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Flt Sgt Copping's P-40 From The Egyptian Desert

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    Guest

    Again, we are endlessly debating scenarios that we just do not know the answers to and we do not know, anyway, whether the canopy was shut or open at the point he landed. Again supposition, but I would have thought he would have opened and locked open the canopy for the crash-landing. But, as with all else, we just don't know. If it was open on landing, then it may well have been opened and closed by subsequent visitors until the point that it became jammed shut. But we just don't know!

    All we do know is that Dennis Copping is missing. How, by whom or when the canopy was closed, we don't know. How, by whom or when the straps were cut/removed, we don't know.

    The only other thing we know is that human bones (they are confirmed as human, Mark12) have been reported as found by the Italian team some 8km distant. We know that the MOD had previously dismissed these as not being Flt Sgt Copping. We also know that they have since admitted that they do not know whether they are or they are not; ergo - they could be. One way or another, the family want to know.

    If the MOD/British Embassy are serious in wanting this resolved, and in wanting to deal with the Italian discoverers, then all they have to do is contact them. Or vice versa.

    All debate, at this stage, about which direction he walked.... or whether he died in the cockpit....who cut the straps...and who opened/closed the canopy is an irrelevance. As is what happens to the P40 itself.

    Isn't this whole thread, fascinating though it is, starting to sound like a broken record in some respects?

    Hopefully, in a few posts time, we will be hearing that finally the British Embassy are in touch with Qattara and his team.

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    • dko
      dko
      Rank 5 Registered User
      • Nov 2012
      • 94

      Thanks Moggy.

      1. This confirms that Copping knew where he was going .. south direction
      2. I assume he had maps and Copping flew in the early afternoon so with good visibility
      3. A 40 km away was the oasis of Farafra and he was on that route so he probably had seen the oasis from that height.

      Comment

      • Moggy C
        Moderator
        • Jan 2000
        • 20534

        Suggesting 24+ mile visibility with the likely heat haze is optimistic. Especially so if he were flying up-Sun, as he would be if he was heading South.

        Not a chance I'd say.

        Moggy
        "What you must remember" Flip said "is that nine-tenths of Cattermole's charm lies beneath the surface." Many agreed.

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        • Guest's Avatar
          Guest

          dko

          All of your points, 1, 2 and 3, are wild assumptions.

          None of it confirms anything!

          In fact, we know quite clearly that he didn't know where he was going. That is precisely why he ended up where he did.

          You also seem to have some knowledge of the sort of altitude he was flying at. Where on earth did you establish this piece of information?
          Last edited by Tangmere1940; 17th November 2012, 14:40.

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          • l.garey
            Rank 5 Registered User
            • Feb 2006
            • 1951

            dko:
            Do you KNOW what altitude he was at?
            Visibility in the desert is often quite restricted due to dust haze.
            40 km is optimistic to say the least.
            In any case, our immediate problem is simple: to identify the bones that were found. They may indeed NOT be Dennis Copping's, but we need to know.
            Laurence

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            • TonyT
              Rank 5 Registered User
              • Oct 2006
              • 9023

              Didn't need a watch, he seems to have taken the clock

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              • Guest's Avatar
                Guest

                No!! All we know is that somebody took the clock!

                True, he may not have been wearing a watch. Or it may been broken in the crash. However, in all the photos he is wearing a very nice watch and I'd be surprised if an RAF pilot didn't wear one.

                Theories, theories, theories and more theories.

                Comment

                • knifeedgeturn
                  Is c0ck-up.
                  • Sep 2010
                  • 534

                  "Isn't this whole thread, fascinating though it is, starting to sound like a broken record in some respects?"

                  That maybe because "we" all want different things from this;
                  some are not bothered about subsequent details because they are "certain" the remains found are those of Coppings,

                  others have him buried by beduins, (in an unknown location)

                  one or two take the opportunity to attack the British govt and the MOD, with accusations of lies, (when the most obvious answer is incompetence)

                  The question is; which of these will help find the remains of flt sgt Copping?
                  " A man hears what he wants to hear, and disregards the rest"

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                  • Guest's Avatar
                    Guest

                    Quite a few of thos posting, Knifeedgeturn, are trying to help find the remains of Flt Sgt Copping. Believe me!

                    And I don't think anyone posting here (or did I miss something?) are 'certain' the remains are those of Flt Sgt Copping. I would say most have some doubts about that, frankly.

                    Lies? Incomptence? Who knows. However, whether the former or the latter it is certainly the case that the 'facts' are somewhat muddled and uncertain. And we do know that misleading information has been given by the authorities to the family. That is an absolute fact.

                    And since we are still talking theories, apparently, then what about this;

                    Flt Sgt Copping's remains may have been found and recovered shortly after the event, shortly after the war...or long after the war. For whatever reason, the remains were not identified but ended up being buried as "unknown" in a CWGC cemetery (Alexandria?) and with either no connection being made to the P40 or, if it was, then without any knowledge as to the identity of the airframe which would have identified the remains. It wouldn't be the first time. Not by a long way!
                    Last edited by Tangmere1940; 17th November 2012, 17:12.

                    Comment

                    • dko
                      dko
                      Rank 5 Registered User
                      • Nov 2012
                      • 94

                      I am old and I have traveled a lot in the Sahara desert with
                      wehicle off road and I can tell you that the desert is an open cemetery ..... many bones are there!
                      Now I do not want to insist over with my theories on the research of Copping .

