Friends of the Somme - Mid Ulster Branch  
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1120984   Sergeant John Hughes
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Dated added: 01/01/2016   Last updated: 03/04/2020
Personal Details
Regiment/Service: 61 Squadron, Royal Air Force Volunteer Reserve (British Air Force)
Date Of Birth: 16/02/1916
Died: 16/06/1944 (Killed in Action)
Age: 28
Summary      
John Hughes was the son of Thomas and Charlotte Hughes. He was born on 16th February 1916. He was one of at least seven children, all born in the Tobermore area. John served with the Royal Air Force Volunteer Reserve in World War Two. By June 1944 Sergeant John Hughes was with 61 Squadron. On the evening of 15th June 1944, Sergeant Hughes, Wireless Operator on an Avro Lancaster (Serial Number ME783) took off from Skellingthorpe near Lincoln, on a night raid. The target was Chatellerault, in the north west of France. For an unknown reason the aircraft failed to return. All the crew died.
Further Information
John Hughes was the son of Thomas and Charlotte Hughes. Thomas Hughes and Charlotte Nelson were married on 16th February 1909 in the district of Magherafelt.
The 1911 census lists Johnís parents living at house 4 in Moyesset, Tobermore. Thomas was a farmer.
John Hughes was born on 16th February 1916. He was one of at least seven children, all born in the Tobermore area.
Known family: Thomas Hughes, Charlotte Hughes, Annie Hughes (born 22nd July 1909), James Hughes (born 25th October 1910), Maggie Hughes (born 23rd January 1913), Thomas Hughes (born 25th September 1914, died 1st November 1914), John Hughes (born 16th February 1916), Thomas Hughes (born 18th May 1917), Robert Hughes (born 4th September 1919).
John Hughes served with the Royal Air Force Volunteer Reserve in World War Two.
By June 1944 Sergeant John Hughes was with 61 Squadron.
On the evening of 15th June 1944, Sergeant Hughes, Wireless Operator on an Avro Lancaster (Serial Number ME783) took off at 20:27 from Skellingthorpe, near Lincoln, on a night raid. The target was Chatellerault, in the north west of France.
Lancaster bomber
Sergeant (Wireless Operator) John Hughes was killed in action on 16th June 1944.
For an unknown reason the aircraft failed to return. Two different sources have the aircraft shot down or hit by bombs being dropped from above. All the crew died, they were:
bullet Flying Officer Basil Alfred CLACK (152041) Navigator
bullet Sergeant Gordon Victor FOYLE (1853072) Air Gunner
bullet Pilot Officer Edmond Jack GOODYER (424451) Pilot
bullet Sergeant John HUGHES (1120984) Wireless Operator
bullet Flying Officer Ernest JONES (152737) Air Bomber
bullet Sergeant Ernest Frederick PRICE (1866332) Air Gunner
bullet Sergeant Willie STOVOLD (2211352) Flight Engineer
Sergeant John Hughes is buried in a joint grave with the crew in Escoublac-La-Baule War Cemetery, west of Nantes on the west coast of France. His inscription reads: GREATER LOVE HATH NO MAN THAN THIS, THAT A MAN LAY DOWN HIS LIFE FOR HIS FRIENDS
Sergeant John Hughes in Escoublac-La-Baule War Cemetery
Sergeant John Hughes is commemorated locally on the memorial in Tobermore Baptist Church and on Tobermore War Memorial.
The CWGC record Sergeant (Wireless Operator) John Hughes as the son of Thomas and Charlotte Hughes of Tobermore, County Londonderry, Northern Ireland.
Read more
Relevant Magherafelt Area Locations
No Location Region Location Notes Longtitude Latitude
1 Moyesset Tobermore Census listing in Moyesset 54.807220 -6.702082
References and Links
No Link Reference Map Doc
1 1911 census lists Hughes family Lists parents at house 4 in Moyesset, Tobermore, Londonderry
2 Billiongraves.com Photo of Sergeant John Hughes' grave
3 International Bomber Command Details of crew and crash
4 RAF Commands - ME783 Details of crew and crash
5 War Graves Photographic Project Photo of Sergeant John Hughes' grave can be purchased here
Magherafelt District's War Dead Acknowledgements 2014-2020