Stanley Malcolm "Red" McClarty

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Red McClarty

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Sarnia, Winnipeg Aces Each Down Two Huns

By P/O STANLEY HELLEUR, A Canadian Airfield in France, June 27, 1944 - (CP) - Four more ME-109's fell today to sharpshooters of S/L Dal Russel's Canadian Spitfire squadron over France. F/L Harry Dowding, D.F.C., of Sarnia, and F/O Stan McClarty of Winnipeg each destroyed two.
The squadron, one of the recently arrived units from Canada, now part of the Canadian wing led by Wing Cmdr. Johnny Johnson, spotted six Messerschmitts flying at low altitude and peeled to the attack from about 8.000 feet.
Both Dowding, who raised his own score to six destroyed, and McClarty were close on the tails of the victims when they made the kills. McClarty, for whom it was first blood, in fact, was so close he flew through the burning wreckage and scorched the propeller, starboard wing and elevator rudders of his Spit so badly the paint was peeled off.

One Big Sheet of Flame
"I guess I wasn't much more than 50 yards away from him when he blew up," the young redhead said. "He seemed to go up in one big sheet of flame and I was smelling fire and brimstone and burnt rubber. It was a little too close for comfort."
Only disappointed man in the squadron was F/O Larry Robillard, D.F.M., of Ottawa, who first went down to the attack and had two Me's as sitting ducks in front of him. "But when I pressed the button not a darned thing happened," he said. "The guns jammed. I'll never get a better chance than that."
Dowding's aircraft hadn't come to a full stop at its dispersal bay before his ground crew, led by LAC Maurice Smith of Ottawa, the armorer, were on the wings and asking Dowding all about it. "That makes four Gerries knocked off by guns that I have worked on," said Smith.

Smith's coworkers were LAC Johnny Christie, fitter, from Calgary, and LAC Bill Rigby, rigger, from Winnipeg.
It was a 'first’ for McClarty's ground crew and one of their immediate problems was getting paint to inscribe two swastikas on the fuselage of the scorched aircraft. LAC Jack Smale of Montreal was the armorer; LAC Charley Grasley, Lawson, Sask., the rigger, and Jack Squires, Tramping Lake, Sask., the fitter.


Born in Dauphin, Manitoba, 5 August 1918
Educated in Manitoba
Various jobs before the war
(Apprentice clerk in a pharmacy, labourer,
  physical instructor in Guelph, stenographer in Regina)
Enlisted in Regina, 23 August 1940
Posted to
No.1 Manning Depot, Toronto
No.1 Equipment Depot, Toronto, 11 Sept. 1940
No.1 ITS, Toronto, 10 November 1940
(Graduated and promoted LAC, 7 December 1940)
No.2 EFTS, Fort William, 8 December 1940
(graduated 26 January 1941)
No.1 Manning Depot, Toronto
No.1 SFTS, Camp Borden, 8 February 1941
Graduated and promoted Sergeant, 28 April 1941
For details on his training, see "Assessments" below
Central Flying School, Trenton, 19 May 1941
No.1 SFTS, 10 August 1941
Promoted Flight Sergeant, 1 December 1941
Promoted WO2, 1 June 1942
Commissioned 1 July 1942
Promoted Flying Officer, 1 March 1943
To Western Air Command, 5 June 1943
To No.132 Squadron, 10 June 1943
To No.14 Squadron, Alaska, 11 August 1943
To “Y” Depot, 14 January 1944
Embarked from Halifax, 20 January 1944
Arrived in UK, 31 January 1944
To No.144 Airfield, 12 February 1944
To No.442 Squadron, 13 February 1944
Promoted Flight Lieutenant, 1 April 1944
Described as 1st Allied pilot to land in France after D-Day
  (Can't be proven)
To No.3 PRC (tour expired), 8 December 1944
To No.83 GSU, 29 December 1944
To No.411 Squadron, 15 April 1945
KIA 3 May 1945 when his Spit (NH263) was hit by flak
He reported a leg wound & crashed into the ground
Buried in the Keil War Cemetery

He was the last member of 441 Sq. to die in WW2


McCLARTY, F/L Stanley Malcolm (J14006) - Distinguished Flying Cross - No.442 Squadron
Award effective 15 December 1944 as per London Gazette of that date &
AFRO 293/45 dated 16 February 1945

This officer has displayed exceptional keenness for operational flying. He has taken part in a large number of varied sorties and has set a fine example of skill and tenacity. He has effectively attacked very many mechanical vehicles and several locomotives. In air fighting he has destroyed three enemy aircraft.

