NORMAN GORICK Fg.Off. RAF.VR d. 31 January 1943 aged 21 124505
RAF Dishforth opened in September 1936 and at the start of World War 2 it became part of 4 Group, Bomber Command. The base was primarily used for recruit training.
At 0212 hrs. on 31 January 1943, a Vickers Wellington Mark X, serial number HE173, took off from Dishforth on a night training exercise. At that period, Dishforth was home to Royal Canadian Air Force squadrons, a part of RAF Bomber Command. There was a crew of four on the Wellington - pilot F/O Norman Gorick, aged 21; navigator F/O George Wood (26), RCAF, of Canada, Fl/Sgt. William Mossop, aged 24, air gunner who was also the wireless operator; and Sgt. J. Welsh, an air gunner. Within one minute of take-off, the aircraft caught fire and crashed just one mile to the NW of the airfield, near Lingham Lane Farm. The only survivor was Sgt. J. Welsh, who was the rear gunner. This accident was the first loss of an aircraft from 428 squadron since its formation,
428 squadron had been formed on 7 November 1942 and later acquired the nickname the "Ghost" squadron, since none of the original squadron members survived.
NORMAN GORICK was the son of William and Edith Rachel Gorick, of 449 Worsley Road, Winton. He had attended Eccles Grammar School as a pupil, and was a keen sportsman, playing football for the school team and cricket at Winton Cricket Club. After leaving school he started work with the Prudential Assurance Co. Ltd. At the outbreak of the war, he joined the Home Guard and was in No.5 Platoon of "A" Company of the 42nd Lancaster Battalion. Soon after, in June 1941, he enlisted in the RAF.VR. He went to California, USA, to train as a pilot. Whilst at the flying school, he was awarded the Gold Star Merit Award and was awarded his wings in April 1942. He received his commission as a Pilot Officer in the RAF.VR on 1 May 1942. He returned to the UK in June 1942 and it is reported that he began operational duties immediately. On 1 November 1942, he was promoted to Flying Officer.
Norman Gorick is commemorated on the Worsley Methodist Church War Memorial, a church he had attended. When that church closed in 2011, the memorial board was transferred to the parish Church of St.Mark, Worsley, where it is now affixed to the inside of the south wall.
Researched and written by Paul R Speakman