Everett, Daniel Bulmer, Squadron Leader (Pilot) 155223.
Royal Air Force Volunteer Reserve No. 35 Squadron
Died 7 March 1945, aged 24
Sgt D B Everett, 1263497, No. 158 Squadron
Image source: 158 Squadron Association Archive,
with kind permission of Rolph Walker, 158 SA Archivist/Historian.
On 14 June 1905, Harold Bulmer Everett (b. 6 April 1878), from Wimbledon, married Ellen Ada Mary Edwards (b. 14 April 1877) [reg. Kingston 6/1905]. She was the daughter of Patrick John Edwards of Blakesley, Merton Park. The groom had qualified a a Chartered Accountant to practice as Messrs Harold Everettt & Co from 3/7 Southampton Street, Strand. Birth of their son Daniel B Everett (apparently on 15 October 1920) came to be registered in Epsom, 12/1920, where the family lived at 'Stoneleigh', 26 Woodcote Park Road.
Daniel Bulmer Everett enlisted in the Royal Air Force Volunteer Reserve to be inducted around May 1940, probably at RAF Uxbridge. With a Service Number 1263497, he trained to fly with the rank of Sergeant. In July 1942 he was stationed at RAF Bicester, seemingly as a pilot with 13 Operational Training Unit which trained light day bomber aircrew on Bristol Blenheims.
This was followed by a period with 1652 Heavy Conversion Unit, Marston Moor.
Having been posted to 158 Squadron at Lissett 28/2/43, he flew (familiarly known as 'Dan' or 'Danny') in the position of 2nd Pilot on operations: -
8/3/43 - Nuremberg (F/Lt. A.S. Woolnough)
11/3/43 - Stuttgart (F/Sgt. R.D. Roberts)
28/3/43 - St. Nazaire
3/4/43 - Essen
4/4/43 - Kiel [The mid upper gunner sighted a twin engined aircraft, presumed to be a Me 110 with a yellow light in the nose at approx 320 yards range, dead ahead, 45 degrees up. The enemy aircraft dived to attack and the Halifax turned to starboard and then did a violent turn to port. The enemy aircraft did not fire but the Mid Upper gunner on the Halifax fired a three second burst. The enemy aircraft broke away to starboard quarter and was lost. 150 rounds were fired by the Halifax.]
Image courtesy of the late Eddie Fell, of Driffield, former chairman-membership officer
of the 158 Squadron Association
On 9/4/43 he was detached to No 1502 Beam Approach Training Flight at RAF Driffield, flying: -
20/4/43 - Stettin
12/5/43 - Duisburg
13/5/43 - Bochum
23/5/43 - Dortmund
25/5/43 - Dusseldorf
27/5/43 - Essen
Promoted on 29/5/43 Pilot Officer (Probation/Emergency), 155223, he then joined 35 (Pathfinder) Squadron at RAF Graveley, part of No 8 Group In March 1944 that squadron re-equipped with the Avro Lancaster.
In Bomber Command generally, a tour of operations had been 30 missions followed by a break, often instructing away from the Squadron, before recall for a further round. Having been picked or volunteered for the Pathfinder Force, however, the requirement was to serve only a single tour, but of 45 missions, and then no more in the European Theatre of Operations.
Awarded the Distinguished Flying Cross (as P/O. in 35 Sqn.) as shown by the London Gazette dated 21 January 1944. No citation was published but original recommendation dated 29 October 1943 read: -
'Pilot Officer Everett was captain of an aircraft detailed to attack Kassel on the night of 22/23rd October 1943. En route to the target the weather was particularly bad and some of his blind flying instruments became inoperative owing to the icing conditions. This officer carried on despite this handicap as he fully realised the importance of this special task and at the target he made a most successful attack, this being proved by an excellent photograph. Throughout the 33 night bombing attacks in which he has taken part, Pilot Officer Everett has consistently maintained an extremely high standard of tenacity and reliability and it is considered that the fine results he achieved in this attack fully merits the immediate (amended to non immediate by the AOC) award of the Distinguished Flying Cross'.
