Canadians Bag 4 Nazis In Honor of New Chief
(By DOUGLAS AMARON) London, Nov. 23, 1941 - (CP) - Canadian fighter pilots, who celebrated the arrival of Air Vice-Marshal Harold Edwards in Britain by shooting down four German planes over Northern France, were visited today by the new air officer commanding the R.C.A.F. in Britain and his predecessor, Air Commodore L. F. Stevenson.
Less than twenty-four hours after he stepped from a plane which brought him from Canada, Vice-Marshal Edwards went to the Canadians station and heard first-hand accounts of the engagements of the previous day, which are considered by air authorities to be one of the finest performances of the war in the particular type of operation in which the Canadians were engaged.
The Canadians, who also were credited with one probably destroyed and four seriously damaged enemy aircraft, were the toast of the station, and received an informal message of congratulations from Sir Archibald Sinclair, Secretary of State for Air, and a formal message from Air Vice-Marshal Trafford Leigh-Mallory, under whose command the squadron operates.
"Congratulations on a splendid showing. Well done, Canadians!" said Vice-Marshal Leigh-Mallory's message, read to all the squadron's personnel.
Like an excited crowd of youngsters who have just won a football game, the Canadians talked shop most of the day, telling and retelling about their combats with what was estimated to be a force of at least sixty German fighters.
Get First Huns
Attention centered on Pilot Officer Ian Ormston of Montreal, Pilot Officer Don Blakeslee of Fairport Harbor, Ohio; Sergeant Omer Levesque of Mont Joli, Que., and Sergeant Don Morrison of Toronto, each of whom shot down his first plane of the war.
It was a particularly satisfying day for Blakeslee, Levesque and Morrison. Levesque, in addition to his confirmed victory, came to grips with a second Nazi and last saw him breaking up in mid-air, while Blakeslee and Morrison also both inflicted serious damage on a second German plane.
The squadron's commanding officer, Squadron Leader Norman Johnstone of Winnipeg and Regina, and Sergeant Jeff Northcott of Minnedosa, Man., were given credit for the other damaged German aircraft.
"Those boys made a might good show of it," said Johnstone, beaming with fatherly pride. "The odds were considerably against them, both in numbers and in consideration of the sweep that took us over enemy territory. It was the first real flight for a majority of them and they pitched right into battle with plenty of courage and no end of ability."
Ormston, who with Flight-Lieutenant E. L. Neal of Quebec City, Blakeslee and Morrison dived into a group of Messerschmitt 109's and new Focke-Wulf 190's, literally blew his Messerschmitt out of the air.
Levesque, who said that "once in action I forgot the perils because things were happening too fast," forced the pilot of the first plane he attacked to bail out and shot part of the wing off the second.
“He Simply Exploded”
Blakeslee, who enlisted at Windsor, Ont., said he spotted the Messerschmitts at 15,000 feet and dived on them at 6,000. "All we did was dive and a one-second burst got my man," he said. "He simply exploded."
Morrison, who earlier in his first week with the squadron, scored a probable, spotted three Germans on the tail of Neal's plane.
"I came up from below and knocked off one," Morrison said. "He apparently didn't know I was there. Later I nearly joined three Focke-Wolf 190's which I thought were Spitfires. I took a crack at the last one and when last seen he was pouring out black smoke."
The Canadian fighter squadron co-operated with an English squadron whose members bagged another two enemy craft.
A veteran RAF wing commander with a personal score of eighteen confirmed victories led the combined English-Canadian squadrons operating from the fighter command's top-scoring station. The six planes destroyed brought the station's total of aircraft shot down since the start of the war to nearly 900.
"We saw fifteen Messerschmitts about two miles below us climbing hard," the wing commander said in describing the action. "Leaving the British squadron on top, I sent down several sections of the Canadians to attack. I stayed with the others, keeping a look-out in case assistance was wanted. It wasn't. Those boys just sailed into the German fighters and they were a grand sight to watch, whooping down and mixing it with the Hun
Chased Into France
"After the fight had been going on for some time our pilots started to chase the Messerschmitts deeper into France, and, as I didn't want them to get too widely scattered, I told them over the radio to come back and call it off. It was well that they did, for another bunch of Messerschmitts had approached higher up."
