PO. Arthur Marcus Fitzgerald.
Photo,s and Documents.
Other crew members.
Requiem for a Rear Gunner
Their final fate.
Hauptmann Ludwig "Luk" Meister
Letter's from Herr Meister.(2002)
Links for Roll of Honour
PO. Arthur Marcus Fitzgerald, RAF(VR) 148128
Arthur Marcus Fitzgerald was born on February 13, 1923 at 18, Cyril Street, Newport, Monmouthshire. His parents were Gerald and Harriet (nee McGuire). He was one of three brothers, the others being Donald and Albert. The family also ran a local shop at 41, Cyril Street which is off Corporation Road near the George Street Bridge. He is survived by his brother Donald who still lives near the same area. He joined the RAF on April 4, 1941 and was posted to the Oxford Reserve. He continued his flying training through-out 1941 and in 1942 was sent for further training to Canada and the USA. While in North America he trained at Turner Field, Carleston Field, Gunter Field and Craig Field. He returned to the UK to complete his training and finally on June 8, 1943 he was posted to 207 Squadron, based at Langar airfield, Nottinghamshire.
Of his other brothers Donald joined the Army and Albert joined the Merchant Navy. Three brothers, three different services.
Sergeant Arthur Marcus Fitzgerald flew his first op on June 12/13, 1943 on a raid to bomb Bochum. Altogether he completed twelve op's including the famous raid on August 17/18, 1943 to bomb Peenemunde, the V1 and V2 rocket research establishment. Between July and August 1943 he was promoted to Pilot Officer. His thirteenth raid took place on August 27/28, 1943 and was an operation to bomb Nuremberg in Germany. Arthur failed to return from this mission and he along with his crew of six perished when their Lancaster MKIII (ED627), EM-N was shot down by a German nightfighter aircraft, piloted by Hauptmann Ludwig Meister near the town of Schwaebisch Hall, Germany before they had reached their target.
See German Police report of the incident in the "Their final fate" page.
The crew's bodies were recovered by the German authorities and originally buried in the St. Nikolai cemetery, Schwaebisch Hall. After the war in 1947 they were re-interred in the Durbach War Cemetery. Arthur's op's took him on raids attacking the town's, cities and area's of Bochum, Oberhausen, Mulheim, Wuppertal, Cologne, Mannheim, Peenemunde, Berlin, Nuremberg and in Italy, Turin and Milan.
Arthur and his crew eventually paid the ultimate price as many other men and women of all the service's did, they gave up their lives for their country and its citizens.
A website dedicated to all the crew can be viewed by clicking below.
On June 24/25, 1943, Arthur and his crew flew Lancaster LM326, EM-Z on a raid to bomb the Wuppertal area in Germany. While they were starting their bombing run, they were bombed by the aircraft flying above them.
In a letter to his sister Kath, the rear gunner (tail-end Charlie) John Goodwin writes,
"If you have'nt already read it, its the piece about the the raid on Wuppertal on the front page. How it happen was that we were showered from above by another kite making his run over the target with incendiaries and 5 came through our fuselarge and one went in our Port petrol tank and two more which set us on fire fell underneath our Mid-Upper and two more fell outside my turret and as they were explosive incendiaries one blew my inter-com to bits and the other one exploded outside my doors blowing them in but luckly no-one was hurt and Harry our air bomber put the fire out by chopping it into the bomb-doors and dropped out when we opened the doors. By the way we never took our mascots on our last trip perhaps thats why it happened as our mascot was in in our own kite, "Betty" as one of her own motors was U/S and we had to have another kite"
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