Hawker Hurricane Mk.IV LD594 of No.439 Squadron, crashed near to Loch Doon on the 18th March 1944
|Roswell Murray MacTavish||Flying Officer RCAF||Pilot||Killed|
The story of this aircraft is virtually the same as Typhoon JR439 of No.440 Sqn which crashed within a few minutes of LD594. On the 18th March the two Royal Canadian Air Force Squadrons were transferring their aircraft from RAF Ayr to RAF Hurn, at the time No.439 Sqn had a mixed fleet of Typhoons and Hurricanes. 7 Typhoons set out for their re-fuelling stop at RAF Woodvale at 10:10 with 11 Hurricanes following on 10 minutes later. Of these 9 arrived Woodvale, one aircraft landed at Walney Island and after a short while continued to Woodvale, the 11th aircraft however was missing and had been from only 7 minutes into the journey. While the flight was climbing through various layers of clouds over southern Ayrshire and at a height of about 3,300ft F/O MacTavish’s aircraft was seen by other pilots to enter a dive and disappear into the clouds.
It was the following day before the crash site had been located and reported to the RAF, who despatched a search team from No.5 (Coastal) Operational Training Unit at RAF Turnberry. They confirmed that the site was indeed that of the missing Hurricane and F/O MacTavish had been killed in the crash. The aircraft had dived into the lower slopes of Meaul in the Rhinns of Kells a short distance to the south east of Loch Doon.