The wing commander sent the English squadron after these, and one German fighter promptly was sent smoking down to earth. Both squadrons then started for home, running into another batch of enemy fighters on the way.
During the flight home Levesque, who transferred to the air force from a French-Canadian army unit, got his Nazi.
"He was having a tough struggle," the wing commander said. "The Messerschmitt he was fighting finally plunged into a wood just inside the French coast and exploded like a bomb."
Over the coast and the Channel the squadrons met more German fighters in ones and twos, and the commander estimated that they encountered about sixty in all.
"Really," he said, "it was a grand afternoon for both squadrons."
J. P. Bickel, Toronto mine owner, who has held positions of importance in the Ministry of Aircraft Production, arrived with Air Vice-Marshal Edwards, as did Brigadier G. R. Turner, who is returning to his post at Canadian Corps Headquarters after a visit to Canada.
Mr. Bickel was met by Sir Archibald Rowlands, Permanent Secretary of the Aircraft Production Ministry. He said he was here "for a couple of weeks."
Flight Lieutenant Bill Broadribb of Ottawa also accompanied Edwards.
The flight across the Atlantic was described as "cold."
|Born in Montreal, 27 June 1921.
Enlisted there 16 August 1940.
Graduated from No.2 SFTS, 1 April 1941 as P/O.
Trained at No.52 OTU, 16 June to 29 August 1941 (4 Sqn.).
Posted to RAF overseas, 19 May 1941.
Flew with 401 Squadron.
Repatriated 26 July 1942.
To No.1 OTU, Bagotville, 18 August 1942.
To RAF overseas, 8 May 1943.
Medal presented at Buckingham Palace 29 June 1943.
Appointed C/O of No. 411 Squadron, September 1943.
Injured in flying accident, 22 December 1943.
Repatriated 29 January 1944.
Commanded No.133 Squadron in Canada, 9 June 1944 till
Released 9 April 1945.
Appointed Honourary Colonel, No.411 Squadron, March 1986.
Photo RE-74-421 shows him with Jeep Neal & Don Blakeslee.
Dominion Airmen Figured in Fight With Battleships
Shot Down at Least Two of 18 Enemy Planes That Were Destroyed
London, Feb. 13, 1942 - (CF Cable) - Canadian squadrons from all three Royal Air Force commands — fighter, bomber, coastal — took part in attacks on the German warships Scharnhorst, Gneisenau and Prinz Eugen, and shot down at least two of the 13 German aircraft destroyed in the great air and naval battle in and over the English Channel.
First details of the part Dominion pilots played in the confused fighting over the misty channel waters were described in a brief release from R.C.A.F. headquarters. Fuller accounts are expected later in the day, when the airmen, rested from their day-long combats, tell their own stories of the attacks which cost Britain 42 planes.
Bring Down Two Planes
F/S G. A. G. Ryckman, of London, Ont., attached to an R.C.A.F. Spitfire squadron, and three members of the first Canadian squadron to arrive in Britain, P/Os A. L. Harvey, of London, Ont.; Ian Ormston, of Montreal, and Sgt. Don Morrison of Toronto, accounted for two enemy planes destroyed, probably destroyed a third and damaged at least three.
Ryckman shot down a Messerschmitt 109F and damaged another while the three other Canadians, members of another squadron, who flew their Hurricanes into the middle of a protecting escort of German fighters, shared their confirmed, probable and damaged planes among them, none taking individual credit for the successes.
Several Canadian-manned Hudsons from the famed R.C.A.F. Demon Squadron, of the coastal command, joined in the direct attack on the warships, but by the time they arrived at the scene of fighting the weather had deteriorated considerably and they were unable to determine immediately the effect of their attacks.
At least two Canadian bomber squadrons were also in action, Eight Hampden bombers from a squadron commanded by W/C N. W. Timmerman, of Kingston, Ont., and Wellingtons from W/C R. M. Fenwick-Wilson's squadron were among the force which strove to prevent the raiders from reaching haven at Heligoland. Fenwick-Wilson is from Rock Creek, B.C.
