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Thread: HAMSTREET - Johnson's Corner

  1. #1
    Senior Member Southend Spitfire's Avatar
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    Default HAMSTREET - Johnson's Corner


  2. #2

    Default Re: Flt. LT. W.H Johnson Memorial, Johnson's Corner

    Some photos that I took on 2 August 2006;







    Last edited by Richard Flagg; 28-12-2012 at 20:59.

  3. #3
    Senior Member Southend Spitfire's Avatar
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    Default Re: Flt. LT. W.H Johnson Memorial, Johnson's Corner

    Thanks Richard. Its nice that Lt. Johnson is remembered, he paid the ultimate sacrifice.

  4. #4

    Default Re: Flt. LT. W.H Johnson Memorial, Johnson's Corner

    Took this on Saturday

    Mem.jpg

  5. #5

    Default Re: HAMSTREET - Johnson's Corner

    Some info from my notes:

    On Thursday 13 April 1944 a Boeing B-17 Flying Fortress 'Spare Part', s/n 42-31719, took off from Rattlesden Airfield in Suffolk. Piloted by Lt. William H. Johnson, they were from the 711th Bombardment Squadron, 477th Bombardment Group and the target was the Messerschmitt factory at Augsburg, Germany. This was their 21st mission as a crew.

    They had just crossed the French coast when the formation came under heavy flak near Dunkirk. Lt. Johnsons aircraft was one of the aircraft hit and they suffered heavy damage causing them to abort the mission and return home. Two engines had to be shut down because of the damage and a number of the crew injured.

    The aircraft was loosing height and it was thought that they may have to ditch in the English Channel. However they somehow crossed the coast near Hythe at about 1,500 ft. Lt. Johnson then ordered his crew to bail out of the stricken bomber.

    It was clear to Lt. Johnson chose to stay with the aircraft to avoid it crashing in to any populated areas, he crash landed the aircraft just south of Hamstreet and was sadly killed.

    Lt. William H. Johnson was posthumously awarded the D.S.C, he was also nominated for the Congessional Medal of Honour.

    The crew who survived were;
    2nd Lieutenant Harold W. Whitely Co-Pilot
    2nd Lieutenant William S. Fancher Navigator
    2nd Lieutenant George H. Ney Bombadier
    T/Staff Sergeant John A. Higgins Radio Operator
    T/Staff Sergeant Kenneth L. Zieger Ball Turret Gunner
    T/Staff Sergeant Peter Bartkus Tail Gunner Tail Gunner
    Technical Sergeant Elbert J. Williams Left Waist Gunner
    Technical Sergeant Paul E. Simpson Right Waist Gunner
    Technical Sergeant Frank J. Hazzard Top Turret Gunner

    When the village of Hamstreet was bypassed in the mid-1990's the landowners, J.W. Goddard & Sons named the new road junction after Lt. Johnson. It is not known when the memorial was erected or dedicated.
    Last edited by Richard Flagg; 28-12-2012 at 21:01.

  6. #6

    Default Re: HAMSTREET - Johnson's Corner

    Some photos sent to me that were taken on 13 April 2014.

    ALL PHOTOS COPYRIGHT NORMAN BRICE








  7. #7
    SuperMod Carnaby's Avatar
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    Default Re: HAMSTREET - Johnson's Corner

    Interesting memorial. Sadly another case of poor research - the USAF did not exist in 1944.

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