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Canadian Virtual War Memorial

Ralph Douglas Van Fleet

In memory of:

Flying Officer Ralph Douglas Van Fleet

March 31, 1944

Military Service


Service Number:

J/25706

Force:

Air Force

Unit:

Royal Canadian Air Force

Division:

640 (R.A.F.) Sqdn

Additional Information


Commemorated on Page 468 of the Second World War Book of Remembrance. Request a copy of this page. Download high resolution copy of this page.

Burial Information


Cemetery:
Grave Reference:

10. D. 8.

Location:

Rheinberg is 24 kilometres north of Krefeld and 13 kilometres south of Wesel, in the locality of Kamp Lintfort, Nordrhein-Westfal. The cemetery is 3 kilometres south of the centre of the town of Rheinberg on the road to Kamp Lintfort. From the motorway 57, turn off at Rheinberg and at the T junction follow the 510 in the direction Kamp Lintfort. The cemetery is a short way along this road on the right.

The site of Rheinberg War Cemetery was chosen in April 1946 by the Army Graves Service for the assembly of Commonwealth graves recovered from numerous German cemeteries in the area. The majority of those now buried in the cemetery were airmen, whose graves were brought in from Dusseldorf, Krefeld, Munchen-Gladbach, Essen, Aachen and Dortmund; 450 graves were from Cologne alone. The men of the other fighting services buried here mostly lost their lives during the battle of the Rhineland, or in the advance from the Rhine to the Elbe.

There are now 3,326 Commonwealth servicemen of the Second World War buried or commemorated at Rheinberg War Cemetery. 156 of the burials are unidentified. There are also nine war graves of other nationalities, most of them Polish.

Information courtesy of the Commonwealth War Graves Commission.

Digital Collection

  • Identification– Submitted for the project Operation Picture Me
  • Correspondence– Submitted for the project Operation Picture Me
  • Correspondence– Submitted for the project Operation Picture Me
  • Correspondence– Submitted for the project Operation Picture Me
  • Correspondence– Submitted for the project Operation Picture Me
  • Document– Submitted for the project Operation Picture Me
  • Newspaper clipping– From the Toronto Star March 1943. Submitted for the project Operation Picture Me
  • Photo of RALPH DOUGLAS VAN FLEET– RCAF photo before training.
  • Photo of RALPH DOUGLAS VAN FLEET– RCAF photo taken after receiving his wings.
  • Grave marker– Photo or original wooden cross
  • Grave Marker– photo of grave marker courtesy of Des Philippet
F/O Van Fleet was bomb aimer on Halifax LW 555 when it was shot down by a night-fighter on an operation against Nuremberg, Germany on the night of 30/31 March 1944.  Two other Canadians were also killed.   They were the pilot, F/O  Charles E. O’Brien,of Toronto and the navigator, F/O R. H. Carleton of Kingston   It was the fourth operation for the three Canadians.
  • Memorial– Flying Officer Ralph Douglas Van Fleet is also commemorated on the Bomber Command Memorial Wall in Nanton, AB … photo courtesy of Marg Liessens
  • Memorial– Flying Officer Ralph Douglas Van Fleet is also commemorated on the Bomber Command Memorial Wall in Nanton, AB … photo courtesy of Marg Liessens
  • Memorial– Father J P Lardie's comments as inscribed on the Bomber Command Memorial Wall in Nanton, AB … photo courtesy of Marg Liessens

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