UFFELMAN, P/O Sheldon Lloyd (J92835) - Distinguished Flying Cross - No.428 Squadron - Award effective 5 July 1945 as per London Gazette dated 20 July 1945 and AFRO 1619/45 dated 19 October 1945.  Born 1920 in Kitchener, Ontario; home in Waterloo, Ontario (student); enlisted London, Ontario, 29 June 1940.  Trained at No.1 ITS  (graduated 14 September 1940), No.2 WS  (graduated 20 January 1941) and No.4 BGS  (graduated 17 February 1941).  Commissioned October 1944.  Award presented in Hamilton, 27 July 1949.  No citation other than "completed...numerous operations against the enemy in the course of which [he has] invariably displayed the utmost fortitude, courage and devotion to duty".  DHist file 181.009 D.1941 (RG.24 Vol.20612) has recommendation by W/C M.W. Gall dated 21 March 1945 when he had flown 20 sorties (138 hours 50 minutes) on a second tour, 6 October 1944 to 1 February 1945.

 

This officer has shown intrepid courage and great determination as an Air Gunner throughout his two tours of operations.  His great ability and confidence created a high standard of morale in his crew which undoubtedly contributed in a large degree to their efficiency.

 

His devotion to duty and great loyalty not only proved of incalculable assistance to his pilot but also furthered the interests of the squadron as a whole.

 

For his courage and fine devotion to duty I recommend the non-immediate award of the D.F.C.

 

                                                                        * * * * *

 

ULLETT, F/O Gerald Bentham (J35740) - Distinguished Flying Cross - No.429 Squadron - Award effective 10 May 1945 as per London Gazette dated 25 May 1945 and AFRO 1291/45 dated 10 August 1945.  Born 1921 in Ottawa; home in Woodroffe, Ontario (ledger keeper for International Harvester); enlisted Ottawa, 30 July 1942. Trained at No.5 ITS  (graduated 3 April 1943) and No.4 AOS  (graduated 17 September 1943).  Commissioned September 1943.  Award presented 1 December 1948.  No citation other than "completed...numerous operations against the enemy in the course of which [he has] invariably displayed the utmost fortitude, courage and devotion to duty."  DHist file 181.009 D.2610 (RG.24 Vol.20627) has recommendation dated 18 February 1945 when he had flown 32 sorties (163 hours 40 minutes), 12 July to 25 November 1944.

 


This navigator has completed a tour of thirty-two attacks on enemy territory, many of which have been against the difficult targets of the Ruhr Valley.  Throughout his tour he has displayed great skill as a navigator and devotion to duty well above the average.  By his skill he has at all times kept his aircraft well on track and in the concentration, thus enabling his captain to reach his target and bomb at the correct time.  Flying Officer Ullett has always shown a determination to complete the task to which he has been assigned and by his skill as a navigator and his cheerfulness under trying conditions has been an inspiration to the other members of the crew.  On the ground he has rendered great assistance in training other navigators and has been of great help to the Navigation Leader...

 

                                                                        * * * * *

 

ULLRICH, F/O Louis Ernest Henry (J17513) - Mention in Despatches - No.1674 Conversion Unit - Award effective 1 January 1945 as per London Gazette of that date and AFRO 379/45 dated 2 March 1945. Home in Ottawa; enlisted there 29 January 1941.  Trained at No.4 WS  (graduated 7 July 1941) and No.1 BGS  (graduated 20 December 1941). Overseas in January 1942; commissioned July 1943.  Repatriated October 1944; had married a British WAAF who arrived with his six-month old daughter in January 1945 (marriage ended in divorce or widowerhood, as he was described on retirement as having "four children by his first wife").  Newsclippings in DHist biographical file say that he survived four crashes overseas (in one of which the aircraft broke into three pieces) and that he flew a total of 86 sorties !  Served in Ottawa police after the war, retiring as Detective Inspector, 1 May 1981.  Had commanded No.211 Air Cadet Squadron.  Died in Ottawa 31 August 1981.

 

                                                                        * * * * *

 

UMPHERSON, F/O William Earl (J23698) - Croix de Guerre (France) - No.502 Squadron (AFRO gives unit only as "Overseas") - Awarded as per AFRO 1672/45 dated 2 November 1945. Home in Poland, Ontario; enlisted Ottawa, 4 December 1941.  Trained at No.1 ITS  (graduated 5 June 1942), No.20 EFTS  (graduated 25 September 1942) and No.9 SFTS  (graduated 9 February 1943).  Public Records Office Air 2/9645 has citation.

 

Flying Officer Umpherson, as captain of aircraft, has displayed great courage, skill and tenacity throughout the campaign in operations off the northwest and western coast of France.  On 13th August, 1944, whilst flying a Halifax he sighted three U-boats and four escort vessels off the mouth of the Gironde.  In spite of the concentrated fire which could obviously be expected from an enemy force of this composition he pressed home his attack with iron determination although the aircraft was twice hit during the bombing run.  He has also engaged in several other attacks on enemy under-water and surface ships in the face of intense anti-aircraft fire.

 

                                                                        * * * * *

 

UNDERHILL, S/L Cameron Cruden (J5112) - Commended for Valuable Services in the Air - No.164 Squadron - Award effective 23 February 1946 as per London Gazette dated 26 February 1946 and AFRO 280/46 dated 15 March 1946.  Home in Moncton, New Brunswick; enlisted there, 17 July 1940.  Trained at No.1 ITS (graduated 3 November 1940), No.4 EFTS (graduated 23 December 1940), and No.8 SFTS (graduated 3 April 1940).  Served in postwar RCAF; awarded Queens Coronation Medal, 23 October 1953, while Wing Commander and OC No.14 ACW Squadron.

 

This officer's devotion to duty as a flight commander and now second in command of the transport squadron is beyond reproach.  His knowledge of transport work both as a pilot and checking-out officer, has proven such that the senior captains and co-pilots are always without doubt at the peak of efficiency which go to make up an efficient squadron which operates in an area where adverse weather conditions exist at all times.

 

                                                                        * * * * *

 

UNDERHILL, F/O William Joseph (J35081) - Distinguished Flying Cross - No.415 Squadron - Award effective 5 April 1945 as per London Gazette dated 17 April 1945 and AFRO 918/45 dated 1 June 1945.  Born 1921 in St.Thomas, Ontario; home there (student); enlisted in London, Ontario, 19 August 1942.  Trained at No.6 ITS  (graduated 1 May 1943), No.1 BGS  (graduated 24 July 1943) and No.4 AOS  (graduated 24 July 1943)  OBVIOUSLY AN ERROR TO HAVE GRADUATION FROM TWO SCHOOLS ON SAME DATE.  Commissioned September 1943.  Medal sent by registered mail 28 June 1949.  No citation other than "completed...numerous operations against the enemy in the course of which [he has] invariably displayed the utmost courage and devotion to duty."  DHist file 181.009 D.1750 (PAC RG.24 Vol.20608) has recommendation dated 16 December 1944 when he had flown 31 sorties (161 hours 45 minutes):

 

This air bomber's work both in the air and on the ground has been outstanding.  Very accurate in his bombing, he has also by his keenness acquired navigational skill of a high order.  His enthusiasm and skill has been of great assistance in ground training. A very fine officer and an asset to any squadron.

 

                                                                        * * * * *

 

UNDERWOOD, WO1 James Henry Colston (R225592) - Medal for Bravery (Czechoslovakia) - awarded as per Canada Gazette dated 24 January 1948, AFRO 81/48 dated 6 February 1948. Born in Bristol, England, 13 November 1912; came to Canada in 1922; farming in Canada, 1927-35 and in paper mills, 1935-39.  To England, November 1938. Enlisted in Royal Air Force, 2 February 1939 as an Aircraft Hand; his service included time with No.242 Squadron in 1940.  Remustered and trained as a Flight Engineer, 14 July 1942; simultaneous posting to No.422 Squadron, with which he served until 30 June 1944, when posted to No.4 (Coastal) Operational Training Unit.  Transferred to RCAF in London, England, 26 January 1945; repatriated to Canada, 14 April 1945; released 3 October 1945. Home in Vancouver.  On a form dated 16 July 1945 he reported having flown one operational tour.  He gave his flying time as 803 operational hours (62 sorties) plus 275 non-operational hours; aircraft experience was on Lerwick (40 hours), Catalina (25 hours) and Sunderland (1,013 hours) flying boats.

 

                                                                        * * * * *

 

UNGERMAN, F/O David (J27698) - Distinguished Flying Cross - No.425 Squadron - Award effective 1 December 1944 as per London Gazette dated 12 December 1944 and AFRO 337/45 dated 23 February 1945.  Home in Toronto (circulation department, Evening Telegram); enlisted there 12 August 1940.  Trained at No.1 ITS  (graduated 22 January 1943), No.1 BGS  (graduated 14 May 1943) and No.1 AOS  (graduated 23 June 1943).  Commissioned 1943.  Medal sent by registered mail 30 March 1949.  Died in Toronto, 17 December 1997. No citation other than "..in recognition of gallantry and devotion to duty in the execution of air operations against the enemy."  DHist file 181.009 D.1730 (RG.24 Vol.20607) has recommendation dated 18 September 1944 when he had flown 35 sorties (164 hours 55 minutes) in tour from 9 May to 31 August 1944.

 

A Bomb Aimer of outstanding ability, Flying Officer Ungerman has recently completed a tour of operations with No.425 Squadron.  He has had sorties which included highly defended targets such as Stuttgart, Hamburg and Kiel.

 

On the night of 25th/26th July 1944, when detailed to attack Stuttgart, it was necessary to orbit twice.  Finally, when the run was made to the target, it was covered by smoke.  The bombs were released and from the explosions in the target area, as well as from the pictures taken, it was proved that the mission had been carried out successfully.

 

Throughout his tour of operations, Flying Officer Ungerman has shown a remarkable tenacity and keenness both in the air and on the ground.  His untiring devotion to duty has resulted in exceptional precision bombing.  This officer has been a source of inspiration to the other members of his crew.

 

His exceptional ability, his dogged determination and outstanding cool courage are highly commendable and worthy of a recommendation for the "Non-Immediate" award of the "Distinguished Flying Cross".

 

                                                                        * * * * *

 

UPCOTT, FS Robert Fairful (R187858) - Distinguished Flying Medal - No.101 Squadron - Award effective 22 May 1945 as per London Gazette of that date and AFRO 1147/45 dated 13 July 1945.  Home in Ruthven, Ontario; enlisted Windsor, 20 October 1942.  Trained at No.1 ITS  (graduated 23 July 1943), No.7 EFTS  (graduated 18 September 1943) and No.6 SFTS  (graduated 11 February 1944).  Medal sent by registered mail.

 

In March 1945, this airman piloted an aircraft detailed to attack Cologne.  Intense enemy fire was encountered over the target and the bomber was hit in both the starboard engines.  In spite of this, Flight Sergeant Upcott pressed home his attack.  On the return journey the two damaged engines became completely unserviceable and it was necessary to feather the propellers.  Despite these difficulties, Flight Sergeant Upcott brought the aircraft and crew safely back to base.  Some days later, this airman made a successful attack on Essen despite the failure of one of his engines on the outward journey.  His fine qualities of leadership, resolution and devotion to duty have been most praiseworthy.

 

                                                                        * * * * *

 

URQUHART, F/O Robert Alexander (J9763) - Distinguished Flying Cross - No.50 Squadron (now dead) - Award effective 15 May 1943 as per London Gazette dated 20 July 1945 and AFRO 1453/45 dated 14 September 1945.  Born 1919 in Moose Jaw; home there; enlisted Vancouver, 10 January 1941.  Trained at No.2 ITS  (graduated 2 May 1941), No.6 AOS  (graduated 25 October 1941), No.5 BGS  (graduated 6 December 1941) and No.1 ANS  (graduated 3 January 1942).  Commissioned January 1942.  Killed in action 16/17 May 1943 with No.617 Squadron (Lancaster ED937).  Medal sent by registered mail to his mother, 7 November 1949.

 

Since joining this squadron, Flying Officer Urquhart has flown on many operations.  At all times his navigation has been of the highest order and the successes he achieved are due in no small measure to his skill.  This officer took part in the daylight raids on Le Creusot and Milan and at other times on many heavily defended German targets.  On one occasion during a low level raid on a target in North West Germany he was wounded by anti-aircraft fire but continued to navigate with accuracy.  By his skill and determination Flying Officer Urquhart has set a high standard among his fellow navigators.

