Bill Hillman's Monthly Military Tribute

May 2014 Edition

Many WWII British Commonwealth Air Training Plan (BCATP) bases across Canada
regularly published STATION MAGAZINES throughout the war years.
Thanks to Harry Hayward of the Brandon CATPM Air Museum
we have featured many of these on our Air Museum Website over the years.
Since these historical documents should be of interest to many of our group members
we are making a series of these more releases accessible to our readers.

Commonwealth Air Training Plan Museum
Bill Hillman
Volunteer Editor and Webmaster

Airman's Post 
No. 2 Manning Depot Brandon

December 1940

January 1941

August 1942

September 1942

December 1942

January 1943

February 1943

Scans by Harry Hayward

FA-18 Crash
Submitted by Inga Bjornson

Photos from the April 2014 accident in Lethbridge.
Check out the sequence of the canopy leaving the scene, the pilot in his rocket-powered seat coming out,
the parachute opening sequence, and the separated seat falling away.
Modern technology at its best.
All of this happened in about two seconds from canopy off to the fireball.

 Check out all the smoke from the canopy rocket motors.

There he goes! So that's what the striped handle does!
The left engine has the nozzle fully open, showing that #1 engine was developing no power.

The white thing is the seat-stabilizing drogue chute.
Notice the pilot's head pinned to his chest from the severe 'G' forces produced by the solid rocket motors in the ACES II seat.
They burn for about 2/10ths of a second... enough time to propel him at least 60 feet clear of the aircraft.
Hellova ride.

 One millisecond from eternity for a beautiful FA-18.
Check out the now-unoccupied ejection seat following the aircraft to glory.

The moment-of-impact photo shows flame shooting out of the left engine . . its 'last gasp'.
There goes the seat above the fireball.

The pilot will be downing his first of several shots within the hour, soon as his hands stop shaking.


Ref: Col D. G. Swinford, USMC, Retired and a history buff. 

1.  The first German serviceman killed in WW II was killed by the Japanese (China, 1937), 
The first American serviceman killed was killed by the Russians (Finland 1940); 
The highest ranking American killed was Lt Gen Lesley McNair, killed by the US Army Air Corps.

2. The youngest US serviceman was 12 year old: Calvin Graham, USN. 
He was wounded and given a Dishonorable Discharge for lying about his age. 
His benefits were later restored by act of Congress.

3. At the time of Pearl Harbor, the top US Navy command was called CINCUS (pronounced 'sink us'); 
The shoulder patch of the US Army's 45th Infantry division was the swastika. 
Hitler's private train was named 'Amerika.' 
All three were soon changed for PR purposes.

4. More US servicemen died in the Air Corps than the Marine Corps. 
While completing the required 30 missions, an airman's chance of being killed was 71%.

5. Generally speaking, there was no such thing as an average fighter pilot. 
You were either an ace or a target. 
For instance, Japanese Ace Hiroyoshi Nishizawa shot down over 80 planes. 
He died while a passenger on a cargo plane.

6. It was a common practice on fighter planes to load every 5th round with a tracer round to aid in aiming. 
This was a big mistake. 
Tracers had different Ballistics so (at long range) if your tracers were hitting the target 80% of your rounds were missing. 
Worse yet tracers instantly told your enemy he was under fire and from which direction. 
Worst of all was the practice of loading a string of tracers at the end of the belt to tell you that you were out of ammo. 
This was definitely not something you wanted to tell the enemy. 
Units that stopped using tracers saw their success rate nearly double and their loss rate go down.

7. When allied armies reached the Rhine, the first thing men did was pee in it.
 This was pretty universal from the lowest private to Winston Churchill (who made a big show of it) 
and Gen. Patton (who had himself photographed in the act).

8. German ME-264 bombers were capable of bombing New York City, 
but they decided to stop development to speed up production of Messerschmitt fighters.

9. Some say German submarine U-120 was sunk by a malfunctioning toilet. 
The official records show it was scuttled.

10. Among the first 'Germans' captured at Normandy were several Koreans. 
They had been forced to fight for the Japanese Army until they were captured by the Russians
and forced to fight for the Russian Army until they were captured by the Germans 
and forced to fight for the German Army until they were captured by the US Army.

11. Following a massive naval bombardment, 
35,000 United States and Canadian troops stormed ashore at Kiska, in the Aleutian Islands. 
21 troops were killed in the assault on the island...
It could have been worse if there had actually been any Japanese on the island.

12. The last marine killed in WWII was killed by a can of spam. 
He was on the ground as a POW in Japan when rescue flights dropping food and supplies came over,
the package came apart in the air and a stray can of spam hit him and killed him.

 Submitted by Inga Bjornson 


Click for full-page image

D-Day Tea
A Time to Remember
 For Veterans, Families and the Community

Monday ~ June 9, 2014
7 - 8:30 pm
1116 Victoria Avenue

RSVP by May 27 to Lorna

It's An Honour! Travelling Exhibit
Monday, May 12 and Tuesday, May 13 at 
Neelin High School (10th Street and Brandon Avenue). 
It is open to the public from 3 to 6 p.m. on both days.

each month at:

Commonwealth Air Training Plan Museum
Commonwealth Air Training Plan Museum: RCAFHMCS Prince Robert: Hillman WWII Scrapbook - RCNXII Dragoons - 26 RCA Museum

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