These four photos show BIll while in Alaska
Bo Middleton, Bill Weeks & Del English |
Bill Weeks with a P-40 (The Maj?) in Alaska
Hugh Morse, George Millar, Bill Campbell & Bill Weeks
To see a few more, click here
|10 January 1924
||Born. Home in Loggieville, NB.
|10 January 1942
||Enlisted [Per Bill Weeks] (in Moncton, NB)
|13 Jan 42 to 27 Mar 42
||Lachine, QC, No. 5 Manning Depot (later became Dorval Airport) [Log Book - Record of Service]
|28 Mar 42 to 8 May 42
||Summerside, PE, No. 9 Service Flying Training School (SFTS) [Log Book - Record of Service]
|9 May 42 to 30 Aug 42
||No. 5 ITS at Belleville [Log Book - Record of Service]
|31 Aug 42 to 20 Oct 42
||Windsor (Windsor Mills), QC RCAF No. 4 Elementary Flying Training School [Log Book - Record of Service]
|26 Oct 42 to 12 Feb 43
||Saint-Hubert, QC RCAF No. 13 Service Flying Training School (SFTS) [Log Book - Record of Service]
|(5 November 1942)
||Getting along well. Soloed Harvard, 1942-11-02 (confirmed in log) [Letter to his mother, Eva Weeks]
|17 February 1943
||Promoted to Pilot Officer [Log Book]
|16 Mar 43 to 12 May 43
||Bagotville, QC RCAF No. 1 Operational Training Unit (OTU) approximately 48:15 in Hurricanes [Log Book]
|13 May 43 to 27 May 43
||Two weeks leave [Picture at Loggieville home]
|(28 May 1943)
||Departing by train from Newcastle to Montreal (went to Rymark Tavern on Peel Street in Montreal [Per Bill Weeks]). From Montreal to Vancouver via Port Arthur and Winnipeg. Arrived in Winnipeg, MB at 10:00 Stranded with "Dempsey and his wife" after disembarking train and missing departure. Stayed at the Royal Alexandra Hotel. Will be in Vancouver on Monday 1943-05-31 [Letter to his mother, Eva]
|31 May 1943
||Arrive Vancouver [Letter to his mother]
|1 June 1943
||From Vancouver to Seattle (unsure of method of transport) [Estimated]
|2 June 1943
||Left from Seattle, WA on a USN DC-3 for Kodiak, AK [Log Book]
|4 June 1943
||Arrives at Kodiak, AK, RCAF 111 Sqn [Log Book]
|5 June 1943
||First P-4O flight [Log Book - Record of Service]
|9 June 1943
||Mechanical failure on landing, crashed P-40E No. 1051. Sent it's clock home to Dad (see below)
|26 June 1943
||Posted to RCAF 14 Squadron at Fort Glenn AAB Umnak, AK [Log Book - Record of Service]
|19 August 1943
||Promoted to Flying Officer [Log Book] (Would not be informed until following March [Letter to J.E. 1944-03-07])
|21 September 1943
||Departs Umnak, AK (in P-40E) [Log Book]
|5 Oct 43 to 21 Dec 43
|| Posted to RACF 14 Squadron at Boundary Bay, BC [Log Book - Record of Service]
|5 October 1943
||Arrives Boundary Bay, BC (in P-40E) [Log Book]
|8 Oct 43 to 7 Nov 43
||Home on Leave (noted in log)
|(12 October 1943)
||Arriving (in Newcastle, NB) tomorrow (1943-10-13) on Scotian at 20:50 (4 day trip means he likely spent 1943-10-12 to 1943-11-03 at home) [Telegraph to his father, Ellery Weeks]
|10 Nov 43 to 21 Dec 43
||Training flights in Harvards and P-40Es at Boundary Bay, BC
|(12 November 1943)
||Likes Boundary Bay. Rumour is they will be there until February before posted overseas, wasn't much to write home about the Aleutians (mentioned receiving cookies) [Letter to his mother]
|1 December 1943
||RCAF 14 Squadron renamed 442 Squadron and posted overseas December 1943/January 1944 [Log Book - Record of Service]
|(8 December 1943)
||Going to Vancouver 1943-12-09. The morning of 1943-12-07 he and Ken Caleral (spelling?) went looking for pheasants in a field (hungry again?) [Letter to his mother]
|22 Dec 43 to 12 Jan 44
||On Leave, including Loggieville [Picture with his sisters] and mentioned in letter to J.E. dated 1944-02-12 they were both home (Loggieville) at Christmas
|12 Jan 44 to 13 Jan 44
||Train to Montreal (likely from Newcastle)
|13 January 1944
||No. 1 Y Depot, Lachine, QC [442 Squadron History]
|19 January 1944
||From Montreal to Halifax by train [442 Squadron History]
|20 January 1944
||Depart Halifax aboard SS Louis Pasteur [442 Squadron History]
|27 January 1944
||Arrival Liverpool [442 Squadron History]
|31 January 1944
||No.3 Personnel Reception Centre, Bournemouth, England (Note: Same day as Leslie Birket Foster of 443) [442 Squadron History]
|(2 February 1944)
||Sent cable to J.E. And to his Mom (Just arrived). Didn't have time to write since leaving Lachine. Seas were very rough but didn't get seasick. Climate here much like Vancouver. Going to look up Ernie (Watling?). [Letter to J.E.]
