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Crossing the North Atlantic in Convoy

Heroes Remember

Crossing the North Atlantic in Convoy

Then I was given a job on a, as gun crew on an anti-aircraft gun and I stood four hour watches in the cold and the wet. The sea was rough but I wasn't ill fortunately, while some of the other fellows were. There were ten nursing sisters on board and ninety other air force officers. The North-Atlantic was rough and several times during the crossing we were, the convoy was torpedoed. But mostly it was rough and cold I think. I was very glad to see land on the other side. We landed at Greenwich in the early hours of the morning and immediately got on a train and went to Bournemouth where we waited for someone to direct us to an OTU (Operational Training Unit). That was a rather trying time at Bournemouth. You really had nothing to do other than you went to parade first thing every morning, hoping that your name would be called out for a posting to a school. They were asking for volunteers for a bomber command and a number of our people got tired of waiting and volunteered for bombers. There was no way I was going to do that. If they came and took me I would've gone, but not voluntarily. I waited for a posting to a fighter, OTU came along and eventually got to Eshet (sp) in Northern England, where we trained on Spitfires.

Mr. Lindsey is finally posted to an operational unit. He is sent to Halifax, Nova Scotia, where he sails in a convoy to Britain. He is asked what he remembers of the crossing.

James Douglas Lindsey

Mr. Lindsey was born in Arnprior, Ontario, and spent his early years on a reservation in Quebec, returning to Arnprior for his schooling. He was active in school sports. He had one younger sister who died of cancer when she was about 38 years old. His father was in the lumber and logging business as was his grandfather. Mr. Lindsey's father was a Regimental Sergeant Major during the First World War and was active in the 42nd Renfrew Regiment Reserves after his First World War service. Mr. Lindsey tried to enlist when the Second World War was declared but was turned down because of his age. He was finally accepted by the RCAF at the age of 17 years with the condition that he complete his schooling first. Eventually, he received training in Toronto and Trenton, Ontario, and Victoriaville, Quebec. It was then on to Chatham, New Brunswick, for pilot training at the Elementary Flying School and additional training at CFB Summerside, PEI. He was then posted back to Trenton to train as a pilot instructor.

Meta Data
Veterans Affairs Canada
Person Interviewed:
James Douglas Lindsey
War, Conflict or Mission:
Second World War
North Atlantic Ocean
Air Force
416 Squadron
Flight Lieutenant

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