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6 November 2017

Fl. Lt. Edward (Ted) McGindle, DFC, A Flight, 462 Sqdn, RAAF Foulsham

Fl/Lt Edward McGindle DFC of RAAF 462 Squadron, 100 Group, Foulsham

418612 Fl/Lt Edward (Ted) McGindle DFC, was Acting Flight Commander for "A" Flight, 462 Squadron RAAF at Foulsham in March 1945. Information on Ted has mainly been sourced and summarised from his book 'Pimpernel Squadron'. This has been used with the permission of the McGindle Family, 26/11/2009. His Service History can be read below. Details of his DFC are also included.

Ted had been Acting Flight Commander of "A" Flight, so he did not remember Pilot Alf Ball, nor Gunner M.J.Hibberd nor other members of that crew, who had been in "B" Flight with Flight Commander Fl/Lt Bruce Drinkwater. However, from late 2004 to late 2008, Ted generously assisted with information and photos of 462 Squadron, and patiently answered my many questions by phone & email. My last contact with Ted was on the 30 November 2008, when he advised that he was about to enter an aged care unit, aged 85.

Sadly Edward McGindle passed away on 18 May 2009.

Photo from 'Pimpernel Squadron' page 2, used with the permission of the McGindle Family, 28/03/2010.

 

Pilots of 462 Squadron, 100 Group, Foulsham, March 1945 (AWM)

An identical photo was received from B.K.Drinkwater in August 2009 with slight variation to the description of ranks. Drinkwater was away on a Special Engine Handling Course at Bristol when this photo was taken.


Pilots of 462 Squadron, Foulsham, March 1945

Photo P03415.001 used with the permission of the Australian War Memorial.

AWM photo identification – Back row, left to right: 428018 F/0 Henry Robert Anderson; 418859 F/O Noel Edward Marchant; 422040 F/O William John Frazer; Fl/Lt J W O'Sullivan; 426118 F/O Allan Morris Lodder; F/O Bailey; W/O G C Sharpe; 424925 F/Sgt Bruce Anthony Simms; F/O J Fleming.

Middle row, left to right: Fl/Lt 'Hank' Hancock; 418612 Fl/Lt Edward (Ted) McGindle DFC; Squadron Leader Col Jackson DFC; Wing Commander Peter Paull DFC; 406394 Fl/Lt Dudley Gilbert Highman; 402673 Sqn/Ldr Lloyd George Scharer; Fl/Lt 'Thrasher' Taylor.

Front row, left to right: Fl/Lt Bill Cookson; F/O 'Jock' Boyd; 427182 F/O Alfred Desmond John Ball (later killed whilst on operations to Germany on 10 April 1945); 05844 F/O Leo Britt; Flt/Lt D J Robertson.

 

P/O Edward McGindle and his crew, 462 Squadron, August 1944 at Driffield (F/Sgt Whelan, amd Sgts Smith, Offley, Soames, Baldwin, Doyle)

 

Photo of McGindle's original crew, August 1944, 462 Squadron at Driffield, Yorkshire.

Photo from 'Pimpernel Squadron' page 14, used with the permission of the McGindle Family, 28/03/2010.

Back row, left to right: F/Sgt Whelan (W/Op); Sgt Smith (R/G); Sgt Offley (MU/G); Sgt Soames (F/Eng)
Front row, let to right: Sgt Baldwin (B/A); P/O McGindle (Pilot); Sgt Boyle (Nav).

Mid-Upper Gunner Sgt Eric Offley and Rear Gunner Sgt Joe Smith followed orders & bailed out on 6 October 1944 during the Sterkrade Oil Refinery raid, and each became a PoW. Navigator Sgt Boyle was seriously wounded in this raid. Bomb Aimer Sgt Fred Baldwin also received injuries.

 

Fl/Lt Edward McGindle DFC and crew, 462 Squadron, Foulsham (F/O Medway, F/O Watt, F/Sgt Baldwin DFM, F/O Nicholls, W/O Whelan DFM, P/O Soames DFM)

 

Photo of McGindle's second crew at 462 Squadron, Foulsham, Norfolk, with replacement Gunners and Navigator, and those airmen of his previous crew with higher ranks, and awards.

Photo from 'Pimpernel Squadron' page 108, used with the permission of the McGindle Family, 28/03/2010.

