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Malcolm Bruce Crooks

Portrait, Weekly News - This image may be subject to copyright

Portrait, Weekly News - This image may be subject to copyright


  • Title
  • Forenames
    Malcolm Bruce AWMM
  • Surname
    Crooks AWMM
  • Ingoa
  • Also known as
  • Service number
    • NZ40755 AWMM
    • WWII 40755 AWMM
  • Gender
    Male AWMM
  • Iwi / Hapū / Waka / Rohe
  • Religion

Civilian life

About birth

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  • Birth
    1916 AWMM
  • Date of birth
  • Place of birth
  • Birth notes
  • Address before enlistment
  • Post war occupation
  • Next of kin on embarkation
    WW2 Mother: Mrs. D. E. Bell of Wellington AWMM
  • Relationship status


Wars and conflicts

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Military decorations

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Training and Enlistment

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  • Military training
  • Branch Trade Proficiency
    • Navigator RNZAF Biographies (R17845609)
    • Sergeant/Military RNZAF Biographies (R17845609)
  • Enlistment
  • Occupation before enlistment
  • Age on enlistment


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Prisoner of war

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  • Capture details
  • Days interned
  • Liberation date
  • Liberation Repatriation
  • POW liberation details
  • POW serial number

Medical history

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  • Medical notes
    Killed in Action, Cause of Death AWMM
    Killed on air operations AWMM

Biographical information

Biographical information

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    • Son of Douglas Harold and Daisy Crooks, of Wellington

      Attended Wellington College (Source: RNZAF Biographies (R17845609)) AWMM
    • Reason for aircraft / crew loss :

      Aircraft : Wellington Ic L7798 HA-S.
      Squadron : RAF 218 Squadron (Gold Coast ) Squadron 3 Group : RAF Base Marham, Norfolk, England.
      Squadron Motto : 'In Time'.
      Crash site : Trezeguer Farm, Lanrivoar, France.

      Operation : Brest
      Date : 22-23 April 1941.

      Last air operation of Wellington L7798 HA-S details:

      26 aircraft left RAF Bases, at England - including aircraft from 218 (Gold Coast) Squadron at Marham, to bomb Brest - an important port and repair works for the German Navy.

      Wellington 1c L7798 HA-S - piloted by New Zealander (Masterton, Wairarapa) Flight Sergeant William Henry Swain RNZAF NZ/40665 - was hit by anti-aircraft flak fired from a German Flak (anti-aircraft) Battery (Regiment 100) over France - and the Wellington crashed at Trezegeur Farm, near Lanrivoar, France. This Wellington was the only aircraft that did not return to RAF base from this air operation - although 2 crash landed in England because of low fuel.

      All crew aboard Wellington IC L7798 HA-S were killed when the bomber crashed - except for RNZAF Flight Sergeant James Clark NZ/402103. He was on the run for 1 month before being captured by German forces and sent to a POW Camp.

      The crew of the last air operation of Wellington L7798 HA-S were :

      1) 1st Pilot - Flight Sergeant William Henry Swain : RNZAF NZ/40665 - aged 23 (killed).
      2) 2nd Pilot - Flight Sergeant Ray E. Finch : RAFVR 907613 - aged 23 (killed).
      3) Observer Flight Sergeant Malcolm Bruce Crooks : RNZAF NZ/40755 - aged 25 (killed).
      4) Wireless Operator/Air Gunner Flight Sergeant Victor M.R. Lloyd RAFVR - aged 21 (killed).
      5) Wireless/Air Gunner Flight Sergeant Geoffrey Molyneaux RAFVR 985594 - aged 22 (killed).
      6) Air Gunner Flight Sergeant James Clark : RNZAF NZ.402103 (survived crash; taken as POW of Germans). Public - Jenifer - Researcher - 13 September 2019 - Reference : (England) : Wellington Ic L7798 HA-S / Swain William Henry.
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About death

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  • Death
    22 April 1941 AWMM
    Age 25 AWMM
    LanrivoareFrance AWMM
  • Date of death
  • Age at death
  • Place of death
  • Cause of death
  • Death notes
  • Cemetery
    Milizac Churchyard, Milizac, Finistere, Bretagne, France AWMM Grave 3 AWMM
  • Cemetery name
  • Grave reference
  • Obituary
  • Memorial name
  • Memorial reference



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  • Memorial name

Roll of Honour

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Leave a note

Leave a tribute or memory of Malcolm Bruce Crooks

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  • My name is Kathleen Crooks, Malcolm Bruce, was my Fathers brother. At the tender age of two years he was put into an Orphanage together with his brothers - my Father Kenneth & my Uncle Ray. Their sister Thelma was adopted out. Considering this he acquitted himself so very well in his short life, -matriculated - has his name on the College's Honour Board, was an accountant when he volunteered, went with the first New Zealand echelon to Britain & served with the RNZAF. My parents stood on the Wellington wharf as they farewelled him, Mum turned to Dad & said quote "I have this feeling he will not return to us"
    Public - Kathleen Robyn - Direct descendant - 25 November 2017
  • Malcolm Bruce Crooks known posthumously to me as Uncle Mick. Was shot down over France exactly one year before my mother was born. He was my grandmother's brother, she was listed as his next of kin.
    Public - Jeanette - Other Relative - 24 April 2015



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  • External links
  • References
    • Martyn, E. (1998-2008). For Your Tomorrow (Vols. 1-3). Christchurch, N.Z.: Volplane Press. AWMM
      Martyn, E. (1998-2008). Vol. 1 p. 118, vol. 3 p. 151 AWMM
    • Information kindly provided by family AWMM
    • RNZAF [Royal New Zealand Air Force] Biographies of Deceased Personnel 1939 - 1945 (Bound Volumes) - Co - Dy. Archives New Zealand (R17845609) - Former archives reference: AIR118 AWMM
    • List of RNZAF [Royal New Zealand Air Force] Personnel - List of Personnel Killed or Missing in Various Theatres, 1940 - 1945. [Missing - But Presumed Dead on Lapse of Time - Officers, Airmen]. Archives New Zealand (R17845743) AWMM
    • Please note that the 12 volumes of the "RNZAF [Royal New Zealand Air Force] Biographies of Deceased Personnel 1939-1945" held at Archives NZ (formerly known as AIR118) should be used in conjunction with Errol Martyn's "For Your Tomorrow". FYT reflects detailed examination of all of the AIR118 bios which contain many inaccuracies and omissions. AWMM


Command item
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DateFirst namesLocationRelationshipContact
17 September 2019JeniferWairarapaResearcher
25 November 2017Kathleen RobynQueensland AustraliaDirect descendant
24 April 2015JeanetteAucklandOther Relative

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