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Consolidated Liberator IIIA, off the Coast of Donegal. August 1942

This article relates to an RAF Liberator which was lost of the coast of Donegal on the 13 August 1942. This loss did not involve the Irish Authorities to any extent but it is included in this project due to to its proximity to the shore and its previous inclusion in other works. For this reason there is no related file in the Irish Military Archvies.

The tragic story of the crash of Liberator LV341 is recounted on the BBC WW2 People's War website by Peter Clare, son of the Flight Engineer, Seymour Clare. The story can be read by clicking on this link to the BBC webpage -
Thursday 13th August 1942: 120 Squadron RAF Coastal Command by Peter Clare.

The crew of the aircraft were those airmen listed below:

P/O Victor Dennis JAMES NZ40976 RNZAF (Pilot)
Missing in Action, Commemorated on the Runnymede Memorial. Son of Dennis Reginald and Mabel James, of Middlemarch, Otago, New Zealand; husband of Gladys James, of Salcombe, Devon.
Sgt Hector Vivian Francis ARCHER 1287321 (Second Pilot), Survived the ditching of LV341 but was killed with 224 Squadron when Liberator BZ713 was shot down on 30 May 1943 by German heavy fighters. Son of Francis and Florence Archer of Twickenham. Middlesex and was 32 at the time of his death. The only member of this crew for which we are missing a photo, F/Sgt Alfred Burton CRAIG R/50369 RCAF (Navigator)
Missing in Action, Commemorated on the Runnymede Memorial. Husband of Merle Craig, of Renfrew, Ontario, Canada.
Sgt Seymour CLARE 652303 (Flight Engineer)
Missing in Action, Commemorated on the Runnymede Memorial. Son of Thomas and Elizabeth Clare, of Etruria, Staffordshire; husband of Nellie Clare, of Etruria
F/Sgt Kenneth Henry WATSON 749427 (Wop/AG)
Missing in Action, Commemorated on the Runnymede Memorial. The CWGC record no next of kin information for F/Sgt Watson and his serial number gives no clues as to where he hailed from. However, S Clare's mother was in correspondance with his family after their death's and the family hailed from Alvaston in Derby. He may have been born in 1917, making him around 25 years old at the time of his death but this is only an guess.
Sgt Peter Francis GEORGE 933499 (Wop/AG)
Survived the ditching and survived the war. Peter passed away in 2005 in Dorset aged 83.
Sgt William Charles GORDON 1023991 (Wop/AG)
Survived the ditching and survived the war. Born in Scotland, he seems to have passed away in Rutherglen in 2002.
Sgt Frederick Norman HOLLIES 755429 (Wop/AG)
Survived the ditching and survived the war. He was commishioned as an officer in late 1944 with serial number 183658 in the Adminsitrative and Special Duties Branch of the RAF. This would indicate that he was not involved in flying duties at this time. Frederick passed away in 1999 in Warwickshire. He was the son of Leigh and Jessie Hollies of Dudley, Staffordshire.

The above photo's were kindly supplied by Peter Clare after his many years of research into his fathers death.

Compiled by Peter Clare and assembled by Dennis Burke, 2012.