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Nelson Reuben Mansfield

Portrait from Weekly News; 19 January 1944 - This image may be subject to copyright

Portrait from Weekly News; 19 January 1944 - This image may be subject to copyright


  • Title
  • Forenames
    Nelson Reuben AWMM
  • Surname
    Mansfield AWMM
  • Ingoa
  • Also known as
  • Service number
    43707 AWMM
  • Gender
    Male AWMM
  • Iwi / Hapū / Waka / Rohe
  • Religion

Civilian life

About birth

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  • Birth
    21 October 1912 RNZAF Biographies (R17845613) ChristchurchCanterbury RNZAF Biographies (R17845613)
  • Date of birth
  • Place of birth
  • Birth notes
  • Address before enlistment
  • Post war occupation
  • Next of kin on embarkation
    • WW2 Widow: Mrs. P. M. J. Masfield of London, England AWMM
    • WW2 Parents: Mr. & Mrs. H. R. Mansfield of Christchurch AWMM
  • Relationship status


Wars and conflicts

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Military decorations

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  • Medals and Awards
    • Distinguished Flying Cross (DFC) AWMM
    • War Medal 1939-1945 AWMM
    • New Zealand War Service Medal AWMM
    • Citation for DFC - from 'The London Gazette' (3rd Supplement) : Tuesday 19 October 1943.
      'Acting Squadron Leader Nelson Reuben Mansfield (43707) Royal Air Force No 156 Squadron.
      "This Officer has undertaken a large number of sorties during which many well defended and far distant targets have been attacked with success. His efforts have been featured by outstanding determination, while on more than one occasion his great skill has been responsible for the safe return of his aircraft in the face of difficulties. Squadron Leader Mansfield has at all times displayed great devotion to duty". Public - Jenifer - Researcher - 17 February 2019 - The London Gazette (3rd Suppleent) : 19 October 1943. See 'Sources' section this profile for copy of Citation.

Training and Enlistment

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  • Military training
  • Branch Trade Proficiency
    • Pilot Officer RNZAF Biographies (R17845613)
    • Flying Officer/Military RNZAF Biographies (R17845613)
    • Flight Lieutenant/Military RNZAF Biographies (R17845613)
  • 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

Biographical information

Biographical information

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    • Nelson Mansfield was the son of Horace Reuben and Ellen Caroline Rose Mansfield, of Christchurch, New Zealand; husband of Pamela Mansfield, of Westminster, London.

      Attended Christchurch Boys' High School (Source: RNZAF Biographies (R17845613)) AWMM
    • Served 156 Squadron RAF. Also served 218 Squadron RAF.

      Awarded Distinguished Flying Cross (DFC) 19 October 1943.

      Pilot of RAF Lancaster ND357 - lost with all crew 14-15 January 1944 - over Kolhorn, Netherlands.

      RAF Lancaster ND357 - piloted by New Zealander Wing Commander Nelson R. Mansfield DFC - took off from its RAF base at England 16:45 hours as part of a 498 aircraft bombing raid targeting the (German) aircraft component and other armament manufacturing facilities in Brunswick, Netherlands.

      Lancaster ND357 - and 37 other aircraft - were lost on this mission.

      Lancaster ND357 - with Wing Commander Mansfield and 6 fellow crew-members (named below) was shot down by a German Night Fighter and crashed into a mill stream at Kolhorn, Netherlands. All crew aboard Lancaster ND357 lost their lives.

      All of the crew members of Lancaster ND357 were highly experienced air-men - veterans of many air operations - with 5 of them, including Wing Commander Mansfield DFC - having previously been awarded military decorations for past bravery in previous air missions.

      In 2004 a memorial to Lancaster ND357 and her brave crew was unveiled above the crash site of this aircraft.

      The fellow crew members of Wing Commander Mansfield DFC lost on this last mission over the Netherlands were :
      (1) Flight Engineer /Warrant Officer : Charles H. Lawrence DFM - RAFVR (British ) RAF Service #1268110 (aged 30).
      (2) Navigator : Squadron Leader Edward Sudbury Alexander DFC & DFM : RCAF (Canada) : RAF Service # J/15543 (aged 24).
      (3) Navigator Pilot Officer : Bernard Aiden Trott : RAFVR (British) : Service # 169548 (age 29).
      (4) Wireless Operator/Air Gunner : Flight Lieutenant Charles Roy Swinney DFC : (British) RAF Service # 52075 (age 20).
      (5) Air Gunner/Flying Officer : George William Penrose DFC : RAFVR (British) : RAF Service # 80423 (age 30).
      (6) Air Gunner/Flight Sergeant : Victor A. Cawdrey : RAFVR (British) : RAF Service # 131506 (aged 20).

      4 other RAF Lancasters were also lost on this mission : JA698; JA975; JB483 and LM344 Public - Jenifer - Researcher - 18 February 2019 - http// : A British website commemorating World War 2 Air Crews.
    • RAF Lancaster ND357 - piloted by Wing Commander Mansfield DFC - and RAF Lancasters JA698; JA975; JB483 and LM344 were all 156 Squadron aircraft. Public - Jenifer - Researcher - 19 February 2019 -
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About death

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  • Death
    14 January 1944 AWMM
    Age 31 AWMM
    The Netherlands (Holland)Europe AWMM
  • Date of death
  • Age at death
  • Place of death
  • Cause of death
  • Death notes
  • Cemetery
    Bergen-Op-Zoom War Cemetery, Noord-Brabant, Netherlands AWMM Coll. grave 29. B. 2. AWMM
  • Cemetery name
  • Grave reference
  • Obituary
  • Memorial name
  • Memorial reference



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  • Memorial name

Roll of Honour

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  • Died alongside a relative of mine. Will never be forgotten x
    Public - Kate - 1 July 2019



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  • External links
  • References
    • Martyn, E. (1998-2008). For Your Tomorrow (Vols. 1-3). Christchurch, N.Z.: Volplane Press. AWMM
    • RNZAF [Royal New Zealand Air Force] Biographies of Deceased Personnel 1939 - 1945 (Bound Volumes) - Ma - McW. Archives New Zealand (R17845613) - 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
    • List of RNZAF [Royal New Zealand Air Force] Personnel - List of Deceased New Zealanders (Formerly) serving with RAF [Royal Air Force]. Archives New Zealand, Wellington (R17845760). AWMM


Command item
Command item
Add new record Refresh
DateFirst namesLocationRelationshipContact
01 July 2019KateSheffieldOther
19 February 2019JeniferWairarapaResearcher
18 February 2019LemaireWairarapaResearcher

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