|(6 February 1944)
||Mentions learning bridge on trip over. Living in former apartment building sharing flat with 7 other officers. Mentions Robert Stewart (friend?) and North Shore Regiment only 5 minutes away. Was out to see Ernie (Watling?) Hazen Archer (from Loggieville), Harold Russell (from Loggieville), Gerald Langteine, Windsor MacDonald. Had dinner in officers mess with Ned Russell (Loggieville) and Syd Hetchbert. Ernie and he went out for evening. [Letter to J.E.]
|(12 February 1944)
||Bill MacLean's (friend) brother Albert stationed here. [Letter to J.E.]
|13 Feb 44 to 16 Feb 44
||With RCAF 442 Squadron at Digby, Lincolnshire, England [Log Book - Record of Service]
|(16 February 1944)
||Since last letter moved to different station [Letter to J.E.]
|(24 February 1944)
||Roy Burden, who was in his OTU and went west with him stopped by to say hello. Also received letter from Dick (Dirk?) Pickard who was also in OTU [Letter to J.E.]
|26 Feb 44 to 30 Mar 44
||Training flights in Spitfires V and IX [Log Book]
|(7 March 1944)
||Grounded for 48 hours with a bad cold. Was over to (cousin) Bruce's (Dealy) barracks. Found out yesterday I had been made a F/O last August should be getting back pay. [Letter to J.E.]
|18 Mar 44 to 3 Apr 44
||With 442 Squadron at Holmsley, Hampshire, England [Log Book - Record of Service]
|31 Mar 1944
||Sweep to Caen-Laval, no Huns no flak [Log Book]
|2 Apr 44 to 22 Apr 44
||With 442 Squadron 144 Wing at West Hampnett, Sussex, England [Log Book - Record of Service]
|22 Apr 44 to 14 May 44
||With 442 Squadron 144 Wing at Funtington, Sussex, England [Log Book - Record of Service]
|14 May 44 to 15 Jun 44
||With 442 Squadron 144 Wing at Ford, Sussex, England [Log Book - Record of Service]
|(2 June 1944)
||Mentions his 1st cousin (Bruce Dealy) is maintaining his aircraft. Had eggs this morning - when he get s home will have fried eggs every day. Getting used to early mornings, tents and cold water (baths). Had letter from his friend Kip (Watling - Pte Ernie Watling's brother). [Letter to his mother]
|15 June 44 to 14 Jul 44
||With 442 Squadron 144 Wing at Sainte-Croix-sur-Mer, France [Log Book - Record of Service]
|(22 June 1944) *
||Weeks claims 442 Squadron's 1st kill.
|14 Jul 44 to 8 Aug 44
||With 442 Squadron 126 Wing at Bény-sur-Mer, France [Log Book - Record of Service]
|8 Aug 44 to 1 Sep 44
||With 442 Squadron 126 Wing at Cristot, France [Log Book - Record of Service]
|1 Sep 44 to 2 Sep 44
||With 442 Squadron 126 Wing at Saint-André-de-l'Eure, France [Log Book - Record of Service]
|2 Sep 44 to 3 Sep 44
||With 442 Squadron 126 Wing at Illiers, France [Log Book - Record of Service]
|3 Sep 44 to 6 Sep 44
||With 442 Squadron 126 Wing at Poix-de-Picardie, France [Log Book - Record of Service]
|6 Sep 44 to 21 Sep 44
||With 442 Squadron 126 Wing at Brussels, Belgium [Log Book - Record of Service]
|21 Sep 44 to 4 Oct 44
||With 442 Squadron 126 Wing at Le Culot, Belgium [Log Book - Record of Service]
|4 Oct 44 to 14 Oct 44
||With 442 Squadron 126 Wing at Gemert, Holland [Log Book - Record of Service]
|14 Oct 44 to 4 Nov 44
||With 442 Squadron 126 Wing at Volkel, Holland [Log Book - Record of Service]
|4 November 1944
||Finished tour with 442 Squadron. Unit diary credited him with 195 operational hours, 63 MET and 15 locomotives
|(6 November 1944)
||In Holland, flew last sortie on 1944-11-04 expects to be back in England soon [Letter to his mother]
|(17 November 1944)
||In England, misses his squadron [Letter to J.E.]
