AIR-SEA RESCUE 1939-1945




AIR RESCUE - Air crew rescued by sea rescue flights, aircraft rescue flights, and ASR flights (Air Sea Rescue)



Crew of 825 squadron of HMS Vindex, 26.2.44 force landed with contaminated fuel, picked up by ML547

Saxe, RF Lt, 801 squadron, seafire, 9.8.1945 of HMS Implacable, ditched in Ramrod to Matsushima. Picked up by a Sea Hawk.

Tucker, FH Lt 9.8.1945 880 squadron seafire, HMS Implacable, ditched in Ramrod to Matsushima. Picked up by a Sea Hawk.

Coy, GR Sub Lt (MID and Lasson, LE (MID) TAG Cope, GH  814 squadron 15.5.41 rescued after crashed, by Lt JH Dundas who was awarded DSC after attack on Sumawar barracks, Iraq.

Pilot of Seafire, missing, 9.10.1944. Missing enroute Dekheila to Khataba, located 30.40'N, 30.28'E. Pilot okay, picked up by a Swordfish which landed there.

Pursall, RD Lt, and LA P Garrett-Reed, Sea Rescue Flight Malta, Hal Far (ex 701 squadron Beirut and dettached at Hal Far), Walrus W3012, 18.4.1943, rescues 4 wellington crew rescued between Lampedusa and Pantelaria, landed at St Paul's Bay, Malta.

Pursall, RD Lt, F/Lt Withy RAF, and L/A P Garrett-Reed, Sea Rescue Flight Malta, Hal Far (ex 701 squadron Beirut and dettached Hal Far), Walrus W3012, 20.3.1943, during a rescue attempt 5m off Sicily were fired on by a German Bf109 and the Walrus float was damaged.

Aircrew with Godfrey, CH  TAG of 857 Avenger squadron on HMS Indomitable ditched off Sumatra at Palembang 29.1.1945 during Operation Meridian and were rescued.


Eyres, DEC Lt and Furlong, B Sub Lt, Kalafrana Rescue Flt, rescued a Fulmar, on 30.9.1941, which was shot down by an Italian MC202,  7m south of Cap Scaramia, picked up by one of the unit's Swordfish seaplanes.


Polwin, LJ Sub Lt (LA N Davison killed) RN Fighter Flight, Dekheila, 12.2.1942, Fulmar, fighter patrol chased by Italian Z1007, shot down in flames 40 miles north of Daba, later picked up injured by Walrus of RAF Sea Rescue Flight from Ma'aten Bagush.

Crew of Walrus W3085, 10.8.1945 HMS Victorious Flt, force landed during rescue, and was subsequently sunk by gunfire from HM destroyers.

F/O WH Smith RAF and crew okay 275 squadron 7.5.43 Walrus, L2207, from Warmwell, landed in rough sea to pick up 3 men, threatened ef on take off, Bally near Calcutta.

Murray,TE P/O RAF and crew okay, 275 squadron, 6.6.1944, Harrowbeer, unable to take off in rough seas after landing to rescue fighter pilot, crew rescued by minesweeper which sank aircraft by gunfire in the English Channel.

Wilson, ET Sub Lt SANF 1839 squadron flying a Hellcat from HMS Indomitable on 26.3.1945, his engine was hit over Ishigaki, and the pilot was forced to ditch. He was picked up by a Walrus from HMS Victorious.

The Albacore observer was rescued from an 828 squadron aircraft which force landed in the sea on 2.4.1941. The observer was picked up from dinghy by Walrus W2676.

Cubitt, LA Lt Cdr, Goodger, MG Sub Lt and Polmeer, DE PO 828 squadron Albacore, on 1.4.1941 flying from Hatston, all crew were lost on an anti-submarine search in a blizzard, the equipment failed and so the aircraft force landed and crashed at A'mhoine, Whiten Head, Sutherland. The whole crew were all injured, and the observer was picked up by Walrus W2676 of 700 squadron from Hatston. The wreckage of the Albacore eventually was preserved at the FAA Museum from 1974.

Schofield, FR Sub Lt rescued (Sub Lt FWE Dixon killed) 841 squadron 3.8.1943 at Tangmere, many flak hits attacking enemy motor vessel  3 1/2 miles from Barfleur, ditched 10 miles  north of Cape Barfleur. The crew were eventaully picked up after 10 1/2 hours in a dinghy by RAF walrus (pilot F/L Deckyvere).

