7 July 1916 – Crui(c)kshanks

Three Sopwith 11/2 Strutters from 70 Squadron were on patrol over Cambrai station. One of these (5719), piloted by Captain Guy Lindsay Cruikshank with 2nd Lieutenant Andrew John Tuke Cruickshank observing, got separated from the others and were pounced upon by three Fokkers. Following a running fight, the observer was wounded and the aileron controls were shot away. The pilot put the plane into a steep dive and made it back over the lines landing at St Omer. Observer 2nd Lieutenant Cruickshank later died of his injuries in hospital.

Meanwhile, Captain Geoffrey Asteley Burney and Lieutenant John William Halcrow of 4 Squadron were shot down in their BE2c (7336) whilst on artillery patrol near Authuile Wood. Both were killed. Their colleagues 2nd Lieutenants James Hector Ross and George Ernest Frederick Sutton were luckier when their BE2c (2638) was hit by ground fire and they made a forced landing at Forceville. Both escaped with minor injuries.


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