Left to right: F/O Medway (R/G); F/O Watt (Nav); F/Sgt Baldwin DFM (B/A); Fl/Lt McGindle DFC (Pilot); F/O Nicholls (MU/G); W/O Whelan DFM (W/Op); P/O Soames DFM (F/Eng). With one DFC and three DFMs, this must be one of the most highly awarded crews in Bomber Command!

The Halifax 'Sleepy Gal' with nose art was actually from 192 Squadron which was also based at Foulsham in 100 Group*. The lower section of a 'G' can be seen towards the rear of the fuselage, above the drum, and 'G' is also visible above both front wheels.

* Reference: Espionage in the Ether: The wartime story of electronic intelligence & radio countermeasures carried out by 192 (Bomber Support) Squadron. William J. & John E. Rees, 1999, Compaid Graphics. ISBN 1 900604 11 6. See page 130 and page 134 showing Halifax PN448 DT-G Sleepy Girl (sic) nose art.

 

"Battling Mac" Fl/Lt Edward McGindle, DFM, 462 Squadron, Foulsham

 

 

"Battling Mac" Fl/Lt Edward McGindle, DFC, 462 Squadron, Foulsham wearing uniform and a sheepskin lined leather flying jacket, and standing beside the front starboard wheel of a Halifax.

As indicated by the 'B' above the wheel, the aircraft identification is either Z5-B of 462 Squadron, or maybe DT-B of 192 Squadron, which was also based at Foulsham.

Halifax DT-B 'Babe' is pictured with nose art on pages 128, 130 & 134 in 'Espionage in the Ether" as mentioned in the caption above. DT-B is also listed as photo P01523.029 in the Australian War Memorial database of photographs.

Photo from 'Pimpernel Squadron' page 108, used with the permission of the McGindle Family, 28/03/2010.

 

Fl/Lt Max Taylor, Fl/Lt Jack O'Sullivan, Fl/Lt Ted McGindle "on a hot seat" at 462 Squadron, Foulsham

 

 

 

Fl/Lt Max Taylor, Fl/Lt Jack O'Sullivan, Fl/Lt Ted McGindle DFC "on a hot seat" at 462 Squadron, Foulsham – Ted with his ubiquitous pipe, and wearing his DFC ribbon. The unidentified Halifax is most likely being loaded with armament in readiness for the next scheduled operation, hence the 'hot seat'.

In the AWM photo above – Pilots of 462 Squadron March 1945 – Taylor can be seen in the middle row, far right; and O'Sullivan in the back row, 4th from left.

Photo from 'Pimpernel Squadron' page 108, used with the permission of the McGindle Family, 28/03/2010.

 

Fl/Lt Edward McGindle, DFC, retired, formerly of RAAF 462 Squadron, photo dated 2007

 

 

 

After WW2 Edward McGindle studied Law at Melbourne University and graduated in 1949. In September 1950 he was admitted to Practise as a Barrister and Solicitor in the Supreme Court of Victoria, and the High Court of Australia. In 1950 he was also appointed Honorary Solicitor to the Air Force Association of Victoria, and held that position for 10 years.

This photo is believed to have been taken in 2007.

Photo used with the permission of the McGindle Family, 28/03/2010.

 

Pimpernel Squadron by E.McGindle 1999, front cover Pimpernel Squadron by E.McGindle 1999, back cover

 

'Pimpernel Squadron'

Edward McGindle was the Author of 'Pimpernel Squadron: An anecdotal history of 462 Squadron RAAF August 1944 – May 1945'. This book was originally published by him in August 1999, with a 2nd Edition published in March 2000. A short reprint run was carried out in November 2004 but the book is now out of print. The last available copy was taken to Germany in May 2005, and was presented to the Oberbürgermeister of Delitzsch for reference in the Delitzsch Archives. Copies are available in various libraries in Australia. (ISBN 0 646 37551 2).

Pictures – far left – the front cover of the book,
and left – the rear cover of the book showing a Halifax Bomber with 462 Squadron personnel. A slightly larger version of this Squadron photo (scanned from a negative loaned by Ted McGindle) can be seen on the 462 Squadron page, via the Locations page.
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Edward (Ted) McGindle RAAF Service History

This introductory information has been obtained from the web sites of the Australian Archives, Australian Nominal Roll, and the Australian War Memorial.