Canadian Pilots and Crews Were in Thick of Air Fighting
To Stop Nazi Battleships
(By DOUGLAS AMARON) Somewhere in England, Feb. 13, 1942 - (CP) - Canadian pilots and air crews were in the thick of the fighting in the Straits of Dover that accompanied the passage under fire of the German battleships Scharnhorst and Gneisenau and the cruiser Prinz Eugen.
Cannon-firing Spitfires, with Canadians at the controls, accounted for at least three of the eighteen German aircraft known to have been destroyed in providing air protection to the German squadron on its voyage from Brest, in Western France, through the English Channel to a German port.
P/O Ian Ormston of Montreal and Sergeant G. A. G. Ryckman of London, Ont., each bagged one of the German planes, while the third destroyed outright was the joint work of P/O A. L. Harley of London, Ont., and Sergeant Don Morrison of Toronto.
Other German aircraft were marked down as either probably destroyed or damaged before the blazing guns of Canadian airmen. Sergeant Deane Macdonald of Toronto got one of these.
Canadian squadrons from all three R.A.F. commands — fighter, bomber, coastal — took part in the action. Among these were several Canadian-manned Hudson bombers from the R.C.A.F. "Demon Squadron" of the Coastal Command. Canadian bombers in the fight included eight Hampdens from the outfit commanded by W/C N. W. Timmermann of Kingston, Ont., and Wellingtons from the squadron of W/C R. M. Fenwick-Wilson of Rock Creek, B.C.
Pilots of the R.C.A.F.'s 1st Fighter Squadron — to which Harley, Morrison and Ormston belong — attacked the vast German aerial screen in line astern and raked enemy machines with the devastating fire of their mufti-cannon Spitfires.
"We went in in three sections," said Harley, "after Morrison had reported seeing an Me109F around 11 o'clock. We followed him to about 1,000 feet above the clouds, gradually drawing within range. Once we got in range we could see our cannon shells back in his fuselage. Then they probably entered the cockpit. "Morrison was following me. We both fired at the Me109 and he went straight down into the sea. Then we flew right alongside the Scharnhorst. The sky was literally filled with kites and we could see our own section sticking very close together."
Ormston was following on his tail, Harley continued, and he disposed of another 109F. "He must have had him dead in his sights," the airman said. "We saw Jerry going down in flames and smoke."
A score of Canadian pilots and other members of R.C.A.F. bomber crews who attempted to prevent the Nazi ships from reaching their Heligoland base told stories of cloud and mist, snow, sleet and rain and constant opposition of enemy guns. These men took part in attacks after the enemy had run through the Strait of Dover and had started his flight up the North Sea.
"Clouds . . . terrific rain . . . couldn't see anything," were remarks generally heard among the Canadians after they returned. But there were some who caught glimpses of the warships through holes in the mist and braved their flak to dive on them, only to lose them again before they could tell whether they had found the mark or missed.
Wellington bombers from Fenwick-Wilson's squadron made the first attack early yesterday afternoon, with the commanding officer himself and his crew, which included Sergeant A. K. Lomas of Toronto, leading the first flight of three aircraft.
Ontario Men There
They were accompanied by Sergeant R. L. Baltzer of Harrow, Ont., and an English pilot with crews which included P/O F. A. G. W. Gerty of Abbotsford, B.C.; Sergeants G. R. Graves of Fort William, and G. R. Jeffries of Montreal, and Flight-Sergeants L. Weakley of St. Joseph, Mo.; P. E. M. Leith of Toronto, E. C. Phillips of Edmonton, and M. P. F. Robson of Vernonville, Ont.
There was "10-10 cloud all the way," Fenwick-Wilson reported when he returned to base. "There were three distinct layers of cloud. We flew around for an hour trying to find breaks, but it was no use."
A second formation of three machines led by S/L John Fauquier of Ottawa landed next and had the same story to tell, except that they had descended to 250 feet looking for the ships.
"There was terrific rain under the clouds," Fauquier said. "I've never seen anything like it before. We went down low enough to see any thing there was to be seen, but all we could see was the sea."