Advanced to Flying Officer (Probation/War sub.), 29/11/43.
DB Everett appears to have been posted out of 35 squadron during March 1944, presumably to be rested upon completion of his operational tour. No.35 Squadron's Operations Record Book shows that he returned to the squadron on 22 August 1944 from the Pathfinder Force Navigational Training Unit. The ORB records that he subsequently participated in 46 operations between 25 August 1944 and 7 March 1945.
Award of a First Bar to the Distinguished Flying Cross (as A/F/Lt. No. 35 Sqn.) published in the London Gazette dated 16 January 1945. No citation detailed but the original recommendation dated 21 October 1944 read: -
'This officer, now on his second operational tour, is a brilliant captain of aircraft, possessing the greatest determination on operations and the utmost thoroughness in all matters of airmanship.
Since being awarded the D.F.C. he has taken part in many attacks against the enemy on widely separated targets such as Berlin, Nuremberg, the Ruhr and Army support attacks in Normandy. Whatever the target and whatever the task, he can be depended upon to mark and bomb with the greatest reliability. Flight Lieutenant Everett continues to show the keenest desire to operate against the enemy on all possible occasions and his enthusiasm and efficiency sets an example to the entire Squadron. In recognition of this Officer's fine record of service, he is recommended for the non-immediate award of a Bar to the Distinguished Flying Cross'.
On 14 January 1945 he had piloted an Avro Lancaster PB684 (TL-B) from Graveley to Merseburg - Leuna. That aircraft was hit by a bomb dropped by a friendly aircraft over the target area; the rear turret was smashed and later broke away taking with it the body of the rear gunner F/O Raymond Terence Salvoni, DFC, who was thought to have been killed by the impact of the bomb.
Awarded a Second Bar to the Distinguished Flying Cross (as A/S/Ldr. No. 35 Sqn.) according to the London Gazette dated 27 March 1945 [almost three weeks after the recipient's demise]. Citation : -
"One night in February 1945, Squadron Leader Everett was pilot and captain of aircraft detailed to attack Goch. Whilst making his first run over the target his aircraft was badly hit. The starboard main plane was extensively damaged and the starboard inner engine caught fire. Momentarily the aircraft went out of control. Squadron Leader Everett quickly levelled out though and feathered the propeller of the burning engine. The flames were then extinguished. Although unable to assess the full extent of the damage sustained, Squadron Leader Everett went on to several further runs over the target, which he only left after he was satisfied as to the success of the operation. He afterwards flew the badly damaged aircraft safely to base. This officer displayed a high degree of skill, courage and resolution throughout."
This is somewhat abridged from the original recommendation dated 18 February 1945 (which was actually for the award of the Distinguished Service Order but amended to that of the second Bar): -
"On the night of 7th February 1945, Squadron Leader Everett was captain of an aircraft detailed to attack Goch, his task being vital to the success of the attack and the safety of our own troops.
Whilst making his first run over the target, before the attack began, his aircraft was involved in a collision which resulted in extensive damage to the starboard main plane and inner engine which caught fire. Squadron Leader Everett skilfully regained control, feathered the engine and put out the fire. Although unable to assess the full extent of the damage and knowing full well that in all probability the wing itself had been weakened structurally, this officer made several further runs over the target and remained in the target area until the last of the bombers had left, and only after he had satisfied himself that the attack had been successfully delivered did he set course for base where he made a masterly landing without further incident. Squadron Leader Everett, by his realisation of the importance of his task accepted the great hazard of remaining in the target area for a long period in a badly damaged aircraft, displaying courage and tenacity of the highest order, and it is considered that his magnificent example fully merits the immediate award of the second Bar to D.F.C."
By then he had flown a total of 85 sorties.
Promoted Flight Lieutenant (War sub.), 25/2/45 - Acting Squadron Leader.