Gass, JB Sub Lt rescued (PO CW Irvine told to bale out, killed) 848 squadron Avenger, 17.4.1945 failed to return to HMS Formidable, during Operation Iceberg. The avenger was  hit by flak and crashed in the sea 2 miles west of Hirara town, Miyako Jima. The observer baled out and was rescued by Walrus which landed on HMS Formidable.

275 sqdn RAF WALRUS

Walrus L2282 - Van Den Honert, R Fl Lt RNAF Netherlands, and crew 275 sdqn RAF Walrus L2282. 5.8.1944 involved in a rescue operation. During take off in rough seas in the English Channel, the floats were damaged.

276 sqdn RAF WALRUS

Walrus - W3026 Dimblebee, FO F/O RAF and crew OK, 276 squadron 1.6.1943, Walrus W3026 flying from Roborough, force landed in the sea and sank during tow 10 miles South East of the Scilly Isles


Crew of 276 squadron Walrus L2220,  from Harrowbeer, unable to take off after ASR landing, sunk by escorting RAF Thunderbolts. The crew was transferred to a Catalina off Scheveningen, Holland, 20.3.1945

277 sqdn RAF WALRUS

Barber, JL Fl Lt RAF flying a Walrus,  L2315 of 277 squadron on 15.2.1944. The Walrus took of with survivers from a ditched aircraft, port float struck wreckage. TheWalrus was  towed by HSL to Dover harbour, overladed with 10 passengers.

Fletcher, T F/Sgt and crew okay, 277 squadron Walrus W3097 on 4.10.1943, had a heavy landing in the English Channel, slowly sank under tow. Eventaully sunk by RN gunfire.

Campbell, DCO W/O RAF 277 squadron Walrus HD867 on 29.3.1944 flying from Gravesend, was involved in a rescue operation. The Aircraft swung on take off in rough sea, and the float was damaged. It managed to return to Felixstowe seaplane base.

278 sqdn RAF WALRUS

W/o FC Perry, and crew OK from 278 squadron Walrus based at Coltishall. Their Walrus  landed in rough seas picked up a pilot in a dinghy. Hoever, during therescue they drifted to the beach only 400 yards distant. They had to be towed back by High Speed launch to Yarmouth harbour. 26.6.43

Whittaker, RC W/O on 11.7.1944 whilst flying a 278 squadron Walrus HD933, he damaged the aircraft after landing in rough sea to rescue an american airman. Crew okay.

Bedford, FJ W/O RAF and crew okay, when 278 squadron Walrus W2715,  rescued the crew of a ditched glider. TheWalrus taxied to the beach but the under carriage collapsed whilst taxying ashore, near Aldeburgh, 18.9.1944.

Bedford, FJ W/O and crew okay, when 278 squadron Walrus W2715 had difficulty taking off in rough seas with survivors. The aircraft capsized under tow from a trawler, and sank 28 miles off the Essex coast, 5.10.1944.

Bedford, FJ W/O and crew okay, when 278 squadron Walrus HD918, flying from Thorney Island,  collided with a naval launch while transferring survivors 30 miles ESE of Felixstowe, and subsequently hit a buoy in tow by RAF launch, 31.7.1944.

Bedford, FJ W/O and crew okay, when 278 squadron Walrus W3076 was damaged on take off in rough seas after picking up survivor 100 miles east of Martlesham, 25.8.1944.

276 sqdn RAF WALRUS

Walrus - W3047 Abel, CG F/Sgt and Mcintosh, EA W/O 282 squadron Walrus, W3047, 8.6.19 43 on take off nose dipped and aircraft damaged, and later abandoned. It  sank off Dunnet head, Caithness. The crew were picked up by dinghy from HMS Royal

283 sqdn RAF WALRUS

Newman LH RAF and crew of 283 sqdn, Algiers, in Walrus X9530 (ex 700 sqdn), 27.4.1943, carried out rescue in extremely rough seas, float damaged. The aircraft sank attempting to take off.

293 sqdn RAF WALRUS

Sgt FA Cail RAF and crew 293 sqdn 22.12.1944 walrus K8562, unable to take off in rough sea after picking up survivor, lost starboard float under night tow by HSL, abandoned 15m SW of Gorgona island, NE of Leghorn, Italy, crew okay.