 

                                                                        * * * * *

 

USHER, P/O Charles Joseph (J18430) - Distinguished Flying Cross - No.467 Squadron - Award effective 30 November 1943 as per London Gazette dated 10 December 1943 and AFRO 297/44 dated 11 February 1944.  Born in Vancouver, 1921; home there; enlisted there 27 June 1941.  Trained at No.2 ITS  (graduated 2 December 1941), No.6 BGS  (graduated 27 April 1942) and No.3 AOS  (graduated 16 March 1942).  Commissioned 1943.  Medal sent by registered mail 19 May 1945.  Posted to No.467 Squadron as a Sergeant, 28 January 1943.

 

Pilot Officer Usher has completed a number of successful sorties as rear gunner against many major targets, including three attacks on Berlin.  His aircraft has been attacked by enemy fighters on several occasions.  In June 1943, over Bochum, by his skill and determination an attacker was driven off and probably damaged.  In July 1943, Pilot Officer Usher's turret was rendered unserviceable and the heating system damaged by severe anti-aircraft fire over Cologne.  Though suffering from intense cold, he remained at his post until the sortie was completed.  On another occasion, as the aircraft was leaving the target area over Hanover, it was attacked and severely damaged by enemy fighters.  Pilot Officer Usher continued to give instructions to his captain as the enemy came in to attack.  He then rendered all possible assistance to the wounded mid-upper gunner.  Throughout his tour of duty this air gunner has displayed the utmost skill, fortitude and initiative.

 

                                                                        * * * * *

 

UTAS, F/O Milton Gerard (J14240) - Distinguished Flying Cross - No.427 Squadron - Award effective 1 September 1944 as per London Gazette dated 19 September 1944 and AFRO 2373/44 dated 3 November 1944.  Born 1923 in Shipman, Alberta; home in Lacombe, Alberta (bank clerk).  Trained at No.4 ITS and No.2 AOS.  Commissioned 1942.   Served in postwar RCAF; Colonel as of 1969.  No citation in AFRO other than "completed...many successful operations during which [he has] displayed high skill, fortitude and devotion to duty." DHist file 181.009 D.1729 (PAC RG.24 Vol.20607) has recommendation forwarded to Station Leeming, 22 June 1944 when he had completed 30 sorties (194 hours 20 minutes).

 

This Navigator has completed thirty trips of which twenty-four have been on major targets.  He has shown commendable courage and devotion to duty and his work generally has been excellent.  His cheerful confidence has inspired a high standard of morale in the crew.

 

                                                                        * * * * *

 

VACHON, FS Everitt Thomas (R79229) - Distinguished Flying Medal - No.1474 Flight -  Award effective 3 February 1943 as per London Gazette dated 5 February 1943 and AFRO 373/43 dated 9 March 1943.  Born in Sumerville, U.S.A., 11 September 1920; home given as Ayer's Cliff, Quebec (machinist).  Enlisted in Montreal, 5 March 1941.  Trained at No.3 ITS, No.4 EFTS, and No.7 BGS (graduated 22 December 1941).  Presented at Buckingham Palace, 18 May 1943.

 

Flight Sergeant Vachon has always displayed outstanding keenness and great ability and by his courage and fortitude in harassing circumstances he has set a fine example.

 

NOTE: Public Records Office Air 2/8934 has recommendation dated 22 December 1942 which indicates that this brief citation masks an exciting and significant event - a hazardous attempt to learn more about German airborne radar by attracting a fighter onto a special aircraft and monitoring its radar pulses.  His sortie list alone suggests more adventures; see also entries for P/O W.A.R. Barry, FS William W. Bigoray and P/O E.A. Paulton.

 

28 July 42  Bombing (Hamburg)

31 July 42  Bombing (Dusseldorf)

2 Sept 42   Special Wireless Investigation (Karlsruhe)

15 Sept 42                                                     Air/Sea Rescue (North Sea)

14 Oct 42   Special Wireless Investigation (Belgian and Dutch coasts)

28 Oct 42   Special Wireless Investigation (West coast of France)

16 Nov 42  Special Wireless Investigation (Frisians and Danish coasts)

17 Nov 42  Special Wireless Investigation (Bayonne)

22 Nov 42  Special Wireless Investigation (Bayonne)

3 Dec 42    Special Wireless Investigation (Frankfurt)

 

Flight Sergeant Vachon was the Rear Gunner of a Wellington Ic aircraft which was engaged on Special Wireless Investigation in the Frankfurt area on the morning of 3rd December 1942. For the success of the operation an interception by an enemy night fighter was necessary and on the sortie the interception was made. The Wellington was engaged by a Ju.88 which carried out ten to twelve attacks on it.  On the first attack the rear turret was put completely out of action and Flight Sergeant Vachon wounded in the shoulder. Despite this fact, he came out of his turret and took up position in the astro dome from where he continued to give fighter control for further attacks. He was again hit during another attack and later had to hand over his position.

 

By his coolness and courage in the face of enemy attack and completely ignoring his personal injuries he set a fine example to the rest of the crew.

 

He has always carried out his duties as Rear Gunner on operations to the utmost of his ability and has always been outstanding in his keenness to engage the enemy.

 

This was edited to a citation for the Air Ministry Honours and Awards Committee (unpublished except in the most abbreviated form):

 

Sergeant Vachon was the rear gunner of a Wellington aircraft engaged on a special mission in the Frankfurt area on the morning of 3rd December 1942.  For the complete success of the operation it was necessary for the aircraft to be intercepted by an enemy fighter. The interception was made and the aircraft was subjected to ten to twelve attacks by a Junkers 88.  In the first attack, Flight Sergeant Vachon was wounded in the shoulder while his turret was put out of action.  Despite this he took up position in the astro dome from where he was able to comment on the fighter's movements.  In a subsequent attack he was wounded in the hand and later had to relinquish his position.  By his courage and fortitude in harassing circumstances, Flight Sergeant Vachon set a fine example.  He has always displayed outstanding keenness and great ability, especially when engaged on special operational missions.

 

                                                                        * * * * *

 

VACOLA, FS George Henry (Can 10106) - British Empire Medal - Conversion Training Squadron - Awarded 1 January 1943 as per London Gazette of that date and AFRO 55/43 dated 15 January 1943.  Born in Ethelbert, Manitoba, 6 May 1911.  Enlisted in Hamilton.  Award presented 16 April 1943.

 

This NCO has given outstandingly meritorious service on maintenance work.  His deep knowledge of all types of service aircraft engines, coupled with his additional ability on airframes, has made him an extremely valuable asset to the RCAF.  he has demonstrated an ability to undertake difficult operations and carry them through to a successful conclusion.  His reliability, initiative and resourcefulness have been outstanding and he has displayed exceptional devotion to duty under what were, at times, the most difficult circumstances.  He has been singularly successful in discharging the duties of a position well in excess of that called for by his present rank, thus commanding the respect and confidence of all ranks.

 

                                                                        * * * * *

 

VAESSEN, F/O Charles Leo (J28073) - Distinguished Flying Cross - No.410 Squadron - Award effective 5 December 1944 as per London Gazette of that date and AFRO 293/45 dated 16 February 1945.  Born 1921 in Leipzig, Saskatchewan; home there (farmer); enlisted Regina, 28 May 1942.  Trained at No.7 ITS  (graduated 18 December 1942 and No.5 AOS  (graduated 9 July 1943).  Commissioned 1943.  Radar operator to C.E. Edinger.  Together they damaged a Ju.88 (13/14 June 1944) and scored kills on 17/18 June 1944 (one Ju.188), 3/4 July 1944 (one Ju.188), 16/17 September 1944 (unidentified), 6/7 October 1944 (one Ju.88), 18/19 December 1944 (one Ju.88) and 24/25 December 1944 (one Ju.87).  Award presented at Landis, Saskatchewan after the war.

 

This officer is a highly skilled observer.  He has displayed outstanding keenness and determination and has assisted in the destruction of four enemy aircraft.

 

VAESSEN, F/O Charles Leo, DFC (J28073) - Mention in Despatches - No.410 Squadron - Award effective 1 January 1946 as per London Gazette of that date and AFRO 155/46 dated 15 February 1946.  Certificate sent to Landis, Saskatchewan, 10 August 1948.

 

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VALENTINE, WO Paul Robert (R125376) - Distinguished Flying Cross - No.13 Squadron - Award effective 2 October 1944 as per London Gazette dated 10 October 1944 and AFRO 2534/44 dated 24 November 1944.  Home in Ottawa; enlisted there 18 August 1941.  Trained at No.4 WS  (graduated 8 June 1942) and No.7 BGS  (graduated 6 July 1942).  Award presented 28 February 1946.

 

Throughout many operational sorties this Warrant Officer has proved to be an outstanding gunner.  On one occasion when flying on an aircraft reconnaissance over the Avezzano area an enemy fighter engaged his aircraft.  By his accurate return fire and skilful directions he not only damaged the enemy fighter but successfully directed his pilot through three attacks without sustaining damage to his own aircraft.  On another occasion when flying over the Florence area an enemy fighter was encountered.  Giving his pilot concise and accurate directions, Warrant Officer Valentine withheld his fire until 250 yards.  After two bursts the hostile aircraft crashed to the ground in flames.

 

                                                                        * * * * *

 

VALPY, FS Laura Joan Dumaresq (W309190) - British Empire Medal - AFHQ - Award effective 13 June 1946 as per Canada Gazette of that date and AFRO 660/46 dated 5 July 1946.  Home in Perce, Gaspe, Quebec.  Enlisted in Montreal, 15 December 1942.  To AFHQ, 25 February 1943; discharged 11 December 1946.  Clerk Stenographer until 29 October 1944 when reclassified as Clerk (Administration).  Name might be Laura Jean.  Medal sent by registered mail 19 February 1949.

 

Flight Sergeant Valpy has been employed at work which required a high degree of personal responsibility and meticulous attention to detail.  At all times she has displayed great devotion to duty, keenness and efficiency far above that required in the normal course of duty.  She has consistently placed the interests of the service before her own, and her exemplary conduct, fine leadership and cheerful efficiency have proven an example and incentive to all her associates.

 

                                                                        * * * * *

 

VAN CAMP, S/L William Charles (C873) - Mention in Despatches - No.11 Squadron - Award effective 1 January 1943 as per Canada Gazette dated 9 January 1943 and AFRO 55/43 dated 15 January 1943.  Born in Tring, Alberta, 15 February 1918; attended University of Alberta; joined RCAF in 1938 (two award cards give enlistment variously as 8 March 1939 in Edmonton and 4 July 1938 in Calgary).  Attended No.1 ATS (graduated 17 June 1939).   Stationed at Dartmouth early in the war; went to No.1 ANS (graduated 12 November 1941); commanded No.11 (BR) Squadron, 16 April 1942 to 26 May 1943.  Then served at No.1 Group Headquarters. Posted overseas, attached to Coastal Command Headquarters.  Returned to Canada, 1945 and remained in postwar force, rising to Group Captain.  Awarded Queens Coronation Medal, 23 October 1953. Photo PL-10389 refers.  Governor General's Records (RG.7 Group 26, Vol.57, File 190-I) has citation.

 

Squadron Leader Van Camp has completed 318 hours of flying as first pilot, 184 hours of which were during 54 operational flights.  He has recently been appointed to command a squadron, and was formerly in charge of a detachment of the same squadron.  He quite recently demonstrated his usual zeal and devotion to duty by successfully ferrying an aircraft to the United Kingdom on his semi-annual leave.  He has recently been appointed to command his squadron.

 

VAN CAMP, W/C William Charles (C873) - Distinguished Flying Cross - No.1 Group HQ (Canada), now with No.11 Squadron.  Award effective 1 January 1944 as per London Gazette of that date and AFRO 113/44 dated 21 January 1944.  Award presented 28 February 1946.

 

This officer has been employed continuously on operational duties since the commencement of hostilities and has at all times displayed the greatest keenness for operational flying.  His devotion to duty, coolness and courage under many trying conditions has been a source of strength and encouragement to all who have served under him.

 

                                                                        * * * * *

 

VAN GORDER, H/S/L John William Thomas (C9981) - Mention in Despatches - Overseas - Award effective 14 June 1945 as per London Gazette of that date and AFRO 1395/45 dated 31 August 1945.  Born 12 November 1907at Jordan Station, Ontario; home in Hamilton; enlisted there 31 January 1942.

