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On 25 March 1945 Tempest Mk.Vs from No. 486 Squadron were strafing eight Fi156s on a grass strip near Grave, Netherlands. Flying Officer William Kalka and his Tempest was hit by flak. He bailed out but fell into the River Maas, 3 miles from Grave. Despite heroic efforts of a young Dutch girl (Riet Jansen, Nijmegan) to save him Kalka drowned.. 

Kalka's Tempest SA-A (NV981) was found in 2000 and in April 2004 the aircraft was recovered by a team in the Netherlands. On 19 September 2019 a memorial was unveiled at the site where Kalka drowned. In attendance were among others Tony Masters (Commander of New Zealand, defence staff) , Kerry Gillam-O'Connorals (First Secretary at New Zealand ambassy in Haag), Mayor of Wijchen Hans Verheijen, Nicole Janssen and Margie Hopper (Riet Jansen's daughter).





Hawker Tempest Mk.V NV981

- Respectvolle onthulling herdenkingsplaquette voor verongelukte WOII piloot Wiliam Arthur Kalka en Riet Janssen



Paul Strik


Latest updates:

RC Tempests

17 Sept 2023
Stephan Frappier's 1/5-scale Hawker Tempest Mk. II, Vailly Aviation design.

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Latest story

13 Sept 2023
Gordon Mellis' article about the loss of F/O Marshall and NV709 on the outskirts of the village Birgham in 1945.


Latest photos

11 Sept 2023
Paul Germain shares his late father's photos. He was stationed at Gutersloh with No. 16 Squadron in approx' 1948.

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9 Sept 2023
Avionics update. The KF Aerospace team have been progressing well with avionics work over the past few weeks.

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29 June 2023
Another step closer to flight! Extensive engine running during the summer including taxing.

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