John Burgess

Flying Officer John Burgess of Cambrai Street, Belfast, Co. Antrim died on 4th April 1943 when Halifax HR754 came down on the return from Essen, Germany.

Flying Officer John Burgess (128714) served in the Royal Air Force Volunteer Reserve during World War Two. He was the son of John (Senior) Burgess and Elizabeth Burgess of 3 Cambrai Street, Belfast, Co. Antrim.

John was a Bomb Aimer / Navigator with RAF 158 Squadron. Before the outbreak of war, he worked as an engineer at the Harland and Wolff Shipyard in his hometown. By 1943, he had 3 years service in the Royal Air Force and joined RAF 158 Squadron on 14th March 1943 from No. 1658 Heavy Conversion Unit.

He died on 4th April 1943 aged 21 years old when Handley-Page Halifax HR754 NP-K crashed near Goxhill, Hornsea. The crew was bound for a bombing raid on the German city of Essen. They took off from RAF Lissett, Yorkshire at 1940hrs on 3rd April 1943.

The Halifax bomber came down on the return leg of the journey between Stud Farm and Wassand Hall on the south of Hornsea Mere at 0048hrs on 4th April 1943. Of a total of 7 crew members on board, 4 died in the incident.

Remembering the crew of Halifax HR754

Last NameFirst Name(s)RankRoleInformation
KeedwellJohnSergeantPilotRAFVR 925015. Killed.
FranksJohn RobertSergeantFlight EngineerRAFVR 998499. Killed.
BurgessJohnFlying OfficerBomb AimerRAFVR 128714. Killed.
LooseReginald VictorSergeantAir GunnerRAFVR 1395954. Killed.
SimpsonWilliam RhymerFlying OfficerNavigatorRAFVR 130239. Injured.
NurseReginald SydneySergeantAir GunnerRAF 1496525. Injured.
FroudLeonard FrancisSergeantAir GunnerRAF 1379219. Injured.

John Burgess’ name is on a family memorial in Section ZZ, Grave 16 of Carnmoney Cemetery, Newtownabbey, Co. Antrim.