Woodsend, Philip Kenneth (No. 62692)

Woodsend, Philip Kenneth (Ken)

Flying Officer

No. 62692, 501 Squadron, Royal Air Force Volunteer Reserve

Killed in an aircraft accident on Sunday 17 January 1943 (aged 21)

Buried:

Paisley (Hawkhead) Cemetery, Renfrewshire, Scotland (Section H Grave 776-779)

Commemorated:

Commonwealth War Graves Commission

BIOGRAPHY

Philip Kenneth Woodsend was born on 4 June 1921, and he was a son of Philip Duncan Woodsend and Norah Agnes Woodsend (nee Eadie) and a grandson of John Scott Eadie and Agnes Ferguson Eadie (nee Wilson) of Paisley.  His great-grandfather, Peter Eadie was Provost of Paisley from 1905 until 1908.

Philip Duncan Woodsend (aged 24) was a Second Lieutenant in Horse Transport, Army Service Corps when he and Norah Agnes Eadie (born 29 October 1891) were married on 4 June 1915 in the Abbey Church, Paisley.

Philip Kenneth Woodsend was just seven months old when his mother Norah died on 18 December 1921.  From 1935 until 1939 he attended Loretto School near Edinbugh where he was a House Prefect and a Corporal in the Officers’ Training Corps (OTC).  He was on the school hockey and swimming teams.  He joined the Royal Air Force Volunteer Reserve in 1940 and after training he served as a fighter pilot in Malta.  Seriously injured, he was invalided home in 1941 and the following year he resumed operational duties.  Flying Officer Philip Kenneth Woodsend was based at RAF Ballyhalbert when he died on 17 January 1943.  He was piloting a Supermarine Spitfire aircraft (BL615) when it collided with another Spitfire during a practice dog fight at 29,000 feet and crashed close to RAF Kirkistown.  Flying Officer Woodsend baled out, but his parachute failed to open, and he plummeted onto the shore at Portavogie, close to the spot where Portavogie couple Dave and Hannah Donnan were standing watching the practice dogfight.  The other aircraft landed safely.

Flying Officer Philip Kenneth Woodsend (No. 62692) was 21 when he died and he was buried in Paisley (Hawkhead) Cemetery, Renfrewshire.

His maternal grandmother died on 31 January 1954 (aged 87) and his parental grandfather died on 2 December 1954 (aged 91).