- Harold Godwin was a son of Samuel John and
Mary Godwin, of Stoke-on-Trent.
- According to the Roll of Honour published by
the Society of Friends of the Airborne Museum (Jan Hey 2011) Godwin was
in C-47 42-93001, which crashed in a field in De Meent at Rhenen on 18
september 1944. He jumped before the plane went down, landed safely, and
made it back to other troops of his brigade. His body was recovered from
the river Lek on 15 november 1944.
- Company Sergeant Major Gatland was in the same
plane as Godwin. He is quoted in the book 'Arnhem Their Final Battle'
about the firt day of Market Garden on pages 53: "Not long after
we had left England I saw the fields and dykes of Holland and I knew
that we had not far to go from that point. The next thing that happened
was a sound in the plane like someone was throwing a handful of hard
peas against the belly. We suddenly saw little puffs of black smoke
appearing in the sky around us. We realised that these were
anti-aircraft shell, bursting in the sky. At that time we were about 800
feet from the ground. At first it just hit the bottom, but then it
started coming through. You could see the tracers coming up and just
going through the floor."
- On page 55 Company Sergeant Major Gatland is
quoted again: "Then the red light 'Action Stations' came on and
we got up and hooked up. At this time we were about 500 feet from the
ground and we suddenly heard a curious rattling noise on the plane and
Private Carroll shouting that he had been hit in the hand. I looked at
his hand and told him it wasn't too bad and that he would be okay. At
that time the plane gave a sudden lurch and started to make a shallow
dive towards the ground. I looked out and could see smoke going past the
window, pouring out of the starboard engine. Captain King shouted that
we were flying well below the rest of the formation at about 250 feet
from the ground. King ordered me to open the bulkhead door into the
pilot's compartment and when I did I saw a mass of smoke and flame. I
closed the door and told King that the plane was going down. The light
was still red, but King made the decision to jump and ordered his
wounded batman, Carroll, to jump immediately after him. There was a
certain disorder, but no panic at all. Some of the men were wounded due
to the fire from the ground. King shouted, "Go, Go, Go" and
out we went."
- The pilot of the plane, Captain Merz, managed
to crashland the plane in a field. His navigator and wireless operator
were killed and his 2nd pilot was wounded. Together with Private
McNaught of 11th Battalion, who was still on the plane, he got the
wounded co-pilot out and they ran away from the crash site and were met
by members of the Dutch resistance.
- The group of men of 11th Battalion under
command of Captain King, including Harold Gowin, managed to reach the
rest of the brigade at down of 19 september.