Date of Birth – 21 October 1923
Place of Birth – London, England
Date of Enlistment – 23 May 1942
Place of Enlistment – Melbourne, Victoria, Australia
Service Number – 418612 RAAF
Next of Kin – Angela McGindle
Date of Discharge – 17 July 1946
Rank at Discharge – Flight Lieutenant
(The WW2 Nominal Roll erroneously lists his rank at discharge as Flying Officer.)
Posting at Discharge – 43 Base

The following information about Ted has been sourced and summarised from 'Pimpernel Squadron', unless noted otherwise, and has been used with the permission of the McGindle Family, 26/11/2009. Photos of Ted scanned from 'Pimpernel Squadron' have been used with the permission of the McGindle Family, 28/03/2010.(My comments where relevant, have been added in italics below).

Ted was educated at St Paul's School, London from 1937 to 1940, but had been studying in Australia at the outbreak of the Pacific War.
He enlisted in the RAAF in April 1942, age 18, commencing in No 28 Course, Empire Air Training Scheme.

Initial Training Course for 6 months at 1 ITS Somers, Victoria.
Elementary Flying Training (29 Course) at 10 EFTS Temora, New South Wales, flying Tiger Moths. His 1st flight was on 21 Oct 1942, his 19th birthday.
Advanced Service Flying Training at 1 SFTS Point Cook, Victoria, flying twin-engine Oxfords. Here he attaining his Pilot's Wings in April 1943, and graduated as a Sergeant Pilot.
Embarked by ship to the UK, posted to RAF Bomber Command for Operational Training.
21 OTU Moreton-in-Marsh UK, March 1944. Here he formed a Crew and converted to twin-engine Wellington Bombers. (same OTU as for Fl/Lt Drinkwater of B Flight 462 Sqdn; also same OTU as for F/O Weeks)
Posted to HCU and converted to four-engine Halifax Bombers.
August 1944 posted to 640 Squadron, No 4 Group, Leconfield, Yorkshire, and completed 11 Ops.
1 September 1944 posted to 462 Squadron, No 4 Group, Driffield, Yorkshire, flying Halifax Bombers. 462 Sqdn had been newly re-formed on 14 August 1944.

6 October 1944 – flew his 19th Op to Synthetic Oil Refinery at Sterkrade. After this Op, Pilot Flying Officer McGindle was awarded a Immediate DFC, and three of his crew were each awarded an Immediate DFM for their actions in returning with their damaged aircraft and wounded crew to Woodbridge – details later on this page. (Two weeks later on 21 October 1944, McGindle celebrated his 21st Birthday.)

On 27 December 1944, he relocated with 462 Squadron to 100 Group, Foulsham, Norfolk.

In seven months he had been promoted 4 times from Sergeant Pilot through to Flight Lieutenant.
In January 1945 as Fight Lieutenant, he was appointed Deputy Flight Commander 'A Flight', and in March 1945 Acting Flight Commander. (See photo above of 462 Squadron Pilots in March 1945)

Ted McGindle's Crew
Formed in March 1944 at 21 OTU, Moreton-in-Marsh, near Oxford, UK, this crew was together for 19 Ops. On a daylight raid to the Synthetic Oil Refinery at Sterkrade, the 2 Gunners baled out on Pilot's orders, and the Navigator was seriously wounded.
(A photo of this crew from page 14 of the book 'Pimpernel Squadron' is shown above.)

Pilot – Sgt Edward McGindle, RAAF, 418612, aged 20
Navigator – Sgt Bob Boyle, RAF, from Lancashire UK, from school
Bomb Aimer – Sgt Cecil Frederick Baldwin (Fred ), RAFVR, from Lincolnshire UK, aged 19
Wireless Operator – F/Sgt Edward George Whelan (Mick), RAAF from Longreach, Queensland, aged 20
Flight Engineer – Sgt Stuart Leslie Soames (Stew), RAFVR, early 30s
Mid-Upper Gunner – Sgt Eric Offley, RAF, from Cheshire, late 20s
Rear Gunner – Sgt Joe Smith, RAF, from Nth England, early 30s.

Ted McGindle & Crew – Ops
Full details in book 'Pimpernel Squadron', from page 21.

