Leonard John "Andy" Anderson

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ANDERSON, S/L Leonard John (41358) - Distinguished Flying Cross - No.114 Squadron
Award effective as per London Gazette dated 29 December 1944
AFRO 379/45 dated 2 March 1945 (reporting his DFC)
Air Ministry Bulletin 16815/AL.950 refers
Canadian in the Royal Air Force.

This officer has now completed a considerable number of operational sorties on his second tour of operational duty. His first tour was completed on Hurricane aircraft in the Western Desert. As a flight commander he has shown the greatest enthusiasm at all times and has set an extremely high standard of operational flying. Squadron Leader Anderson has operated entirely by night and in all types of weather. On one occasion during the Battle of Rome he flew his aircraft to attack large concentrations of enemy transport north of the city. Having bombed successfully he attacked the columns in spite of opposition, persisting until his ammunition was exhausted. He has always displayed a fine fighting spirit and has set a fine example to his crews.

Public Records Office Air 2/9033 has recommendation dated 26 September 1944 giving much more detail. He had flown a total of 1,088 hours 40 minutes (172 hours 15 minutes in previous six months), and 271 hours 25 minutes on operations (107 sorties). He was a Flight Commander.

This officer has now completed over 50 operational sorties on this, his second tour, his first tour being performed on Hurricane aircraft in the Desert. As a Flight Commander and operationally he has, at all times, shown the greatest enthusiasm and keenness and set an extremely high standard of operational flying. He has been operating entirely at night, in all types of weather, and has never lost a chance of getting to grips with the Hun, as can be well illustrated by one of many raids he did during the Battle for Rome in an A.20G, a nine-gun aircraft carrying no navigator. On the night in question he flew his aircraft to attack large concentrations of enemy transport moving north of Rome; having bombed these he again and again successfully attacked the columns, in spite of opposition, and only returned to base when his ammunition was exhausted.

Squadron Leader Anderson has at all times shown the greatest devotion to duty and is an excellent example to the crews under his command, and I highly recommend this award.


Born 19 April 1916 in Moose Jaw, Sask.
Home in Arvida, Quebec
Joined the RAF in Wales in 1938
To No. 8 EFTS Reading 10 Oct '38
To Abu Sueir
Graduated as Pilot in June 1939
Took a navigation course &
Joined No. 70 Squadron
Flying Valentia Troop Carriers
Converted to Wellingtons
Crashed on his 3rd mission on type
Right knee permanently injured
Managed to get posting ferrying fighters
Somehow joining 33 Squadron in August
Flew 54 missions - downing one Me110
Eventually got caught & reprimanded
But was allowed to return to 33 Sqn.
To No. 128 Squadron on Hurricanes
To instruct at OTU Bagotville Aug. 1942

Married in March 1943 &
Sent back to Britain in July as an instructor
(As of September 1944 his wife was
residing in Pointe Claire, Quebec)

To No. 114 Squadron on Bostons in Italy
Flew 70 night intruder missions
And 127 combat missions in total

It is not clear when he took his discharge,
but on 10 April 1951 he joined the RCAF as a pilot
He took his release on 9 April 1956


"ANDERSON, Leonard John "Andy", W/C (41358) D.F.C., from Moose Jaw, applied to the R.A.F. and was told to report to Ottawa for interviews in May /38. When asked why he wanted in the R.A.F., and not the R.C.A.F., he replied "I want to join an Air Force — not a Flying Club". After being turned down, he went to Halifax and bought a Berth as a Cattle Handler on the S.S. Dakotian going to Cardiff, Wales. There he jumped ship and worked for 3 months in a Cinema. Again he went to the R.A.F. and this time was sent to No. 8 E.F.T.S. at Reading on Oct. 10 1938. For advanced flying, a posting came to Abu Sueir, Egypt and graduation as a Pilot came in June 1939. After a Navigation course, P/O Anderson joined No. 70 Sqdn. in Nov. and flew Valentia Troop Carriers from Cairo-Khartoum-Bagdad runs. The squadron re-equipped with Wellingtons in Jan. 1941 and on his third mission, the aircraft was hit and they crash landed. His right knee was permanently injured, but he wangled a medical to Ferry Fighters from West Africa to Egypt. Somehow he joined No. 33 Sqdn. in Aug. 1941 in Egypt, and flew 54 missions — downing one ME110. (Canadian ace "Woody" Woodward was his squadron mate.) After all this, he was reprimanded before a Board which wanted to know how he was allowed to fly operationally, after being injured. They allowed him to return to No. 33 Sqdn. A/V/M Coningham, CO. of Desert Air Force sent him a personal signal saying "Good show, Anderson, Carry on No. 33" and recommended an immediate D.F.C. "Last I ever heard of that one" says W/C Anderson.
A posting to No. 128 Sqdn. flying Hurricanes near Freetown came in early 1942. He did 3 missions against French Vichy Forces around Dakar, and then instructed briefly on Strafing Tactics in West African Air Command. In Aug. 1942, a posting came to instruct at O.T.U. at Bagotville, Canada. Pilots were converting to Hurricanes from Harvards. He was married in March 1943, but was posted to Britain in July as an Instructor.
In Dec. 1943, a posting took him to No. 114 Sqdn. flying Bostons in Italy. As a Sqdn. Ldr., he flew 70 night intruder missions against all targets and he describes it as "a hairy tour with heavy losses.” Finally, a D.F.C. came through — after 127 combat missions."

Quoted from "Canadians In The Royal Air Force" by Les Allison


Victories Include :

?? one Me110 destroyed

1 / 0 / 0




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