 

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VAN HOUTEN, F/L John Thomas (J8163) - Air Force Cross - No.7 (BR) Squadron - Award effective 21 April 1945 as per Canada Gazette of that date, London Gazette dated 24 April 1945 and AFRO 802/45 dated 11 May 1945.  Home in Victoria, British Columbia; enlisted in Vancouver, 13 February 1941. Trained at No.2 ITS (graduated 23 May 1941), No.5 EFTS (graduated 15 July 1941) and No.12 SFTS (graduated 17 October 1941).  Award presented 1 October 1946.  Governor General's Records (RG.7 Group 26, Vol.58, file 190-I, dossier 6) has citation.  When recommended he had flown 932 flying hours, of which 642 were on operations (166 sorties).  American in RCAF.

 

This officer has completed many hundreds of hours of operational flying and as a flight commander by his excellent leadership has developed his crew into the most efficient in his squadron.  On one occasion his coolness, exceptional flying skill and judgement were demonstrated when in spite of adverse weather conditions he successfully landed his aircraft and prevented the loss of the aircraft and possibly saved the lives of his crew.  His keenness, willingness to work and devotion to duty have been outstanding.

 

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VAN KLEECK, F/L Larry Robertson (J9367) - Distinguished Flying Cross - No.427 Squadron - Award effective 15 December 1944 as per London Gazette of that date and AFRO 293/45 dated 16 February 1945.  Born 1919 in Vancouver; home there; enlisted there 15 April 1941.  Trained at No.4 ITS  (graduated 5 August 1941), No.5 EFTS  (graduated 25 September 1941) and No.7 SFTS  (graduated 19 December 1941).  Commissioned 1941.  Award presented 13 July 1946.

 

This officer has displayed high qualities of courage and leadership.  He has participated in a large number of sorties, many of them against strongly defended targets.  In September 1944 this officer piloted an aircraft detailed to attack a target in the Calais area.  In the early stages of the outward flight one engine became unserviceable. This did not deter Flight Lieutenant Van Kleeck from continuing to the target which he successfully bombed.  This officer has invariably pressed home his attack with outstanding determination.

 

NOTE: DHH file 181.009 D.2609 (RG.24 Volume 20627) has recommendation by W/C V.F. Ganderton drafted 19 October 1944 when he had flown 30 sorties (151 hours 25 minutes), 21 June to 14 October 1944.

 

This captain has completed 30 heavy operational bombing attacks against the enemy of which twelve have been on major targets.

 

On the 28th of June [his] aircraft was detailed to attack Metz and shortly after leaving the target the bomber was attacked by an enemy fighter; this captain was successful in his evasive action.

 

On the 12th of August [his] aircraft was detailed to attack Brunswick, and just after dropping their bombs the aircraft was attacked by an enemy Messerschmitt 109.  The rear gunner gave instructions for evasive action and fired at the enemy fighter.  The evasive action was successful.  The bomber was later attacked over the North Seas by an enemy Messerschmitt 410.  Evasive action was taken and both gunners opened fire and scored hits, damaging the enemy fighter.  This captain brought his bomber back to base from this trip with slight damage by cannon shell.

 

On the 25th of September [his] bomber was detailed to attack Calais and lost an engine just after takeoff.  This captain completed the trip on three engines and obtained a primary.

 

This captain has exceptional qualities of leadership and coolness, setting a splendid example to his crew.  I strongly recommend that Flight Lieutenant Van Kleeck be awarded a Distinguished Flying Cross.

 

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VAN METRE, P/O Roy Bentley (J89752) - Distinguished Flying Cross - No.405 Squadron - Award effective 18 May 1945 as per London Gazette of that date and AFRO 1085/45 dated 29 June 1945.  Born 1919 in Lashburn, Saskatchewan; home in Okotoks, Alberta (farmer, ex-Royal Canadian Artillery); enlisted Calgary, 21 July 1941.  Trained at No.2 WS  (graduated 14 September 1942) and No.2 BGS  (graduated 12 October 1942).  Commissioned 1944.  Cited with WO A. Robb (RAF, awarded CGM).  Award presented 9 July 1949.

 

Pilot Officer Van Metre and Warrant Officer Robb were wireless operator and mid-upper gunner respectively in an aircraft detailed to attack Dessau one night in March 1945.  Whilst over the target the aircraft was attacked by three enemy fighters.  The first enemy aircraft to attack was shot down by the rear gunner.  Warrant Officer Robb engaged the second fighter.  Following a short but accurate burst of fire from his guns the enemy aircraft fell to the ground.  The remaining fighter attacked with great persistence.  The rear gun turret of the bomber was badly hit and set on fire.  The rear gunner was trapped. Pilot Officer Van Metre and Warrant Officer Robb, displaying the greatest determination, immediately went to the assistance of their trapped comrade.  By their joint efforts, these crew members finally extinguished the flames and extricated the rear gunner from the gun turret.  Pilot Officer Van Metre had severely burned his hands.  In spite of much pain he returned to his post to work at his wireless apparatus throughout the return flight. Pilot Officer Van Metre and Warrant Officer Robb set a fine example of courage and resolution in very trying circumstances.

 

                                                                        * * * * *

 

VAN NES, F/L Johan Christian (J10507) - Distinguished Flying Cross - No.177 Squadron - Award effective 8 August 1944 as per London Gazette dated 11 August 1944 and AFRO 2101/44 dated 29 September 1944.  Born 1917 in Prud'homme, Saskatchewan; home in Saskatoon; enlisted there 12 June 1941.  Trained at No.2 ITS  (graduated 27 August 1941), No.15 EFTS  (graduated 7 November 1941) and No.11 SFTS  (graduated 27 February 1942).  Commissioned 1942.  Award presented 23 April 1949.

 

Flight Lieutenant Van Nes has completed many operational day and night sorties flying over very difficult country and through most adverse weather.  He has always shown great courage and determination.  Over a period of eight months he has attacked and destroyed or damaged twenty-eight locomotives, seventeen of these being attacked in one month.  His fearlessness and devotion to duty in the face of severe opposition have set a fine example to all.

 

NOTE:  Public Record Office has recommendation drafted 12 May 1944 when he had flown 42 sorties (172 hours 25 minutes).  Sortie sheet and text add to the record:

 

10 Sep 43    Patrol Hunter's Bay-Taungup (4.25)              Sampans, etc.

22 Sep 43    Patrol Gwa Bay-Taungup (4.50)                    Sandoway vessels attacked; one hit from anti-aircraft.

25 Sep 43    Road-rail patrol, Sedaw-Cokteik (3.20)       Weather unsuitable.

1 Oct 43       Offensive strike (2.40)                                    SS Mahla destroyed.

10 Oct 43     Road patrol, Mangaw-Kaleymo (2.30)          Nothing seen.

5 Nov 43      Kanzauk-Hunter's Bay (3.40)                         River patrol; small craft damaged.

8 Nov 43      Allanmyo-Magwe (4.45)                                 Road patrol and reconnaissance; hit by anti-aircraft fire.

10 Nov 43    Air/Sea Rescue Search (1.50)                                  -

13 Nov 43    Strike, Yenanyaung oil fields (3.15)               No results.

20 Nov 43    Rail patrol, Henzada-Promo (5.05)               One locomotive destroyed; three factories set on fire.

27 Nov 43    Strike, Magwe aerodrome (3.10)                  Motor transport strafed.

4 Dec 43      Rail patrol, Wetlet-Wuntho (3.20)                  Locomotives and trucks damaged.

10 Dec 43    Road and waterways patrol (5.05)                An Chaung-Taungup-Padaung; river craft and motor transport attacked.

14 Dec 43    Road and rail patrol (3.55)                             Pyinmana-Magwe-Pakokku; train attacked and left burning.

20 Dec 43    Rail strike, Thazi-Mandalay (3.35)                 Locomotive and trucks strafed.

23 Dec 43    Rail, river strike, Andaw-Thazi (3.40)            River craft and trucks strafed; oil tank at Singu attacked.

31 Dec 43    Rail strike, Andaw-Thazi (3.45)                     Locomotives and trucks damaged; heavy anti-aircraft fire.

4 Jan 44       Night road patrol, Prome-Taungup (4.40)    Nothing seen.

9 Jan 44       Rail, road and river night patrol (4.35)          Prome-Taungup.

14 Jan 44     River and road patrol (4.45)                           Prome-Taungup; powered craft, country craft and barges destroyed and damaged.

22 Jan 44     River patrol, Mandalay-Male (3.30)               Small steamer attacked.

21 Feb 44    Offensive patrol, Myebon-Taungup (4.10)    Bridge attacked.

29 Feb 44    Waterways patrol, An Chaung-Gwa (5.00)   Motor transport and river craft attacked.

4 Mar 44      Night patrol, Padaung-Taungup (4.40)         Motor transport hit; rest camp attacked.

8 Mar 44      Night river patrol, Mandalay-Male (3.10)      Nothing seen; weather unsuitable.

11 Mar 44    Offensive patrol, Taungtha-Mindon (4.20)    Petrol dump destroyed; railway trucks damaged.

13 Mar 44    Patrol Mandalay-Thabbeikyin (3.05)             Nothing seen; recalled; weather unsuitable.

17 Mar 44    Patrol Monywa-Chauk-Kaleymo (4.15)         Two oil craft destroyed, 20 damaged; oil farm attacked; one hit from flak.

23 Mar 33    Offensive patrol (4.40)                                    Thabyedaung-Toungoo; rail car and petrol wagon destroyed; Zero aircraft damaged.

25 Mar 44    River patrol, Moulmein-Tadein (6.55)           Locomotive, trucks, and motor transport damaged; aircraft hit by heavy and light anti-aircraft.

1 Apr 44       Rail strike, Pyinmana-Minzu (4.05)               Locomotives and trucks destroyed.

5 Apr 44       Rail strike, Moulmein-Tadein (6.35)              Locomotives and trucks damaged.

9 Apr 44       Air/Sea Rescue Search (3.10)                                  -

11 Apr 44     Road patrol, Taung-Kunhing (4.55)               Nothing seen.

15 Apr 44     Road patrol, Myingyan area (4.40)                River craft, rolling stock and motor transport strafed.

19 Apr 44     Rail strike and recce (4.00)                            Sagaing-Wuntho; four locomotives, oil tanker and motor transport destroyed.

24 Apr 44     Rail strike, Mandalay-Lashio (4.05)              Two locomotives, two motor transport damaged.

28 Apr 44     Offensive patrol (4.30)                                    Mandalay-Kyaukme; two locomotives and motor transport hit.

3 May 44      Road patrol, Kyaukme-Thaneikkyin (3.40)   Buildings attacked.

5 May 44      Night patrol (3.30)                                           Zigon-Sagaing-Myingan; one motor transport damaged.

7 May 44      Night patrol, Ramree-Taungup Pass (4.35) Motor transport destroyed.

9 May 44      Night patrol, Kyaukse-Yamethin (3.55)         Two trains attacked; two ammunition wagons destroyed; motor transport attacked.

 

This officer has carried out many operational sorties over Burma, in the course of which he has shown exemplary courage and devotion to duty in pressing home his attacks in the face of severe opposition.  Both in day and night sorties he has displayed the greatest determination in reaching the target, in spite of adverse weather conditions and most difficult country.  His chief successes have been scored in attacks on supply trains and dumps. Over a period of eight months he has attacked and either destroyed or severely damaged 28 locomotives, 17 of these being attacked in one month. His example has been an inspiration to all.

 

                                                                        * * * * *

 

VAN RASSEL, WO Anton John George (R69035) - Distinguished Flying Cross - No.40 Squadron - Award effective 1 December 1942 as per London Gazette dated 4 December 1942 and AFRO 2113/42 dated 30 December 1942.  Born in Cochrane, Ontario, 3 June 1916; home in Timmins (carpenter); enlisted North Bay, 20 July 1940.  Trained at No.1 ITS  (graduated 15 November 1940), No.11 EFTS  (graduated 5 January 1941) and No.9 SFTS  (graduated 17 April 1941).  Medal sent by registered mail 10 June 1948.

 

Warrant Officer Van Rassel has completed numerous operational sorties within the last two months.  On the night of the 13th of July he was detailed to attack shipping at Tobruk.  Extremely heavy gun fire was encountered and two flares ignited approximately 150 feet above the aircraft, causing it to be illuminated and caught by the searchlights.  Despite these difficulties and the damage caused to the aircraft by the gun fire, Warrant Officer Van Rassel executed successful evasive tactics and later made a crash landing without injury to the crew or further serious damage to his aircraft.  Although unable to return to his base for three days this officer returned to operational flying the day after his arrival.  On three other occasions he experienced serious trouble with his engines but this did not deter him from completing his task.  Warrant Officer Van Rassel has displayed continuous gallantry while his devotion to duty has set an example of the highest order.

