William Wigham was posted to 102 Squadron, which was a Handley Page Halifax heavy bomber unit, in No 4 Group of Bomber Command, on 23/9/43. I have highlighted his 26 missions with the unit in 1943-44 in bold.

As before details are drawn mainly from the W R Chorley books Bomber Command Losses 1943 and Bomber Command Losses 1944. I have included losses from September 1943 to September 1944, somewhat arbitrary cut off dates perhaps, but this does give a graphic sense of the terrible night by night attrition suffered by every Bomber Command squadron in 1939-45.

1/9/43 Berlin. One 102 Sq aircraft lost, one POW, one evader, five killed.

6-7/9/43 Munich. One 102 Sq aircraft lost, four POWs, three killed.

16-17/9/42 Modane. One 102 Sq aircraft, crashed on return to base. All seven crew injured.

22-23/9/43 Hannover. One 102 Sq aircraft lost, all seven crew POW.

27-28/9/43 Hanover. WW's first mission with 102 Sq on his second tour.

29/9/43 Bochum. WW's second mission.

2-3/10/43. A 102 Sq aircraft crashed on landing during training. All seven crew killed.

8/10/43 Hanover. WW's third mission. One 102 Sq aircraft lost. Three killed, four POW.

22-23/10/43 Kassell. Two 102 Sq aircraft lost. Respectively, three killed and three POWs and one killed and seven POWs.

11-12/11/43 Minelaying. One 102 Sq aircraft lost. All seven crew killed.

19/11/43 Leverkusen. WW's fourth mission.

22-23/11/43 Berlin. One 102 Sq aircraft lost, in collision with a 77 Sq Halifax. All seven crew aboard the 102 Sq aircraft killed. All seven aboard the 77 Sq aircraft also died.

24/11/43 Frankfurt. WW's fifth mission. Citation dates raid as 24/11/43, Chorley as 25-26/11/43. Three 102 Sq aircraft lost. Casualties respectively, three killed and four POWs; one killed and seven POWs; and seven killed.

26/11/43 Stuttgart. At least one 102 Sq aircraft damaged and one fatality. The crew involved were William Wigham's regular crew, with a replacement rear gunner standing in while he was on leave visiting his wife after the birth of his son Howard, who was born on 26/11/43.

Halifax HX188 of 102 Sq was attacked by a night fighter and the mid-upper gunner killed. This incident is not covered in The W R Chorley book. Details below are from the book 'RAAF Losses attached to RAF', page 72:

'Halifax HK188 on 26th November 1943 was detailed to bomb the industrial area of Stuttgart, Germany. On the way into the target area it was attacked by an ME210 enemy night fighter on a heading of 083 deg at 1930 hours in position 51.56N 09.18E. The Me210 was not sighted until 300 yards astern and down, it then moved to the starboard quartet and attacked from there. The first burst put the Mid Upper turret out of action (Flt Sgt Peterson). The Rear Gunner opened fire on the fighter which broke to port and down and did not return. Flt Sgt Peterson had several head injuries and must have died instantly. The remainder of the crew were not injured and the machine returned safely to base although it was badly damaged.


Flying Officer W N A Dick, (Pilot), RAF
Flt Sgt M Bernbaum, (Flight Engineer), RCAF
Flying Officer C S Patrick, (Navigator) RAF
Sgt G Holmes, (Air Bomber), RAF
Sgt J Holden, (Wireless Air Gunner), RAF
408459 Flt Sgt K J Peterson, (Mid Upper Gunner), RAAF. killed.
Pilot Officer G A Henderson (Rear Gunner), RCAF

Flt Sgt K J Peterson is buried in the Brookwood Military Cemetery, Essex, UK'

This was possibly the only 102 Sq fatality on this mission.

From Mrs Wigham's 2001 memoir:


William Wigham’s Second Operational Tour, with 102 Squadron RAF, in 1943-44