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Mission: Night attack on London, England.

Date: 21
st /22nd January 1944

Unit: 2 Staffel./Kampfgeschwader 40

Type: Heinkel He 177A-3


Coded: 5J + VL

Location: Amy, Western France.

Pilot: Leutnant. Rolf Heinrich Melcher. 53489/59 – Killed. Born 29.07.1922 in Lübeck.

Observer: Unteroffizier. Walter Oppermann. 53489/11 – Killed. Born 11.08.1910 in Osterweg/Halberstadt.

Flt/Eng: Feldwebel. Theodor Schlagkamp. 53489/75 – Killed. Born 21.12.1919 in Bienen/Düsseldorf.

Radio/Op: Unteroffizier. Georg Buder. 53489/56 – Safe? Born 28.01.1921 in Lossburg.

Gunner: Obergefreiter. Horst Klippel. 53489/81 – Killed. Born 24.03.1920 in Ebersbach.


On return from London this aircraft attempted a crash landing but was destroyed on impact killing four of the crew. The crew were originally buried in graves 1 to 4 at the Soldatenfriedhof Montdidier, France.

Heinkel He 177 BA (2)
A landing of a Heinkel He 177 from KG40

22.01.44 He 177 Uffz. Schlagkamp 2KG40ccSchlagkamp 2
Death notice for Theodor Schlagkamp the ill-fated (Bordmechaniker)

Burial detail:
Kriegsgräberstätte in Bourdon.

Rolf Melcher. Block 35 Row 10 Grave 361.

Walter Oppermann. Block 35 Row 10 Grave 363.

Theodor Schlagkamp. Block 35 Row 10 Grave 362.

Horst Klippel.
Block 35 Row 10 Grave 364.

Georg Buder. No burial details presumed survived.

Researched and compiled by Melvin Brownless, September 2013.