|9 February 1945
||Posted to No. 7 Operational Training Unit (OTU) at Debert, NS [Log Book - Record of Service]
|19 February 1945
||Promoted to Flight Lieutenant [Log Book]
|(17 April 1945)
||At Trenton, ON [Letter to J.E.]
|(30 May 1945)
||At Debert, NS. Decides he will "retire" early summer with hope of being accepted at UNB [Letter to J.E.]
|(6 June 1945)
||At Debert, NS.Will have leave from 1945-06-16 to 1945-06-30. Can't believe its been a year since he supported the troops on D-DAY [Letter to J.E.]
|(10 July 1945)
||At Debert, NS. Expects to be discharged soon [Letter to J.E.]
|(1 August 1945)
||Arrived home in Loggieville, NB at 2AM, woke at 7AM and spent day with Kip and Ernie (Watling) [Letter to J.E.]
|20 August 1945
||Released from the RCAF
||Attended, & graduated from, University of New Brunswick
|16 November 1950
||Rejoined the RCAF (service number 33896)
|7 November 1954
||Retired again from RCAF
||He then studied law and was, for almost 30 years, head of Mathematics at Chambly County High School (St. Lambert, Quebec)
|16 March 2006
||Died in Miramichi, New Brunswick
"One clarification on the June 9th, 1943 "crash" the port oleo leg collapsed on landing. This was on his 4th day of flying with 111 Squadron. He sent the plane's clock back to his father (Ellery) in Loggieville, NB as a souvenir. His father took the clock to a shop to have repaired but forgot to pick it up. When the store closed operations the owner's son found the clock and gave it to my Uncle (Frank) and his son gave it to me on June 9th, 2015 - exactly 72 years after the crash." - email from Alex Weeks
Clock from P-40E No. 1051
First Victory by Michael McCabe shows Weeks' kill
In the book Spitfire 2 The Canadians by Robert Bracken,
Bill tells us what happened the day he opened 442 Squadron's score:
"On the morning of June 15, 1944, 144 Wing moved to France and began operating from B3 at Saint-Croix-sur-Mer. On the evening of June 18, a vicious Atlantic storm, which would last for three and a half days, struck the Normandy beaches, causing great destruction to our off-loading facilities. At noon of June 22, the day was bright and the sun high. Johnnie Johnson briefed 442 Squadron and one of the other squadrons of the wing and placed us on readiness. During the briefing, I was assigned to fly No. 2 to F/L Deane Dover. Soon after, we were scrambled. We got airborne in good time, climbed to 12,000 feet, and flew in a southerly heading in the general direction of Argentan.
We had been on our heading for a very few minutes when Dover called Johnson on the R.T. and informed him that he had spotted aircraft below at a distance of six to eight miles. Johnson detached our section to check these aircraft out. Dover took us down in a gentle dive roughly on the same southerly heading for possibly two or three minutes, during which time we picked up air speed. He then began a medium 180-degree turn to the left. When we came out of that turn, we were about 300 yards behind a flight of four Me 109s.
Dover then attacked the leader of that flight. I skidded my aircraft about 75 yards to the left of him in order to give him good coverage. While getting into position, I glanced over my right shoulder and saw, closing rapidly, another flight of four 109s.
The leader of this second flight immediately began to attack Dover. Now the correct procedure for me would have been to alert Deane by calling for a break. Unfortunately, someone was nattering on the R.T., and all I could do was fire a burst from an angle of about 45 degrees at this aircraft that was attacking Dover, in order to divert the pilot.
I must have diverted him, for almost immediately, I noticed that I was overtaking that aircraft very rapidly, and was in danger of overshooting it and getting myself shot down. I immediately closed my throttle and applied alternately left and right rudder, and did succeed in slowing down enough to end up in close formation with that Jerry aircraft.
