Five Canadian Airmen Win Gallantry Awards
Ottawa, Feb. 2 (1943) (Ch).—Five awards to Canadian
fliers serving overseas were included in a list of decorations announced
tonight by R.C.A.F. headquarters.
FO. Charles Stanley Wright Proctor, 248 Heath Street West, Toronto;
WO. William Donald Ross, Calgary;
Flt.-Lt. John Harvey Curry, Dallas, Tex.;
Acting Flt. Lt. William Lawrence Chisholm, Kentville, N.S.;
PO. Lorne Edward Kropf, Kitchener.
FO. Proctor: "This officer has at all times displayed great skill
as a navigator bomb aimer. He was engaged throughout the critical period
of the enemy advance and succeeded in spotting enemy concentrations in
the battle area and scoring many hits on enemy transport. Throughout these
operations on a large variety of targets, his technical ability and conduct
have inspired confidence in all with whom he had flown.
WO. Ross: "Since February, 1942, WO. Ross has taken part continuously
in operations flying. He has participated in 14 bombing raids on Tobruk,
pressing home his attacks regardless of opposition. On one occasion he
attacked from 10,000 feet despite having a crippled aircraft. In addition,
this officer has made several successful raids on enemy's transport in
battle area. At all times his devotion to duty has set a fine example
to his crew"
Fit. Lt. Curry: "Flt. Lt. Curry is an outstanding pilot, who displays
the greatest determination to engage the enemy regardless of the opposition
encountered. He has destroyed at least seven enemy aircraft and is a source
of inspiration to his fellow pilots."
Flt. Lt Chisholm: "Flt. Lt, Chisholm has flown on numerous operational
sorties. He has always displayed skill and courage and great determination
to engage the enemy. He had destroyed at least five enemy aircraft. This
officer's invigorating influence and personal example have greatly contributed
toward making his flight a formidable fighting unit."
PO. Kropf was a member of the crew of an aircraft of which he was the
only Canadian. The citation, which covers the entire crew, reads: "In
various capacities as members of aircraft crew (PO. Kropf) they have displayed
great gallantry and determination in attacks against targets in enemy-occupied
Born 29 August 1916 at Berwick, Nova Scotia.
CPR brakeman before the war.
Home in Kentville.
Enlisted in Halifax, 18 June 1940.
No.2 ITS (30 June-29 August 1940),
No.3 EFTS (30 August-3 November 1940, and
No.1 SFTS (4 November 1940-28 January 1941
Commissioned 13 November 1941
(Flying Officer, 1 October 1942
Flight Lieutenant, 2 December 1942;
Squadron Leader, 1 May 1945)
Embarked for UK, 20 February 1941.
No.7 Bombing and Gunnery School, Wales, 5 March '41
No.56 OTU, Sutton Bridge, 20 September 1941;
No.92 Squadron, 5 November 1941 to 16 April 1943
Suffered slight concussion (2 Dec.'42) when landing Spitfire VC
BR476 at Magrun; blew a tire and aircraft went over on its back.
To Middle East, 13 February to 13 March 1942
Returned to Canada, June 1943;
recruiting in Winnipeg & Halifax from 13 Aug 43 to 27 Feb 44
employed thereafter as staff officer.
Released 30 October 1945.
Claimed to have flown 172 op hours with No.92 Squadron.
DFC and Bar presented 24 April 1944.
CHISHOLM, F/L William Lawrence (J15044) - Distinguished
Flying Cross - No.92 Squadron
Award effective 1 February 1943 as per London Gazette dated 5 February
AFRO 373/43 dated 5 March 1943.
Since July 1942, Flight Lieutenant Chisholm has flown
on numerous operational sorties. He has always displayed skill and courage
and great determination to engage the enemy. He has destroyed at least
five enemy aircraft. This officer's invigorating influence and personal
example have greatly contributed towards making his flight a formidable
NOTE: Public Record Office Air 2/8933 has text from an
earlier draft recommendation for a non-immediate award as sent on 21 December
1942 from Headquarters, Royal Air Force, Middle East to Air Ministry:
Pilot Officer Chisholm arrived in the Western Desert
with No.92 Squadron at the beginning of July when the squadron was flying
Hurricane aircraft of No.80 Squadron. On his first patrol one wheel refused
to retract; letting his enthusiasm override his good sense he carried
on and when the squadron engaged escorted Stukas he succeeded in badly
damaging a Stuka. Since that day, both on Hurricane and later on Spitfires,
Pilot Officer Chisholm has flown and fought with great courage and shown
great determination to get to grips with the enemy; moreover he has displayed
considerable skill as a leader of a flight. He has destroyed five enemy
aircraft, shared a further two destroyed, has probably destroyed two more
and damaged three others.
He has proved himself a cool and capable leader; his
invigorating influence and personal example have gone a long way to make
"B" Flight a formidable fighting unit.
Hamilton Flier Notable In 8th Army's Advance
An Airfield Beyond Gabes, North Africa, April 20 (1943)
-(CP)- Three Canadian members of a front-line fighter squadron distinguished
themselves during the 8th Army's advance, with an impressive record of
low-level attacks on enemy tanks, armored vehicles and motor transport.
Flying with a specially-assigned squadron, FO. James Carswell, of Turleford,
Sask., FO. Kenneth Bendall of Hamilton, Ont., and PO. John Wilcox of Cobalt,
Ont., braved intense ground fire in attacks which set tanks aflame and
disrupted armored forces trying to stem Gen. Montgomery's spectacular
Riddled repeatedly with machine-Fun bullets and fragments of flak, their
aircraft never failed on any mission they undertook. Bendall and Carswell
both had their engines hit, but managed to coax their machines home. Carswell
on one occasion had a bullet hole through the hood of his cockpit.
The impressive score of a Canadian pilot with another Spitfire squadron,
Flt. Lt. Lawrence (Red) Chisholm, D.F.C. and Bar, former railway brakeman
of Kentville, N.S., who is one of the most brilliant R.C.A.F. fighter
pilots in the Middle East, continued to grow as the African campaign neared
its climax. He destroyed an ME109 and probably destroyed a Macchi 202
in mid-April to raise his score to seven destroyed, with many more probables
In one scrap, he led Sgt. Michael Askey, son of a Winnipeg army padre,
and a third pilot who was English, against a strong formation of enemy
fighters. Chisholm and Askey each got one. Their squadron, led by a famous
Battle of Britain pilot, got five that day. Another who added to his score
was WO. E. A. Ker of Fenwick, Ont. He destroyed a Macchi 202 over Mareth
and an ME109 over the Mediterranean. He has shot down a total of three
enemy aircraft and has many probables and damaged to his credit.
Ker is a member of a crack R.A.F. squadron which piled up a combined score
of 20 destroyed in March and added another seven before the middle of
The English squadron commander has a personal score of 20, the highest
number of enemy aircraft destroyed by any fighter pilot entirely in the
CHISHOLM, F/L William Lawrence (J15044) - Bar to DFC -
Award effective 23 February 1943 as per London Gazette dated 23 February
AFRO 513/43 dated 26 March 1943.
This officer has taken part in the squadron's activities
since its arrival in the Western Desert. Throughout he has displayed gallant
leadership and outstanding keenness. On one occasion he led the squadron
in an attack on a force of enemy fighters and in the ensuing engagement
two of them were destroyed without loss. Flight Lieutenant Chisholm, who
has destroyed six enemy aircraft, has invariably displayed great courage
and devotion to duty.
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