Sergeant G. E. Martin, RAF, 1625906::
|This cutting from the Sutton Herald from July 4th 1999 was found in March 2020. There are several Martin's in the family tree - my paternal great grandmother was Alice Martin before she married John Sculpher in 1872 and my mother was raised by the Ruddell family and her adopted elder brother (by twelve years) Frederick Ruddell married Kathleen Matilda Martin - known to everyone as 'Kit'.|
|Sergeant Gerald Edward Martin was a crew member of an Avro Lancaster (type
II, serial number LL678, aircraft code JI-L2) of 514 Squadron taking off
from RAF Waterbeach at 23:12 on the night of the 12th June 1944 as one
of three hundred and three aircraft (286 Lancasters and 17 Mosquito's of
Numbers 1, 3 and 8 Groups) carrying out the first raid of the new Oil
Campaign; the target was the Nordstern synthetic oil plant at
Gelsenkirchen, which lies at the centre of the Ruhr. Gelsenkirchen
was a target of strategic bombing during the war and three quarters of
the town was destroyed.
Gerald Martin's Lancaster LL678 was shot down on its return from the raid by a FW-190A-8 number 171660 of the 9/JF-11 (S.U) flown by Oberleutnant Dietrich Shmidt and crash landed at 01:24 on the 13th June in Holland at Zuidloo, Overijseel. Of the eight man crew, just three survived, for some of them, it was due to be their last tour of duty. The three survivors evaded capture; their escape aided by the Dutch resistance. Gerald Martin hide in a bakery surrounded by Germans and remained hidden in Holland until liberated in April 1945. After the war Gerald met the pilot and radio operator of the FW-109 that shot down LL678. Gerald died of cancer in March 2008.
RAF Waterbeach was located five and a half miles north of Cambridge.
It was built in 1940 and operated by RAF Bomber Command
until 1945, after which it transferred to RAF Transport Command until
1949, becoming a Fighter Command base from 1950 to 1963. From 1963 to
1966 the airfield was used by the RAF Airfield Construction Branch and then
handed over to the British Army Royal Engineers as Waterbeach Barracks,
although the main runway and control tower remained in use. In July 2011
the Ministry of Defence announced that Waterbeach Barracks would close
and the land sold for housing. Closure took place on the 28th
March 2013. Photographs from 2008 show the original control tower and
many RAF buildings, including several hangers.
|Who is Mrs E Martin? In the 1939 Register Edith Martin and her
husband Amos W Martin are living at 78 Ruskin Road, Carshalton. The year
of their respective births is shown at 1890. A search of marriage
records finds an entry for Edith Mercer and Amos W Martin in the March
quarter of 1916 (Croydon 2a, 559). A search of birth records returns
Amos William Martin registered in the December quarter of 1890 in
Islington (1b, 372). A search for the birth entry for Edith Mercer finds
an entry for the September quarter of 1890 in Guildford (2a,100). A
search for the birth record for Gerald Edward Martin finds Gerald E
Martin registered in the March quarter of 1923 in Croydon (2a, 467). The
mothers maiden name is shown as Mercer. A birth in early 1923 would mean
Gerald was 21 in the June of 1944. I believe that Gerald had an older
brother Kenneth N Martin, birth registered in the June quarter of 1921
in the Croydon district (2a, 576), the mothers maiden name is Mercer.
Amos William Martin (born 1890-1891) was living in Newington Green Road, Islington in the 1891 census with his parents Alfred Amos and Elizabeth Ann, his older brother Sidney (born 1887/1888) and older sister Rose Florence (born 1889/1890). Alfred Amos is a carpenter. Ten years later in the 1901 census the family have moved to Croydon, Sidney is now 13 (place of birth shown as Hammersmith), Rose Florence is now 11 (place of birth shown as Fulham). Amos William is listed as William Amos is 10 years old and has a younger brother Harry E, aged 8 (born 1892/1893 in Kilburn). Also at the address is Alfred's mother Thirza (or Thurza) aged 58, born in Great Braxted, Essesx and Alfred's sister Clara Martin, aged 27 and born in Kensington, London.
In the 1911 census the family is still in Croydon (South Croydon), Alfred Amos is now 45, a carpenter and builder, his wife Elizabeth Ann is 44, Rose Florence is 21 and Amos William is 20 and shown as being born in Stoke Newington, London. His younger brother Harry Edward is now 18 and a house painter. The elder son Sidney is not at the same address.
Alfred Amos Martin appears on the 1871 census where he is 4 years old, born in 1866 and christened at St Mary Magdalen Church in Richmond, Surrey on the 30th September 1866. His father Amos is 31 years old and born in Hitwich, Bedfordshire His mother Thirza is 28 and shown as being born in Great Braxted, Essex. There is a daughter also - Thurza A Martin aged 2 and born in Twickenham, Surrey.
All the above information from the various census and birth and marriage records all hang together. However, I have yet to find a connection either with Alice Martin or Kathleen Matilda Martin.