Mid-air collision Accident Short S.38 65,
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ASN Wikibase Occurrence # 218661
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Date:Sunday 12 September 1915
Type:Short S.38
Owner/operator:RNAS Eastchurch
Registration: 65
Fatalities:Fatalities: 1 / Occupants: 1
Other fatalities:1
Aircraft damage: Destroyed
Location:Eastchurch, Isle of Sheppey, Kent -   United Kingdom
Phase: En route
Departure airport:RNAS Eastchurch, Isle of Sheppey, Kent
Destination airport:RNAS Eastchurch, Isle of Sheppey, Kent
Confidence Rating: Information is only available from news, social media or unofficial sources
12.9.15: Short S.38 No. 65, RNAS Eastchurch. Written off (destroyed) in a Mid-air collision with Caudron G.III 3282, RNAS Eastchurch, Isle of Sheppey, Kent. The pilot of the Short S.38 - Flt Sub-Lt Macfie Keith-Johnston (aged 17) - was killed. The pilot of the Caudron G.III - Flt Sub-Lt James Morrow Alexander (Canadian, aged 23) - was also killed.

"AEROPLANE" (15 September 1915), carries the following report:

"KEITH-JOHNSTON - Killed at Eastchurch, on September 12th, 1915, in an aeroplane accident, Macfie Keith-Johnston, Probationary Flight Sub-Lieutenant, Royal Naval Air Service, youngest son of Mr. and Mrs. R. Keith-Johnston, of Bushey Heath, Herts.

Flight Sub-Lieutenant Macfie Keith-Johnston was killed in a collision with another machine at a height of several hundreds of feet. It is stated that the wingtips of the two machines met, and one of them collapsed at once. The other apparently made some attempt to get down with a broken extension, but caught fire at about 200 feet and fell. Both pilots were killed on the spot. The name of the pilot of the latter machine is not yet announced."


1. http://www.rcawsey.co.uk/Acc1916.htm
2. https://www.cwgc.org/find-war-dead/casualty/3057568/keith-johnston,-macfie/
3. http://sussexhistoryforum.co.uk/index.php?topic=5025.0;wap2
4. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Short_S.38#Accidents_and_incidents
5. https://airwar19141918.wordpress.com/tag/james-morrow-alexander/
6. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_accidents_and_incidents_involving_military_aircraft_before_1925#1915
7. http://www.theaerodrome.com/forum/showthread.php?t=12997
8. Ray Sturtivant and Gordon Page Royal Navy Aircraft Serials and Units 1911–1919 page 31 (Air-Britain, 1992. ISBN 0-85130-191-6)

Revision history:

27-Nov-2018 21:37 Dr.John Smith Added

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