 

NOTE: Public Records Office Air 2/9606 has recommendation dated 3 November 1942:

 

This Warrant Officer pilot joined No.40 Squadron on the 23rd of June 1942 on posting from No.4 Middle East Training School and after carrying out six operational sorties against the enemy as a second pilot, was appointed to the captaincy of a crew early in July. He has now completed 34 operational sorties comprising 237 hours, and of these 23 have been carried out in two months.

 

This pilot has carried out all his operations brilliantly and has on many occasions displayed great courage and daring. For example, on the night of the 13th of July, when detailed to attacking shipping at Tobruk, extremely heavy anti-aircraft fire was encountered and two flares ignited approximately 150 feet above the aircraft causing it to be illuminated and caught by the searchlights. Bombs were dropped however, and many explosions were observed and although the aircraft had to descend to 6,000 feet to avoid flak which had already caused some damage to the aircraft, Warrant Officer Van Rassell [sic] successfully piloted the aircraft away from the target area. On returning to base, the aircraft ran sort of fuel and the pilot decided to refuel at Landing Ground 224 but owing to haze which obscured the ground, this could not be located. Accordingly, he made a successful belly landing without injury to the crew or serious damaged to the aircraft. Although he was unable to return to base for three days, this Warrant Officer returned to operational flying upon the day after his arrival.

 

On three other occasions, namely on the 1st, the 9th and 14th of August, this Warrant Officer experienced serious trouble with his engines, his port engine catching fire on one occasion, but this did not deter him from completing his task. He has displayed continuous gallantly throughout the operations which he has carried out with this unit, while his devotion to duty has set an example to [of ?] the highest order to the remainder of the squadron.

 

VAN RASSEL, F/L Anton John George, DFC (J16709) - Bar to Distinguished Flying Cross - No.405 Squadron - Award effective 1 September 1944 as per London Gazette dated 15 September 1944 and AFRO 2373/44 dated 3 November 1944.

 

This officer has achieved many operational successes.  He has displayed great courage in the face of danger and his determination to press home his attacks has set an inspiring example to all members of his squadron.

 

                                                                        * * * * *

 

VANSLYCK, F/L Earl Byron (J10246) - Distinguished Flying Cross - No.433 Squadron - Award effective 5 December 1944 as per London Gazette of that date and AFRO 293/45 dated 16 February 1945.  Born 1917 in Plato, Saskatchewan; home in Laura, Saskatchewan (clerk).  Trained at No.2 ITS, No.8 EFTS and No.15 SFTS.  Commissioned 1942.

 

This officer has at all times displayed commendable skill and determination.  On one occasion whilst over Berlin his aircraft was badly damaged when struck by anti-aircraft fire and the aircraft became very difficult to control.  Nevertheless Flight Lieutenant Van Slyck flew it to base.  By his skill and resolution this officer was undoubtedly responsible for the safe return of the aircraft and its crew.

 

                                                                        * * * * *

 

VAN TIGHEM, F/O John Victor (J35508) - Distinguished Flying Cross - No.428 Squadron - Award effective 15 March 1945 as per London Gazette dated 27 March 1945 and AFRO 1127/45 dated 6 July 1945.  Born 1917 in Strathmore, Alberta; home there (former COTC); enlisted Calgary, 29 June 1942.  Trained at No.2 ITS  (graduated 23 January 1943), No.6 BGS  (graduated 30 April 1943) and No.10 AOS  (graduated 17 September 1943).  Commissioned September 1943.  Award presented 9 July 1949.  No citation other than "completed...many successful operations against the enemy in which [he has] displayed high skill, fortitude and devotion to duty."  DHist file 181.009 D.3260 (RG.24 Vol.20637) has recommendation dated 5 December 1944 when he had flown 25 sorties (158 hours 40 minutes), 6 September to 4 December 1944.  NOTE: The recommendation suggests the name as Vantighem or VanTighem.  It is also for an immediate award but is granted as a non-immediate decoration.  The incident described is clearly the same as that involving  D.F. Poole.

 

On the night of 2nd December 1944, proceeding to attack Hagen, the Gee of  Flying Officer VanTighen's aircraft ceased to function shortly after leaving base.  The use of H2S was not permitted at the time and later it was found that the H2S was also unserviceable and that the Air Speed Indicator was out of commission.

 

Despite these handicaps and extremely trying conditions, including heavy icing in clouds,  Flying Officer VanTighen navigated by Directional Radio and through his exceptional skill and determination the aircraft reached the target on time.

 

His calm confidence and great ability inspired his crew and contributed to a major degree in the successful attack by this aircraft and its safe return to base.  For his courage, determination and great devotion to duty I recommend the immediate award of the Distinguished Flying Cross.

 

                                                                        * * * * *

 

VANCE, F/O Alan Russell (J23617) - Distinguished Flying Cross - No.19 Squadron (missing, believed killed) - Award effective 6 November 1944 as per London Gazette dated 14 November 1944 and AFRO 1/45 dated 5 January 1945.  Born 1923 in Spanish, Ontario; home there; enlisted North Bay, 15 October 1941.  Trained at No.6 ITS  (graduated 19 June 1942), No.12 EFTS  (graduated 25 September 1942) and No.16 SFTS  (graduated 25 September 1942 (NOTE: ERROR - SAME GRADUATION DATE FOR TWO SCHOOLS).  Commissioned 1943.  Award presented 1 April 1949.

 

This officer has taken part in numerous long range convoy escort patrols in the course of which he has made many effective attacks on enemy vessels, some of which have been destroyed.  He has also completed two attacks on oil installations in Yugoslavia during which storage tanks were destroyed.  In September 1944 his aircraft was badly damaged by anti-aircraft fire while attacking trains.  Despite this, he continued the flight giving all possible assistance to his leader.  He finally flew the damaged aircraft safely to base.

 

                                                                        * * * * *

 

VANDEKERCKHOVE, P/O George Pierre (J17326) - Distinguished Flying Cross - No.427 Squadron - Award effective 6 August 1943 as per London Gazette dated 17 August 1943 and AFRO 2258/43 dated 5 November 1943.  Born Neuville Calvados, France, 1917; home in Stoney Mountain, Manitoba; enlisted Winnipeg 16 April 1941. Trained at No.4 ITS  (graduated 5 August 1941), No.5 EFTS  (graduated 25 September 1941) and No.7 SFTS  (graduated 19 December 1941).  Commissioned 1943.  Award presented 12 December 1944.

 

This officer has successfully completed a number of operational bombing flights during which he displayed courage of the highest order.  An exceptionally good captain, he has invariably pressed home his attacks with vigour and his success has been demonstrated by the photographs he has secured.  In March 1943, this officer was captain of an aircraft detailed for an attack on Essen.  Nearing the target area the aircraft was badly damaged by anti-aircraft fire but he flew safely back to this country, his rear gunner damaging a Junkers 88 on the return flight.  On another occasion, Pilot Officer Vandekerckhove was testing an aircraft at 10,000 feet when the dinghy broke loose and severely damaged the tail of the plane.  Ordering his crew to leave the aircraft by parachute, he regained control and made a successful landing in hazardous circumstances.  This officer has always shown excellent judgement and superb airmanship.

 

                                                                        * * * * *

 

VANDER DASSON, FS William Lorne (R67655) - Distinguished Flying Medal - No.619 Squadron - Award effective 1 September 1943 as per London Gazette dated 10 September 1943 and AFRO 2322/43 dated 12 November 1943.  Born in Leamington, Ontario, 1920; home in Windsor, Ontario (salesman); enlisted there 17 August 1940.  Trained at No.3 BGS  (graduated 22 June 1941) and No.2 WS  (graduated 26 May 1941).  Award presented 28 February 1946.

 

This airman has participated in numerous attacks against most of the enemy's heavily defended targets in Germany.  He has obtained some excellent photographs.  Although, on one occasion, he was forced to abandon his aircraft by parachute, he has continued to display enthusiasm for operational flying, maintaining a high standard of courage and determination.

 

                                                                        * * * * *

 

VANDEWATER, F/O Howard Smith (J16735) - Mention in Despatches - No.235 Squadron - Award effective 8 June 1944 as per London Gazette of that date and AFRO 1729/44 dated 11 August 1944.  Home in Toronto; enlisted there 13 May 1941.  Trained at No.1 ITS  (graduated 20 August 1941), No.20 EFTS  (graduated 10 October 1941) and No.16 SFTS  (graduated 9 January 1942).  No citation in AFRO.

 

                                                                        * * * * *

 

VANEXAN, WO William Corbett (R56148) - Distinguished Flying Cross - No.57 Squadron - Award effective 4 August 1942 as per London Gazette dated 11 August 1942 and AFRO 1371/42 dated 28 August 1942. Born 21 October 1918 in Smith Falls, Ontario; home there (clerk); enlisted Montreal 22 June 1940. Trained at No.2 ITS  (graduated 27 July 1940), No.3 EFTS  (graduated 21 October 1940) and No.1 SFTS  (graduated 24 January 1941).  News clipping in the Ottawa Citizen dated 18 September 1944 credits him with two tours, 61 sorties - and only once was his aircraft damaged (flak - slight injury to one crewman).  Medal sent by registered mail with DSO. 13 February 1948.

 

Warrant Officer Vanexan is an extremely capable operational pilot.  The majority of his sorties have been against heavily defended targets and have all been pressed home with vigour.  He has displayed courage and devotion to duty.

 

NOTE: Public Record Office Air 2/9595 has recommendation dated 18 June 1942 when he had flown 33 sorties (188 operational hours).  This goes into much more detail both in sortie sheet and text.

 

11 June 41  Boulogne (4.05)                         1 Apr 42      Hanau (6.25)

12 June 41  Hamm (5.35)                              8 Apr 42      Hamburg (6.00)

16 June 41  Dusseldorf (6.10)                       10 Apr 42    Essen (4.50)

18 June 41  Brest (6.15)                                25 Apr 42    Rostock (7.10)

21 June 41  Dunkirk (3.00)                            27 Apr 42    Cologne (6.55)

24 June 41  Kiel (6.25)                                   29 Apr 42    Paris (5.30)

27 June 41  Bremen (6.40)                            2 May 42     St.Nazaire (7.30)

30 June 41  Cologne (5.20)                           4 May 42     Stuttgart (7.00)

8 July 41      Munster (5.40)                            6 May 42     Stuttgart            (7.00)

10 July 41   Cologne (6.20)                           7 May 42     Kiel (6.55)

4 Nov 41     Essen (6.20)                              9 May 42     GARDENING, Baltic (7.20)

7 Nov 41     Berlin (3.40, early return)          15 May 42   GARDENING, Baltic (7.25)

23 Nov 41   Dunkirk (4.00)                            19 May 42   Mannheim (6.00)

26 Nov 41   Ostende (5.05)                           30 May 42   Cologne (4.30)

30 Nov 41   Hamburg (6.30)                         1 June 42    Essen (4.00)

23 Mar 42   St.Nazaire (3.55)                       2 June 41    Essen (3.50)

28 Mar 42   Paris (4.40)

 

Since 3rd June 1941, this Warrant Officer of the Royal Canadian Air Force has carried out 188 hours operational flying involving 33 sorties, 19 being as captain of aircraft.

 

He has carried out all his sorties with the utmost skill, courage and devotion to duty. The majority of his attacks have been carried out against the most heavily defended targets and have all been pressed home with the greatest determination at a low hight.

 

On the night of 15th/16th May 1942, the aircraft of which he was captain had ben detailed to lay mines in the Baltic area.  In order to be sure of dropping the mines in the correct position it was necessary for him to fly over an area of sea which he knew to be defended by several enemy anti-aircraft ships.  As a result his aircraft was subjected to intense anti-aircraft fire while flying at only 800 feet.  The tail portion of the aircraft was hit, the tail gunner being wounded and the elevators badly damaged.  Nevertheless, he continued on his course and dropped his mines in the correct position, returning the fire of the enemy anti-aircraft ships, and then brought his aircraft safely home to base without incurring further damage, although he experienced considerable difficulty in controlling it.

 

This is typical of the manner in which he went about all his operational flying, and he has earned the respect and admiration of the ret of the squadron.

