Sunday 17 September 1916 – We Lost 1,496
Jasta #2 of the German Air Force falls in with a flight of #12 Squadron Royal Flying Corps on a bombing raid against Marcoing Station. The Royal Flying Corps aircraft are escorted by machines from 11th Squadron. Three British planes are shot down, with the crews of the first two being made prisoners. Captain Tom Rees (Welsh Fusiliers attached Royal Flying Corps) with his pilot Second Lieutenant Lionel Bertram Frank Morris (Royal West Surrey Regiment) become the first victims of Manfred von Richthofen when they become the third victim of the guns of Jasta #2 as they are shot down near Villers Plouich. His family suffers a double tragedy as on today his brother John is struck and killed by lightning. One British observer scores a victory during this fight. Sergeant Albert Clarkson shoots down one German aircraft. He will himself be shot down and killed by von Richthofen while flying with a different pilot in less than two weeks.
British forces attack and occupy Mazar in the Northern Sinai.
Today’s losses include:
- The first victims of ‘The Red Baron’ Manfred von Richthofen
- The brother of a future General
- Multiple families that will lose two sons in the Great War
- Multiple sons of members of the clergy
- The son of a Member of Parliament
- The brother of a future Member of Parliament
- A novelist
- Brothers killed together
Today’s highlighted casualties include:
- Captain Armar Leslie Auchinleck (Cameronians attached Machine Gun Corps) is killed at age 29. He is the brother of the future General Claude John Eyre Auchinleck.
- Captain Gilbert Vere Bogle (New Zealand Army Medical Corps) is killed at age 32. He is one of three brothers of the great grandfather of New Zealand Ambassador Christine Bogle.
- Captain Danaiel MacDougald Cowie (Highland Light Infantry) is killed in action at age 28. His brother will die of wounds in eleven days.
- Lieutenant Stephen Ralph Perry (King’s Royal Rifle Corps) is killed at age 23. He is the son of the Reverend S E Perry Vicar of Litdeport.
- Lieutenant Douglas William Hurd (Middlesex Regiment) is killed at age 21. His brother will be killed in March 1918. They are sons of ‘Sir’ Percy Angier Hurd MP, journalist and author while a third brother will be elected to Parliament in 1945.