diary of bruce johnston diary of bruce johnston





Mission Notes: Lens

( see map at bottom of screen )

Operation Summary:
270 Lancasters attacked Douai, Lens and Somain.

Planes from 115 Squadron:
29 (9 from A flight, 9 from B flight, 10 from C flight)

Planes lost from 115 Squadron:

Johnston’s Plane: KO-W (W.PB 131)

Take-off: 2:05 pm

Landing: 6:00 pm

Round trip time: 3 hrs 55 mins

Bombing Height: 15,000 ft


RAF Bomber Command, 115 Squadron at Witchford, near Ely

Daylight - Daytime operation/mission

Lens - French city 200 kms north of Paris near the Belgium border

Prang - Usually refers to crashing a plane on landing or takeoff at the airfield, but in this case means the target was successfully bombed

Turn twenty - Order in which returning planes have been cleared to land – a plane given “turn twenty’ would land twentieth

Barb - Johnston’s girlfriend in Ontario

August 11, 1944 (Friday)

Operation # 19 - Lens

Eleven 1,000 pound and four 500 pound bombs

Did a daylight to Lens this afternoon and what a trip! There was no opposition to speak of and it was a good prang.

I did as we were told on the way back and got back turn twenty of all times! Then I made one of the worst landings of my career – out in the grass, slid right off the runway! Oh, I was cheesed with things.

Stayed in and had a shower tonight - which is about all I did. I got a letter from Barb this morning.

Lens bombing run
from 15,000 ft

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