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Bennett, James (Sergeant)

Drowned 1945-June-23

Male Head

Birth Date: 1925-August-12 (age 19)

Son of James and Mary Ellen Bennett, of Edmonton, Middlesex, England.

5 OTU- Operational Training Unit
Abbotsford, British Columbia, Canada
Air Chief MarshalA/C/M
Air MarshalA/M
Air Vice MarshalA/V/M
Air CommodoreA/C
Group CaptainG/C
Wing CommanderW/C
Squadron LeaderS/L
Flight LieutenantF/L
Flying OfficerF/O
Pilot OfficerP/O
Warrant Officer 1st ClassWO1
Warrant Officer 2nd ClassWO2
Flight SergeantFS
Senior AircraftmanSAC
Leading AircraftmanLAC
Aircraftman 1st ClassAC1
Aircraftman 2nd ClassAC2
Service Numbers
According to the Unit Daily Diary, at 1750 hours on 1945-06-23 Sgt J. Bennett drown in Mill Pond, Abbotsford, British Columbia while swimming. However according to his sister, he was a very bad swimmer and actually afraid of the water. Mill Lake was a centre of logging at the turn of that century and there was a small gauge logging train that skirted across the West end of the lake. The trestle that crossed the water was then more than 60 years old and very depilated. Several RAF Airmen were walking along it when the portion they were on collapsed. This is how he drowned. (this information was provided by Michael DesMazes.)

Canada Primary Source School Daily Diary Entry – 1945-06-23

Commonwealth War Graves Commission Commonwealth War Graves Commission

Canada Primary Source Library and Archives Canada Service Files (may not exist)

Google Map Hazelwood Cemetery, Canada
Ploy 5 Grave 13

5 OTU- Operational Training Unit (5 Operational Training Unit)

The Operational Training Unit (OTU) was the last stop for aircrew trainees. They spent 8 to 14 weeks learning to fly operational aircraft (Hawker Hurricane or Fairey Swordfish, e.g.). The instructors had experience in actual operations, and often were posted to OTUs after their operational tour. 5 Operational Training Unit was established at RCAF Station Boundary Bay, British Columbia. The former station is now the Boundary Bay Airport. More information on the RCAF Station at Boundary Bay can be found at
  • RCAF Roundel RCAF.Info

  • A Detachment of 5 Operational Training Unit was established at RCAF Station Abbotsford, British Columbia. The former Station is now the Abbotsford International Airport. More information on the RCAF Station at Abbotsford can be found at
  • RCAF Roundel RCAF.Info

  • 1944-04-01 Primary Location Boundary Bay Canada
    1944-04-01 Detachment Abbotsford Canada

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