De Havilland Meteor Crash in Pakistan 1949

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Could anyone please advise me where I can find more details about a fatal air crash in Pakistan sometime in 1949.

According to his son (who has asked me to help him) Ex-RAF Pilot Ralph Osborne Edwards was employed from October 1948 as a civilian flying instructor with the newly formed Pakistan Air Force (PAF). At the time of his death he was allegedly flying a De Havilland Meteor.

Shortly before the birth of his son in Rawalpindi in November 1949 Ralph was allegedly killed in a mid-air collision. But no other details are known. No date. No death certificate. No grave. No photographs. No confirmation. Nothing. The PAF archives are unable to help because we have no death certificate.

We do have Ralph's family tree and his RAF service record but not his log book. We also have two newspaper articles that mention Ralph in air incidents dated 1946 & 1947. And I'm heading to the National Archives and British library next week to examine some possible references linked to Mauripur, where his mother was based after Ralph's death, before she remarried in April 1953. 

There is an incident listed on Plane-Trace dated 26/8/1952 for a Bristol 170 crash between Lahore and Peshawar. This fits the geography but not quite the time frame. How do I confirm the names of those involved ? 

Any help or advice gratefully received.




Original post
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14 years 1 month

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Hi, there seems to be some confusion with the  aircraft type, suggest it could be either a DeHavilland Vampire or a Gloster Meteor.


That said I can see nothing on the ASN database that fits either type;

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7 years 5 months

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Don't think Pakistan operated either type. Indian Air Force used Vampires though.

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Pakistan didn't start jet operations until 1953. It is likely the gentleman was flying a Hawker Tempest , or Fury as these were the mainstay of the RPAF in the early days. It could of course have been a harvard because of his instructor duties?

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Could also have been a De Havilland DH82 Tiger Moth which the PAF flew until the late 50's.

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953830 Ralph Osborne EDWARDS (143273) Commission 1st May 1943 from Sgt RAFVR General Duties Branch

Commission resigned 15th Oct 1948 (Retaining rank Flt Lt)

953830 Enlisted from Sept 1939 Cardington

Born 1919 Registered 4th Qtr 1919 at Bradfield (Berkshire)
Mother Maiden name Osborne

Pilot Altas Aviation Company Dec 1946

Training at Estree Sept 1947

I have asked on a Historic Pakistan Air Force group on Facebook and the opinion is that he was instructing on De Havilland Tiger Moths. As any other type does not make sense timewise - also if you note he was an experienced instructor

Note: No accident can be matched so far, what may (I say may) be linked is the death in Nov 1949 of P/O G H Hakim 874 GD(P) on 15th Nov 1949 in unknown circumstances

The experts on this group also suggest that evidence was that he was a civilian instructor on DH Tiger Moth especially as the son was born in Rawalpindi. One possibility is the University Air School Rawalpindi which was established in Nov 1949

It is unlikely he as instructoring service pilots as a location of Rawalpindi  precludes instruction at Risalpur where military training wa carried out



Profile picture for user paulmcmillan

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Can't supply a full list for Bristol 170 Frieghter G-783 on 26/8/1952 

But of the 18 On Board the History of the Pakistan Air Force, 1947-1982 provides details of 12 of the people on board

Bristol 170 Frieghter G-783 Bound for Pesawar Crashed ned Kherwra, killing 11 oficers, 1 Flight cadet and six airmen

No 6 Sqn lost 3 pilots, five navigators and two signallers

The victims were 
Wg. Cdr. A.K.S. Ahmad GD(P), 
Flg. Off. M.M. Hussain GD (P), 
Plt. Off. Kabir Khan GD (P), 
Flg. Off. Muniruddin GD (N), 
Flg. Off. A. Rashid GD (N), 
Plt. Off. M.K. Malik GD (N), 
Plt. Off. S.R.H. Rizvi GD (N), 
Plt. Off. F.A. Mirza GD (N), .
Sgt. Zaman (Sig), 
Sgt. Ghori (Sig), 

Sqn. Ldr. T.S. Shahzada (O. C. Admin Wing) and Plt. Off. M.A. Bhatti (Armament Officer) both from RPAF Station Lahore, 
were also among the victims.