Fauquier's crew included Sergeants H. S. Hill of Montreal, R. A. Gardiner of Hanover, Ont., and F. J. Tetro of Toronto. The second machine, which also drew blank, was piloted by F/L L. P. Frizzle of Tampa, Fla., and included F/S A. Smith of Dunbarton, Ont., and Sergeants W. B. Kayser of South Porcupine, Ont., and A. J. Francis of Saskatoon.
Sergeants C. W. Higgins of Charlottetown and J. W. Anderson of Vernon, B.C., were the Canadians in the third plane, and they too, told how they had "stooped around but couldn't find anything."
The crew of another Wellington which returned to base after dark had a different story to tell, but one with the same ending, "We were darn lucky," said Sergeant W. E. N. Field of Montreal, the plane’s second pilot. "There was cloud, cloud and more cloud, and it was getting toward dusk.
Saw Nazi Battleship
"Then we came across a break in the clouds and there below, just for an instant, was a German battleship. We went over the break in the cloud too quickly to bomb. The hole was very small and we were in cloud again before we could take any action. The flak was pumping up too. It was all aver the place."
Canadians See Action On Air Escort After Paratroops Patrol
Sgt. Morrison, Toronto, Saves Fellow Flier and Gets 'Probable'
'BUNCH OF 109's'
(By LOUIS V. HUNTER) An R.A.F. Station Somewhere in England, March 1, 1942 - (CP) - Canadian fighter pilots and bomber crews took part in Saturday's paratroop-Commando raid that destroyed an enemy wireless location station at Bruneval, France, but for a Canadian Spitfire squadron which formed part of the umbrella for the raid the dawn job was just the start of the day's work.
A few hours after the squadron completed what its members called a "routine patrol" it was in action again. It escorted Blenheim bombers in Saturday's daylight attack on Ostend, during which Sergeant Pilot Don Morrison, young Toronto flier who is the squadron's "high man," added to his score one plane probably shot down and one damaged. His tally had stood on Feb. 21 at two destroyed, two probables and one damaged.
Flight Lieutenant Al Harley of London, Ont., was one of those in charge of a section of Spitfires guarding the vessels carrying the returning paratroops. The squadron's commanding officer, Squadron Leader A. G. Douglas, R.A.F., and Flight Lieutenant Gene Neal of Quebec City were in charge of the other sections.
"It was just like an ordinary patrol," said lanky Flight Lieutenant Harley. "There wasn't a thing around and I didn't even see the ships."
Pilot Officer Hugh Merritt of Smithville, Ont., agreed it was a "dull trip." He said he met the convoy about midway across the Channel and "saw the ships all right, but I don't know yet what they did."
The airmen in Harley's section were Flight Sergeant Deane Macdonald of Toronto, Flight Sergeant Jack Ferguson of Victoria, a former star of the Calgary Bronks football team, and Sergeant Pilot Gerry Clarke of Winnipeg, who was reported missing after the afternoon operation.
Sergeant Pilot Jack Aubrey Ferguson of South Port Morien, N.S.; Flight Sergeant Jim Whitman of Edmonton; Pilot Officer Ian Ormston of Montreal; Pilot Officer Don Blakeslee of Cleveland, Ohio and Morrison were the other pilots in the fighter screen.
Canadians in Crews
Canadian members of the crews of the Wellingtons and Whitleys, which carried the paratroops, included, besides pilots whose names are not immediately available: Flight Sergeant A. Bradshaw of. Edmonton; Wireless Operator-Air Gunner Sergeants L. J. Narveau of Cornwall, Ont. and L. D. Jackson of Saint John, N.B.; Air Gunner R. J. Heather of Toronto; Observer J. Dremers of Timmins, Ont.; Wireless Operator-Air Gunners A. E. Shaw of Paris, Ont. and R. W. Taylor of Victoria; Observer T. R. Cattle of Toronto; Air Gunners D. F. Campbell of Toronto, R. J. Chisholm of Vancouver and H. W. Bydwell of Montreal and Wireless Operator-Air Gunner H. F. Tice of Hamilton, Ont.
During the second escort job of the day Morrison tackled a Focke-Wulf 190 which was roaring in to attack Ormston. It was the second time the dark-haired Toronto youngster had saved his Montreal companion from attack by a Nazi aircraft.