 

This document was favourably endorsed by the Officer Commanding, RAF Station Feltwell (date not recorded) and by the Air Officer Commanding, No.3 Group, on 26 June 1942.

 

VANEXAN, S/L William Corbett, DFC (J15603) - Distinguished Service Order - No.431 Squadron - Award effective 24 October 1944 as per London Gazette of that date and AFRO 2637/44 dated 8 December 1944.  DHist file 181.009 D.5526 (RG.24 Vol.20667) has recommendation dated 20 August 1944 when he had flown 60 sorties (318 hours 50 minutes); had flown 130 hours 50 minutes since previous award.  First tour sorties from 11 June 1941 (Boulogne) to 2 June 1942 (Essen) - 33 trips in all.  Second tour began 6 March 1944 (Le Mans) and ran to 15 August 1944.

 

This officer has completed a large number of sorties since being awarded the Distinguished Flying Cross and has displayed outstanding determination and zeal.  He has attacked his targets fearlessly, yet with cool and calculated methods which have brought him much success.  He is a virile leader and has proved a great asset to the squadron.

 

                                                                        * * * * *

 

VANIER, WO (now P/O) Joseph Benoit Felix Xavier (R135534/J87611) - Distinguished Flying Cross - No.424 Squadron - Award effective 2 October 1944 as per London Gazette dated 17 October 1944 and AFRO 2637/44 dated 8 December 1944.  Born 1917 in Sherbrooke, Quebec; home there (book keeper); enlisted Montreal, 15 October 1941.  Trained at No.3 ITS  (graduated 13 July 1942), No.11 EFTS  (graduated 23 October 1942) and No.13 SFTS  (graduated 5 March 1943).  Commissioned 1944.  Award presented 25 February 1949.  No citation other than "completed...numerous operations against the enemy in the course of which [he has] invariably displayed the utmost fortitude, courage and devotion to duty".  DHist file 181.009 D.2609 (RG.24 Vol.20632) has recommendation by W/C J.D. Blane dated 23 July 1944 when he had flown 30 sorties (162 hours 15 minutes), 20 February to 12 July 1944.  Airman's number might have been R135334.

 

Warrant Officer Vanier has completed thirty sorties, many of which have been flown over the most heavily defended enemy targets. 

 

On many occasions Warrant Officer Vanier's exceptional airmanship, his high courage and coolness under the most trying circumstances, coupled with fine co-operation from his crew members has enabled him to press home the attacks successfully in the face of the most stubborn opposition.

 

It is my considered opinion that the example set by this Warrant Officer throughout his long operational tour is worthy of high recognition and I therefore strongly recommend him for the award of the Distinguished Flying Cross.

 

                                                                        * * * * *

 

VANN, F/L George Cecil James (J10122) - Distinguished Flying Cross - No.405 Squadron - Award effective 5 April 1945 as per London Gazette dated 13 April 1945 and AFRO 824/45 dated 18 May 1945.  Born 1922 in Rosedale, Manitoba; educated in Minnedosa, Manitoba; home in Flin Flon (live stock assistant); enlisted Winnipeg 11 March 1941.  Trained at No.4 ITS  (graduated 16 August 1941), No.19 EFTS  (graduated 24 October 1941) and No.12 SFTS  (graduated 6 January 1942).  Commissioned January 1942.  Award presented 9 April 1948.  Died in Toronto, 6 February 1998.  No citation other than "completed...numerous operations against the enemy in the course of which [he has] invariably displayed the utmost courage and devotion to duty."  Public Records Office Air 2/9060 has recommendation dated 20 January 1945 when he had flown 38 sorties (171 hours 15 minutes), 24 July 1944 to 16 January 1945. Died in Toronto, 6 February 1998.

 

24 Jul 44        Illfay (4.05)                                  24 Oct 44       Homberg (3.15)

25 Jul 44        Stuttgart (7.55)                           28 Oct 44       Cologne (4.35)

1 Aug 44        Ferme de Forestel (3.45)         29 Oct 44       Walcheren (2.20)

3 Aug 44        Foret de Dieppe [?] (4.00)        6 Nov 44         Gelsenkirchen (3.30)

4 Aug 44        Bois de Cassant (4.45)             16 Nov 44      Julich (3.20)

5 Aug 44        St.Leu Desserant (4.55)           17 Nov 44      Wanne Eickel (4.30)

8 Aug 44        Foret de Chantilly (4.10)           2 Dec 44        Hagen (5.30)

16 Aug 44      Kiel (4.15)                                   6 Dec 44        Leuna (6.20)

18 Aug 44      Bremen (5.25)                            12 Dec 44      Essen (5.25)

25 Aug 44      Brest (5.30)                                17 Dec 44      Ulm (6.25)

27 Aug 44      Mimoycreques (3.35)                22 Dec 44      Bingen (4.25)

28 Aug 44      Oeuf en Ternus (3.30)               27 Dec 44      Gladbach (3.40)

26 Sep 44      Cap Gris Nez (2.30)                  28 Dec 44      Bonn (4.30)

27 Sep 44      Bottrop (3.15)                             29 Dec 44      Gelsenkirchen (4.30)

5 Oct 44         Saarbrucken (4.40)                   30 Dec 44      Cologne (4.10)

6 Oct 44         Sterkrade (3.10)                        2 Jan 45         Nuremburg (6.15)

15 Oct 44       Wilhelmshaven (4.15)                4 Jan 45         Royan (5.00)

19 Oct 44       Stuttgart (5.15)                           14 Jan 45       Saarbrucken (4.40)

22 Oct 44       Essen (4.20)                               16 Jan 45       Magdeburg (5.40)

 

This officer has displayed the highest standard of skill and courage in air operations.  As captain and pilot of aircraft, he has participated in a large number of sorties, many of which have necessitated Flight Lieutenant Venn remaining within the target area for a considerable period of time.  The calmness and reliability of this officer, both in the face of the enemy and his work on the ground, have been an inspiration to his squadron.

 

VANN, S/L George Cecil James, DFC (J10122) - Bar to Distinguished Flying Cross - No.405 Squadron - Award effective 8 September 1945 as per London Gazette dated 21 September 1945 and AFRO 1704/45 dated 9 November 1945.

 

Since the award of the Distinguished Flying Cross, Squadron Leader Vann has continued to show outstanding enthusiasm on all operations.  He has participated in many attacks on heavily defended targets, including Kiel, Hamburg and Stuttgart. His skill, determination and keen devotion to duty have done much to ensure the success of many of his missions.

 

                                                                        * * * * *

 

VARDEN, F/L Dennis Peter (J2456) - George Medal - Station Yarmouth - Award effective 15 December 1945 as per Canada Gazette of that date, AFRO 183/46 dated 22 February 1946 and London Gazette dated 21 February 1947.  Home in Merrickville, Ontario; enlisted Montreal, 5 February 1942.  Trained at No.5 ITS  (graduated 1 August 1942), No.20 EFTS,  (graduated 22 November 1942) and No.2 SFTS  (graduated 19 March 1943).  Medal sent by registered mail.

 

On the 30th June 1945, a Liberator took off from Royal Air Force Station Dorval, and within a few minutes, crashed in the close vicinity of the house occupied by Flight Lieutenant Varden, who was then on leave.  This officer immediately ran to the scene of the crash, which was blazing fiercely, and with complete disregard for his own safety and with no immediate assistance, commenced pulling the occupants clear and returned again and successfully recovered a third.  He then recovered two dead occupants.  Undaunted by the flames and heat of the blazing aircraft he further extricated two other living occupants whom he discovered pinned down by the wreckage.  To release the second of these two men he had to pour water (brought to him by his wife) on the wreckage to cool the metal sufficiently for him to lift and release him.  He received burns on his hands in so doing.  By this time other persons had arrived at the scene of the crash and it was not until he found that his services were no longer necessary that he ceased his efforts.  This officer's courage and initiative were solely responsible for saving the lives of five occupants of the aircraft who otherwise would have certainly perished in the flames.  Flight Lieutenant Varden's actions throughout the incident in question were in keeping with the finest traditions of the Royal Canadian Air Force.

 

                                                                        * * * * *

 

VAUGHAN, P/O Edward Gerrard (J86685) - Distinguished Flying Cross - No.408 Squadron - Award effective 4 November 1944 as per London Gazette dated 17 November 1944 and AFRO 239/45 dated 9 February 1945.  Born 1923 in Swansea, Wales; home in Vancouver or Cumberland, British Columbia; enlisted Vancouver 25 February 1942.  Trained at No.4 ITS  (graduated 11 September 1942), No.5 EFTS  (graduated 18 December 1942) and No.7 SFTS  (graduated 15 April 1943).  Commissioned May 1944.  Award presented 29 January 1947.  No citation other than "completed...numerous operations against the enemy in the course of which [he has] invariably displayed the utmost fortitude, courage and devotion to duty."  DHist file 181.009 D.1633 (RG.24 Vol.20603) has recommendation dated 18 August 1944 when he had flown 34 sorties (158 hours), 26 March to 14 August 1944.

 

Pilot Officer Vaughan has completed a tour of operations on four-engine bombers in an exemplary manner.  His sorties took him to many heavily defended targets, such as Nuremburg, Essen and Karlsruhe, deep in Germany.  On every occasion Pilot Officer Vaughan displayed fine offensive spirit and pressed home all his attacks with great determination.  He brought back many splendid pictures of the aiming points attacked, and has proved to all that he is an operational pilot of outstanding ability.

 

                                                                        * * * * *

 

VAUGHAN, S/L Robert Polk (C3094) - Mention in Despatches - Linton-on-Ouse - Award effective 1 January 1945 as per London Gazette of that date and AFRO 337/45 dated 23 February 1945.  AFRO gave unit as No.62 Base; DHist file 181.009 D1658 (RG.24 Vol.20605) gives station, states he enlisted 16 November 1940 (one year service in Canada, 34 months in UK); recommended August 1944 as follows:

 

This officer has been employed as Chief Technical Officer on an important and very busy operational station for the past several months.  Throughout his tour of duty, and particularly in the month preceding the Normandy invasion and in those subsequent, this officer has displayed splendid qualities of organization and co-ordination, and by personal example of untiring zeal far above the normal call of duty has contributed in very large part to this station's excellent maintenance record, without which many important sorties would not have been possible.

 

                                                                        * * * * *

VAWTER, F/O Earl LeRoy (J28256) - Distinguished Flying Cross - No.425 Squadron - Award effective 22 August 1944 as per London Gazette of that date and AFRO 2274/44 dated 20 October 1944.  Born 1918; home in Allan, Saskatchewan (farmer, two years in Royal Canadian Artillery); enlisted Regina 28 May 1942. Trained at No.7 ITS  (graduated 18 December 1942), No.7 BGS  (graduated 28 May 1943) and No.1 AOS  (graduated 9 July 1943).  Award presented 22 April 1950.

 

This officer was the bomb aimer in an aircraft detailed to attack an enemy target one night in June 1944.  Soon after the bombs had been released, the aircraft was struck by bullets from a fighter and the pilot was wounded.  He called for assistance and Flying Officer Vawter, who promptly answered the call, found him slumped over the controls.  With the help of another member of the crew, Flying Officer Vawter removed his injured comrade from his seat and took his place.  Although untrained for such responsibilities, he took over the controls and flew back to an airfield where, with helpful instructions from the ground, he effected a safe landing at the third attempt.  In a most trying situation this officer displayed a high degree of bravery, resourcefulness and determination and was undoubtedly responsible for saving a valuable aircraft and the lives of its crew.

 

                                                                        * * * * *

 

VEALE, FS Westcott Neville (R51050) - British Empire Medal - No.5 (BR) Squadron - Award effective 14 June 1945 as per Canada Gazette of that date and AFRO 1127/45 dated 6 July 1945.  Born 29 March 1908 in Capetown, South Africa.  Educated at Landis, Saskatchewan.  Mechanic before the war.  Enlisted in Saskatoon, Saskatchewan, 20 October 1939.  Award presented 22 November 1945.  Governor General's Records (RG.7 Group 26, Volume 59, file 190-I dossier 7) has citation.

 

This non-commissioned officer has served with his squadron since November 1939.  While flying on operations for two and one-half years as a wireless engineer mechanic and wireless air gunner instructor, his skill and cheerfulness were most praiseworthy.  In his present position as non-commissioned officer in charge of the wireless  section of his squadron, he has continued to give loyal and efficient service.  He has displayed splendid qualities of leadership and given unstintingly of his time to many activities of his squadron.  The consistent devotion to duty shown by this non-commissioned officer for over five years has set a splendid example.

