Norman Ralph "Norm" Fowlow

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Four Fighter-Bombers Raiding English Coast Downed and Destroyed
RAF and RCAF Planes Resume Their Assaults on Nazi-Held Europe

London, June 1, 1943 - (CP) - R.A.F. and R.C.A.F. fighter squadrons sped through broken clouds over the southeast coast today to resume attacks on the Nazi-held Channel Coast. Many formations were seen from the ground and others, flying too high to be seen, were heard. The daylight stabs by fighter planes followed what was presumed to be night attacks by bombers, as residents on the English side of the Channel reported the sound of bomb explosions from the Calais region.

Down Four of Foe
German fighter-bombers attacked the southeast coast of England this afternoon and four of them were reported destroyed.
Two enemy aircraft, penetrating Britain's southeast defences and setting off London's sirens for the first time in a week, killed four persons and injured three others today with a direct bomb hit on a suburban shelter and six others were killed in another suburb, it was reported authoritatively.
"We heard a bomb strike the shelter and then a second bomb came whistling down," said a nearby resident. "We rushed out and found the brick and concrete shelter completely demolished."
A number of persons were buried under a mass of debris and a crane was needed to clear a path for rescuers. A woman was found dead in a wrecked house, lying over her three-year-old son, who was still alive. Her 24-year-old daughter was seriously injured.
A man taken from another house kept pleading with rescue workers to "save my wife." She was later found dead, while her 28-year-old son is missing.
Bombs wrecked several homes.
Britain's own bombers apparently were active earlier in the night harrying the French coast, for residents on this side of the channel reported the sound of explosions from the Calais region.
In two long sweeps yesterday over northern France and the Low Countries, R.A.F. medium bombers and escorting Spitfires blasted airports, communications, docks and factories at Zeebrugge, Nieuport and Brugge in Belgium, Vlissingen in the Netherlands and Caen and Cherbourg in France.
The Spitfires downed two Focke-Wulf 190's in a running battle with about 30 enemy planes over Nieuport. One of the fighters was lost.
Credited with these two kills were four Canadian pilots – F/O N.R. Fowlow of Windsor, N.S., getting one, while Pilot Officers R.W.M. Isbister, 317 Belsize drive, Toronto; Webb Harten, Sault Ste. Marie, Ont., and Sgt. David Small, Copper Cliff, Ont., shared the other.
An RCAF communique said one Canadian Spitfire was missing.
This was final day-time assault of May on Germany, and German held Europe. Canadian Spitfires also provided part of the fighter protection for United States medium bombers attacking enemy targets at Flushing in Holland the same day.


Born 9 Aug. 1921 in Hodges Cove (Trinity Bay), NF.
Home in Windsor, Nova Scotia.
Enlisted in Halifax 22 August 1940.
Trained at
No.1 ITS (graduated 14 December 1940),
No.11 EFTS (graduated 28 January 1941) and
No.2 SFTS (graduated 4 April 1941).
Arrived in the UK in May 1941.
Further trained at No.55 OTU.
To No.131 Squadron, 11 July 1941.
Commissioned 6 December 1941.
To No.611 Squadron, 2 April 1942.
To No.131 Squadron (again), 11 April 1942.
To No.601 Squadron (Malta), 9 May 1942.
Shot down 18 May 1942 - slightly wounded
- rescued by launch..
To No.1 RAF Depot, 8 August 1942.
To No.403 Squadron, 29 August 1942.
To Station Kenley, 23 January 1943.
Promoted to S/L 13 September 1943.
To No.421 Squadron, 5 October 1943.
To No.411 Squadron, 10 April 1944.
He was best man at Buck McNair's wedding.

Killed in action, 19 May 1944 in Spit MK834.
While dive-bombing a rail crossing at Hazebrouck,
France, he was hit by flak at 7,000 feet & his
500 lb bomb exploded killing him instantly.

DFC presented to next-of-kin, 28 February 1946.


Sweeps Over Europe Tougher Than Malta, Say Canadian Boys

With the R.C.A.F. Fighter Command, Somewhere in England, June 22, 1943 - (CP) - Remember when Malta was getting it hot and heavy from the Axis air forces, when raid after raid rocked the George Cross island? Canadian fighter pilots were flying out there then, and today; working out of Southern England in fighter command, they say that Malta stuff perhaps was easier than current sweeps over Europe.
Flying Officer J. I. (Skip) McKay, a curly-haired pilot from Owen Sound, says so anyway. He was there for six and one-half months. F/O Norman Fowlow of Windsor, N.S. was there too. He thinks the same way.
"It's a lot of fun, as a rule, escorting Flying Fortresses — because you are usually sure of a good tangle," said Fowlow. He had just returned from a sweep over the Netherlands with Fortresses and was waiting to be interrogated.
"But," he added, "if you ask me about this flying compared with Malta when I was there, I'd say this is tougher because in Malta you did all your fighter work over your own territory. Here you leave England in a hurry and do your fighting over strange country."


