Canadian Virtual War Memorial

Ernest Franklin Elford

In memory of:

Flying Officer Ernest Franklin Elford

June 19, 1945

Sandoway, Myanmar

Military Service


Service Number:

J/45996

Age:

26

Force:

Air Force

Unit:

Royal Canadian Air Force

Division:

358 (R.A.F.) Sqdn

Citation(s):

Operational Wings awarded posthumously March 19, 1947, Canadian Service Volunteer Medal, War Medal 1939-45

Additional Information


Born:

March 21, 1919
Duncan, British Columbia

Enlistment:

June 2, 1944
Vancouver, British Columbia

Son of late William Raymond and Hannah Thelma (née Petersen) of Victoria, British Columbia. Husband of Mrs. Joan Mary (née Heninger) remarried now Mrs.Todd. Brother to Winston, Olive and Grace. Flying Officer Elford attended Boy's Central School, Victoria High School and Sprott Shaw Commercial School. His past times were playing basketball, football and swimming.

Commemorated on Page 512 of the Second World War Book of Remembrance. Request a copy of this page.

Burial Information


Cemetery:

SINGAPORE MEMORIAL
Singapore

Grave Reference:

Column 456.

Location:

In the Far East at Singapore, the SINGAPORE MEMORIAL bears, on its columns, the names of over 24,000 soldiers and airmen of the British Commonwealth and Empire who have no known grave. The airmen whose names are inscribed on the Memorial died during operations over the whole of southern and eastern Asia and the surrounding seas and oceans. The SINGAPORE MEMORIAL stands in Kranji War Cemetery. The central avenue of the Cemetery rises gently from the Stone of Remembrance near the entrance, to the Cross of Sacrifice beyond which flights of steps lead to a terrace on top of a hill, on which the Memorial stands. Twelve wide columns bear the name panels and support a flat roof, which gives protection to the inscribed names and shade and shelter to the visitor. Rising through the roof in the centre, to a height of 24 metres, is a great pylon surmounted by a star. On a curved panel at the foot of this pylon are inscribed in English these words:
1939 - 1945 On the walls of this memorial are recorded the names of twenty-four thousand soldiers and airmen of many races united in service to the British Crown who gave their lives in Malaya and neighbouring lands and seas in the air over Southern and Eastern Asia and the Pacific but to whom the fortune of war denied the customary rites accorded to their comrades in death. Kranji War Cemetery is 22 kilometres north of the city of Singapore, on the north side of Singapore Island overlooking the Straits of Johore. It is just off the Singapore-Johore road (Woodlands road) at milestone 13 1/2 and there is a short approach road from the main road. The Cemetery is known locally as Kranji Memorial.

Information courtesy of the Commonwealth War Graves Commission.

Digital Collection

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  • Photo of ERNEST FRANKLIN ELFORD– Submitted for the project, Operation Picture Me
  • RAF Liberator Plane– Ernie¿s B-24 Liberator, coded EW124, was similar to this RAF 159 Squadron model, seen taking off from its Digri, India base in 1944.
  • Group Photo– This photo shows Ernie Elford, the five other Canadians who died with him in Burma, and other then-crewmates during Liberator training in British Columbia, circa early 1945.   It was sent to Ernie's mother by the mother of his skipper, Arthur Anderson.  The caption on the back reads as follows: 'Front row: Ernie Elford, Alfie Maxwell, George Bond, Bill Vaudner.  Back row: Jack [no last name], my son Arthur Anderson, Ingy [no last name], Allan Silverthorn, Lloyd [no last name], Jim [no last name]'. 

Ernie, Bond, Maxwell, Vaudner, Anderson, and Silverthorn, plus two Englishmen not in the photo (Albert Robertson and Ken Storrar) were killed on an RAF 358 Squadron Special Duties operation destined for Siam on 19 June 1945.  Their missing Liberator, plus four sets of unidentified remains, were discovered later in 1945 on the slope of a remote mountain in western Burma.  The four bodies were buried at the crash site in November 1945, but sadly they were never moved to a war cemetery at a later date.  All eight crewmen are still officially missing.
  • Photo of Ernie Elford– Taken in British Columbia during Liberator crew training, circa early 1945
  • Group Photos 2– Ernie Elford with two of his crewmates in India.  Left to Right: Ernie Elford, Arthur Anderson, and Allan Silverthorn.  They died together.
  • Photo 2 of Ernie Elford– India, 1945
  • Group Photo 3– Sent by Ernie Elford from Bombay, India to his family back in Canada, this photo shows him with three other mates, including Allan Silverthorn -- one of those with whom he died.  The caption on the back reads: 'Bombay, India, Mar. 18/45: Silver [Allan Silverthorn] - my 2nd pilot, Jack - my navigator, Gordie - another crew, Self and friends.  How do you like our friends? Won't write as it will take too long to get this. Glad you are feeling better, am much relieved now.  Love, Ernie.'
  • Inscription

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