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John Russell Petrie

Headstone, Sage War Cemetery - This image may be subject to copyright

Headstone, Sage War Cemetery - This image may be subject to copyright


  • Title
  • Forenames
    John Russell AWMM
  • Surname
    Petrie AWMM
  • Ingoa
  • Also known as
  • Service number
    • WWII NZ414337 AWMM
    • WWII 414337 AWMM
  • Gender
    Male AWMM
  • Iwi
  • Hapū
  • Waka
  • Rohe
  • Religion

Civilian life

About birth

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  • Birth
    11 August 1917 RNZAF Biographies (R17845614) FoxtonManawatu RNZAF Biographies (R17845614)
  • Date of birth
  • Place of birth
  • Birth notes
  • Address before enlistment
  • Post war occupation
  • Next of kin on embarkation
    • WW2 Frances Joan Petrie (wife), Balclutha, New Zealand AWMM
    • WW2 Widow: Mrs. F. J. Petrie of Dunedin AWMM
    • WW2 Mother: Mrs. A. P. Petrie of Balclutha AWMM
  • Relationship status


Wars and conflicts

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Training and Enlistment

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  • Military training
  • Branch Trade Proficiency
    Captain/Military RNZAF Biographies (R17845614)
  • 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 on Active Service, Cause of Death AWMM

Biographical information

Biographical information

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    • Son of Frank and Annir Petrie (nee Morton) of Balclutha, New Zealand. Husband of Frances Joan Petrie also of Balclutha

      Attended South Otago District High School (Source: RNZAF Biographies (R17845614)) AWMM
    • JR Petrie’s service records
      These records that Petrie (born 11 August 1917; previously a sawmill hand) arrived at Chipping Warden OUT on 20 October 1942 for crewing up and completion of his Wellington pilot training. During February 1943 he converted to Lancaster four-engined aircraft at Waterbeach. On 31 March 1943 he was posted to No. 7 Squadron at Oakington, Cambridge, for operational flying.Awarded Pathfinder badge 26 August 1943.Died 16 December 1943. Awarded DFC January 1944.

      Petrie’s widow, Frances, arrived in Balclutha, NZ, on 3 September 1946, intending to remain indefinitely. In April 1946 his mother stated that he had married in England 3 months before his death: ‘She was a new acquaintance.’ Frances Joan Schofield, from Whaley Thorns (Derbyshire) married JRP on 26 August 1943. At the time she was an Aircraftwoman (ACW) at RAF Oakington. Public - Paul - 5 November 2017 - Service records via NZ Defence Force
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About death

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  • Death
    16 December 1943 AWMM
    Age 26 AWMM
    GermanyEurope AWMM
  • Date of death
  • Age at death
  • Place of death
  • Cause of death
  • Death notes
  • Cemetery
    Sage War Cemetery, Oldenburg, Niedersachsen, Germany AWMM Grave 5 E 4 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 John Russell Petrie

Leave a note

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  • Petrie was my dad's pilot in training in 1942-3 - dad was his navigator. They had two bad crashes in training. 1. 2 February 1943, a training flight, at dusk, in a five-man Wellington, at Chipping Warden. When only 500 or 600 feet up the ‘good’ engine went (i.e. not the one that had been under repair). Petrie, the 23-year-old New Zealand pilot (‘a burly bloke’ – dad did a sort of Popeye mime) put full power into the good engine (made a screaming noise), and turned back to the airfield, losing height. In the event Petrie managing a safe (belly) landing. Of this, dad said that undoubtedly Petrie saved the crew’s lives. 2. A training run on a Stirlings from Waterbeach, March 1943. Petrie again the pilot. On taking off both undercarriage struts collapsed. I have more details if anyone is interested. We do know who shot Petrie down in December 43. I'd love to locate Petrie's family.
    Public - Paul - 17 June 2017



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  • External links
  • References
    • Martyn, E. (1998-2008). For Your Tomorrow (Vols. 1-3). Christchurch, N.Z.: Volplane Press. AWMM
    • Information kindly provided by family AWMM
    • RNZAF [Royal New Zealand Air Force] Biographies of Deceased Personnel 1939 - 1945 (Bound Volumes) - Na - Py. Archives New Zealand (R17845614) - 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


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DateFirst namesLocationRelationshipContact
05 November 2017PaulNear Peterborough, EnglandOther
07 May 2015Online CenotaphAuckland, New ZealandResearcher

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