Lancaster ME361, a Mk.111 delivered to 35 Squadron ex-32MU in November 1944, had taken part in the following Operations: Cologne 23 December 1944, Daylight Hannover 5/6 January 1945, Duisburg 21/22 February 1945.
Although ordered to take a rest after 98 sorties and assigned to PFF Group Maintenance Unit testing aircraft Danny Everett is reported to have heard that a spare aircraft was 'going begging' at his old squadron [Pathfinders at War, 1977, and Bomber Barons, 2001, by Chaz Bowyer ]. He was said to have authorised his own participation in the raid by 35 Squadron having gathered together a scratch crew for what was to be his 99th and last, Operation.
A similar story appeared in We Act With One Accord, 35 Squadron, Alan Cooper, 1998, Pilot Officer White who had played chess with Danny immediately before take off noted that he appeared to be suffering from stress, sweating profusely. 1063420 Flight Sergeant Frank Joseph Tudor, DFM, his Wireless Operator, observed that this pilot was 'a very quiet person but knew what it was all about, he liked having a beer with his crew... He was a great man who never panicked and could not be faulted. His great aim in life was to get it all over as soon as possible'.
There were a number of relatively highly ranked, and decorated, fliers with him - Plt. Off. K G Munro, RAAF, Flg. Off. J M Aylieff, DFC, Flt. Lt. C G Mitchell, DFC, RCAF, Flt. Lt. C O Russell, DFC, Flt. Lt. R C Chapman, Flg. Off. R M Weller, DFC, & Flg. Off. A H Pidgeon.
On 7 May 1945, 256 Halifaxes and 25 Lancasters of Nos. 4, 6 & 8 Groups attacked the Deutsche Erdoel oil refinery at Hemmingstedt, near Heide, with little success - 4 Halifaxes and 1 Lancaster were lost. Airborne 18.53hrs on 7 March 1945 from Graveley as Master Bomber for the raid on the Deutsche Erdoel oil refinery, Sqn Ldr Everett's aircraft was shot down at about 22.00 hrs. in the target area. P/O Bob White, with whom he had been playing chess before departure, saw the aircraft go down, apparently hit by flak. (Luftgau kommando files record "Hemmingstedt lanc 35 me361 n/f [night fighter] hemmingstedt, 5 km s heide (UT42) ca. 2200" [RG 242.4.2 at NARA in the US: Microfilm frame 132351 ] but a card RL 19/470 at BA/MA in Germany summarises the Flak claim by 3. Flak-Division which lists the seven batteries making the claim )
Touchingly, the Ottawa Journal, 10 December 1947, reported a posthumous award to the next of kin of ME361's Canadian Navigator -
"'In the name of His Majesty the King … I give you the medal which your father won …' Viscount Alexander, Governor-General, bowed and smiled as he handed the Distinguished Flying Cross to 4-year-old Kenneth Mitchell of Victoria at an investiture today in Government House. It was the medal Kenneth's father, the late Flt. Lt. C. G. Mitchell, had won for "devotion to duty." The lad and his mother had travelled from the west coast to receive the award".
[No citation other than completed numerous operations against the enemy in the course of which he has invariably displayed the utmost fortitude courage and devotion to duty. Recommendation dated 18 February 1945, National Archives, Air 2/ 9070.]
Daniel was buried with his crew in the Hamburg Cemetery, Germany, known locally as 'Ohlsdorf '. His father, Harold Bulmer Everett, died, aged 70, 25 September 1948 and was interred at Gap Road Cemetery, Wimbledon. The widowed Mrs Ellen Ada Mary Everett, passed away 16 August 1950 to be buried in plot G588 Epsom Cemetery three days later.
Daniel's inscription on his mother's headstone in Epsom Cemetery
Image courtesy of Brian Bouchard ©2014.
With grateful acknowledgement of material supplied by the late Eddie Fell, of Driffield, former chairman-membership officer of the158 Squadron (RAF Bomber Command) Association and Pete Tresadern of the No. 35 Squadron - From Thetford to Scampton website.
Brian Bouchard 2014
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