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Joe McDonnell

Joe McDonnell

Leading Aircraftman 538044, 15 Squadron Royal Air Force
Died 12 May 1940, aged 23
Buried in the Hotton War Cemetery Belgium
Remembered on a Memorial in Gellik in Belgium
Remembered on Ash War Memorial

Patrick Joseph McDonnell was the wireless operator and Air Gunner of a Blenheim bomber which crashed into a canal near the village of Gellik in Belgium. The pilot bailed out, but his parachute failed to open, and the other two crew members were killed on board when the plane crashed. The bodies of all three were buried by the canal and later re-interred in the cemetery.

An eight foot monument was erected in the village of Gellik in 1985 by the Belgian War Veterans Association, and there was a fly past by RAF Tornados to mark the ceremony on Remembrance Day.

Joe McDonnell attended St Patrick's Roman Catholic School and Salesian College in Farnborough. He lived in Vale Road, Ash Vale, and his parents were John and Bridget McDonnell of Ash Vale. Electoral registers record that John and Bridget McDonnell lived in Hutton Road 1932-1939, and in Olive Cottage in Vale Road in 1945.

Ash Second World War Roll of Honour


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