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William Henry SEGRAVE, k.i.f.a. February 12th 1917


wwrsimon
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Hello

 

Can anyone give the aircraft involved in Lt. William Henry Segrave's fatal accident at Chesterfield on February 12th 1917? The Gloucester Journal of February 17th reported the accident:

 

Lieut. W. H. Segrave, Royal Flying Corps, made a false [sic -forced?] landing at Chesterfield on Monday afternoon owing to engine trouble, his biplane coming into contact with a tree top. He was killed instantaneously.

 

Regards


Simon

 

EDIT - just found it on the RAF Museum Casualty Card - BE2c 7229. Sorry!

Edited by wwrsimon
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Simon

 

He was flying B.E.2d 7229.

 

Flight of 15 February 1917, carried the following:

Lieut. W. H. Segrave, R.F.C., was killed while landing at Chesterfield on the afternoon of the 13th inst. While attempting to land, apparently through engine trouble, his machine came into contact with a tree top and crashed to the ground, the pilot being killed instantly.

Graeme

 

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Thanks for the correction on the BE2 variant Graeme - the casualty card states BE2c.

 

The Belper News of February 27th 1917 has some further details of the crash:

 

BIPLANE CRASHES TO THE GROUND

Lieutenant's Skull Fractured

Chesterfield has received its first aviation fatality, the victim being Lieutenant W. H. Segrave, 3H, Portman Mansions, Baker St., West London - an airman who has shown wonderful coolness, skill and daring.

News of the gallant airman's death cast quite a gloom over the district, and many people paid a visit to the scene of the tragic occurrence - the field facing the two cottages abutting the by-road leading from Walton Road to the Blue Stoops.

....

Second Lt. Wm. Bagnall, a qualified pilot in the Royal Flying Corps, identified the deceased, whose age, he said, was about 27 years. Liuet. Segrave was an experienced and competent pilot and was the instructor to the squadron to which he had been attached. He went by train to a town in Surrey to bring back a new 90 H.P. biplane.

...

Dr. W. C Fowler, Medical Superintendant of the Derbyshire County Council's Sanatorium at Walton, said he saw the biplane about 1.30. It was flying so low that it only just cleared his house, It was proceeding in the direction of Walton Hall Farm, and disappeared from view. Almost immediately he heard two crashes and, running forward he saw the machine lying in a field about 20 yards away. Several branches had been broken off the tree nearby. The machine was overturned and the airman was underneath, being strapped to his seat. He called out to him, but received no reply. By this time several men had come up and he got them to hold up the tail of the aeroplane, while he released the pilot by cutting the straps. He was alive but unconscious, and died in about three minutes. [Dr Fowler stated] my impression is that the motor was shut off. The machine made very little noise.

 

Regards


Simon

 

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