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Freese, Gunnar (Flying Officer)

Killed in Flying Accident 1944-October-20

Birth Date: 1908 (age 36)

Conrad and Eva Freese, of Helsingfors, Finland; husband of Sylvia Freese, of Montreal.

Sylvia Freese, of Montreal.

Home: Helsingfors, Finland

1 NAGS- Naval Air Gunnery School
Flying Officer
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
aero engine mechanic
Service Numbers
1 Naval Air Gunnery School, Yarmouth, Nova Scotia. Anson aircraft 11233 and Anson aircraft 7146 were in a mid-air collision before they crashed five miles south of Digby, Nova Scotia. Two Fleet Air Arm airmen, ALA. R.E. Stanier, ALA. H. Taylor, and F/O, Freese were killed in aircraft 7146. F/O J.N. Richardson, and two Fleet Air Arm airmen, ALA. J.A. Bennett and ALA. A.D. Brookes were killed in aircraft 11233.

This incident involved multiple aircraft:

  1. Anson Mk. II Serial: 11233
  2. Anson Mk. II Serial: 7146

All the aircraft in the above list are referenced in this report.

Canada Source Canadian Virtual War Memorial

Commonwealth War Graves Commission Commonwealth War Graves Commission

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

Google MapHelsingfors, Finland
Google MapMount Royal Cemetery
Sec G943 Grave 432

Anson 7146

Anson 11233

Avro Anson

Avro Anson Mk. V
Canadian Warplane Heritage Museum
The Museum's Anson Mk. V was built by MacDonald Brothers in Winnipeg in 1944. It flew with No. 7 Photographic Wing and No. 414 Squadron in Ottawa on photo survey work until the late 1940s. In 1956, it was purchased by INCO and used for mineral surveying until 1980, when it was donated to the Museum. The exterior is painted in the yellow colour common to all BCATP trainers and is in its same wartime RCAF markings.

The Avro Anson was known by a number of nicknames including "Faithful Annie" or "Flying Greenhouse". It was the first aircraft to be flown by the Royal Canadian Air Force to have a retractable undercarriage, which was a comparative novelty in 1936. In 1940, a Canadian government owned company, Federal Aircraft Limited, was created in Montreal to manufacture the Anson for Canadian use. Nearly 3,000 Anson aircraft were produced and, in the early days of the British Commonwealth Air Training Plan (BCATP), the Anson was the standard trainer for many pilots, observers (navigators), wireless operators and bomb aimers. More than 20,000 aircrew received training on the Anson. In Canadian service, the aircraft was substantially re-designed with the substitution of North American engines and many other airframe and equipment changes. Harold Skaarup web pages

General Harold A Skaarup Web Page

YouTube Avro Anson History

YouTube Avro Anson Construction

CASPIR Aircraft Groups:
RCAF On Strength (4404), RCAF 400 Squadron (6), Canadian Aircraft Losses (257)
last update: 2022-02-22 21:45:24

Anson Mk. II 7146

Delivered to stored reserve. Assigned to storage with Eastern Air Command on 10 August 1942, delivered on 15 August 1942. Issued from storage on 15 August 1942, for use by No. 1 General Reconnaissance School at Summerside, PEI. To No. 3 Training Command on 3 December 1942. Back to Eastern Air Command on 5 August 1943. With No. 1 Naval Air Gunners School at East Camp, RCAF Station Yarmouth, NS when it collided with Anson 11233 of the same School on 20 October 1944, 8 miles south west of Digby, NS. Total of 6 fatalities in the 2 aircraft, 4 RN trainees and both RCAF staff pilots. Ownership to No. 4 Repair Depot on 31 October 1944. Scrapped on site.
1942-03-20 Taken on Strength No. 3 Training Command 2019-08-20
1944-March-06 Accident: 1 Naval Air Gunnery School Loc: Liverpool Nova Scotia Names: Farrow | Glass | Reed
1944-October-20 Accident: 1 Naval Air Gunnery School Loc: Digby Nova Scotia Names: Bennett | Brooks | Freese | Richardson | Strainier | Taylor
1945-01-04 Struck off Strength 2019-08-20

Anson 11233

Anson Mk. II 11233

Delivered to storage at Halifax on 18 January 1943. Issued from storage on 25 January 1943, for use by No. 1 Naval Air Gunners School at Yarmouth, NS. Delivered to Yarmouth on 4 February 1943. Destroyed in mid-air with Anson 7146 on 20 October 1944, both aircraft crashing near Digby, NS. All 6 aircrew on both aircraft killed. Ownership to No. 4 Repair Depot on 31 October 1944, for write off. Disposed of on site.
1943-01-09 Taken on Strength Eastern Air Command 2019-08-20
1944-October-20 Accident: 1 Naval Air Gunnery School Loc: Digby Nova Scotia Names: Bennett | Brooks | Freese | Richardson | Strainier | Taylor
1945-01-04 Struck off Strength 2019-08-20

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