CARRUTHERS, JOHN ROBERT

Service number
1590317
Date of death
1944-05-13
Died
Belgium, Killed in action
Force
Rank
Awards
Royal Air Force Volunteer Reserve
Plot 4 | Row AA | Grave 2

"GOD'S GREATEST GIFT, REMEMBRANCE"

Military grave
Additional info

On the night of 12th/13th May 1944, Lancaster KB713 VR-X, took off to attack Louvain (Leuven), Belgium. Nothing further was heard from this aircraft and its failure to return to base is presumed to be due to enemy action. This aircraft was airborne at 2200 hrs and its estimated time of return is 0240 hrs. The names of the missing crew are as follows:
 
Flying Officer Robert Roy CAMPBELL J/22573 (Navigator) Royal Canadian Air Force. 
Sergeant John Robert CARRUTHERS 1590317 (Flight Engineer) Royal Air Force Volunteer Reserve
Pilot Officer Peter DEWAR J/88395 (Air Bomber) Royal Canadian Air Force.
Pilot Officer Burdel Frank EDWARDS J/24243 (Pilot) Royal Canadian Air Force.
Pilot Officer Harold Engma ODDAN J/38163 (Rear Air Gunner) Royal Canadian Air Force.
Pilot Officer Roy Stanley SMITH J/89610 (Wireless Operator) Royal Canadian Air Force. (Koksijde, Belgium)
Pilot Officer Joseph Alexander WEBBER J/38164 (Air Gunner) Royal Canadian Air Force. 

On the 28th February, 1946 a visit was made to Reninghe, Belgium and the following witnesses interrogated: Antoine Mahieu, Eric Vaneecke, Gaston Debeir, Georges Hoorelbeke.

All declared that a four engined bomber had crashed at Reninghe (Hameau de Knocke) on the night of 12/13 May, 1944 at 01.00 hrs. This aircraft was apparently coming from the direction of the coast and believed to have been shot down by coastal Anti Aircraft Batteries. On impact with the ground the bombs exploded and the aircraft was blown to pieces.

Unrecognisable unidentified human remains were buried by the villagers in three small coffins in grave nr. 16 British plot Reninghe Belgian Military Cemetery. It was marked with a brown wooden cross on which was painted a Union Jack and the following lettering almost illegible. "Unbekant Fliegers 13 Mai 1944" (Unknown Aircrew 13 May 1944).

R.S. Smith his remains are buried at Coxyde Military Cemetery (found 2 days later by the Germans inside the air craft).

**Additional information/ Service records requested to complete this profile**