"Ormy," Morrison said, "was about 100 yards in front of me when the 190 suddenly appeared about fifty yards over my head, going for Ormy. I sort of pulled up after him and chased him around, but I took a squirt at him and saw the shells explode in the front of his cockpit. He just rolled over and went down in a dive with a trail of smoke behind him."
Went for Two More
Morrison followed the Nazi down to 12,000 feet in an 8,000-foot dive, but had to leave him "because I saw two more Jerries over on my left and went for them."
"They attacked a bunch of Spits," he continued. "One of them broke off and I took a squirt. He started shooting out black smoke and I was just about to close in and administer the coup de grace when two more Jerries came down and began to circle around. I figured it was time to go home — and did."
Morrison and his companions were uncertain what happened to Clarke. The Toronto flier said he did not see Clarke during the action and Harvey said he heard the Winnipegger report over his radiotelephone that he had been hit.
"We ran into a bunch of 190's on the way back and apparently one of them went for Clarke," Harvey said. "I heard him say his aircraft was hit but that he was all right. Later someone in another squadron saw a Spit going down and it must have been Gerry."
Stratford Flyer Shows Coolness
Escapes By Parachute Over Channel When Ship Blasted
London, April 1, 1942 — (CP Cable) — The R.C.A.F. revealed today that Sgt.-Pilot C. S. Pope, of Stratford, Ont., saved himself with singular coolness via parachute after his Spitfire was seriously damaged over the English channel.
Serving with one of the most famous R.C.A.F. fighter command squadrons, he was heading homeward after a fighter sweep immediately behind the section leader, F/L E. L. Neal, Quebec, when two German Focke-Wulfes dived.
P/O Ian Ormston, Montreal, led several pilots, who delayed their fire, onto the enemy's tail and was credited with the probable destruction of one of the planes, while the remainder of the section battled a big Focke-Wulf formation.
Pope's plane was raked with machine-gun and cannon fire which damaged the control surfaces. Be managed to head for the English coast but encountered trouble in bailing out when his knees jammed under the instrument panel.
The big fellow, after failing to throw himself clear in a fast dive, eventually scrambled from the cockpit and with dexterous chute handling managed to land safely near the coast.
Jeep Neal & Ian Ormston before either one was gonged
DFC Awards Are Made To Two Canadian Pilots
By Louis Hunter, London, May 27, 1942 - (CP) - Flight Lieutenant Eugene Neal of Quebec and Pilot Officer Ian Ormston of Montreal, a couple of young fighter pilots who have been in almost 100 operational flights together, were awarded the Distinguished Flying Cross tonight and the announcement of their decorations broke up a team that has accounted for at least four Nazi aircraft.
They will still fly in the same squadron, but Ormston, a tousle-haired youngster of 21 who has been serving in a flight commanded by Neal, has been promoted to the rank of Flight Lieutenant and given command of a flight of his own. Spitfire pilots, they both are members of 401 Squadron of the R.C.A.F., commanded by Squadron Leader A. G. Douglas, an Englishman who also was awarded the D.F.C.
The citation described stocky, fair-haired Neal as "a skilled and determined pilot." He has participated in ninety sweeps, convoy patrols and other operations and "throughout he has displayed great keenness and has set an inspiring example."
"On one occasion his aircraft was very extensively damaged by enemy fire. Despite this he skillfully landed it in a field. On another occasion after several combats and when running short of petrol he was forced to leave his craft by parachute whilst over the sea. He was rescued some two hours later," the citation said.
Neal, who is 25, was officially credited with destruction of a Messerschmitt 109 and assistance in destruction of another.
Ormston, who likes nothing better than a good sky battle, has destroyed three Nazi aircraft, probably destroyed another and has shared in the destruction of a fifth.
A keen flier, his enthusiasm drew official praise. The citation said: "He displayed exceptional keenness to engage the enemy." He has been on almost 100 operational flights.
Douglas has completed more than 100 operational trips and destroyed two enemy machines in addition to probably damaging two others.