                      Comment

                      • knifeedgeturn
                        Is c0ck-up.
                        • Sep 2010
                        • 534

                        Tangmere, (note correct spelling) I'm not suggesting that anyone is not trying to help, just that the fixation of the "discovered remains" and the situation r.e the Italians and the Mod (in Egypt) is an impass.

                        I do wonder whether there was any point in contacting MP's, as their information (assuming they could even be bothered to ask for it) would come straight from the Ministry for Defence office, doubtless who have a prepared statement, along the lines of "everthing that can be done is being done".

                        Am I alone in wondering why we are allowed to discuss this matter, but the thread with all the background information, remains inaccessable; I for one would like the chance to re evaluate the information relative to flt sgt Copping, and his fate.

                        If his remains were recovered in the scenario you suggest, he would have to have been quite a way from his A/C, for them not to have seen (or indeed looked for) said A/C, because if it were found, the identity was there to be seen.
                        " A man hears what he wants to hear, and disregards the rest"

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                        • Guest's Avatar
                          Guest

                          Re your last scenario; that is all supposing that the markings were then still to be seen. Even if they were, the 'finder' might not have been able to understand them. And if the remains were some distance away, then the aircraft may not have been seen.

                          I am sorry that my typo seems to have offended. Now corrected.
                          Last edited by Tangmere1940; 17th November 2012, 17:13.

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                          • knifeedgeturn
                            Is c0ck-up.
                            • Sep 2010
                            • 534

                            That's re your last scenario! ;I thought that in the original thread that at least part of the serial was readable and that was seventy years on!

                            And yes if they did find him (in that scenario) but not his A/C that would tend to suggest that he didn't die in the crash.

                            Re typo, what about all the others!
                            " A man hears what he wants to hear, and disregards the rest"

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                            • Guest's Avatar
                              Guest

                              Knifeedgeturn


                              I was referring to your last scenario relating to the suggested possibility that the codes/serial were visible!

                              Even if they were readable, what is there to say that they were understandable to whoever found him? Even if they were, what is to say that the information was passed on by whoever handed the remains over? And it isn't to say, either way, that he might have been found at the aircraft or away from it.

                              The scenario I suggested is not impossible. I have a filing cabinet groaning with cases relating to missing aircrew and where, very often, a clue or piece of vital evidence has been missed or misunderstood. And that is in European countries - and sometimes the UK. It is not a theory that can be wholly discounted, as far as I can see.

                              As for other typos, maybe you'd either send me a list or report the matter to the spelling Police? If you like, and if its important, I could reciprocate.
                              Last edited by Tangmere1940; 17th November 2012, 17:35.

                              Comment

                              • knifeedgeturn
                                Is c0ck-up.
                                • Sep 2010
                                • 534

                                "As for other typos, maybe you'd either send me a list or report the matter to the spelling Police? If you like, and if its important, I could reciprocate".

                                Now this is pointless!

                                I'll stick my neck out here, I believe the forced landing was survivable, and Copping did indeed survive it; I think he cut the harness maybe to make a carry strap, maybe just to collect "useful" items together for a trek, whether he made one I don't know.

                                Did British fighter A/C operating in the desert carry rations/ water?
                                Last edited by knifeedgeturn; 18th November 2012, 12:25.
                                " A man hears what he wants to hear, and disregards the rest"

                                Comment

                                • charliehunt
                                  Nearly there!
                                  • Oct 2012
                                  • 11459

                                  Surely these exchanges achieve nothing. It is clear there are 4 or 5 scenarii for what happened but until hard evidence is proved we will not know which, if any, is correct.
                                  Charlie

                                  Keep smiling - it's never as bad as you think!!

                                  Comment

                                  • Whitley_Project
                                    If in doubt apply heat..
                                    • Jan 2000
                                    • 2842

                                    Yes, they would normally carry desert equipment.

                                    I'd be very surprised if he did not survive the landing.

                                    Comment

                                    • knifeedgeturn
                                      Is c0ck-up.
                                      • Sep 2010
                                      • 534

                                      Originally posted by charliehunt View Post
                                      Surely these exchanges achieve nothing. It is clear there are 4 or 5 scenarii for what happened but until hard evidence is proved we will not know which, if any, is correct.
                                      As I see it, hard evidence will be the discovery of flt sgt Coppings remains, in one place or another; if we presume that he died in the crash, and persons unknown removed his body, then he is already buried, and our quest comes to an end.
                                      " A man hears what he wants to hear, and disregards the rest"

                                      Comment

                                      • Peter
                                        Moderator
                                        • Jan 2000
                                        • 12508

                                        Just a thought... was there any sort of extensive searching done on the immediate site after the p40 was removed??
                                        As for andy and knifeedge.. pack it in..!
                                        Cheers,Peter
                                        "Merlins always drip oil, when they don't....worry!"

                                        Comment

                                        • David_Kavangh
                                          Senior Member
                                          • Jan 2000
                                          • 1017

                                          Originally posted by charliehunt View Post
                                          Surely these exchanges achieve nothing. It is clear there are 4 or 5 scenarii for what happened but until hard evidence is proved we will not know which, if any, is correct.
                                          "Scenarii" now that's spelling!

                                          Comment

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