In Memory of


Flight Sergeant
44 Sqdn., Royal Air Force Volunteer Reserve
who died on
Tuesday, 23rd November 1943. Age 23.

Additional Information: Son of George Henry and Maria Margaret Beebe, of Stretford, Lancashire; husband of Winifred Emily Beebe, of Stretford.


Andrew Wilson very kindly contacted me with some information that came to light while he was researching his own family history, specifically his great uncle Gilbert John O'Brien.  This is what he had to say.....

"I just happened across your family web site, specifically the memorial page to John Beebe.

Recently I have taken on the task of finding out a little more about my great uncle Gilbert John O'Brien who was killed during a raid over Berlin on 23rd November 1943.

After a bit of digging around I came up with various details including the fact that John Beebe was one of his fellow crewmen.

I now have the details of 6 crew members in all, but would have expected there to be 7 in total.

Based at RAF Dunholme Lodge in Lincolnshire, they took off at 17:16 on November 23rd 1943 and the crew of Lancaster III LM373 KM-V, in no particular order, were:

Gilbert O'Brien, John Beebe, Eric Ambrose, John Taylor, Peter Lees, Maxwell Hardy, plus (I believe) one other.

I have the rank and serial numbers of all the above but have come to a bit of a dead end now.

Anyway, I just wanted to share the little information I have found which may be of interest to the Beebe family.

Thank you Andrew.  Does anyone have anything they can add?


Commemorative Information

Cemetery: BERLIN 1939-1945 WAR CEMETERY, Brandenburg, Germany
Grave Reference/
Panel Number:
Coll. grave 4. K. 14-19.
Location: The Cemetery is in the district of Charlottenburg, 8 kilometres west of the city centre, on the south side of the Heerstrasse. From Theodor Heuss Platz in the district of Charlottenburg, near the exhibition hall complex and next to the Olympic Stadium, follow signs for Spandau, proceeding along the Heerstrasse. The Cemetery lies on the Heerstrasse on the left hand side of the road and 3 kilometres from Theodor Heuss Platz. Visitors should drive beyond the cemetery to the traffic lights, then turn left directly onto a small one way street running parallel to the Heerstrasse. The Cemetery entrance is on this small one way road.

Historical Information: The site of Berlin 1939-45 War Cemetery was selected by the British Occupation Authorities and Commission officials jointly in 1945, soon after hostilities ceased. To this War Cemetery were moved the graves from the Berlin area and from Eastern Germany. The great majority of those buried here, approximately 80 per cent of the total, were airmen who lost their lives in the air raids over Berlin and the towns in Eastern Germany. The remainder were men who died in prisoner-of-war camps in these regions, some of whom were victims of the notorious forced march into Germany of prisoners from camps in Poland, in front of the advancing Russians. It is said that during the battle for Berlin there was severe fighting between Russian and German forces in the cemetery area. Districts from which graves were transferred to this war cemetery include Leipzig, Konigsberg, Iena, Dresden, Halle, Rostock, Teltow, Wismar, Mittenwalde, Neuburzdorf, Magdeburg, Grunberg, Doberitz, Buchholz, Halberstadt, Blankenburg, Gotha, Tannenburg, Potsdam, Weder, Tessau, Stralsund, Schweren, Munsdorf, Brandenburg and Schonwalde. From the Olympischestrasse Cemetery in Berlin came 88 war graves. That cemetery contained a large number of burials which were not the responsibility of the Commission, and permanent maintenance of the war graves to the Commission's standards would have been impossible. Special memorials, commemorate men known to be buried in certain groups of graves in the cemetery, whose graves within these groups cannot be individually identified. They bear the superscription "Buried near this spot. " There are 3,583 Commonwealth burials of the 1939-1945 war commemorated here, 392 of which are unidentified. There are in addition 266 non-war graves; i.e. graves of men of the British Occupation Forces or their dependants, or of members of the Control Commission. There are also 5 Polish foreign national burials.