Ten Pilots Share Credit For Destroying Hun Aircraft

(By Alan Randal, Canadian Press Staff Writer)
With the R.C.A.F. Somewhere in England, June 24, 1943 — (CP) — Mess room chatter:
The Wolf Squadron of the RCAF claims credit for frightening one Nazi pilot to death. Ten pilots were along on the show and each of them has been credited with 1-10th of an aircraft destroyed. Two of these are Pilot Officer Jimmy Abbots, of Owen Sound, Ont., who was a sergeant at the time, and Sgt. Don Hamilton, of Moncton, N.B.

"We just scared it into the sea," said Flying Officer Norman Fowlow, of Windsor, N.S. Pilot Officer Dean Dover, of Toronto, and Fowlow fired at the Jerry, but nobody was nearer than 400 yards and the enemy went un-hit but crashed into the sea without firing a shot in return.
Fowlow says you don't feel particularly excited firing at an opposite number in the Luftwaffe. "You are more or less too busy working out the range and wondering if by any chance there's anybody getting you lined up for a burst at the same time," he said.

Makes 30 Sweeps
Fowlow, veteran of air fighting over Malta, has done more than 30 sweeps.
Welfare officer from the Knights of Columbus with the Canadian Wolf Squadron is Fred Boyle, of Edmonton. He's been lining up places in the country where squadron members can go on their 40-hour leaves and have a bit of a holiday.

Norm Fowlow
Norman Fowlow

Competition is keen in the fighter wing. Take Pilot Officer Frank McWilliams, of New Westminster, B.C. His biggest worry during a session as duty officer of the Wolf Squadron was how many sweeps he had in. "You see," he explained, "I want to keep ahead of some of those who were with this squadron before I got here." At this point he had 30 sweeps in.

Flying Officer J. I. (Skip) McKay, of 1116 4th avenue west, Owen Sound, Ont., working in fighter command after a spell of duty in Malta, says the Italian flyers showed there that they were good fighters when they got in a tough spot and, generally speaking, good sports.


Nazi-Held Railways Hammered

London, July 2, 1943 (AP) — R.A.F. bombers and fighters again ripped into enemy railway, supply and communications targets in France and the Low Countries today and observers reported seeing another strong force of British planes, apparently including bombers, heading across the Channel early tonight.
The Air Ministry News Service said R.A.F. Typhoons hit an oil storage tank near Ijmuiden in Holland and the pilots saw flames shoot to a height of 100 feet.
Boston bombers attacked railway tracks, engine sheds and rail junctions at Ghent and Courtrai in Belgium and at Lille in France.
An earlier Air Ministry announcement disclosed that R.A.F. Spitfires and United States Typhoons (Thunderbolts -ed) destroyed eight enemy fighters in separate sweeps over France and the Low Countries late yesterday. R.C.A.F. pilots, S/L Hugh Godefroy of Toronto, F/O Norman Follow of Halifax and F/S Graham Shouldice of Chesley, Ont., each shot down an enemy fighter.
United States Headquarters said the Thunderbolt squadrons ran into about 30 Focke-Wulf 190's south of Rotterdam and shot down four, probably destroyed another and damaged five with the loss of only one plane.
The Spitfires downed four planes over Northern France. Four R.A.F. planes were lost in this sweep and an earlier attack by fighter-escorted Typhoon bombers on an enemy convoy off the Dutch coast. Three merchant ships and four mine-sweepers were reported damaged by the convoy attackers.
A German broadcast declared the R.A.F. lost six fighters and two bombers in the assault on the convoy.


Attack Kiel U-Boat Slips, Heinkel Plant; R.C.A.F. as Escort

London, July 29, 1943 (CP) — Strong formations of four-motored American bombers, hacking their way through Nazi fighter packs deep inside Germany, rained explosives on the Kiel U-boat slips and the Heinkel aircraft factory at Warnemuende on the Baltic today and shot down more than 30 enemy planes.
"Good bombing results were observed on both targets," the United States Army Headquarters communique said. Ten American bombers were lost.
"Fairly strong fighter opposition was encountered by the unescorted Fortresses at Kiel, but there was little opposition at Warnemuende," the bulletin added. "Preliminary claims totaled more than 30 enemy fighters destroyed by the bombers."
Returning crewmen said the tight-flying bombers encountered most of their opposition on the homeward flight.
R.A.F., R.C.A.F. and Allied fighters supported the big bombers part of the way to and from Germany, and Canadian fighters knocked down three German planes.

Power Station Hit
Late today medium bombers attacked a power station near Rouen and an airfield at Mervinne in France, and United States medium bombers struck an airfield at Fort Rouge near St. Omer.
Escorting Norwegian Spitfire pilots knocked down two enemy fighters.
From these subsidiary operations three Allied fighters were missing.
A Canadian Spitfire fighter squadron destroyed three enemy fighters during operations over Holland in support of the American attacks. The enemy machines were shot down by P/O Karl Linton of Plaster Rock, N.B., F/O W. Harten of Sault Ste. Marie, Ont., and F/L Norman Fowlow of Windsor, N.S.
One Canadian fighter failed to return from the day's operations, an R.C.A.F. communique said.


FOWLOW, F/L Norman Ralph (J15095) - Distinguished Flying Cross - No.421 Sq.
Award effective 9 September 1943 as per London Gazette dated 24 September 1943 &
AFRO 2386/43 dated 19 November 1943

This officer has taken part in a very large number of sorties and has proved himself to be a skilful and courageous fighter. He has destroyed four and shared in the destruction of another enemy aircraft.


Beurling Fights Again, Bags Nazi Over France

London, Sept. 24, 1943 - (CP) - Canadian flying aces in some of the most productive aerial fighting since the days of the Battle of Britain three years ago destroyed five enemy fighters today in widespread actions over France.
F/O George (Buzz) Beurling of Verdun, Que., marked his long-sought return to action by shooting down a Focke-Wulf 190 to raise his score of enemy planes to 30.
Maintaining the blistering pace set by R.C.A.F. night Mosquito fliers, the Canadian pilots knocked out of the sky 5 of the 20 enemy planes downed by Fighter Command during the day.
Three of four German fighters shot down Thursday night were victims of Canadian airmen. F/L M. W. Beveridge of Montreal destroyed two and F/O J. R. F. Johnson of Omemee, Ont., got one.
Flying with the Wolf Squadron under S/L Norman Fowlow of Windsor, N.S., Beurling saw the FW-190 above him. He circled and tore off the enemy's port wing with a single burst.
W/C L. V. Chadburn of Aurora, Ont., and F/L J. D. Mitchner of Saskatoon shared one of the day's bag. The others fell to Wing Cmdr. Hugh Godefroy of Toronto, who has just taken over command of a Canadian fighter wing; F/L Robert Buckham of Vancouver, leader of the Red Indian Squadron, and W/C E. F. J. Charles of Vancouver, who flies with the R.A.F.
Buckham, who also was credited with damaging one plane, blew an FW190 to bits after chasing it from 20,000 feet almost to the ground. It was his second victory in five days.
In one of the sweeps by Godefroy's squadron - he was squadron leader of the Wolf Squadron before his new appointment – P/O William F. Cook of Clinton, Ont., dived his Spitfire to low level to put out of service a French freight engine, although flak from the train broke part of one wing.
Beurling had been yearning to get back into combat flying ever since he was stationed in Malta where he ran his score of enemy planes downed from two to 29.
He transferred from the R.A.F. to the R.C.A.F. on Sept 1 to "get back into the air." He had been assigned to an instructor's job in an R.A.F. gunner school after his return to Britain from a leave in Canada.




Norm Fowlow
Norm Fowlow in the cockpit of a 403 Squadron Spitfire in 1942

Air Force Casualties

Ottawa, June 13, 1944 - The Department of National Defense for Air today issued Casualty List No. 908 of the Royal Canadian Air Force, showing next of kin of those named from Ontario, as follows:

Missing After Air Operations

... FOWLOW, Norman Ralph, D.F.C., - Sqdn. Ldr. Parrsboro, N.S. ...


Air Force Casualties

Ottawa, Feb. 13, 1945 - The Department of National Defence for Air today issued casualty list No. 1,116 of the Royal Canadian Air Force, showing next of kin of those named from Ontario as follows:


Previously Missing, Now Officially Presumed Dead

... FOWLOW, Norman Ralph, D.F.C., S/L, Parrsboro, N.S. ...

Seriously Injured Accidentally

... REEVES, Richard Leonard, F/L. C. E. Reeves (father), 1307 Mount Pleasant Rd., Toronto. ...


Victories Include:

31 May 1943
12 June 1943
1 July 1943
29 July 1943
one FW190
one Me109
one Me109
one Me109
near Nieuport *
Caudebec **
SW of Amsterdam

4 / 0 / 0

* - I was flying Blue 1 at 22,000 feet when off Nieuport I attacked the first FW190 from the port and astern with a three second burst but had to break away because of two FW190’s coming in from the sun. I broke left and attacked another FW190 giving it a seven second burst from 250 to 200 yards range; it slipped slowly to port and when I last saw, it was going straight down. I was unable to observe what happened to it later on but because of evidence put forward by other members of the Squadron I claim this FW190 as destroyed.

** - I was flying Blue 1 at 25,000 feet N/W of Rouen when I saw 3 Me190’s in wide vic formation in front of us flying North about 1000 feet below. I attacked the starboard man, giving a short burst from astern, closing from 200 to 100 yards or less. I saw strikes on the port side into the engine and cockpit and on the port wing. There was a big explosion in the port wing and the port wing seemed to fold up and half of it broke off. The e/a started to spin and when I last saw it, it was several thousand feet below still spinning with black smoke pouring from it. I claim this Me109 as destroyed.




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