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Second World War tragedy near Tinwell in Rutland commemorated on 80th anniversary at Commonwealth War Graves section in Newark Cemetery





In a small act of commemoration a group of veterans gathered to remember those that died in a Second World War tragedy 80 years ago.

On Monday a group from the Airborne Riders, made up of former British Paratroopers, met at the Commonwealth War Graves section in Newark Cemetery to pay their respects to 26 Polish servicemen buried there who lost their lives in a tragic accident near the village of Tinwell, in Rutland.

On the night on June 8, 1944, 33 C-47 Skytrains from the USAAF 315th Trooper Carrier Group were on manoeuvres carrying 369 Polish Paratroopers from 1st Independent Polish Parachute Brigade.

Gathering at the Commonwealth War Graves section in Newark Cemetery to commemorate the 80th anniversary of a second world war tragedy in which 26 Polish servicemen and 8 American Airmen lost their lives near the village on Tinwell, in Rutland. Photo: Laurence Goff.
Gathering at the Commonwealth War Graves section in Newark Cemetery to commemorate the 80th anniversary of a second world war tragedy in which 26 Polish servicemen and 8 American Airmen lost their lives near the village on Tinwell, in Rutland. Photo: Laurence Goff.

Setting off from RAF Spanhoe, the aircraft were flying at 1,300 feet, aiming to drop at RAF Wittering as part of a training exercise.

In tight formation two of the military transport aircraft collided mid flight in the skies above Stamford and plummeted to the Earth.

An American Air Force Corporal was the only survivor of the downed aircraft after managing to jump free as it fell.

In total 26 Polish Paratroopers and eight USAAF Airmen lost their lives in the incident.

The American casualties were initially buried in Cambridge before being repatriated back to the United States in 1948.

The bodies of their Polish comrades were taken to Newark where they remain to this day in the Commonwealth War Graves section, the largest polish cemetery anywhere outside of Poland.

Red and white roses were placed on the graves of the 26 Polish paratroopers that lost their lives in the tragedy. Photo: Laurence Goff.
Red and white roses were placed on the graves of the 26 Polish paratroopers that lost their lives in the tragedy. Photo: Laurence Goff.

During the commemoration marking the anniversary of the tragedy, white and red roses were placed on the graves of those that lost their lives.

The commemoration was organised with the help of local historian Shaun Noble and the Friends of Newark Cemetery.



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