Robert was born on August 13, 1918 at Cobalt, Ontario. He worked in the Estimating Dept. of Anglin Norcross, Ontario, Ltd. pre-war.
He enlisted in the RCAF at Toronto in October 1941. He did his intial training at #1 Manning Depot at Toronto. He was on guard duty at #1SFTS Camp Borden and then took his I.T.S. at Bellville - #5. He finished his training at #1 AOS, Malton and received his Navigator Wing in September 1942.
He was posted overseas to #3PRC at Bournemouth and then on to #22 OTU, Wellesbourne Mount Ford near Stratford-on-Avon and then his AFU, Moretan Valence, near Gloucester. Having finished his training he was posted to
Eastmoor, Yorkshire to 429 Squadron, RCAF 6 Group, Bomber Command (Cdn.).
His crew on ops consisted of Pilot - P/O W.A.Sneath RCAF KIA; WOP - Sgt. J.T. Hindley RAF - KIA; RG F/Sgt. J.D.Hills RCAF - KIA; BA - P/O A.B. Drummond-Hay RCAF; AG - W/O J.Allen RAF and myself.
Most Memorable Operation:
Our Bombaimer became an instant POW when he parachuted right into the midst of a flak battery. The night fighter crew that shot us down came over and picked him up and took him back to the mess. They bought him a drink and quite proudly told him we were their 21st victory.
June 22/23 1943. Lost starboard engine to flak over target (Mulheim in the Ruhr). Shortly after the first attack by night fighter, killed rear gunner and put port engine out of action. Decided to abandon aircraft, Bombaimer and self managed to bail out, but second attack must have killed remaining crew, since Germans told Bombaimer, three bodies in the aircraft when it crashed. I was loose for three days, hiding in woods by day and walking SW towards France by night. Crossed border into Belgium. Feet blistered due to lack of boots, lost in bailout. Approached farmhouse, picked wrong one since they turned me in.
Imprisoned at Dulag Luft, Interrogation Centre, Frankfurt: Stalag Luft 3, Sagan(Centre Compound, June 43 to Mar 44): Stalag Luft 3, Belaria (Mar 44 to Jan 45) then the Winter march Stalag 3A, Luchenwalde(Feb 45 - May 45)
Robert was demobbed at Toronto on October of 1945.
Returned to Anglin-Norcross and was project manager until 1948, then Chief Estimator until 1953 and ended up as Assistant General Manager.
Married Olive Sylvester in 1948 and we had four children, three girls and one boy. Presently we have six grandchildren.