damaged beyond repair)
Location:Swansea Bay, 800 yards northwest of the Scarweather lightship -   United Kingdom
Phase: En route
Nature:Military
Departure airport:RAF Chivenor, Barnstaple, Devon
Destination airport:
Narrative:
This Mk.VIII Wellington (equipped with a 'Leigh Light') was built by Vickers Armstrong at Weybridge. It was assigned to 172 Squadron,at RAF Chivenor, Devon. During a training flight on 19th August 1942, the aircraft was shot down by 'friendly fire' from USS Gulf of Mexico, a US Oil tanker. As a result it crashed into the Swansea Bay, 800 yards northwest of the Scarweather lightship, 1 mile off Scarweather Sands - in Swansea Bay within sight of Swansea, Port Talbot and Porthcawl. All five crew were killed

Pilot Officer Gordon Cave Vincent Jamieson (Pilot) (Service Number 118075, aged 10) - killed. Buried Bristol (Canford) Cemetery, Sec. NN. Grave 56.
Sergeant Edwin Thomas Arthur Deacon (Service Number 919703, aged 25) - killed. Buried Killay (St. Hilary of Poictiers) Churchyard, Grave 202
Pilot Officer Ross Pringle Fahrni, RCAF (Service Number J/9903, Canadian, aged 21)- killed. Buried Killay (St. Hilary of Poictiers) Churchyard, Grave 201
Sergeant Edgar Harold Dawe (Service Number 798712, aged 23) - killed. Buried Killay (St. Hilary of Poictiers) Churchyard, Grave 183
Sergeant Jack Mullins (Service Number 1051648, aged 22) - killed. Buried Macclesfield Cemetery, Plot H. Grave 6418.

According to a published source (see link #10):

"At 11:25 hours on 19 August 1942, the US tanker GULF OF MEXICO was en route in the Bristol Channel when a single low flying twin-engine bomber appeared out of low clouds from ahead about 1 mile west of Scarweather Light. The aircraft looked like a Ju 88 and did not fire recognition signals, so the order was given to open fire at 1000 yards in accordance with CAMSI instructions to fire at any plane approaching within 1500 yards when east of 36░W. Receiving several hits from three Oerlikon guns the aircraft caught fire and crashed into the sea about 1 mile off the starboard quarter. When the tanker arrived at Milford Haven the next day, they were told that they had downed a British aircraft.

Pilot Officer Ross Pringle Fahrni, RCAF was flying as aircrew in an RAF 172 Squadron Wellington VIII 'Leigh Light' bomber, registration HX482 and assigned to Coastal Command and tasked with the identification and destruction of enemy submarines. The aircraft was piloted by my mother's fiancÚ F/O Gordon Jamieson and on that day was flying an air test and demonstration flight. This was not an offensive mission and the aircraft was unarmed apart from her gun turrets. Flying over Swansea Bay, South Wales in broad daylight and in good visibility, the aircraft was cruising across the bay when she was attacked by anti-aircraft gunners on an American ship, reported as the USS or SS 'Gulf of Mexico'. The Wellington was at relatively low level but not in an attacking stance, but was nevertheless mistaken for an enemy aircraft and shot down into the bay. All on board were killed as they had no time to bale out. The wreck remains in Swansea Bay and is protected by UK Government legislation from any interference, although I understand all the crew were recovered from the sea in the following days and buried separately in accordance with family wishes. Gordon is buried at Canford in Bristol."

Sources:

1. Halley, J, 1989 Royal Air Force Aircraft HA100-HZ999, p112.
2. http://www.ggat.org.uk/timeline/pdf/Military%20Aircraft%20Crash%20Sites%20in%20Southeast%20Wales.pdf
3. https://coflein.gov.uk/en/site/515828/details/vickers-wellington-viii-hx482
4. https://www.cwgc.org/find-war-dead/casualty/2450709/jamieson,-gordon-cave-vincent/
5. https://www.cwgc.org/find-war-dead/casualty/2717282/deacon,-edwin-thomas-arthur/
6. https://www.cwgc.org/find-war-dead/casualty/2717283/fahrni,-ross-pringle/
7. https://www.cwgc.org/find-war-dead/casualty/2717281/dawe,-edgar-harold/
8. https://www.cwgc.org/find-war-dead/casualty/2735811/mullins,-jack/
9. http://www.rafcommands.com/forum/showthread.php?21356-Loss-of-Wellington-in-Irish-Sea-18the-or-19the-August-1942&p=124913&styleid=3
10. http://forum.12oclockhigh.net/showthread.php?t=2670&page=66
11. https://www.findagrave.com/memorial/11357038/ross-pringle-fahrni


Revision history:

Date/timeContributorUpdates
15-May-2019 22:55 Dr. John Smith Added
16-May-2019 09:42 stehlik49 Updated [Operator]

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