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The Airmen's Stories - Sgt. R Copcutt


Richard Copcutt of Whetstone, Middlesex, was born in 1920 in Hackney and joined the RAF about March 1939 as a direct-entry Airman u/t Observer. He completed his training and joined 248 Squadron at Dyce from No. 1 (C) OTU Silloth on 26th June 1940.

He was a member of the crew of Blenheim P6952 WR*X, detailed to carry out a reconnaissance off the south-west coast of Norway on 20th October 1940. After engaging and damaging a Do18 of 1./KuFlGr.406 the Blenheim was attacked by Me109's of JG77.

One engine was knocked out and the cockpit filled with smoke. The captain, P/O GM Baird, got down to low level, flying blind and skimming over the sea at a speed of 150 mph. The aircraft struck the sea 12 miles off Utsira and the fuselage filled with water.

Baird freed himself and opened the hatch. He then managed to float out the unconscious Sgt. DL Burton but was unable to rescue Copcutt, also unconscious, before the aircraft sank.

Sgt. SV Wood had freed himself and released the dinghy, the three survivors climbed aboard and were later picked up by He59 BV+HH of Seenotflugkdo.5 and landed at Stavanger. They spent the rest of the war as prisoners.

Copcutt was 20. His name is on the Runnymede Memorial, Panel 13.





Above image courtesy of Dean Sumner


Battle of Britain Monument