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Getting Back to the Squadron

Heroes Remember

Getting Back to the Squadron

He said, “We have been told that days before there had been some parachutes,” and he said it’s not on the basis, “Now have you had anything?” And I said, “No!” So he called his driver and set up a tea caddy and boiled some tea, put me in their truck and drove me up to an air base just behind Tobruk where the RAF were just taking over with fighters and they didn’t have anything they could do for me except shove a can of bully beef in my hand and a bottle of whiskey as if I wanted that. But it took me two days to get back to base. I had to hitch hike and walk to get back to the base that I had... It wasn’t the same base we had moved forward to Kilo 40 and when I had been driven to this point on the road, I had been sort of, they gave me an MP to take me down to the road and he would vouch for me and he stopped a vehicle that had some officers in it, some air force officers and he told them that I was an evader and I was trying to get back and they said get in and they took me to this air base about forty miles down, took me in and of course it was heaven on earth, you know, in a sense but it took me as I say two days to get back and I was still dressed in this thing when I arrived in the middle of the air field but I was in hospital for a few weeks, I guess. I had to have a little bit of surgery and stuff. By the time I was on my rehab leave out of the hospital the rest of the squadron, older members came back, joined me and then we were flown, flew out across Africa and back to UK by boat.

Under the protection of the Brits, Mr. Watts is given some nourishment and escorted back to the Canadian air base.

Jack Watts

Jack Vincent Watts was born on November 10, 1920, and was raised in Hamilton, Ontario, where he enlisted in the Royal Canadian Air Force on July 2, 1940. He flew on Royal Air Force squadrons throughout his wartime service, serving with squadrons 10, 462, 109 and 105. He finished the war as a squadron leader and received the Distinguished Service Order (DSO), the Distinguished Flying Cross (DFC) and Bar. He retired as a brigadier-general in 1975. On his return to Canada after the war, he played in the Canadian Football League with the Hamilton Tigers and the Wildcats. He moved to Ottawa for his service career, and resided there with his war bride, Norma Zelia, formerly of Coventry, England.

Meta Data
Veterans Affairs Canada
June 1, 2012
Person Interviewed:
Jack Watts
War, Conflict or Mission:
Second World War
Air Force
Bomber Command

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