Crew : Flight Sergeant Thomas (Tom) Noel Heywood Fogaty
Service No : 1315224 RAFVR
Awards : DFM
Awarded : 15.02.1944 (Immed)
On the night of January 14th 1944, Flight Sergeant Fogaty was captain of a Lancaster which attached Brunswick. After leaving the target at a height of 22,000ft the aircraft was attacked from below by a JU88, the enemy aircraft not being seen until it broke away. The starboard inner engine was hit by cannon shell and caused a violent shuddering of the aircraft and the engineer was wounded in the hand and leg and the mid upper and front turrets put out of action. Hydraulics oil and smoke filled the interior of the aircraft. In the second attack, the starboard wing was hit again. A third attack was made by the enemy aircraft but was unsuccessful. The aircraft was by this time down to 12,000ft and it was observed that the starboard inner engine had been shot away. Throughout the attacks, Slight Sergeant Fogaty remained calm and encouraged his crew. A course was set for base, the aircraft losing height to 5,000ft. Nevertheless Flight Sergeant Fogaty was determined to reach this country or ditch than fall into enemy hands. By skilful airmanship, he flew his damaged aircraft and executed a successful landing with a burst tyre at Woodbridge without further damaged to the aircraft or crew. . This NCO was on his fourth operation captain and first on the Lancaster aircraft. His masterly handling of a difficult situation and fine crew co-operation saved both the crew and the aircraft.
Remarks by Station Commander
This N.C.O displayed great skill in handling his aircraft under very trying conditions, setting a fine example to his crew.
No.1657 HCU (unconfirmed)
No.623 Squadron :25.08.1943
No.1678 Con.Unit : 06.12.1943
No.115 Squadron : 21.12.1943 (via ORB)
Operations Flown with No.623 Squadron RAF Downham Market
2nd Pilot (S/Ldr J Austin DFC)
Starboard outer supercharger failed. Returned early after jettisoning load.
Six mines were planted in Garden. No reported incidents.
This aircraft arrived over the target area at 21.26hrs and bombed from a height of 14,000ft. The captain reported the visibility was good but with a slight haze. Bombing was carried out on green TI markers, good well concentrated fires were reported.
Flight Sergeant Fogaty return early to base owing to the fact his rear turret of his aircraft was u/s. He jettisoned 72 x 30lb and 810 x 4lb (bombs) incendiaries at 19.56hrsfrom a height of 12,000ft. These incendiaries were jettisoned (fused) at 5030N- 0035E
Veg planted, duty carried out. This aircraft diverted to another base which was Milltown landing at 23.15hrs.
Operations flown with No.115 Squadron (Lancaster Mk.B.II) RAF Witchford
2nd Pilot (F/Lt J H Christianson RNZAF) “A” Flight
Identified target with aid of sky markers on which he dropped his bombs from 20,500ft. A good attack if markers dropped correctly.
Identified target by means of Red & Green Markers on which he dropped his bombs from a height of 22,000ft. White glow on clouds indicated large fires a large explosion followed by sheets of flames seen at 19.26hrs. In combat with enemy fighter starboard inner engine was knocked out completely. Various holes in wings behind starboard inner and pieces of engine were thrown through fuselage. On return aircraft with perfect team work was able to land at RAF Woodbridge. Photo attempted but flash did not go off. F/Sgt Fogaty was awarded a DFM for this trip.
Target identified by Red & Green stars, 10/10th cloud, bombs dropped from a height of 20,000ft. Heavy flak.
Target identified by sky markers on which he bombed from a height of 20,000ft. No results seen. Bombed early being hemmed in by stream, strong sky glow in target area seen from 80 mikes away
Identified target by target indicators and bombed in the centre of these from 21,000ft. Successful attack, target seen alight 100 miles away on approach. Photo attempted.
2nd pilot Sgt P Bennett
Bombed centre of sky markers from 21,000ft.Attack considered poor and scattered, PFF appeared well spread. Landed Tangmere due to shortage of fuel.
Target identified by PFF and visually by river. Bombed target indictors from 21,000ft. Indicators on river bank, scattered fires in target area.
Target identified by Red target indicators on which bombed from 21,000ft. Unable to access results of bombing. Photo attempted.
22.43hrs – FTR
Homebound, shot down by combination of flak and a Night Fighter flown by Oblt Helmut Schulte 4./NJG5 at 00.48hrs. After being partially abandoned, F/Sgt Fogaty crashed landed Avro Lancaster Mk.B.IILL704 KO-S at 02.40hrs * at Raidwangen, 4 ms South West of Nurtingen. All the crew were captured and sent to various PoW Camps.
*there is obviously conflict between both times given.