Gorfunkle, Norman

    Date of birth:
    August 5th, 1920 (Liverpool, UK)
    Date of death:
    November 7th, 1942 (Chaumont/Champagne-Ardenne, France)
    Buried on:
    Commonwealth War Graves Chaumont
    British (1801-present, Kingdom)


    Service Number 1260360

    Norman Gorfunkle was born in Liverpool on 5 Augustus 1920. His father Wolfe was the son of Jewish Polish immigrants who arrived in the UK in the 1850's. They owned a second hand furniture store in Liverpool. His father died when he was young and he moved back to London, his mother’s home city with his sister Naomi in 1936 and were living in the Cricklewood area of NW London. Norman worked as an office clerk before volunteering in the RAF as a trainee Observer on 2 Augustus 1940 aged 20. He soon made the rank of Sergeant Observer and served with various squadrons in both the UK and also for several periods in South Africa before joining No. 76 Squadron (Bomber Command) on the 31st August 1942. It was with this squadron that Norman sadly lost his life on the 7th November 1942 following a raid on Genoa. He was the navigator on the Halifax DT515 that crashed in Chaumont, France. Just before the aircraft crashed, he managed to bale out. He was seriously wounded but he managed to get in hiding with two other crew members. However, he was arrested only one day later in a house in the woods and was taken to the hospital in Chaumont. Here he died of his wounds and was buried in the cemetery of Chaumont.

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    • Photo: Family of N. Gorfunkle
    • - Paul Moerenhout/Russell Gellman
      - Mémoires 52, the Haute-Marne local history society, supplement a la lettre No. 30
      - Commonwealth War Graves Commission