Phil Wood Posted 29 January , 2018 Share Posted 29 January , 2018 (edited) Researching Harry George Lovelock, DSM. His rank was AM1, RNAS - but his job was Air Gunner, as which he got the DSM (London Gazette, 2/11/1917) and subsequently died 22/03/1918. The following newspaper report gave details of his death: Newbury Weekly News, 4 April 1918 – Local War Notes Mr and Mrs Lovelock, of Kings-road, have received the sad news that their son, H G Lovelock, DSM, of the RNAS, was killed in Belgium on March 22nd. Deceased was a gunlayer in a machine with Flight Sub-Lieutenant Bambridge, and was escorting a machine over the lies, when it was struck by anti-aircraft fire. The machine turned over on its back in the air, and the pilot did all in his power, crawling on the wings to bring the machine safely to ground, but it crashed upside down our side of the lines. The pilot had his legs broken in three places, but deceased was unfortunately killed. He is spoken of by his commander, as one of the squadron’s best and bravest gunlayers. The funeral was attended by officers and men, and also by 20 Belgian officers. The bit that interests me is: the pilot did all in his power, crawling on the wings to bring the machine safely to ground I am an ignoramus when it comes to flying (in this case a DH.4) and am struggling to work out how the pilot hoped to bring the plane under control by crawling out on a wing (let alone wings). Can anyone give a rational explanation for this? The cynic in me can't help considering that, in the event of a crash, it may have been safer (albeit very marginally) to be on a wing than in the pilot's seat sandwiched between the engine and the fuel tank, or that the likely cause of death would not involve burning alive - and that the pilot was aware of this. In which case his action may have been less noble, but eminently sensible! And, let's face it, he did survive the crash. Edited 29 January , 2018 by Phil Wood Link to comment Share on other sites More sharing options...
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