Battle of Britain London Monument – Sgt. B E Dye

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Privacy Statement The Airmen’s Stories – Sgt. B E Dye

 

Bertram Ernest Dye, of Stakeford, Northumberland joined the RAF as an Aircrafthand in September 1938. He later remustered as an Air Gunner and after training was with 219 Squadron at Catterick in June 1940. He served throughout the Battle but with the advent of AI equipment and the Beaufighter, Dye and other 219 gunners retrained as Radio Observers.

In January 1941 he teamed up with P/O AJ Hodgkinson and they had great success. During the night of 26th/27th February they damaged a He111, on 13th/14th March they destroyed a Do17, on 7th/8th April a He111, on the 10th/11th probably a Ju88, on 30th April/1st May a He111 destroyed and another unidentified aircraft damaged, on 9th/10th May and 16th/17th two He111’s destroyed, on 25th/26th June a He111 and on 27th/28th July a Ju88.

Dye was awarded the DFM (gazetted 2nd May 1941) and a Bar (gazetted 6th June 1941).

 

 

Commissioned in December 1941, Dye returned to operations in March 1942, going with Hodgkinson to 264 Squadron at Colerne. During the night of 28th/29th June they damaged a Do217 southeast of Portland Bill.

Dye was killed on 31st August 1943, as a Flight Lieutenant with 96 Squadron. His Beaufighter VI V8715 collided with a B-17 near Norwich and crashed near Church Farm, Foulsham. His pilot, F/O FN Robertson, was also killed.

The B-17F, 42-5376 JJ-X ‘Eager Eagle’ was from the 422nd Bomb Squadron, 305th Bomb Group at Chelveston. All but two of the crew were killed:

1/Lt. FH Truesdell Pilot,
2/Lt. AN McDaniel Co-Pilot
2/Lt. WM Cullity Jr, Navigator
1/Lt. RW Barrall, Bombardier
T/Sgt. JN Yongue, Gunner/Engineer
T/Sgt. JF van Esley Radio Operator
S/Sgt. CF Awrajcewicz, Ball Turret Gunner
S/Sgt. GD Simon, Tail Gunner
S/Ldr. EM Appleton, Observer (RAF)

The two waist gunners were able to bale out:

Sgt. CG Ruehl and S/Sgt. JE Breen.

Dye was 23 and is buried in St Peter’s New Burial Ground, Cambois, Northumberland.

 

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