Failed to Return

Sgt G Hunter and Crew

Sgt Hunter and crew were posted to 550 Sqdn from 1662 Con. Unit w.e.f. 10/1/44:

Lancaster ND396

The same researcher as was researching Lancaster LM461/BQ-U looked into another 550 Squadron Lancaster, ND396/BQ-D, which failed to return from a raid on 30/31 January 1944. ND396/BQ-D was on a raid on Berlin when it was lost in the approach; all of the crew survived and became PoWs.

See the original site archive at, under the Aircraft link where it is listed as "FTR 31 Jan '44". Other details can be found (if the links are still live) at:

The crew the night that the aircraft failed to return was the same as listed above.

Sgt J.C.Cartwright was interned in Camps L6/357. PoW No.1268, with Sgt W.C.Frost, PoW No.1056, Sgt C.V.Gale, PoW No.1057.
Sgt G.Hunter in Camps L6/L4, PoW No.1629 with Sgt L.I.Smith, PoW No.1262.
F/O G.Pickavance in Camps 9C/L3, PoW No.1812.
Sgt T.W.Vittle in Camp L1. No PoW No.

Other information about the flight and the target available here.

F/O G Pickavance RCAF

In April 2016 some information came to light about F/O Pickavance, namely that he was in fact from Baltimore, MD in the USA.

My Uncle, George Pickavance, served in the RCAF during WWII. He was a Flight Officer in 550 Squadron.
He left Baltimore along with a younger brother, John Pickavance, and went up to Canada to fight HITLER before the USA was in the war. He was shot down over Berlin and was a POW. He was a hero flying many missions out of England prior to his crash. He survived with two broken legs. After the war he was released from a German Prison camp. He first lived in Baltimore with the rest of his family after a few years he finally moved to Canada due to his serious injuries. He died in Canada. I still miss him. My mom and dad and the rest of the family made trips to Canada and he made trips back to Maryland.
Born in England, St. Helens Lancashire County (I believe), my dad and grandfather left Great Britain for America in 1923 and settled in Baltimore. Then they sent for my grandmother and the other four brothers. Uncle George and John were two of the four.
He was a GREAT human being. A wonderful person an artist he had a photographic memory. I loved him dearly. "PICKAVANCE" is a proud British Name, all the way back to the beginning of England.
His loving niece, Elizabeth Pickavance

Many thanks to Elizabeth Pickavance for providing this information.

At the time of writing (May 2016) this makes F/O Pickavance only the second (identified) US flier that flew with 550, the other being F/O G P Fauman USAAF.