Crew of 293 sqdn, walrus, R6547, 10.12.1944, about 50m from Rimini, rescued ditched US pilot, Lt KB Walker, ok. Tried for 2hrs to take off in rough seas, then lost undercarriage during the 22hrs it was in the water, badly strained and leaking.

Newsome, D Sgt RAF and crew, Walrus X9529, 10.9.1944, 293 sqdn, Falconara taxying at dusk after rescuing airman, unable to take off, hit by gunfire from British MTB which mistook it for an E-boat, 5m SE of Rimini, picked up okay by MTB.

294 sqdn RAF WALRUS

Turner, JS F/O RAF and crew okay, 294 sqdn (which had previously been ASR Flt Middle East, Berka III) 13.9.1944 picked up crew from dinghy 33.58'N, 23.42'E, port float hit top of high swell on take off and broke, sucessfully landing on airfield.

700 sqdn FAA WALRUS

Wignell, R Sub Lt 700 sqdn, HD876 Walrus, in HMS Anson, damaged on landing during recovery at sea 6.7.1943.

Corkhill, AD Mid rescued and Hill, WH L/A (DOW)(Benson-Dare, RW Lt killed), 700 sqdn, in HMS Devonshire, shot down by He11k after 15 min fight, Malangsfjord, Rystraumer, Norway, 18.5.1940

Crew of Walrus W2706 Sea Rescue Flight (or 701 sqdn?) unable to take off after picking up survivors, from ASV Wellington 20m N of El Amaid, beached and salved 28.6.1942.


Crozier, ETJ, PO, Damerell, S PO, and TAG MFA Rose all okay, 10.12.1941, Walrus R6587, 700 sqdn, in HMS Repulse, sighted Japanese invasion barges and watched Japanese attack on fleet, then force-landed as out of fuel, rescued by HMS Stronghold, 60m to Singapore towed to Singapore dockyard.

710 sqdn FAA WALRUS

Cheesman, VBG Lt, RM, (awarded MBE), Broadburn, WC Sub Lt (MID) and Dale, MW CPO awarded BEM, 710 sqdn, Walrus P5667, 14.1.1941 in HMS Albatross, landed 120m w of Freetown, to assist survivors of SS Eumaeus sunk by U-boat.

764 sqdn FAA WALRUS

Francklin, MPB Lt 764 sqdn, Walrus, L2230, 25.11.1942 landed in minefield to rescue crew of sunderland DV972 of 119 sqdn RAF. Insufficient fuel to take off, kept aircraft afloat 5hr eventually left it sinking 51.5.40'w after transferring survivors to launch.

765 sqdn FAA WALRUS

Hoskins, MC Lt and Rose-Richards, TE Lt walrus, 765 sqdn, 7.10.1940, Sandbanks, rescue mission, shot down in sea by enemy aircraft 7-8 m south of Anvil point.

785 sqdn FAA WALRUS
Page, PJF Sub Lt and crew 785 sqdn, 15.1.1944 Barracuda, Crail, EF FL in sea, 3m S of Fife Ness, picked up by fishing boat.

796 sqdn FAA WALRUS
Foulds, PS Lt RCN, Kingswood, LC Lt, and Elston, W Lt, 25.5.1943, 796 sqdn, ditched, all saved by HMS Hawkins

Vine, WD Sub Lt, 800 sqdn, Hellcat, 27.10.1944, strafing shore battery, shot down by AA, baled out, picked up by Walrus L2238.

1700 sqdn WALRUS
Crew of 851 sqdn Avenger, HMS Emperor, 15.5.1945, Operation Dukedom, attack on Japanese cruiser in Malacca strait, out of fuel, ditched 30m NE of fleet, rescued by 1700 sqdn walrus.

1701? sqdn SEA OTTER

Henderson, RDIC Lt 748 sqdn, corsair, 31.8.45, collided with other corsair in formation aerobatics, into sea 3m NW of Kilkhampton, Bude near Morewenstone, baled out picked up by sea otter.








          Created: 3-3-2001. Last modified 3-6-2005


Back to Air-Sea Rescue Main Page

Return to Home Page


This page is published by Fleet Air Arm Archive and is updated regularly.
2000-2005 All rights reserved for all information created for or on behalf of the Fleet Air Arm Archive
Contact details