NOTE: DHist file 181.009 D.2833 (RG.24 Volume 20632) has recommendation dated 26 October 1944 which bears comparison. As of that date he had flown 164 sorties (202 hours 25 minutes and was commanding "B" Flight:

Flight Lieutenant McClarty has continually proven himself to be an exceptional fighter pilot in his extraordinary keenness and ability to attack the enemy on the ground and in the air. As a Flight Commander and a leader of many dive-bombing sorties, his results have been particularly praiseworthy. At all times his leadership has materially contributed to the successes of the squadron. In combat he has destroyed three enemy aircraft, probably destroyed one and damaged two others. In particular, in one sortie he destroyed two and damaged a third enemy aircraft. Against ground targets he has destroyed and damaged 65 MET [Mechanical Enemy Transport] and damaged nine locomotives. In order to achieve this score he has attacked wherever the enemy could be found, often in areas very heavily defended by flak. His complete disregard for enemy opposition and his continued successes have won the deepest respect and admiration of the squadron.


Air Force Casualties

Killed On Active Service

McClarty, Stanley. M., D.F.C., F/L, Winnipeg, Man.



“Young NCO instructor, very keen and conscientious in his duties. Has cheerful personality and considered eligible of Acting Rank Warrant Officer II.” (W/C D. Edwards, No.1 SFTS, 30 May 1942).

“This officer has had considerable experience in YMCA organization and is a very competent athlete himself. This instructor has considerable instructing time to his credit. NCO experience and is very cordial in his manner. Students have on the average been good.” (W/C G.A. Hiltz, No.1 SFTS, 22 December 1942).

“A keen, hard working instructor whose students show the interest he takes in them.” (W/C G.A. Hiltz, No.1 SFTS, 11 March 1943).

“Good fighter material. Should do a good, steady job on operations.” (S/L B.R. Walker, Boundary Bay, 17 November 1943).

“F/L McClarty has done an excellent job while with the squadron, and held the responsible position of senior flight commander for a number of months. His keenness and ability were outstanding and his leadership contributed much to the success of the squadron. He was extremely courageous and never failed to produce good results. The squadron has lost a valuable asset on losing him.” (S/L W.A. Olmsted, 9 December 1944, on his posting as tour expired. Form credited him with 1,980 hours flown, 249 in previous six months.

Two reports of his ground strafs are of interest. The first was dated 24 April 1945, 1100 hours, involving two attacks on locomotives - one of about 1.5 seconds and 1.1 seconds with strikes seen, assessed as “Dive too steep and closing range too great” and the second of two bursts, each about one second with no strikes seen; “Opening too great a range, more than 1,200 yards.” The second report is also 24 April 1945, 1230 hours, one locomotive attacked (3.2 seconds) and strikes seen. Assessed as “Wander of aim.”

His service file includes a Combat Report dated 21 April 1945 as follows:

Time Up and Down - 1720-1908
Place of Attack - West of Parchim
Height of enemy aircraft on first sighting - 300 feet
Own height on first sighting - 500 feet.
Our casualties - nil
Enemy casualties - one Me.109 destroyed.

General Report - I was leading Blue Section 412 Squadron in the Parchim area and sighting a train went down to strafe it. As I opened fire on the train an Me.109 crossed my line of sight going the opposite direction. I finished my attack on the train and broke starboard after the Me.109; as I came in on the port side he broke port and after one turn I gave him a 1/4 second burst from about 100 yards. The burst hit him at the cockpit and he began burning at the lower part of the cockpit. His cockpit hood and sundry bits and pieces blew off, damaging my port radiator. The aircraft was seen to crash right on a railway line by the whole squadron. G.G.S, and cine camera used. I claim one Me.109 destroyed.


Interviewed in Regina, 23 August 1940 when described as “Intelligent, pleasant, good physique, mature, confident. Probable commission calibre.”

