1 Squadron RNAS moved to the Somme area to assist the RFC today. 1 Squadron RFC has just converted to a single seat fighter squadron operating a mixture of Nieuport 16s and 17s.
One of their first patrols led to the death of Captain James Montague Edward Shepherd. He was flying a Nieuport 17 (A6622) when he and another Nieuport with 2nd Lieutenant Hugh Welch encountered 3 enemy aircraft near Ypres. One of the enemy flown by Vitzfeldwebel Glasmacher got on Shepherd’s tail. Welch attacked it, driving it off, but it was too late and Shepherd’s Nieuport went down in a vertical dive.
Later in the day, 2nd Lieutenant Victor H Collins had also chased off a 2-seater when was attacked by 4 enemy scouts near Ypres. Two of these got on his tail and put his engine out of action. Collins went down Albatross DIII of Leutnant Hans von Keudell (Jasta 27) sitting on his tail and wih no power he was forced into desperate measures. He apruptly pulled the nose of his Nieuport 16 (A6610) round and fired half a drum of Lewis into his pursuer. The aircraft burst into flames and crashed in British lines near Vlanmartinghe. 2Lt Collins made a forced landing nearbybut was unharmed. Von Keudell was killed. He had just assumed command of Jasta 27.
Lieutenant James Andesson Slater also from 1 Squadron claimed an Albatros Scout out of control near Warneton.
54 Squadron suffered a bit of a beating with 3 of its Sopwith Pups shot up. 2nd Lieutenant Edward Huddleston Hamilton in A645 and Captain Charles Lindsay Murray Scott in A654 were both shot down and killed. Leutnant Ernst Freiherr von Stenglin from Jasta 1 claimed one victory but it is unclear which one. One of them was also shot down by AA fire.
Lieutenant Henry Collister Mulock and Private Tom Askew Booth from 52 Squadron RFC were shot down in their RE8 (A87) by Leutnant Georg Schlenker from Jasta 3. Mullock was killed and Booth taken prisoner. The rest of the RE8s have been withdrawn from 54 Squadron due to the number of accidents.
Finally Lieutenant Charles Henry March from 32 Squadron was shot down in. His DH2 (7932) whilst on patrol by Vitzfeldwebel Heinrich Büssing from Jasta 5.m