Spanhoe explosion.

Spanhoe explosion.

adam517
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adam517
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Joined: June 27th, 2010, 4:05 am

April 19th, 2011, 2:56 am #1

Hi All, 

I'm sure most are aware of the grenade explosion that took place at Spanhoe on (I beleive) the evening of the 4th when loading up for D-Day the night it was post-poned that resulted in the deaths of 4 Paratroopers from the 505th PIR. Does anybody know the names of those killed, and any information on their plane? Which i'd imagine must have been damaged in someway and maybe grounded?


Regards, Adam
Ignorance means life is lost.
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BENNING WING
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BENNING WING
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April 19th, 2011, 10:25 am #2

Hope this helps.
http://www.faaa.me.uk/Spanhoe%202008.htm
http://www.315group.org/315history.htm
On the night of June 5, 1944, the paratroopers of the 82nd Airborne Division had been given their orders—“the invasion was on.” On the tarmac at Spanhoe field the 505th Parachute Infantry Regiment was awaiting take off. These were the veterans of many campaigns: North Africa, Sicily and Salerno—the United States’ most experienced infantry. One of the planes of the 43rd TCS of the 315th TCG (nose marked UA, tail marked G), contained a stick from the 505th’s headquarters company’s mortar platoon. The plane contained paratroopers, mortar ordnance and demo-team explosives. While the plane sat on the tarmac, with engines running, a gammon grenade or explosive pack went off, resulting in the wounding or death of almost everyone on the plane. Three died outright, one later that night. Mortar sergeant Melvin Fryer from Edgemere, Md., and two crew members were the only occupants to escape unhurt. He helped remove the wounded from the plane, and after the wounded were being attended to, he went to another plane from the squadron.

Regards
Lee Bowden
FAAA
  
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BENNING WING
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BENNING WING
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April 19th, 2011, 10:35 am #3

Two of the dead Paratroopers from the 505th Parachute Infantry Regiment (HQ 1st Battalion) were:



Cpl Kenneth A Vaught

PFC Robert L Leakey



A third Paratrooper died in Hospital that night.



Only one trooper/Aircrew was un harmed, he was killed in Normandy twelve day later.



Regards



Lee
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adam517
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adam517
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April 20th, 2011, 5:11 am #4

Hi Lee,



Thanks for the reply. When we were in Normandy a few years back Simon Harrison threw a pair of Dogtags with the 4 names on into the Merderet at La Fiere as I believe this was the destination of the 4 men who were killed. Was a touching moment.



Adam
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BENNING WING
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April 20th, 2011, 10:45 am #5

Hi Adam
Yes this is the type of thing Simon would do.
We go each year to the US Military Cemetery and lay flowers on the two mens graves.
This weekend just gone we held a Sunset Parade in Honor of Dick Winters at Littlecote House 
Are you still a Ranger Man!
Regards
Lee 
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adam517
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adam517
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April 20th, 2011, 3:41 pm #6

Im not Lee, i've called it a day with reenacting, at least for the time being. I had to sell a lot of stuff to fund flying to Australia to see my girlfriend, we ended up travelling for 2 1/2 months, cost a few bob.



Adam
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BENNING WING
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April 22nd, 2011, 2:23 am #7

Roger Out Adam
See you have an interest in the 508th recently.  We will be covering the 508th in Nottinham in June and possibly at Kelmarsh in July
Regards
Lee
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adam517
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April 22nd, 2011, 5:50 am #8

Lee will you be at Wollaton hall or is it that Nottingham castle?
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BENNING WING
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April 22nd, 2011, 2:07 pm #9

Nottingham Castle this year, which is a pity.  We have a group wedding the week after so down to min manning for this one, but we will still have a presence there representing the Red Devils.
Pop along, it will be good to see you.
Regards
Lee
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adam517
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April 22nd, 2011, 2:43 pm #10

I May do Lee, what are the dates?



my interest in the 508th is down to the fact im gathering more research on their time in the UK. Was hoping you might be at Wollaton Hall again in order to get some snaps of men in kit with Pyramids in the park.



Regards, Adam
Ignorance means life is lost.
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