The list of awards also contained the name of Squadron Leader J. A. F. MacLachlan, D.F.C., of Southampton, England, who has destroyed three enemy aircraft since he started flying again after the loss of his left arm in aerial combat over Malta. He is the leader of a Hurricane night fighter squadron which has been active over enemy bases in Northern France.
ORMSTON, P/O Ian Campbell (J5028) - Distinguished Flying Cross - No.401 Sq.
Award effective 28 May 1942 as per London Gazette dated 29 May 1942 &
AFRO 880-881/42 dated 12 June 1942.
This officer has completed many sweeps, convoy patrols and other sorties. He has destroyed three enemy aircraft, probably destroyed one and assisted in the destruction of another. He has displayed exceptional keenness to engage the enemy.
Went Into Action Two Years Ago, Canadian Fliers Have Won 6 DFC's
Proud Record Compiled by Only R.C.A.F. Unit in Battle of Britain
By FLYING OFFICER BASIL DEAN, R.C.A.F. London, July 17, 1942 — Canada's first fighter squadron to precede overseas — the only R.C.A.F. unit to serve during the Battle of Britain — has just celebrated its second anniversary. It was two years ago in June that the squadron landed in Great Britain.
Since that day, it has carved out a fine name for itself in the Battle of Britain. It accounted for a considerable number of German raiders, and since then took a leading part in the great daylight sweeps over Northern France which Fighter Command has been staging during the summers of 1941 and 1942.
Today it is commanded by Squadron Leader Keith Hodson of London, Ont., former chief instructor at the service flying school in Moncton, N.B., with 2,000 flying hours in his log book. A former commanding officer, who was moved recently, is Squadron Leader A. G. Douglas, an R.A.F. pilot who was awarded the D.F.C. for his work with the squadron. Two other members of the squadron got D.F.C.s at the same time — Flight Lieutenant Eugene (Jeep) Neal of Quebec City and Flight Lieutenant Ian (Ormie) Ormston of Montreal. Seven decorations in all have been awarded to members of the squadron.
Two Squadrons Merge
The squadron was born from the amalgamation of two pre-war Canadian squadrons, No. 1, which was based at Calgary, and No. 115, which had its headquarters at Montreal. The boys first got together on the boat early in June, and by the time they landed at an English port, were fairly well acquainted. First, they were at "A" for a couple of days after landing, and then went to a station in the vicinity of "B" for three weeks. July 7 saw them at "X," not far from London. It was at the latter station, they say, that "we found out what the war was all about."
A day or two before they were scheduled to leave for still another station Jerry came over to leave his visiting card with the Canadians.
"That night we really got a pasting," the veteran members of the squadron recall. There were no casualties, however, although a bomb went right through the orderly room. Some members of the squadron will tell you that this bomb was the only "good" one the Nazis have dropped in the whole war. It destroyed, it seems, many squadron records, including the crime sheets. All petty offenses any one had committed prior to that date, therefore, were wiped out and forgotten.
The squadron moved on to another station according to schedule, however, and it was at this new station, Aug. 26, that it first went into combat as a unit. A few days previously Squadron Leader (now Group Captain) Ernest McNab, who later won the D.F.C., went on an operational trip with another squadron "just to see what it was like," and managed to shoot down an enemy aircraft. The first action as a squadron, however, was on Aug. 26 and it was the date they lost their first pilot, Flying Officer Robert L. Edwards.
It was a grand record for the first time out, however. The squadron was ordered to intercept twenty-five enemy bombers raiding Britain, and they did so with a vengeance. They destroyed three Do215’s and damaged three others, and pretty well broke up the formation.
In the show that day were a number of pilots whose names have since become bywords in Canada in this war. There were Flight Lieutenants G. R. McGregor, A. Dean Nesbitt and V. B. Corbett, and Flying Officers Jean Paul Desloges, H. de M. Molson and D. B. Russel. Including the squadron leader, six of these men now wear the Distinguished Flying Cross.
Two of the first Focke-Wulf 190's shot down by Allied airmen went to the credit of the squadron on Nov. 22, when the total score was four destroyed, one probable and four damaged. On that day Flight Lieutenant Ian Ormston, later to become a flight commander and holder of the Distinguished Flying Cross, got his first enemy aircraft. It was the first aerial combat, too, for another who was to become a Flight Commander with a D.F.C., Flight Lieutenant E. L. (Jeep) Neal. Flying Officer H. A. (Hank) Sprague was reported missing in that day's operations, and is now a prisoner of war.