 

                                                                        * * * * *

 

VEIRA, F/O Basil Vernon Lancelot (J10677) - Distinguished Flying Cross - No.12 Squadron - Award effective 27 April 1943 as per London Gazette dated 20 June 1944 and AFRO 1660/44 dated 4 August 1944.  Born 4 April 1914 in Basseterre, St.Kitts, British West Indies; home in Montreal; enlisted there 25 June 1941.  Attended No.3 Initial Training School (graduated 6th in a class of 18 observer candidates, 13 September 1941), No.9 Air Observer School (graduated 7th in a class of 22, air and ground subjects, 3 January 1942), No.6 Bombing and Gunnery School (graduated 9th in a class of 27 on 14 February 1942, received Air Observer Badge that date), and No.2 Air Navigation School (graduated 16 March 1942 in a class of 89, having stood 3rd in ground subjects and first in air subjects).  Further trained at No.31 General Reconnaissance School, Charlottetown, 10 April to 14 June 1942 (graduated 14th in a class of 26; his performance described as "disappointing").  Embarked for overseas, 16 June 1942; taken on strength of No.3 Personnel Reception Centre, Britain, 25 June 1942.  Posted to No.20 Operational Training Unit, 13 July 1942; posted to No.12 Squadron, 21 October 1942.  Ranks:             Aircraftman, Second Class on enlistment, 25 June 1941; promoted to Leading Aircraftman, 28 September 1941; promoted to Sergeant, 14 February 1942; commissioned as Pilot Officer, 16 March 1942; promoted to Flying Officer, 1 October 1942.  Killed in action 28/29 April 1943 on Lancaster GB408.  Particulars of Death Aircraft was shot down by a German night fighter, 29 April 1943 in vicinity of Leba (near Lauenburg, Germany).  Body washed ashore and buried in Leba.  Lancaster ED408; Crew were 1315743 Sergeant G. Elsworthy (pilot), J10677 F/O B.V.L. Veira (navigator), 1311073 FS W.E. Freeman (WAG), 143857 P/O J.J.L. Haddow (bomb aimer), 621910 Sergeant E.A. Pye (flight engineer), 989136 Sergeant C.W.S. Downes (mid-upper gunner) and 930059 Sergeant R.C. Grant (rear gunner).  No.12 Squadron.  Aircraft carrying four 1,500 pound sea mines when it took off.  On 12 December 1944 his widow attended an investiture at Government House, Ottawa, to receive her husband's Distinguished Flying Cross.  The Department of National Defence provided her with a rail ticket and $ 10.00 expenses.  It is interesting to note that this investiture was attended by 28 other next-of-kin receiving awards on behalf of deceased family; the list of those attending includes not only Mrs. B.V.L. Veira but also Mrs. D.E. Hornell (picking up her husband's posthumous Victoria Cross).  This information is not on his personal file but is found in RCAF file 305-4-3 "Honours and Awards - Fifth Investiture at Government House", National Archives of Canada, RG.24 E.1, Volume 3350.Award presented to next of kin, 12 December 1944.  

 

This officer has participated in numerous operational sorties which have included missions to Hamburg, Berlin, the Ruhr, Stettin and Spezia.  His navigation has always been of a very high standard and he has a fine record of achievement.  His determination and confidence while on operations has always been an inspiration to the squadron while his gallantry and devotion to duty has done much to create a high morale among his fellow navigators.

 

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VENN, FS (now P/O) Harry John (R156970/J87584) - Distinguished Flying Medal - No.429 Squadron - Award effective 2 October 1944 as per London Gazette dated 17 October 1944 and AFRO 2637/44 dated 8 December 1944.  Born 1923 in Hamilton; home there; enlisted there 11 March 1942.  Trained at No.6 ITS  (graduated 25 September 1942), No.4 AOS  (graduated 5 February 1943) and No.4 BGS  (graduated 9 July 1943).  Commissioned 1944.  Award presented 18 October 1947.  No citation other than "completed....numerous operations against the enemy in the course of which they have invariably displayed the utmost fortitude, courage and devotion to duty."  DHist file 181.009 D.2609 (RG.24 Vol.20627) has recommendation dated 9 July 1944 when he had flown 36 sorties (203 hours 50 minutes) from 22 September 1943 to 28 June 1944.

 

This air gunner has taken part in thirty-six attacks over enemy territory including three attacks on Berlin and numerous attacks on the Ruhr and other heavily defended targets.  He has spent many hours under conditions of discomfort and fatigue in the mid-upper lookout position and by his unfailing vigilance has on several occasions warned his pilot of the approach of hostile aircraft in time for him to take evasive action, evade combat and proceed on his mission.  Under trying conditions he has always shown a fine offensive spirit and his quiet confidence has been a great help to his pilot and a source of inspiration to his crew...

 

                                                                        * * * * *

 

VENO, F/O Hazen Henley (J13027) - Commended for Valuable Services in the Air - No.10 EFTS - award effective 1 January 1946 as per Canada Gazette of that date and AFRO 82/46 dated 25 January 1946.  Home at Baker Settlement, Lunenburg County, Nova Scotia.  Enlisted in Halifax, 27 August 1941. Trained at No.3 ITS (graduated 16 January 1942), No.22 EFTS (graduated 27 March 1942), and No.13 SFTS (graduated 30 July 1942).

 

During thirty-four months of association with flying training, this officer has set an admirable example amongst flying instructors.  He has been responsible for the passing out of a continuous flow of high standard trainee pilots.  During the past three months, he has held the post of Chief Examining Officer.  This officer can always be relied upon to perform all and every task with the highest degree of accuracy and proficiency.  His untiring efforts on the ground and in the air have always been a source of encouragement to instructors under him.

 

                                                                        * * * * *

 

VERRY, P/O Paul Elefterios (J86173) - Distinguished Flying Cross - No.427 Squadron - Award effective 1 December 1944 as per London Gazette dated 12 December 1944 and AFRO 337/45 dated 23 February 1945.  Born 1921 in Winnipeg; home in Norwood, Manitoba (waiter); enlisted Winnipeg 5 September 1941.  Trained at No.7 ITS, No.6 EFTS, No.7 BGS  (graduated 5 March 1943) and No.4 AOS  (graduated 14 May 1943).  Commissioned 1944.  Award presented 13 September 1947.  No citation other than "..in recognition of gallantry and devotion to duty in the execution of air operations against the enemy."  DHist file 181.009 D.1729 (PAC RG.24 Vol.20607) has recommendation forwarded from squadron, date uncertain but apparently early July 1944 when he had flown 34 sorties (175 hours 25 minutes) in a tour lasting from 20 February 1944 to 11 September 1944.

 

The above officer has completed thirty-four operational bombing sorties against the enemy.  He has outstanding ability and a strong sense of duty and is an inspiration to his crew.

 

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VERNER, G/C James Abercrombie (C177) - Mention in Despatches - No.76 Base - Award effective 1 January 1946 as per London Gazette of that date and AFRO 322/46 dated 29 March 1946.  Born in Vancouver, 1912; educated there including University of British Columbia (mechanical engineering).  Enlisted at Camp Borden as a Provisional Pilot Officer, 8 June 1931.  Probably let go  as of 31 August 1931 in "The Big Cut"; re-appointed P/P/O in new Brunswick, 13 June 1935; awarded pilots wings 26 May 1936.  Sent to England 1939 for a course in aero engineering.  Returned to Canada in April 1940 to serve at Dartmouth.  From December 1940 to September 1942 he was Engineering Officer at No.4 Training Command, Regina; same duties with No.3 Training Command, Montreal, to March 1943; transferred to No.9 Repair Depot (St.Jean, Quebec) where he was appointed Commanding Officer in June 1943.  Returned overseas in July 1944 and served at No.76 Base to July 1945.  Repatriated to Canada, September 1945.  Postwar RCAF; with Air Materiel Command Headquarters from November 1945 to March 1948 when he became CO of Station Goose Bay.  Transferred in 1950 to AFHQ (Directorate of Materiel Supply); appointed Director of that office in 1952; awarded Queen's Coronation Medal, 23 October 1953 while Group Captain, Station London (on strength of that unit while attending a course in business administration, University of Western Ontario).  To AFHQ, May 1955; in September 1955 he was named Director of Organization and Establishment.  Promoted to Air Commodore in 1960 and sent to Imperial Defence College.  Appointed Chief Staff Officer, Training Command Headquarters, Winnipeg, 18 December 1961.  DHist file 181.002 D.225 notes that wartime service had included four years ten months in Canada, eleven months in England, when recommended.

 

This officer, in the position of Base Engineering Officer, has given unceasingly of his time and effort in order to improve the standard of our aircraft serviceability.  Under his direction, the re-arming of two Heavy Conversion Units has been accomplished quickly and efficiently.

 

                                                                        * * * * *

 

VERNON, F/O Hubert Allen (J24327) - Distinguished Flying Cross - No.12 Squadron - Award effective 4 November 1944 as per London Gazette dated 17 November 1944 and AFRO 239/45 dated 9 February 1945.  American in the RCAF. Born 1912 in Danforth, Maine; home in Vanceboro, Maine; enlisted Montreal, 2 February 1942.  Trained at No.3 ITS  (graduated 31 July 1942), No.4 EFTS  (graduated 6 November 1942) and No.8 SFTS  (graduated 8 March 1943).  Commissioned 1943.  Medal sent to his home in Maine via External Affairs, 29 July 1955.  No citation other than "completed... numerous operations against the enemy in the course of which [he has] invariably displayed the utmost fortitude, courage and devotion to duty."  Public Records Office Air 2/8827 has recommendation dated 14 August 1944 when he had flown 30 sorties (150 hours), 24 May to 10 August 1944.

 

24 May 44      Aachen                                   30 Jun 44       Vierzon

31 May 44      Tegnier                                   2 July 44         Domleger

2 June 44       Berneval                                 4 July 44         Orleans rail yards

4 June 44       Pas de Calais                       5 July 44         Dijon rail yards

5 June 44       Crisbecq                                5 July 44         Caen

6 June 44       Acheres                                  18 Jul 44        Gelsenkirchen

9 June 44       Flers                                       20 Jul 44        Courtrai

11 Jun 44       Evreux                                    24 Jul 44        Stuttgart

12 Jun 44       Gelsenkirchen                       25 Jul 44        Stuttgart

14 Jun 44       Le Havre                                31 Jul 44        Foret de Nieppe

15 Jun 44       Boulogne                                2 Aug 44        Catelliers

20 Jun 44       Marguise                                3 Aug 44        Trossy St.Maximum

Mimoyecques                        5 Aug 44        Blaye

24 Jun 44       Flers                                       8 Aug 44        Aire-sur-Lis

27 Jun 44       Vaires                                     10 Aug 44      GARDENING

28 Jun 44       Ciracourt

 

Flight Lieutenant Vernon, an American serving in the Royal Canadian Air Force, has completed thirty very successful sorties against the enemy.  His skill as a pilot coupled with his infectious and unconquerable cheerfulness have kept the morale and efficiency of his crew at the highest level in spite of adversity.  On two successive daylight raids his aircraft was extensively damaged by flak shortly before reaching the target.  In both cases he pressed home his attacks with determination.

 

This officer's courage and leadership have been a definite asset to the squadron, not only inspiring the utmost confidence in his crew, but setting an excellent example to all other crews.

 

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VERONNEAU, F/O Joseph Francis Xavier (J25147) - Distinguished Flying Cross - No.90 Squadron - Award effective 15 December 1944 as per London Gazette of that date and AFRO 293/45 dated 16 February 1945.  Born 1921 in Alberta; home in Bruderheim, Alberta; enlisted Edmonton 16 December 1941.  Trained at No.6 ITS  (graduated 3 July 1942), No.12 EFTS  (graduated 23 October 1942) and No.1 SFTS  (graduated 3 April 1943).  Commissioned 1943.  Award presented 27 May 1950.  Cited with F/O F.H. Burdett (RAF, awarded DFC).

