Most Memorable Experiences 1

While at #7 Limivady, five aircraft were lost one night within sight of the airfield due to a sudden ice storm.

While flying with another over the Red Sea, the pilot dove to 50 feet doing practice runs, but mushroomed out and hit the water surface, ripping the  belly of the Wimpy from the main spar to the tail turret.

Escorting the Sicily invasion fleet, escorting the surrendering Italian fleet, and the sinking of a German troop ship in the Aegean Sea. On this strike, George’s crew did not make a hit with their torpedoes but two other crews did, sinking the troop ship. Unfortunately George “copped it” and spent the next six months in a RAF hospital in Cairo. This ended with a repatriation on medical grounds.

While at a Anson Navigational School, both George and a friend, Les Voisey, weighed a good 200 lbs. When the civilian pilot of the Anson had one of them go into the nose position, he had the other go to the tail to avoid having to trim the aircraft.

At Bombing and Gunnery School, two Fairey Battle aircraft collided over the field at about 2000 feet and locked together. One student inside the fuselage, Gade, an American, survived and walked out after the aircaft hit the ground.

On his first visit to the mess at #5 MOTS, Shallufa, Egypt, George was served by an Italian POW. Seeing the CANADA badges he asked if anyone was from Fort William. Evidently, he had been recalled from there to Italy to do his time in the army. At the first opportunity, he surrendered to the Allied forces!

An Royal Australian Air Force crew of torpedo Squadron #458 was shot down about the time of the Italian surrender, and floating around in the Mediterranean in their dinghy. Three Italian destroyers appeared and the lead ship picked them up. As they boarded, the Captain surrendered his ships to the six airmen, glad to have someone on board who could communicate with the Allied forces and arranage safe passage. Possibly the first surrender of enemy ships to the Air Force.