Then on Feb. 12 of this year the squadron took part in the "Scharnhorst do," up the English Channel, and in this affair raised a score of two destroyed and two damaged. Many times, this spring and early summer, they have gone out over the Channel or over France without seeing an enemy. At other times he has fled home.
While many former members have gone to other squadrons, the "Newcomers" still carry on. There is Sergeant Don Morrison of Toronto, who has destroyed two enemy aircraft and helped destroy another, besides between two and three damaged on his board. There is Ian Ormston, who destroyed two and helped destroy another, besides a probable and a damaged. And there are many others.
HUN FLYERS TAKE NO CHANCES
UNLESS ALL ODDS WITH THEM
Montreal Veteran Asserts Attacks Over France Divert Germans
POUNCE ON UNWARY
Ottawa, Aug. 15, 1942 — (CP) — German airmen are "fighting this war to win it" and take no chances on unnecessary fights in the air, F/L Ian C. Ormston, of Montreal, said in an interview here today.
Takes New Duties
Veteran of 72 sweeps over enemy territory and winner of the Distinguished Flying Cross, Ormston is back in Canada to take on other duties, perhaps instructing new pilots, perhaps with Canada's home defence squadrons.
The offensive sweeps carried out regularly by the Royal Air Force with Canadian squadrons participating are for the purpose of picking fights with the enemy, Ormston said. Usually the attackers find the enemy fighters up in the sky waiting for them. If they do they drop a few bombs to stir him up.
The attackers start out with an advantage in the maneuverability of their aircraft because the Spitfire can turn more quickly than the German fighters, but the Germans usually have the advantage of position as they are high up waiting for the attack and pounce on the invaders.
Use Old Trick
So it is usually the Germans who start the fight unless you see something below you, in which case it is easy to pick him out. When the German fighters get on the tail of the attackers from above the fight starts. In two or three turns a Spitfire can get behind an enemy fighter and so gain the advantage. The enemy fighters usually make off before that happens.
"One of their favorite tricks is to send down a stooge who dives through us," said Ormston. "If any one follows him his goose is cooked as the others are right on his tail. They do that regularly but we don't fall for it."
All of Ormston's many fights in which he is credited with destroying three enemy aircraft, probable destruction of one and assisting in the destruction of another, took place over enemy territory, except one when the Germans followed his squadron home and attacked five miles off the Dover coast.
"It is nice being able to fight near your own shores and to know that if you are shot down you can bail out to safety. The German fighters over France have that satisfaction all the time."
For a time the R.A.F. sweeps over France met with no opposition at all, said Ormston. Then the enemy started using his fighters and from this he concluded that the sweeps had succeeded in keeping busy some air strength which might have been used against Russia.
Now that he has seen his parents Ormston wants to get back overseas. He prefers that to duty in Canada, but having done his stint of fighting, the rules of the R.C.A.F. call for a turn on this side of the Atlantic.
R.C.A.F.'S BAG DURING WEEK INCLUDES SUB
Ottawa, Dec. 17, 1943 (CP) — Mosquito pilots of the R.C.A.F. overseas destroyed one Heinkel 111 and damaged another during the last week, while the two-man crew of another Mosquito shot down three of four bombers destroyed over England last Friday and a Coastal Command Flying Fortress, whose second pilot was a Canadian, sank a U-boat after two depth-charge attacks.
In addition, the R.C.A.F. said in a summary of overseas operations tonight, Spitfire squadrons of the RCAF were active last Monday carrying out sweeps in support of United States Flying Fortresses and Liberators hammering targets in Northwest Germany. Two squadrons later escorted Marauders of the United States Army Air Force in an attack on Schipol airfield in Amsterdam.
Last Tuesday P/O C. B. Witt of Morden, Man., shared in the victory of a Coastal Command Beaufighter squadron off the coast of Norway. Two Beaufighters were patrolling when they saw a Dornier three-engined, long-range flying boat ahead. They immediately attacked it and set it on fire.
