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First Operational Mission

Heroes Remember

First Operational Mission

A little apprehensive, made damn sure that I didn't lose my CO (commanding officer), but other than that it was a fairly uneventful mission as I recall. Not too deep. It was an escort mission of some American bombers and there were enemy aircraft in the air but I didn't see any. And we weren't engaged by any, although the, we could hear the, on the radio that the Fortresses were engaged by the Luftwaffe after we left them. One thing about a Spitfire is of course it has very limited range We only carried ninety-six gallons of fuel. And the penetration into, into France and Germany was such that we couldn't stay with the bombers the whole way. We took them in to the extent of our range and then we left them and went back home, refuelled, then went back out, picked them up on the way out.

In early summer of 1943, Mr. Lindsey has joined 403 Squadron in Kent, England. He is there only two days when he is sent on his first operational mission. He remembers his reaction at the time.

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
Air Force
127 Wing - 403 Squadron
Flight Commander

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