From 02 FEB 2020:
"See 5 pages about Halifax II DT620 shot
down over the Baltic Sea off Stevns on 14 March 1943 mostly by Niels B.
Pedersen (short name 5HALsd).
Google Map p143 HAL DT620. Zoom. Also
SDFE-map HAL DT620.
See p143MACR about this crew
FLUKO - German map.
Overview of the crew.
Anders Straarup: Masson and
Ross were taken to Rødvig and then to Air
Station Kastrup and Bispebjerg Cemetery, see
taken to Store Heddinge Hospital, fetched by the Wehrmacht and buried
in Bispebjerg on 26 March.
Harrap was found
at sea, taken to Rødvig and buried in
Bispebjerg Cemetery on 7 April.
Sixsmith was found on 14 April and taken to
Store Heddinge Hospital and then to Air Station Kastrup according to
Sixsmith was buried on 19 April.
We know that Danish Aviation Historical Review
states about the 6 bodies: "Among the 6 was Air
Gunner Sgt Thomas Mairs who drifted ashore at Harvig on 24 April.
According to English reports his body was identified in Store Heddinge
Hospital. However, Sgt Mairs is still buried as Unknown in Bispebjerg."
He was buried 4 days
later on 28 April, see MAIRS.
Canadian Virtual War Memorial has
this about Sergeant Donald Robin Ross and
about others buried in Bispebjerg Cemetery, including Sgt
see Digital Collection Crew List 1943 *
Crew List 1949 *
Casualty Enquiry D.122 * Amendment to D.122
* Funeral Bispebjerg - about
and other crew members,
copied to AirmenDK to make them easier to read.
Casualty Enquiry D.122 of 2 December 1946, paragraph 8:
"- as according to Danish Police reports the body of Sgt. Mairs was
washed ashore on the 23rd April, 1943, at Harvig, approximately one
month later, taken to Store Hedding Hospital and identified by his
discs, and a driving licence found on him. He was collected from there
by the Germans. No burial details were made known to the Danish
Germans must have taken care of the body of Sgt Mairs in the same way
that they treated the other bodies.
Funeral Bispebjerg - a
document in German with a translation into English stating that Ross and
Masson were buried with full military honours as also stated in
5HALsd. Why should the Germans then dump the body of Mairs in some
unknown place? It is a fact that the Germans took a
drowned airman to Bispebjerg to be
buried on 28 April 1943.
However, if grave 129 contains some other perished English airman than
Mairs, the Germans should have had a number of dead airmen and
they just picked one chosen at random!
SIXSMITH was buried on 19 APR 1943, and on that day the
Germans ran out of deceased airmen! It must be the body
of Mairs in
DT620 is p143.htm on the chronological list of
463 air crashes mentioned on AirmenDK.
It is impossible for me to see which other plane crashed at sea during
the previous weeks - and then an airman not accounted for should have
been taken to Bispebjerg Cemetery!
My conclusion: Based on all
evidence Sergeant Thomas Mairs must be the airman buried in grave
6-129 in Bispebjerg Cemetery."
Addition 2023: On 02 FEB 2020 I sent another submission to the CWGC that
Sergeant Thomas Mairs must be the airman in grave 6-129 in Bispebjerg
On 14 MAR 2023 - 80 years after the crash of
HAL DT620 -
there was a final reply from the CWGC
from which I quote the first and the last parts:
I regret to have to inform you that we are unable to accept
your latest submission regarding the identification of graves at
Bisperjerg Cemetery. We understand that this will come as unwelcome news
but as we explained in our response to your previous submission, in
order for us to re-investigate we require a clear presentation of new
evidence which has not previously been considered.
- - -
appreciate that you have made concerted efforts over many years to try
to locate more information, but those searches have not provided any new
records not already considered. Thank you for your dedicated attempts,
but given the limits of the physical evidence cannot ever be overcome,
we must now finally close the case and draw this correspondence to a
I know that you will join with everyone at the Commission
in continuing to honour all those airmen who remain missing across
Europe, including those who are buried at Bisperjerg, whoever they are.
Their service and sacrifice will be commemorated in perpetuity on the
Air Forces Memorial at Runnymede, so they will never be forgotten.
Kind regards Mel, Mel Donnelly, Head of Commemorations Casework,
Commonwealt War Graves Commission."
My reply on 15 MAR 2023: To
the CWGC, Att.: Head of Commemorations Casework Mel Donnelly,
Mel Donnelly, Thank you so much for your final response to my
submissions about Sergeant Thomas Mairs. Unfortunately negative, but it
was worth a try.
Kind regards Anders, Anders Baadsgaard