My starboard wing overlapped his port wing, so from his cockpit to mine could not have been more than 20 feet. He seemed to be a tall, angular type, and he was obviously not perturbed by my presence, for he jabbed his left index finger at me with the thumb pointing downward, indicating to me (I suppose) where he thought I was going to go. I had the temerity to shake my head. Since we were in close formation, with our throttles closed, and rapidly losing air speed, it must have occurred to him that his 109 would stall before my Spitfire, for he suddenly opened his throttle. Before I could react and get my throttle open, he was about 60 yards in front of me.
At about 75 yards, I lined him up carefully and opened fire. I could see the cannon shells striking the cockpit area and glycol vapour coming from the engine. The pilot must have been hit, for the aircraft went into a steep dive. I watched it briefly, and it then occurred to me that those other seven Messerschmitts were probably on my tail!
I proceeded to do a steep turn to the left. My turn was so tight that I missed a head-on collision with one of the 109s attacking me by a few yards; as a matter of fact, I was close enough to see smoke coming from the cannon in the nose cone of that aircraft. Meanwhile, I heard Dover inform the wing commander that his No. 2 had just been shot down and that he was rejoining the formation. I called Dover and told him that it was a Jerry I had shot down, and that I was all right except that I was rather busy at the moment. While being chased around in this big steep turn, I got in the odd wild shot and expended most (if not all) of my ammunition.
I was, to put it euphemistically, quite willing to terminate the engagement, except I had no idea how! The reflection of the sun in my rearview mirror suddenly brought to my mind a book I had read called Signed With Their Honour. The words on the flyleaf quickly came to mind: “And they journeyed a short while into the sun, and left the vivid sky signed with their honour.” Immediately, I knew how to break off the action—I would continue my turn until I was facing into the sun, which was still high at that time of the afternoon, and point the nose of the Spitfire into the sun, and climb away.
This I did. My angle of climb was steeper than that of the Me 109s, and I could see in my rearview mirror that they were having difficulty in lining me up. When I reached about 8,000 feet, I looked off my starboard wing and saw Spitfires diving out of the blue.
Dover, as usual, had done the correct thing: realizing that a lone aircraft could have little effect, he had brought the rest of the formation back with him, and they proceeded to shoot down another five aircraft. “There were eight of them,” said Johnson, “and we got six!”
The War Reviewed
11 Dec. 1944 - A two-man armed reconnaissance by F/Os B. E. Middleton, D.F.C., and W. R. Weeks, of Toronto and Loggieville, N.B., respectively, paid dividends recently when the Canadian Spitfire pilots dive- bombed a railway and scored a direct hit. Returning to base, they saw one enemy transport vehicle and left it probably destroyed. On a subsequent four-man mission by mates of Middleton and Weeks, all being members of the squadron commanded by S/L Bill Olmsted, D.F.C., of Hamilton, the town of Lavesum and territory immediately northeast of it was thoroughly plastered with bombs, machine gun and cannon fire.
Two locomotives were disabled northeast of the town by F/O Don Goodwin, D.F.C., of Maynooth, Ont., and another officer. The latter, on the way home, destroyed a pair of enemy vehicles and damaged a third.
S/L Dean Dover, D.F.C., of Toronto, led another dive-bomber sortie in which his squadron scored direct hits on an important road in close proximity to Zutphen.
Fliers Win DFC's
Ottawa, Jan. 1, 1945 - (CP) - Air Force Headquarters tonight announced the award of three bars to the Distinguished Flying Cross and of 30 DFC's to RCAF personnel serving overseas.
Two of the DFC's went to F/L Douglas Warren and F/L Bruce Warren, twin brothers from Ponoka, Alta., who are serving with the same squadron overseas. The recipients:
BAR TO DFC :
S/L W. A. Olmsted, Hamilton
F/O D. W. Goodwin, Maynooth.
F/O D. R. C. Jamieson, 148 Gilbert Ave., Toronto
S/L W. M. Foster, Guelph
S/L E. H. Lapp, Redcliffe, Alta.
S/L A. E. Monson, North Hollywood, Ca.
S/L A. H. Sager, Vancouver
S/L E. P. Wood, Renfrew
F/L W. D. Burton, Brantford
F/L J. M. Ballachey, High River, Alta.
F/L W. C. Fox, Dunnville
F/L R. E. Evans, Cleveland, Ohio
F/L P. L. Gibbs, Harlan, Sask.
F/L D. W. A. Harling, Westmount, Que.
F/L J. E. McLurg, Westmount, Que.