Crew of the Fighter Command Mosquito which destroyed three bombers last Friday was F/O R. D. Schultz of Bashaw, Alta., and F/O Vernon Williams of Hamilton, the plane's pilot and navigator respectively.
They took off to intercept enemy bombers attacking England and shot down a Dornier 217, blowing it up in mid-air. They then encountered and destroyed another Do217, accounting for their third victim after their own aircraft had been damaged and was flying on only one engine.
New Base Effective
The Coastal Command plane which sank the U-boat was captained by an Englishman. The submarine was the first victim to fall to a squadron operating from newly acquired bases in the Azores.
F/O D. Thompson of Westmount, Que., second pilot, described the second attack against the U-boat as "a beautiful straddle."
The Heinkel 111 shot down Sunday was destroyed by F/L Robert Kipp of Kamloops, B.C. The second Heinkel was severely damaged by F/O J. Johnson of Omemee. Kipp's navigator was F/O Pete Huletsky of Montreal and Johnson's was F/O J. Gibbons of Vancouver. The combat occurred in daylight over France. (Johnson and Kipp shared them both –ed)
Squadrons commanded by S/L E. L. (Jeep) Neal, D.F.C., of Quebec; S/L I. G. Ormston, D.F.C., of Montreal; S/L George C. Keefer, D.F.C., of Charlottetown; S/L R. A. Buckham, D.F.C. (United States), and S/L G. M. Magwood, D.F.C., of Toronto carried out sweeps on Monday.
In close escort of United States heavy bombers were squadrons commanded by S/L G. W. Northcott, D.F.C., of Minnedosa, Man., and S/L F. E. Green, D.F.C, of Toronto.
The squadrons commanded by Buckham and Northcott escorted the American marauders in their attack on Schipol airfield.
Canadian Fliers Get 50thVictim
London, July 20, 1943 - (CP) - The 1st Canadian Fighter Squadron in Britain marked up its 50th destroyed German aircraft in a sweep over occupied Western Europe yesterday, it was announced today.
F/L Ian Ormston, D.F.C., of Montreal; F/O R. K. Hayward of St. John's, Nfld., and Sgts. K. B. Woodhouse of Prince Albert, Sask., and D. M. Wilson of Regina, shared the kill.
F/S H. W. Bowker of Granby, Que., a train-busting ace, scored a probable.
Canadian Fighter Unit Downs 201 Nazi Planes
An Advanced R.C.A.F. Airfield in Holland, Dec. 18, 1944 - (CP) - Fliers of a Canadian Spitfire wing under G/C G. R. McGregor and W/C Dal Russel, both of Montreal, became the second to pass the 200 mark in German aircraft destroyed since the wing’s formation, when they shot down a pair of FW190's over Geldern in Germany.
First to establish the mark was the wing commanded jointly by G/C W. R. MacBrien of Ottawa, and W/C Johnny Johnson, whose fliers shot down five aircraft Oct. 8, raising their total to 202, and subsequently to 207.
The McGregor-Russel wing's total stands at 201.
The two Canadian units have destroyed 314 Huns between them since D-Day, scored more than 15 probables and damaged upwards of 200. In addition to crippling German road and rail transport with dive-bombing, as well as machine-gun and cannon offensives.
The first Jerry destroyed by McGregor-Russel pilots, July 19, 1943, was a FW190, joint victim of S/L Ian Ormston of Montreal, and S/L Bob Hayward of St. John's, Nfld. Since then many aces have been born within the wing. The most recent being F/L Don Laubman, of Edmonton, with 15 destroyed; S/L R. I. Smith, Regina, 11 destroyed; F/L W. J. Banks and F/O D. R. Jamieson, both of Toronto, each with eight destroyed.
George Keefer (w/ Rommel), Doug Matheson (w/ Duke) & Ian Ormston (w/ Flight)
Victories Include :
|22 Nov 1941
12 Feb 1942
29 Mar 1942
1 May 1942
19 July 1943
2.33 / 1.25 / 1
| Shared with Al Harley & Don Morrison.
 Shared with Bob Hayward, D. M. Wilson & Ken Woodhouse.