 

Flying Officer Burdett and Flying Officer Veronneau were flight engineer and pilot respectively of an aircraft detailed to attack Bonn in October 1944. Whilst on the bombing run the aircraft was subjected to heavy anti-aircraft fire.  The bomber was hit, the aileron control was severed and the rudder control became firmly jammed in a main member in the fuselage. The aircraft commenced to lose height but the bombs were successfully released.  Almost immediately the aircraft was again hit.  This time the oxygen system was rendered unserviceable and considerable discomfort was experienced.  Nevertheless, Flying Officer Veronneau retained a measure of control of the aircraft and headed for home.  It was difficult in the circumstances to keep to an accurate course and the aircraft was again hit when passing over a heavily defended area.  The mid-upper turret was put out of action.  Meanwhile Flying Officer Burdett, although suffering from the lack of oxygen, worked unremittingly in an effort to free the rudder control rod.  Although he toiled for more than an hour and a half his efforts were in vain but afterwards he rendered valuable assistance to his pilot by the use of the aileron trim and throttles.  Eventually Flying Officer Veronneau reached an airfield where he effected a safe landing. In the face of great difficulty this officer displayed the highest standard of skill, coolness and resolution, setting a splendid example.  Flying Officer Burdett also proved himself to be a cool, confident and devoted crew member.  His conduct was exemplary.

 

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VIAU, F/L (now S/L) Joseph Jean Marie (C1160) - Mention in Despatches - No.5 Squadron (Canada) - Award effective 11 December 1943 as per London Gazette dated 14 December 1943 and AFRO 568/44 dated 17 March 1944.  Home in Lachine, Quebec.  RMC Cadet, 20 June to 31 July 1939.  Commissioned in Kingston, 1 October 1939.

 

VIAU, W/C Joseph Jean Marie (C1160) - Distinguished Flying Cross - No.5 (BR) Squadron - Award effective 21 April 1945 as per Canada Gazette of that date and AFRO 802/45 dated 11 May 1945.    Governor General's Records (RG.7 Group 26 Volume 58, file 190-I, dossier 6) has citation.  When recommended he had flown 2,161 hours, of which 885 were on operations (91 sorties).  Award presented in Montreal, 25 November 1949.

 

Over two and a half years on anti-submarine operations in the North Atlantic area this officer as captain of aircraft has displayed determination and devotion to duty of the highest order.  He carried out a submarine attack under adverse weather conditions with courage and resourcefulness.  As a squadron commander his inspiring leadership, enthusiasm and personal efforts have brought his squadron to the highest peak of efficiency.  His record has been outstanding throughout his flying career.

 

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VICKERS, S/L George Peter (J15210) - Distinguished Flying Cross - No.88 Squadron - Award effective 12 August 1944 as per London Gazette dated 18 September 1945 and AFRO 1672/45 dated 2 November 1945.  Born 1919 in Buxton, Derbyshire; home in Vancouver; enlisted there 17 July 1940.  Trained at No.1 ITS (graduated 3 November 1940), No.3 EFTS (graduated 28 December 1940) and No.,6 SFTS (graduated 5 March 1941).  Commissioned February 1942.  Killed in action 13 August 1944 (Boston BZ382); buried in France.  Medal presented to next-of-kin, 9 December 1947.

 

Squadron Leader Vickers has completed many successful operational sorties and has completed his second tour.  During an attack on Charleroi in 1943 his port engine was set on fire by intense anti-aircraft fire but Squadron Leader Vickers maintained effective control of his aircraft, extinguished the fire and flew back to his base without further damage or casualty.  Throughout all his operations Squadron Leader Vickers has shown determination, coolness and skill.

 

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VILA, S/L John Augustus (C13520) - Member, Order of the British Empire - AFHQ - Award effective 1 January 1946 as per Canada Gazette of that date and AFRO 82/46 dated 25 January 1946.  Enlisted in Toronto, 21 August 1942.  Award presented 24 April 1948.

 

This officer, who is Secretary of the Honours and Awards Committee, has made an invaluable contribution to the Royal Canadian Air Force.  The volume of work handled by his section has constantly increased and become more involved and has required imagination, a wide knowledge and the highest efficiency, all of which this officer has supplied.  Squadron Leader Vila's close co-operation with Government House, in connection with the investitures held in Ottawa, has been the subject of letters of appreciation from the Assistant Secretary to the Governor General.  This officer, on his own volition, put in many long hours of overtime, has been tireless in his work and has set aside his own personal interests for the good of the Service.  His devotion to duty has been an example to all.

 

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VILLENEUVE, Sergeant Joseph Hilaire Roland (Can 7641) - Mention in Despatches - No.63 Base - Award effective 1 January 1945 as per London Gazette of that date and AFRO 425/45 dated 9 March 1945.  Home in St.Cyrille, Quebec; enlisted in Quebec 25 May 1939.  DHist file 181.009 D.2619 (RG.24 Vol.20628) has recommendation forwarded 31 July 1944 to No.6 Group Headquarters.  Had served 41 months in Canada, 21 months overseas.

 

This NCO is a very capable fitter-armourer and has carried out his duties in a most conscientious and efficient manner.  His ability of overcoming the handicap of not speaking English and becoming so efficient at his trade has earned the respect of all the airmen working with him.

 

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VINCE, S/L (now W/C) Archibald George (C1985) - Member, Order of the British Empire - Technical Training School - Award effective 1 January 1943 as per London Gazette of that date and AFRO 55/43 dated 15 January 1943.  Born in Hampshire, England, 20 September 1899. A carpenter and musician by trade who ran a confectionary store on Main Street, Ottawa, before business foundered.  His wife, Dora Lee, formerly on the staff at Rideau Hall, was the subject of a book, Storming the Castle: The World of Dora and the Dutchess by Jill Downie (Key Porter Books, 1998).  Enlisted in Ottawa, 16 July 1924.  Award presented 17 April 1943.

 

During and since the formative period of this unit this officer, as Chief Instructor, has proved exceptional ability and this together with his devotion to duty, which is well above the average, has inspired all with whom he comes in contact.  He has contributed, in a large measure, to the building up of the present high standard of the Technical Training School and his good judgement and loyal support have been of great help to his superiors.

 

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VINCE, FS Edward Lorne (R205706) - Distinguished Flying Medal - No.419 Squadron - Award effective 3 November 1944 as per London Gazette of that date and AFRO 2637/44 dated 8 December 1944.  Born 1918 in Waterford, Ontario; home there (farmer); enlisted London, 3 December 1942.  Trained at No.9 BGS  (graduated 7 September 1943).  Award presented 28 May 1947.

 

As rear gunner Flight Sergeant Vince has participated in very many sorties.  He has displayed great skill and coolness and, when necessary, has defended his aircraft with resolution.  On one occasion during an operation against Sterkrade his aircraft was intercepted by a fighter.  In the ensuing engagement Flight Sergeant Vince used his guns to good effect.  Although his own aircraft sustained damage he shot down the attacker.  Some time later, on the flight home, several more attacks from enemy fighters were experienced, but this rear gunner's vigilance and skilful combat manoeuvres enabled his captain to evade the enemy aircraft. Flight Sergeant Vince has displayed outstanding devotion to duty.

 

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VINCENT, S/L (now A/W/C) Arthur James (C1056) - Air Force Cross - No.1 CFS (since moved to No.1 SFTS) - Award effective 14 November 1944 as per London Gazette of that date and AFRO 2684/44 dated 15 December 1944.  Enlisted at Camp Borden, 9 September 1939.  Reported to have flown 1,428.10 hours to date, 1,120.20 hours as instructor, 272.10 hours in previous six months.  Award presented 22 September 1945.

 

This officer has been actively engaged in flying training for the past four years.  His flying has been exceptional and he has at all times performed his duties in an exceedingly praiseworthy manner.  By his outstanding ability and untiring efforts, he has stimulated instructors at whatever flying schools he has visited and has contributed materially in the upgrading of flying training in Canada.

 

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VINCENT, P/O Gordon Ridge (J86473) - Distinguished Flying Cross - No.425 Squadron - Award effective 19 September 1944 as per London Gazette of that date and AFRO 2274/44 dated 20 October 1944.  Born 1921 in Windsor, Ontario; home there.  Trained at No.6 ITS, No.12 EFTS and No.9 SFTS.

 

This officer has completed many sorties during which he effectively attacked such enemy targets as Essen, Dusseldorf and Berlin.  On one occasion whilst over Karlsruhe his aircraft commenced to vibrate badly.  Nevertheless, Pilot Officer Vincent executed his attack and flew his aircraft to this country despite much physical discomfort.  At the airfield visibility was extremely poor but Pilot Officer Vincent made a landing at the third attempt.  As the aircraft came to rest the starboard petrol tanks caught fire.  It was then discovered that the rear gunner was trapped in his turret.  Heedless of the imminent danger, Pilot Officer Vincent worked strenuously to force open the door of the damaged turret and succeeded in releasing his comrade.  This officer displayed great skill, courage and determination in most harassing circumstances.

 

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VINCENT, F/O Harry (J28068) - Distinguished Flying Cross - No.424 Squadron - Award effective 6 January 1945 as per London Gazette dated 19 January 1945 and AFRO 508/45 dated 23 March 1945.  Born 15 August 1916 in Winnipeg; home there (butcher); enlisted there 26 February 1942).  Trained at No.2 ITS  (graduated 12 September 1942) and No.5 AOS  (graduated 9 July 1943).  Commissioned 1943.   Medal sent by registered mail 30 March 1949.  Retired from the RCAF in 1963.  Following that he joined Canada Customs and on the staff of the Sergeant-at-Arms, Legislature of British Columbia.  Died in Victoria, 12 August 1998. No citation other than "completed ...numerous operations against the enemy in the course of which [he has] invariably displayed the utmost fortitude, courage and devotion to duty."  DHist file 181.009 D.2609 (RG.24 Vol.20627) has recommendation dated 23 October 1944 when he had flown 35 sorties (179 hours 25 minutes) from 5 June to 14 October 1944.

 

A veteran of nine raids on heavily defended targets in Germany, including Stuttgart, Hamburg, Brunswick, Dortmund and twenty-two precision targets in enemy occupied territory, this officer has proved himself to be a capable navigator.  Flying Officer Vincent has always been on his target on time; in addition he has been of valuable assistance in the navigational section checking logs, assisting with records, and briefing crews for operations.  Throughout thirty-five trips this officer has done exceptional work in the air and at all times has been an example to other navigators in the squadron and an inspiration to his crew.

 

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VINE, P/O James (J93012) - Distinguished Flying Cross - No.415 Squadron - Award effective 5 April 1945 as per London Gazette dated 17 April 1945 and AFRO 918/45 dated 1 June 1945.  Born 1925 in Winnipeg; home in St.James, Manitoba (student, ex-Royal Canadian Artillery); enlisted Winnipeg 24 February 1943.  Trained at No.4 WS (graduated 20 August 1943) and No.3 BGS  (graduated (graduated 26 November 1943).  Commissioned November 1944.  Award presented 11 June 1949.

 

Through a tour of operations as air gunner Pilot Officer Vine has shown enthusiasm, vigilance and courage of a high order.  On one occasion during a mission against Castrop Rauxel his aircraft was attacked by three enemy aircraft in succession.  While engaged on the third attack Pilot Officer Vine's guns jammed.  Despite this his excellent tactics saved his aircraft from major damage and the mission was completed.  His devotion to duty has always been most praiseworthy.

