Language selection


Flying over a German staff car (2 of 2)

Heroes Remember

Flying over a German staff car (2 of 2)

And by this time, July the 17th, we were not permitted, reconnaissance and our Mustangs heavily armed, to attack targets of opportunity because the decision had been made that we were so valuable in terms of map reading and reconnaissance, all these things, that we should leave the attacking of targets of opportunity, because they were high risk on the ground, we would leave them to Spitfires or the Typhoons. So we were not permitted to attack, by this time the Germans knew immediately that the Mustangs would not attack. So I go along and I see this staff car, it's huge staff car two men at the front, three in the back. I knew it was brass because I could see the glint from the caps and uniforms, but I didn't know who it was. Not permitted to attack, I called group control centre on the radio and said, "Kenway, there is a staff car preceding south," and I gave them the pinpoint, then I left. Well history tells me that what happened was that Kenway contacted two Spitfires, we still don't know who they are, and they came in and shot up the car and the driver was killed, Corporal Daniel. The car hit a stump, of course the top was down, three men in the back seat were thrown out, they weren't injured. The man in the front seat who was doing the map reading was Field Marshall Rommel, and he hit the, when the car hit the stump, his forehead hit the windscreen post, caved it in and he was within an inch of his life. And he was taken to a, a Luftwaffe hospital and he did survive that event but he was out of the war. He was finished. He went to his home in Herrlingen, near Ulm and recuperated. And, but Hitler made sure that he was dead in the beginning of October because Hitler discovered that he was part of, the Gestapo told Hitler that Rommel was a part of the plot to kill Hitler which took place just a few days after this event.

As he flies closer, Mr. Rohmer determines that this car belongs to Field Marshall Rommel. The car runs off the road in an attempt to avoid what it thinks is an air attack.

Richard Heath Rohmer

Major General Rohmer was born in Hamilton, Ontario on January 24, 1924. He enlisted with the Royal Canadian Air Force on his eighteenth birthday. He had received some training in Canada before being shipped overseas to Bournemouth for further training on both Spitfires and Mustangs. He chose to fly a Mustang and was finally able to get into operations in the Fall of 1944.

General Rohmer provided reconnaissance for D-Day, the Falaise Gap and the Liberation of the Netherlands.

After the war, General Rohmer instructed Spitfire pilots on how to attack in the air at Gunnery Instructor School and later went back to college in Ontario, Canada. After graduating from college he went on to practice law. General Rohmer has received several awards throughout his illustrious career including the Distinguished Flying Cross, the Canada Defence Medal and is an Officer of the Order of Canada just to name a few. General Rohmer is also a best selling author.

Meta Data
Veterans Affairs Canada
Person Interviewed:
Richard Heath Rohmer
War, Conflict or Mission:
Second World War
Battle of Normandy
Air Force
403 Squadron

Copyright / Permission to Reproduce

Related Videos

Date modified: