James Bernard "Jim" Kerr


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Johnson Bags 2 More, Boosts His Total to 35

LONDON, July 5, 1944 - (CP) - Canadian Spitfire pilots, their 28-year-old English leader, W/C James E. (Johnny) Johnson again setting the pace, destroyed seven German aircraft over Normandy today, raising to 65 the number of enemy planes knocked down by Canadian fighter wings in one week. Johnson, leading Allied air ace in the European theatre, shot down two planes today to bring his score to 35. F/O R. C. McRoberts of Calgary (& Scotland) also got two "kills" in today's triumphant sweep by the Canadian fliers that followed their spectacular success of July 3 when they got 19 of the 21 German planes destroyed over Normandy that day. The Canadians shot down 13 planes on June 30, and 26 on June 28.
One aircraft was missing after the day’s operations by the Canadian fighters, which culminated an active 24 hours for airmen of the R.C.A.F.
Canadian-manned Typhoon and Mustang fighter-bombers attacked bridges over the Orne and broke up a road leading to that river, while Bomber and Coastal Command crews also saw action, and intruders were out over France. Johnson's kills today brought his score to three more than the mark set during the Battle of Britain by Group Capt. A. G. (Sailor) Malan, who is not now on active operations, and the late Paddy Finucane, lost in action last year. Unofficially, Finucane was credited with 33 planes.
Lt.Col. Francis Gabreski, 25-year-old fighter pilot, today became the leading ace of the United States Air Forces when he shot down an Me-109 near Evreux, France, for his 28th victory. He now will take a delayed leave and go home to Oil City, Pa., to get married. He had postponed his departure until he broke the American record.
Air records also were broken in Russia, it was announced today. It was announced in Moscow that the record of 53 German planes shot down by Major Alexander Pokryshkin has been equaled by two other Soviet fliers, Lieut. Nikolai Gulayev and Capt. Gregory Rechkalov.
Johnson recently returned to active operations at his own request after a period of ground duty during which he aided in the planning of aerial coverage of the invasion. He previously had command of a Canadian wing and was given another on his return to active flying, which he prefers to desk work. The Canadians now are flying new Spitfires, armed with twin cannon and four machine-guns in the wings.
Top Canadian fighter ace is F/L George Beurling of Verdun, Que., with 31 shot down, most of them over Malta. He now is back in Canada.

Little Opposition
Aircraft of the R.A.F. 2nd Tactical Air Force had flown nearly 500 sorties by 6 p.m. with little opposition. A train with 15 tanks aboard was left in columns of dust and debris by bomb and rocket carrying Typhoons operating from Normandy bases.
F/L J. B. Kerr of Trenton, Ont., brought the number of aircraft destroyed in the air by the City of Edmonton Intruder Squadron to 90 when he shot down a JU-88 over Northern France early today. This squadron's grand total now is 136, including planes destroyed on the ground.
Three kills and several damaged, credited to R.C.A.F. airmen yesterday, also were reported tonight. F/L H. C. Trainor, Charlottetown, P.E.I., got two German planes southeast of Caen, and shared in the destruction of a third with S/L G. D. Robertson of Toronto.
McRobert's victims today were ME-109's. Both fell near Bernay.
Other kills yesterday were recorded by F/L R. K. Hayward, St. John's, Nfld., who destroyed a FW-190, and damaged a FW-190 and a ME-109, and F/Ls A. B. Whiteford, Midnapore, Alta., and R. S. Hyndman, Belleville, Ont., each damaged a ME-109.
In an attack on shipping early today, F/O J. H. A. Senecal of Rosetown, Sask., saw three bombs from his plane explode on an armed auxiliary off Dunkerque. Pieces of wreckage flew in all directions.


James Bernard Kerr  # J3493
Son of James Alexander Kerr &
Minta Amelia Kerr, of Trenton, Ontario
Home there
With 418 Mosquito Squadron
Killed In Action 18 July 1944 age 27
Flying Mosquito # HR 183
  during night Op against Kolberg, Germany

S/L Kerr has no known grave, his name is
inscribed on the Runnymede War Memorial,
Englefield Green, Egham, Surrey. Panel 243



With A Canadian Fighter Wing in Britain, May 21, 1944 - (CP) - The R.A.F. 2nd Tactical Air Fore, with a Canadian Spitfire group under Wing Cmdr. Lloyd V. Chadburn of Aurora playing a prominent part, ranged across the Netherlands, Belgium and France today in a great softening-up of the enemy's rail transport which might have to bear the brunt of troop-carrying traffic when the invasion begins.
Swift fighters and fighter bombers of the Tactical Air Force and Air Defence of Great Britain, Joined forces for their biggest operation of the war against the Nazis' overloaded and battered transport machine in Western Europe. Complete results of the operation are not yet compiled, but with bombs, cannon and machine guns, the British and Canadian fliers attacked this minimum list of targets with excellent results:
Thirty-five military supply trains, 13 locomotives (five of which were seen to blow up), a large number of military lorries, staff cars, tugs, barges, flak towers and other military installations.

Got Two Jerries
F/L J.B. Kerr of Toronto, member of the City of Edmonton Mosquito Squadron, destroyed an enemy bomber and shared in the destruction at a second with an American Mustang pilot during a sweep over the Low Countries.
Kerr downed the bomber of the French Leo 45 twin-engined type near Aalborg in Northern Denmark. The Canadian pilot, flying with an English navigator, fought off attacks by a FW-190 and a Messerschmitt 109 after shooting down the enemy plane.
The Canadians also struck in the area northwest of Paris, accounting for 18 trains as well as an assorted bag of lorries, army buses, staff cars dispatch riders and other enemy personnel.
The airmen flew through vicious anti-aircraft fire thrown up by flak cars which the German Command has attached to many trains moving through Europe in a futile effort to husband its dwindling rolling stock.
Besides the far reaching strike against the railroads, 2nd Tactical Air Force planes flew escort missions for light bombers and offensive patrols, damaging 12 barges on one thrust to the Brussels area.

Airfield Plastered
Again the Luftwaffe let the challenge in its skies go unheeded. The only enemy aircraft seen were on an airfield near Bloches and this was plastered with shellfire.
Twenty planes were lost, some of them Canadian, but the pilot of one fighter is known to be safe.
Chadburn did not go up himself but his old City of Oshawa Squadron, led by S/L Freddie Green, DFC, Toronto, was in the forefront of the Canadian attack. Pilots of the squadron attacked 13 trains, six of which were shared by F/L Don Hayworth of Regina and F/O R. Sharun of Toronto.
"The most amazing thing about it all," Green said, "was that you could fly about France and not see any enemy aircraft."
Three trains were damaged by F/Os A.G. Borland of Guelph and A.R. McFadden, Springdale, Alta. and four others were shared by F/L R.D. Forbes-Roberts, Vancouver; D.R. Cuthbertson, Brantford, and W/O Ron McRae, Spencerville.

Shot Up Four Trains
The Red Indian Squadron under S/L W.A. Conrad, DFC, Richmond, Ont., shot up four trains. F/O R. Cook of Clinton and P/O Bill Warfield of New York City teamed in a Joint attack on one train. Warfield went for the flak car in the centre of the train and then fired his guns at another in the rear, while Cook stopped the engine with a couple of well-placed bursts of cannon fire.
Another train was attacked by F/L Paul Johnson of San Diego, Cal., who also shared in damaging another two with F/L Johnny Drope of Regina and F/O Gordon Smith of Vancouver and Nelson. Johnson's Spitfire was hit by flak but he returned safely

Personnel Also Attacked
A standing train was attacked outside a station by a pair of Wolf Squadron pilots, F/L John Gordon of Edmonton and F/O Harry Boyle of Saskatoon. The engine was left with clouds of steam pouring from it.
Johnston and F/L C.T. Brown of Prescott attacked two truckloads of soldiers, and F/L Peter Logan of Montreal blasted a German staff car.
"An officer Jumped out and lay flat on the ground," said Logan. "I could see my bullets spattering around and through him."
F/L Andy MacKenzie, DFC, of Montreal, who has just been appointed a flight commander in the Wolf Squadron, afterwards set the staff car on fire.


Air Force Casualties

Ottawa, August 20, 1944 — The Department of National Defense for Air today issued casualty list No. 966 of the Royal Canadian Air Force, showing next of kin of those named from Ontario include:

KERR, James Bernard, S/L. - J.A. Kerr (father), Hotel Gilbert, Trenton.
ROSELAND, Arnold Walter, F/L - Mrs. A. W. Roseland (wife), Neustadt, Ont.

BILLING, Gerald Daniel, F/O - J. D. Billing (father), Essex, Ont.



Victories Include:

16 April 1944

21 May 1944
7/8 June 1944
21 June 1944
4/5 July 1944
9/10 July 1944
one Bu131
1/2 Ju87
one Bu131
1.33 LeO451
one Ju52/3m
two FW190s
one Ju88
one V-1
destroyed OTG &
damaged OTG
damaged OTG

3.33 / 0 / 0   plus 1 V-1
1.5 / 0 / 3  On The Ground

All with 418 Squadron




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