F/L H. J. Nixon, Hamilton
F/L J. D. Orr of Victoria
F/L W. B. Peglar, 144 Glengarry Ave., Toronto
F/L D. B. Rodd, Concord, Mass.
F/L N. G. Russell, New Westminster
F/L B. Warren, Ponoka, Alta.
F/L D. Warren, Ponoka, Alta.
F/L G. M. Smith, Nelson, B.C.
F/O W. K. Carr, Grand Bank, Nfld.
F/O W. F. Cook, Clinton
F/O D. H. Kimball, Oromocto, N.B.
F/O J. P. Lumsden, Hamilton
F/O H. F. Morse, Haney, B.C.
F/O G. F. Ockenden, Edmonton
F/O P. Slayden, Houston, Texas
F/O A. M. Sauve, Hull, Que.
F/O W. R. Weeks, Loggieville, N.B.
P/O J. A. Kerr, Alexander, Man.
WEEKS, F/O William Roland (J23840) - Distinguished Flying Cross - No.442 Squadron
Award effective 18 December 1944 as per London Gazette dated 29 December 1944 and
AFRO 379/45 dated 2 March 1945
This officer has throughout a long operational tour consistently shown great determination, enthusiasm and devotion to duty. He has participated in a large number of dive bombing sorties and attacks against ground targets. He has also inflicted much damage to enemy transport including destruction or damage to sixty-three vehicles and damage to eleven locomotives. On one occasion he participated in the destruction of a large ammunition train. Another time he successfully attacked and destroyed a midget submarine. In combat he has destroyed one enemy aircraft and damaged two others.
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 148 sorties (186 hours ten minutes):
Pilot Officer Weeks has completed 148 sorties against the enemy and at all times has proved himself to be a very determined and capable pilot, keen to attack the Hun in the air and on the ground. He has taken part in a large number of dive-bombing sorties and has never failed to press home his attacks. Against ground targets he has been particularly able, destroying and damaging 63 MET [Mechanical Enemy Transport] and accounting for eleven locomotives damaged. On one occasion he shared in the destruction of a large ammunition train, and on another he successfully attacked and destroyed a midget submarine. In combat he has destroyed one enemy aircraft and damaged two others. Pilot Officer Weeks has always been a valuable member of the squadron, and his influence has accounted for much of its success.
("Flying Officer Bill Weeks of Loggieville, New Brunswick, was young, eager and individualistic, and won a DFC for his aggressive flying." Quoted from 'Blue Skies' by Bill Olmsted who recommended Bill for the DFC)
Victories Include :
|22 June 1944
27 July 1944
6 Oct 1944
1 / 0 / 2
* 442 squadron's 1st victory - "A dogfight near Argentan on June 22nd opened the Squadron's record of air victories. As the Spitfires returned from a sweep, W/C Johnson and seven Caribous spotted an equal number of Messerschmitt and four FockeWulf fighters 7,000 feet below. Diving to the deck, the Spitfires attacked and brought down half of the German formation. Johnson scored his 30th kill, and 442 Squadron pilots got three more. P/O Bill Weeks, the "baby" of the squadron, shot down an Me.109; P/O "Frosty" Young got another, and F/L John Marriott shared a FW.190 with S/L Dal Russel. The Squadron diary would later record that P/O Weeks was credited with drawing the first blood for 442."
** "Another dogfight against heavy odds on the 27th, saw twelve pilots on an armed reconnaissance south of Lisieux, chase two enemy aircraft to Dreux aerodrome, west of Paris. There, the Caribous were bounced by forty Messerschrnitts and Focke-Wulfs and became split up. The ensuing fight was the hottest the squadron had experienced so far. Nevertheless, F/L Olmsted got a probable on an Me109, and F/O Morse and P/O Weeks each were credited with a damaged on an Me109 and FW 190 respectively. P/O W.S. Curtis, who’s Spitfire was hit in the wing and cockpit during the combat, wounding him in the leg, also received a damaged credit on a FW190."
*** “On the 6th and 7th, two heated engagements with the Luftwaffe saw F/L McClarty and a patrol of eleven Spitfires, encounter over 100 Me109s and FW190s over Nijmegen. Mcclarty shot down one Messerschmitt, P/O E.T. Hoare got another, and F/O Goodwin, after driving a FW190 down to the deck, saw the pilot bale out and the aircraft half roll into the ground. Added to these three confirmed kills were damage claims on Focke-Wulfs by F/Ls MacLean, Jowsey, and Keene, and F/O Weeks.”
Details from "442 Squadron History" by Capt. Grant MacDonald & Capt. Terry Strocel