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Canadian Virtual War Memorial

Lawrence Ellwin Pike

In memory of:

Flying Officer Lawrence Ellwin Pike

November 20, 1944

Military Service


Service Number:

J/40651

Age:

23

Force:

Air Force

Unit:

Royal Canadian Air Force

Division:

1656 Heavy Conversion Unit

Additional Information


Son of Thomas E. Pike and Margaret Pike, of Kerwood, Ontario.

Commemorated on Page 417 of the Second World War Book of Remembrance. Request a copy of this page. Download high resolution copy of this page.

Burial Information


Cemetery:

HARROGATE (STONEFALL) CEMETERY
Yorkshire, United Kingdom

Grave Reference:

Sec. H. Row C. Grave 6.

Location:

The town cemetery is on the south east side of Harrogate, Yorkshire. The Commonwealth War Graves Commission's plot is in the southern part of the cemetery. To reach the cemetery from Harrogate, go along the Harrogate/Wetherby road (A661) to the junction with the A59. The cemetery is signposted at this junction. This cemetery contains war graves of both world wars. The large majority of the war burials occurred during the 1939-45 War. Nearly all are airmen, two-thirds of them belonging to the Canadian forces. Many of these men died in the Military Wing of Harrogate General Hospital. Of the many airfields established in Yorkshire during the War, a number were situated in the vicinity of Harrogate. Such were the R.A.F. station at Harrogate itself, and those at Linton-on-Ouse, Tockwith, Rufforth and Marston Moor. Nearly all the Canadians buried here belonged to No. 6 (R.C.A.F.) Bomber Group, whose headquarters were at Allerton Park. All the stations controlled by this Group were in the area north of Harrogate in the Vale of York, the largest base having its headquarters at Linton-on-Ouse. During the early months of the war a piece of land was set aside by the local authorities for service war burials near the north-west corner of the cemetery. This group of war graves is in Sections 20E and 21E within the northern boundary. In July 1943 the Air Forces Section was opened at the north-eastern corner of the cemetery, where men from airfields in Yorkshire and the north-eastern counties were brought, most of whom died in the great bomber offensive on targets in Germany.

Information courtesy of the Commonwealth War Graves Commission.

Digital Collection

  • Photo of LAWRENCE ELLWIN PIKE– Submitted for the project Operation Picture Me
  • Attestation paper– Submitted for the project Operation Picture Me
  • Notification of death– Submitted for the project Operation Picture Me
  • Photo of Lawrence Pike– Submitted for the project, Operation: Picture Me.
  • Document– Hospital Admittance Sheet (obv) for Norman Stubbs, a member of the Pike's crew.  Remarkably, the rear gunner survived the crash when all the others were killed. 

Library & Archives Canada RG24 28753
via R. Whitehouse
  • Document– Hospital Admittance Sheet (rev) for Norman Stubbs, a member of the Pike's crew.   It states that Stubbs was dead from multiple injuries but doen;t state that he was burned.  The aircraft exploed on impact.

Library & Archives Canada RG24 28753
via R. Whitehouse
  • Report– This short report on injuries to a W7875 crew member was sent as soon as possible.   Note that it states multiple injuries.  Stubbs was the MUG and was the farthest from the front of the aircraft with the exception of the rear-gunner, who happened to survive this one.  Each crew member would have this in his file along with a hospital admittance form stating if he arrived at the hospital alive or dead and his condition on discharge.  (Ususally admitted dead, discharged dead.)

Source of document- Library & Archives Canada R24 vol 28753 (N R Stubbs) via R Whitehouse.
  • Telegram– A message from Lindholme airbase to the Air Ministry and Records section stating the Next of Kin of the dead RCAF personnel.

Library & Archives Canada RG24 28753
via R. Whitehouse
  • Casualty report– This is a standard casualty report to HQ from a base with respect to flying casualties.  The subjects are known to the recipient and only the answers are sent.  You can figure out what the question are by reading the message.

Library & Archives Canada RG24 28753
via R. Whitehouse
  • Message from Lindholme Airbase– Message from Lindholme Airbase to the Air Ministry reporting on the funeral timings for the RCAF  members of the crew.  The English crew members were buried elsewhere.
R Whitehouse 

Library & Archives Canada RG24 28753  
via R Whitehouse
  • Flying Accident Report– Flying Accident Report (rev).  Report says that the court of inquiry is still in session.  

R Whitehouse

Library & Archives Canada RG24 28753  
via R Whitehouse
  • Initial Accident Report– A copy of the Initial Accident Report (obv).  This shows that the aircraft belonged to 1656 Heavy Conversion Unit.  This unit trained new crews on 4 engined bombers as they began training on 2 engined aircraft.  Halifax Mk II Serial #W7875 was one of several that crashed shortly after takeoff that evening.  Investigation concluded that the novice crews had retracted the flaps rather than the wheels shortly after takeoff.  This destroyed lift and lead to the crash.  In one case, the bomb bay doors were opened instead of raising the wheels.


Library & Archives Canada RG24 28753  
via R Whitehouse
  • Letter (November 28, 1944)– A copy of this letter to the mother of Norman Stubbs (MUG) is in the personal record of each of the four Canadians killed.  It gives a brief outline of the events and the location of the accident.  It is dated a week after the accident.

Library & Archives Canada RG24 28753  
via R Whitehouse
  • Memorial– Flying Officer Lawrence Ellwin Pike is commemorated on the Bomber Command Memorial Wall in Nanton, AB … photo courtesy of Marg Liessens
  • Memorial– Father J P Lardie's comments as inscribed on the Bomber Command Memorial Wall in Nanton, AB … photo courtesy of Marg Liessens
  • Memorial– Flying Officer Lawrence Ellwin Pike is commemorated on the Bomber Command Memorial Wall in Nanton, AB … photo courtesy of Marg Liessens
  • Gravemarker

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