Late in the evening of June 25th 1943 at approximately 23:01 hours 419 squadron ID VR-C took off from their base at Middleton St. George with crew members listed as F/L B.N. Jost ( later Squadron Leader) as Captain, Sgt. E.B. Pope as Navigator, F/S A.W. Bruce (RNZAF)as Bomb Aimer,F/O R.O. Goodwin as WAG Sgt. J.D. Johnson as Flight Enginner, F/S L. Barker as Second Gunner Sgt. R.H. Austin as Rear Gunner. The Halifax II squadron ID VR-C was to join up with a massive formation of over 600 bombers headed to Wuppertal Germany. The usual breifings to the crews had laid out the paths to the targets. The flight paths were never a straight run from a bomber's base to target. Many factors came into play with any size operation. The paths were selected to bypass heavily defended areas on the way to the target as well as other factors, including raids that may be going on concurrently near or on the way to the target. The forming of large numbers of bombers in a air of this size also had an impact on the flight paths and timing of arrivals on target.
So it was that the crew of JD147 found themselves under attack between Massstricht and Massmechelen Belgium from a Luftwaffe ME110 night fighter from NJG 4 (Nachtjagdgeschwader 4) Damage to the right wing and an engine caused the wing to burst into flame, the pilot F/L Jost put the aircraft in a nose dive in an attempt to extish the flames. The fire had spread to the fuselage when the order to bail out was given. The Bomb Aimer Sgt. Bruce left the aircraft near Massbracht, followed by the Rear Gunner Sgt.Austin who jumped out near Leroppeveld. The aircraft was coming apart as the crew was bailing out and others were preparing to bail out. The pilot F/L Jost had noticed that the path of the aircraft was heading for a populated area and with bombs still on board. He fought to control the aircraft to miss the town. Navigator Sgt.Pope and the Second gunner F/S Baker had jumped, leaving just Jost, Johnson and Goodwin on board. With an altitude of only 900 feet F/O Goodwin finally bailed out.
All the time on the way to the crash landing parts of the aircraft had been tumbling down to the ground. The aircraft crashed down in a field which locally was called Hammerveld where the separated section of the cockpit section was located by local fire fighters. There the bodies of F/L Jost and Sgt. Johnson were found. German Army units worked at rounding up the crew members that had jumped. With the exception of F/O Goodwin who had been badly hurt in fall, belived to be the failure of his chute to open in time to save him. Local reports gave witness to the fact that F/O Goodwin had lived after the fall and could be heard crying out for help. For some unwritten reason help never came, F/O Goodwin's body was found a number of weeks after the crash
From a translation of the article done in the 1980's one part of the fuselage landed at where the TV tower in the photo is now located and the other remaining section, the cockpit area was in a field close by. There are other versions where the bombs had been jetisoned, others where the smaller incentary bombs were still on board. Either way the Flight Enginneer and the Pilot knew they had to stay with JD146 to miss hitting the village. The people of Roermond named this road after S/L Jost and included a memorial stone with the names of S/L Jost and Sgt. Johnson. The stone also includes the squadron number and the aircraft serial number.