Sergeant Harold Wyrill
1432606 Harold Wyrill enlisted 5 May 1941 having volunteered for aircrew at No.2 Recruitment Centre at RAF Cardington. The following day he was put on reserve eventually getting his call up on 30 September 1941 to No.3 Recruitment Centre at RAF Padgate for training as a wireless operator. His following moves were;
8 October 1941 No.10 Recruitment Centre (Signals) at Blackpool.
5 january 1942 No.2 Signals School, which became No.2 Radio School, RAF Yatesbury.
30 April 1942 RAF Catterick.
29 July 1942 96 W Wing. RAF Newtownards
16 September 1942 No.7 Signals School, London.
27 January 1943 No.4 Radio School. RAF Madley.
21 April 1943 No.7 Armament and Gunnery School. RAF Stormey Down.
12 May 1943 No.3 Advanced Flying Unit. RAF Bobbington.
15 June 1943 29 Operational Traing Unit. RAF North Luffenham.
17 September 1943 1654 Conversion Unit. RAF Wigsley.
8 December 1943 61 Squadron RAF Coningsby.
Left to right – back row: Kenneth Dean – Flight Engineer, Leslie Cannon- Pilot, George Hull - Navigator, John (Jack) Green (RAAF) – Rear Gunner, Ray Stones, Bomb Aimer – Front Row: Harold Wyrill – Wireless Operator/Gunner, Bert Sherliker Mid Upper Gunner.
The crews operations were as follows;
20/21 December 1943 Sgt L Cannon Captain. Frankfurt
Lancaster Sgt K H Dean F/Eng.
EE176 F/Sgt G J Hull Nav.
Sgt R Stones A.B.
Sgt H Wyrill Wop/Air
Sgt H Sherliker A.G.1
F/Sgt J M Green A.G.2
23/24 December 1943 Berlin
1/2 January 1944 Berlin
5/6 January 1944 Stettin
14/15 January 1944 Brunswick
21/22 January 1944 Berlin
15/16 February 1944 Berlin
24/25 February 1944 Schweinfurt
25/26 February 1944 Augsburg
1/2 March 1944 Stuttgart
10/11 March 1944 Chateroux
15/16 March 1944 Stuttgart
18/19 March 1944 Frankfurt
Lancaster Failed to return
ND 727 issued to 61 Squadron on 5 March 1944 this was its first operation and the crews 13th.
All died on 18/19th March 1944 on the operation to bomb Frankfurt. Only George Hull and Jack Green were wearing dog tags that night so only they have named graves the other 5 are remembered on the Runnymede Memorial . All their remains were buried by the Luftwaffe in the main cemetery in Frankfurt and were then moved to Durnbach Cemetery after the war and we think/hope he is one of the 22 graves of “A British Airman” in Durnbach with the same date of death but have no concrete proof.
Later investigations found that the plane actually crashed at Rodelheimerstrasse just outside the Beigwald forest east of Frankfurt.
We are grateful to Harold Wyrill's neice Gail Parkes for the information and photos for this story.