 

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VINE, P/O William Edward (C88225) - Distinguished Flying Cross - No.405 Squadron - Award effective 5 February 1945 as per London Gazette dated 16 February 1945 and AFRO 563/45 dated 29 March 1945.  Born 1921 in Toronto; home in Hamilton (production clerk); enlisted there 1 June 1940.  Commissioned 1944.   No citation other than "completed...numerous operations against the enemy in the course of which [he has] invariably displayed the utmost fortitude, courage and devotion to duty."  Public Records Office Air 2/8831 has recommendation dated 20 November 1944 when he had flown 46 sorties (209 hours five minutes):

 

30 Aug 43     Munchen Gladbach (6.00)                    22 May 44               Dortmund (3.51)

31 Aug 43     Berlin (7.50)                       27 May 44  Rennes (3.51)

5 Sept 43      Mannheim (8.30)               28 May 44  Mardyck (2.15)

6 Sept 43      Munich (9.35)                     5 June 44   Longues (2.57)

22 Sept 43    Hanover (6.00)                   7 June 44   Foret de Cerisy (3.32)

23 Sept 43    Mannheim (8.00)               27 Jun 44   Oisemont-au-Bois (2.15)

27 Sept 43    Hanover (6.30)                   28 Jun 44   Metz (5.18)

29 Sept 43    Bochum (6.25)                   2 July 44     Oisemont-au-Bois (2.21)

4 Oct 43        Frankfurt (8.10)                  9 July 44     L'Hey (1.46)

15 Feb 44     Berlin (6.33)                       7 Aug 44    TOTALIZE (2.45)

20 Feb 44     Stettin (6.15)                      8 Aug 44    Lucheux (3.01)

24 Feb 44     Schweinfurt (6.49)             10 Aug 44  La Pallice (5.03)

15 Mar 44     Stuttgart (6.48)                   20 Sep 44  Calais (2.16)

18 Mar 44     Frankfurt (4.48)                  24 Sep 44  Calais (2.16)

22 Mar 44     Frankfurt (5.13)                  25 Sep 44  Calais (2.42)

24 Mar 44     Berlin (6.39)                       26 Sep 44  Cap Gris Nez (2.27)

30 Mar 44     Nuremburg (6.38)              28 Sep 44  Cap Gris Nez (1.56)

26 Apr 44      Essen (3.53)                      5 Oct 44     Saarbrucken (4.35)

27 Apr 44      Montzen (3.11)                   14 Oct 44   Duisburg (3.20)

3 May 44       Montdidier (3.08)               15 Oct 44   Wilhelmshaven (4.16)

8 May 44       Haine St.Pierre (2.29)      19 Oct 44   Stuttgart (5.25)

11 May 44     Boulogne (2.17)                 23 Oct 44   Essen (4.14)

19 May 44     Mont Couple (1.46)           25 Oct 44   Homberg (3.16)

 

Pilot Officer Vine is a very capable Flight Engineer, now on his second tour of operations. He has participated in attacks on such heavily defended enemy areas as Berlin, Hanover and Stuttgart. Throughout his long and varied operational career, this officer has often been placed in great personal danger, bur he has never allowed personal considerations to overrule service exigencies. He has remained faithfully at his post of duty, carrying out his allotted tasks in a very cool and efficient manner. The fine example of fearlessness and sense of responsibility displayed by this officer is most commendable and has had a salutary effect on all fellow members of his crew.  Strongly recommended for the non-immediate award of the Distinguished Flying Cross.

 

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VINEN, Sergeant Vern Edgar (R52140)- British Empire Medal - Station Rockcliffe - Award effective 1 January 1945 as per London Gazette of that date and AFRO 89/45 dated 19 January 1945.  Home in Eastview, Ontario (modern Vanier); enlisted Ottawa 24 October 1937.  Award presented 27 June 1945.

 

This non-commissioned officer has been employed on experimental armament work at the Test and Development Establishment for the past three years.  On several occasions he has taken part in experimental trials of an extremely hazardous nature, during which he has always displayed the greatest skill and coolness.  His untiring enthusiasm and ability displayed in the execution of all tasks allotted to him are most praiseworthy.  His outstanding devotion to duty has set a very fine example to all.

 

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VINISH, P/O George Alexander (J17099) - Distinguished Flying Cross - No.10 Squadron, RAF - Award effective 1 July 1943 as per London Gazette dated 13 July 1943 and AFRO 1724/43 dated 27 August 1943.  Born Prince Alberta, 1920; home in Wakaw, Saskatchewan; enlisted Saskatoon, 12 February 1941.  Trained at No.2 ITS  (graduated 24 July 1941), No.6 EFTS  (graduated 12 September 1941) and No.4 SFTS  (graduated 2 January 1942).  Commissioned 1943.  Invested with award by King George VI 23 May 1944.

 

Throughout his tour of operational duty Pilot Officer Vinish has been an outstanding captain of aircraft. In March 1943, while on a sortie to Essen, he completed his mission successfully though his tail gunner seriously wounded and one engine in his aircraft was unserviceable.  On another occasion he again bombed Essen effectively, although his windscreen had been shattered and fragments blown into his face.  Pilot Officer Vinish has a splendid record and it is largely due to his resolution and enthusiasm that his crew has achieved many success.

 

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VINNICOMBE, S/L Harry Cail (C985) - Mention in Despatches - Station Dartmouth (now Station Gander) - Award effective 1 January 1944 as per London Gazette and Canada Gazette of that date and AFRO 113/44 dated 21 January 1944.  Born 16 June 1915 at Boston, Massachusetts.  Home in Dartmouth, Nova Scotia; enlisted in Halifax, 5 June 1939.  Trained as pilot at Hamilton Flying Club and Camp Borden; qualified for pilots wings, 30 October 1939. Also flew with No.160 (BR) Squadron during war.  Remained in postwar RCAF; received Queens Coronation Medal, 23 October 1953 while with No.31 ACW Squadron.  Died at Waterloo, Ontario, 23 June 2000. Governor General's Records (RG.7 Group 26, Volume 57, file 190-I) has citation.

 

This officer as assistant controller has by his capable ability and consistent personal attention, carefully and skilfully directed anti-submarine operations and convoy patrols from his unit with outstanding success.

 

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VIPOND, F/L James French (J35759) - Distinguished Flying Cross - No.434 Squadron - Award effective 8 September 1945 as per London Gazette dated 21 September 1945 and AFRO 1704/45 dated 9 November 1945.  Born 1916 in Southport, England; home in Toronto (news reporter); enlisted there 27 June 1942.  Trained at No.5 ITS  (graduated 1 May 1943) and No.4 AOS  (graduated 1 October 1943).  Commissioned September 1943.  Award presented 22 November 1948.  No citation other than "completed...numerous operations against the enemy in the course of which [he has] invariably displayed the utmost fortitude, courage and devotion to duty."  DHist file 181.009 D.1941 (RG.9 Vol.20612) has recommendation dated 3 April 1945 when he had flown 28 sorties (156 hours 43 minutes), 24 June 1944 to 21 March 1945.

 

As an outstanding navigator, Flight Lieutenant Vipond has completed numerous sorties against heavily defended targets such as Stuttgart and Hamburg.  This officer has continuously exhibited skill and reliability worthy of high praise.  As Squadron Navigation Leader, he has carried out his duties very efficiently, holding the high respect of all those under him, and proving himself a tower of strength to the squadron. His devotion to duty and fine offensive spirit have been an example worthy of emulation by all members of the squadron.

 

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VIRR, F/L Laurence Garnet Reid (C987) - Mention in Despatches - Overseas - Award effective 8 June 1944 as per London Gazette of that date and AFRO 1729/44 dated 11 August 1944.  Home in Dartmouth, Nova Scotia; enlisted in Kingston, 5 June 1939.  To Britain by Catalina, August 1942; to East Africa in early 1943.  No citation in AFRO.

 

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VOGAN, P/O George Lindsay (J17351) - Distinguished Flying Cross - No.427 Squadron - Award effective 30 November 1943 as per London Gazette dated 10 December 1943 and AFRO 297/44 dated 11 February 1944.  See War Service Records 1939-1945 (Canadian Bank of Commerce, 1947). Born in Wellesley Township, Ontario, 21 August 1918.  Educated at Elmira, Stratford, and Queens University; home in Millbank, Ontario.  Enlisted in Hamilton 23 July 1941.  Trained at No.1 ITS  (graduated 6 December 1941), No.4 AOS  (graduated 25 April 1942), No.4 BGS  (graduated 16 March 1942) and No.2 ANS  (graduated 25 May 1942).  Flew a tour with No.427 Squadron (DFC 30 November 1943).  Promoted to Flight Lieutenant, October 1943, Squadron Leader in September 1944.  Graduated with high honours from RAF Bombing Leaders' Course, No.1 Air Armament School, and became Bombing Leader of No.427 Squadron.  Organized the Bombing Section at Gamston, Notts.  Attended Bomber Command Bombing Analysis School, Worsop, Notts.  Transferred to the OTU at Ossington, Notts., as Bombing Leader.  Served as Bombing Leader at Bomber Command Instructors' School, Finningly, Yorks.  Posted to Training and Operational Staff, No.6 Group Headquarters, January 1945.   Commissioned 1943.  Medal sent by registered mail.

 

Pilot Officer Vogan has completed many successful operations against the enemy in which he has displayed high skill, fortitude and devotion to duty.

 

VOGAN, S/L George Lindsay, DFC (J17351) - Mention in Despatches - No.6 Group Headquarters - Award effective 1 January 1946 as per London Gazette of that date and AFRO 322/46 dated 29 March 1946.   AFRO gives unit only as "Overseas"; unit found in McEwen Papers list of recommendations for MiD. 

 

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VOGAN, F/O Raymond Ross (J27576) - Distinguished Flying Cross - No.408 Squadron - Award effective 5 February 1945 as per London Gazette dated 20 February 1945 and AFRO 625/45 dated 13 April 1945.  Born 1910 in Carrick, Ontario; home there (farmer); enlisted Ottawa 9 May 1942.  Trained at No.1 ITS  (graduated 30 December 1942) and No.7 AOS  (graduated 25 June 1943).  Commissioned 1943. Award presented 30 May 1947.  No citation other than "completed... numerous operations against the enemy in the course of which [he has] displayed the utmost fortitude, courage and devotion to duty."  DHist file 181.009 D.1515 (RG.24 Vol.20600) has recommendation dated 4 November 1944 when he had flown 33 sorties (160 hours ten minutes), 1 May to 12 September 1944.

 

Flying Officer Vogan has completed a tour of operations as navigator on four engined bombers in an exemplary manner.  He has navigated his aircraft with exceptional accuracy to such heavily defended targets in Germany as Sterkrade, Kiel, Stuttgart and Hamburg, and has on all occasions shown a complete disregard of any defences the enemy had to offer.

 

As a navigator, Flying Officer Vogan has stood out as one of the best the squadron has had, and his coolness and cheerful disregard of any dangers in operations has inspired his crew with complete confidence in his skill.  He has, by his accuracy in timing and track keeping, set a fine example to all navigators in the squadron.  Therefore I recommend that by virtue of this officer's outstanding service, he be awarded the Non-Immediate Distinguished Flying Cross.

 

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VOKEY, W/C Joseph (C2194) - Member, Order of the British Empire - AFHQ - Award effective 1 January 1946 as per Canada Gazette of that date and AFRO 82/46 dated 25 January 1946.  Home in Montreal; enlisted there 6 June 1940.  Award presented 24 April 1948.

 

This officer in his capacity as Secretary of the Aerodrome Development and Projects Committee for over four years has performed his duties with outstanding ability and conscientiousness.  His initiative and knowledge in dealing with Royal Canadian Air Force Headquarters Divisions and other Governmental Departments has been displayed time and again and has frequently resulted in considerable saving of public funds.  His work throughout, despite the fact that it at times has been arduous, has been performed on a very high plane of efficiency.

 

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VOKEY, Corporal Joseph Henry Gordon (R73974) - Mention in Despatches - Middleton St. George - Award effective 14 January 1944 as per London Gazette of that date and AFRO 874/44 dated 21 April 1944.  Unit identified in AFRO only as "Overseas"; positive unit identification from No.6 Group Monthly Summary of Operational and Training Activities (January 1944).  Home Verdun, Quebec; enlisted Montreal, 22 November 1940.

 

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VOLLHOFFER, Sergeant Olga Mary (W301617) - Mention in Despatches - No.2 Detachment - Award effective 14 June 1945 as per Canada Gazette of that date and AFRO 1127/45 dated 6 July 1945.  Home in Regina, Saskatchewan; enlisted there 28 October 1941. Chef, recommended 19 January 1945.  Certificate sent to Victoria, 4 July 1945.

 

Sergeant Vollhoffer has worked long and arduous hours with no job too small or too unimportant to be left undone.  She has diligently performed her duties in such a manner as to be a constant source of inspiration to her fellow workers.  Her initiative and devotion to duty have been an outstanding contribution to her station. 

 

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VOLLICK, FS (now WO2) Carlisle Nelson (R75767) - British Empire Medal - No.5 Radio School - Award effective as of 1 January 1945 as per London Gazette of that date and AFRO 89/45 dated 19 January 1945.  Enlisted in Hamilton, 5 November 1940.  Award presented 17 June 1945.

 

This airman has been the non-commissioned officer in charge of the radar training section at this station for the past year, during which time he has shown outstanding initiative in organizing additional instruction, which has done much towards raising the standard of training.  His keen interest and outstanding work in organizing extra-mural activities is most praiseworthy.  His outstanding skill and untiring efforts he has rendered highly meritorious service.

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VOUT, F/O Theodore Robert (C7880) - Mention in Despatches - Award effective 1 June 1943 as per London Gazette dated 2 June 1943 and AFRO 1247/43 dated 2 July 1943.  Home in Ottawa; enlisted there 3 October 1941.  As of May 1945 he was an Air Traffic Controller in Malta.