The original of this report can be found at the Public Record Offices, Kew, London

Ref: WO 208 3322 (-) 2232

.SECRET

Escape Report M.I.9/S/P.G. (-) 2232

Evaded capture in France

Statement by A412313 W/O. HARTWIG, Gustaf Kenneth, R.A.A.F., 90 Sqn,

Bomber Command, R.A.F.

Post in crew: Wireless Operator

.Interviewed by I.S.9 (W) )

O.R.S., Bomber Command, RAF ) 29 Aug 44.

We took off from TUDDENHAM in a Lancaster MkIII aircraft at 2245 hrs on 10 Jun 44 to bomb DRUEX. We bombed the target, but after releasing the bombs we were hit by Flak . The aircraft caught fire and the order was given to Bail Out. I do not remember actually bailing out, my mind was a complete blank until I found myself walking along a road. I looked at my watch and saw it was 0600 hrs.

I burnt all the papers and buried my mae west immediately and then seeing a hay shed near the road I crawled into it and went to sleep until about 1400 hrs.

I left the hay shed and saw a a farmhouse nearby.

As I had been hit in the forehead I thought I would make for the farm and ask if they would help me to bathe my wound. I met a woman at the farmhouse and I told her who I was and asked her to help me but she would not do anything for me as she said there were too many Germans in the neighbourhood. So I left the farm and went in a Westerly direction.

At about 1900 hrs I came to a farm and asked the farmer to help me. He dressed my head and gave me food and water. This farm was South-East of DAMVILLE I continued walking in a Easterly direction and just near the outskirts of LAIGLE. I rested and fell asleep. A Frenchman woke me up thinking I was French and when I told him who I was he offered to help me and took me out of the town and hid me in a small wood. He brought his daughter who could speak English. She took me to their house and next day (18 Jun) a friend came and took me to his farm at LA NEUVE LYRE where I stayed for about a Week.

On 25 Jun I was taken by car to EVREUX.

After I had been there an hour I was taken to the back of the house where I met an American who was staying there named John GABRIEL< 0817918. We remained here a few days but got very discontented. The owner of this house who was a member of the Resistance movement was shot one morning by the Gestapo who came to search the place. We escaped to a house nearby and were later hidden in the cellar of a mental hospital in the town and stayed there until the Americans arrived on 23 Aug .

End of report.


Escape report of Sgt J F Clinton Sgt H R Holt