Course at No.1 ITS was 11 November to 9 December 1940. Courses and marks as follows: Mathematics (90/100), Armament, practical and oral (86/100), Visual Link (86/100), Drill (80/100), Law and Discipline (90/100). Placed 66th in a class of 198. “Pilot material. Good appearance. Lots of pep and determination. Cool and courageous.” (W/C G.S. O’Brian, 14 December 1940).

Course at No.2 EFTS was 9 December 1940 to 26 January 1941. Flew Tiger Moths (26.50 day dual, 40.55 day solo; also logged five hours in Link. A.A. Madore (instructor) wrote, “This pupil is ambitious, works hard and sticks to the finish; earned good will.” Ground training courses were Airmanship (184/200), Airframes (194/200), Aero Engines (135/200), Signals, practical (50/50), Theory of Flight (100/100), Air Navigation (162/200), Armament, oral (172/200). Graded 130/200 under “Qualities as an officer” and ranked 8th in a class of 27. “This airman has a lot of determination. His flying was of a high order and he should develop into a valuable pilot. His conduct has been very satisfactory.”

Course at No.1 SFTS was 9 February to 28 April 1941. Flew Yales (10.35 day dual, 24.50 day solo) and Harvards (27.25 day dual, 19.20 day solo, 4.25 night dual, 3.45 night solo). Of this, 19.45 on instruments. “Good on instruments. Needs more aerobatics.” Ground courses were Airmanship and Maintenance (129/200), Armament, written (82/100), Armament, practical (77/100), Navigation and Meteorology (114/200), Signals, written (83/100) and Signals, practical (48/50). Placed 15th in a class of 42. Average in formation flying and navigation; above average in night flying, determination and initiative and instrument flying. “Needs more practice on aerobatics” wrote W/C W.E. Kennedy, who nevertheless recommended him for fighters.

CFS course at Trenton was 16 June to 8 August 1941; 12.05 solo and 21.25 dual on single-engine aircraft, 10.00 solo and 10.40 dual on twins. “Pleasing manner. Flies with confidence. Good knowledge of patter. Very willing worker. Should be a good average instructor with experience.” (F/O V.S. Houston). “Should become a capable instructor with further experience. No outstanding faults.” (S/L J.W. Reid).

Tested January 1942 by F/L G.K. Preston who noted he had flown 297 hours instructing. Although his voice was high pitched and his manner hurried, he was deemed a good average type: “This instructor is a capable pilot in general flying and very good in aerobatics. Knowedge of sequence must be improved.”

Circumstances of death:

Report on loss of Spitfire NH263 dated 5 May 1945 and signed by S/L J.N. Newell:

No.411 Squadron was ordered to carry out an Armed Recce/Fighter Sweep in the Hamburg/Kiel area. The section of eleven aircraft led by S/L J.N. Newell was airborne at 0710 hours and at approximately 0830 hours the section carried out an attack on an enemy train approximately 20 miles south of Kiel, Map Reference N.5727; on completion of the attack F/L McClarty’s aircraft climbed to approximately 4,000 feet. The pilot reported over his R/T that he had been wounded in the leg by flak and requested that he be led to the nearest [airfield]. His No.2, F/O Shropshire, closed up and headed for Luneburg; after three or four minutes F/L McClarty appeared to slump forward and his aircraft peeled off and dived straight through a thin cloud layer. F/O Shropshire called on his R/T requesting F/L McClarty to bail out; he followed his aircraft down to the cloud layer but did not see it crash. It is presumed that the aircraft was lost while on air operations due to enemy action.


McClarty Lake

A lake three miles north and sixteen miles east of Cormorant Forest Reserve,
Northern Manitoba, was named after him in 1949. On Google Maps.


Victories Include :

27 June 1944
28 June 1944
13 July 1944
28 Sept 1944
  6 Oct 1944
21 Apr 1945
two Me109s
one FW190
one Me109
one FW190
one Me109
one Me109
Y2-S *


4 / 0 / 2

(claims from "Those Other Eagles" by Shores)

* Dal Russel led his pilots on an armed recce in the Lisieux area, when they sighted six Me109 fighter-bombers behind the lines. Green Section, which was in the best position, attacked. F/O S. M. McClarty fired on three in quick succession, crashing the first and blowing up the third. F/L H. J. Dowding also downed two for his 4th and 5th kills. Both men were so close to their victims, that their Spits were scorched by the blasts.




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