Ops 1 to 11 were completed with 640 Squadron, No 4 Group, Leconfield, Yorkshire.
Op No 1: 9 August 1944, Les Catelliers, France;
Op No 2: 10 August 1944, Dijon, France;
Op not counted: 12 August, Russelsheim, Germany;
Ops 3 to 11: various German targets.

A further 8 Ops were completed with 462 Squadron, No 4 Group, Driffield, Yorkshire.
Op No 12: 3 Sept 1944, Soesterburg Airfield, Holland;
Op No 18: 15 Sept 1944, Kiel Dockyards & Submarine Pens;
Op No 19: – 6 October 1944, Sterkrade Oil Refinery (see book 'Pimpernel Squadron' pages 46 to 52 inclusive). In summary – Halifax NP990, Z5-L "Love" was hit by flak over the target, and caught on fire with bomb doors open and a full bomb load. The order was given to 'abandon aircraft' whilst the Pilot pulled the bomb-jettison switch. Mid-Upper Gunner Sgt Eric Offley and Rear Gunner Sgt Joe Smith followed orders & bailed out. The Navigator Sgt Bob Boyle was seriously injured by flak and was unable to bale out, and the Bomb Aimer Sgt Fred Baldwin was also injured. The aircraft was severely damaged, although the fire had been extinguished by the Flight Engineer F/Sgt Stew Soames. They flew for Woodbridge, an emergency landing base in the south of England. Over Holland they were given assistance by a Spitfire Pilot who strafed an anti-aircraft gun position, as their aircraft was without defences**. The 2 Gunners each became a PoW, however neither is listed in book 'Footprints on the Sands of Time – RAF Bomber Command Prisoners of War in Germany 1939-45.' by Oliver Clutton-Brock (published 2003). Information received in early November 2011 from Oliver Clutton-Brock is that Sgt J.A. Smith 2211862 RAF and Sgt W.E.L. Offley 2218499 RAF arrived at Stalag Luft VII (Bankau) POW camp on 21 October 1944.

** A painting 'Top Cover' by aviation artist Robert Taylor depicts this event. Squadron Leader Tony Gaze, DFC and 2 bars, of 610 Squadron was the Spitfire Pilot who gave cover to Ted's damaged Halifax & his wounded crew on 6 October 1944. For further information and prints of this painting, please contact Aviation Art.

After this episode the Crew had 2 replacement Air Gunners and a Navigator.
Navigator – F/O William Thompson Hamilton Watt (Paddy), RAFVR from southern Ireland
Mid-Upper Gunner – P/O R. (Bob) Nicholls RAAF
Rear Gunner – F/O R. (Bert) Medway RAAF
(A photo of this 2nd crew from page 108 of the book 'Pimpernel Squadron' is shown above.)

A further 15 Ops were flown with 462 Squadron, 100 Group, Foulsham, Norfolk.

Ted McGindle completed 34 Operational Bombing Missions over Germany and occupied Europe.

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Awards

Immediate Distinguished Flying Cross – Flying Officer Edward McGindle (Ted), RAAF, 418612 (see photo below)
Immediate Distinguished Flying Medal – Bomb Aimer – Sgt Cecil Frederick Baldwin (Fred), RAFVR, 1452215
Immediate Distinguished Flying Medal – Flight Engineer – Sgt Stuart Leslie Soames (Stew), RAFVR, 1159268
Immediate Distinguished Flying Medal – Wireless Operator – F/Sgt Edward George Whelan (Mick), RAAF 434231
(In later references in the book 'Pimpernel Squadron', the crew Ranks were described as Flight Sergeants, and Warrant Officer.)

 

Immediate DFC awarded to F/O (later Fl/Lt) Edward McGindle, 462 Squadron at Driffield, Oct 1944

 

Immediate Distinguished Flying Cross

From the Australian War Memorial web site – The DFC was awarded during E.McGindle's service with 462 Sqdn RAAF while based at Driffield, Yorkshire. He held the rank of Flying Officer at that time. The DFC was promulgated in the London Gazette on 12 December 1944 (page 5690, position 1), and in the Commonwealth of Australia Gazette on 20 December 1944 (page 2797, position 35). The Insignia was presented by the Governor-General at Government House, Melbourne, Victoria on 20 October 1947. The Citation reads " Attack on synthetic oil refinery STERKRADE, Oct 44."

Photo used with the permission of the McGindle Family, 28/03/2010.

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