Stay Out of Those Clouds

Heroes Remember

Stay Out of Those Clouds

Well, I had a couple of nice trips that I'd like to tell you about. We had ops. and got pretty good at it, and felt very professional. And things were going along, and we went on this big … we had to go through the monsoons. I guess everybody tell you about flying through the monsoons, and those great high cumulonimbus, fifteen thousand feet, and we couldn't go over them. So Charlie, the pilot, said to me, “Can you keep track of the position if I dodge those clouds?” I said, “Charlie, stay out of those clouds. I don't want to get torn to pieces.” So he dodged around there for awhile. And I kept going, zigzagging with my map. We came out … down the bottom was a whole mess of islands. So I handed my map, my topographical maps, to the pilot and said, “See if you can figure out where we are.” No, they couldn't figure it out. So, I finished my plot and got up there, and where do you think we were? Over Sir Robert Campbell Island. And I had a son that was one year old at that time, sitting back home in the exact opposite side of the world. Isn't that amazing? Interviewer: His name was Robert Campbell? His name was Robert Campbell, and it still is. And my father's name was Robert Campbell. Interviewer: Wow. And my second name is Robert Campbell. And there it was, on the other side of the world. Interviewer: That's neat. That's something -I got …and if anybody didn't believe it, I can prove it. I got the map to this day, in my memoirs. Interviewer: So that helped you get back home okay, because you knew where you were? Well, it helped us get to the target. We bombed the target and we hit it. We were the only ones that hit it. We hit the bridge and we displaced it. You don't always displace it, but we did that time. We hit it and got home safely. Interviewer: Were you jettisoning the bombs in that mission? No. I left it with the bomb aimer that time.

Mr. Campbell talks about flying through the monsoons, trying not to be torn to pieces, and coming upon an amazing discovery.

David Robert Campbell

David Robert Campbell was born on May 16, 1916. Mr. Campbell grew up on the family farm with his brother and sister in Elgin County, Ontario. He attended a one-room schoolhouse, then went to Western University on a scholarship, studying math and physics, later becoming a high school math teacher. Mr. Campbell joined the Royal Air Force as a navigational instructor in 1940. He taught navigation to many students and flew numerous operational missions as a navigator. Though he was never wounded, Mr. Campbell saw many of his colleagues fall. After the war Mr. Campbell returned to teaching math.

Meta Data
Veterans Affairs Canada
Person Interviewed:
David Robert Campbell
War, Conflict or Mission:
Second World War
Air Force
356 Squadron

Copyright / Permission to Reproduce

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