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McAuley, David Alexander (Leading Aircraftman)

Killed in Flying Accident 1943-01-07

Male Head

Birth Date: 1924-01-01 (age 19)

David and Sara Jane McAuley, of Ballygally, Co. Antrim, Northern Irelan

Service
RAFVR
Unit
37 SFTS- Service Flying Training School (RAF)
Base
Calgary, Alberta, Canada
Rank
Leading Aircraftman
Marshal
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
SergeantSGT
CorporalCPL
Senior AircraftmanSAC
Leading AircraftmanLAC
Aircraftman 1st ClassAC1
Aircraftman 2nd ClassAC2
Position
Service Numbers
1482473
37 SFTS, Calgary, Alberta.

Commonwealth War Graves Commission Commonwealth War Graves Commission

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

This incident involved multiple aircraft:

  1. Harvard Mk. II AJ912
  2. Harvard Mk. II AJ953

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

Burial
Google Map Greenwood Cemetery, Canada
Range 50 South Lot 28 Grave 1

Crew on Harvard Mk. II AJ953

North American Harvard NA-26 NA-44

North American Harvard Mk. IV
Canadian Warplane Heritage Museum

The North American Harvard appeared in 1937, in response to a US Air Corps proposal for an advanced trainer. The first of 50 Harvard Mk. Is ordered by the Canadian Government were delivered to RCAF Sea Island, BC in July 1939. By early 1940, the Mk. II was being assembled in California with an all metal fuselage replacing the original tube and fabric structure. 1200 Mk. IIs were supplied from US sources, until Canadian built Harvards started being produced in 1941.

In August 1938, Noorduyn Aviation of Montreal farsightedly signed an agreement with North American, to build the Harvard under licence. When the British Commonwealth Air Training Plan (BCATP) came into being in December 1939, Noorduyn received its first orders and went on to produce nearly 2800 Harvard Mk. IIBs for the RCAF and the RAF, between 1940 and 1945. In Canada, Harvard Mk. IIBs were used as advanced trainers with the BCATP at fifteen Service Flying Training Schools across the nation. They helped pilots make to the transition from low powered primary trainers, like Fleet Finch or the de Havilland Tiger Moth, to high performance front line fighters such as the Spitfire.

At the end of WW II, although the RCAF retained the Harvard as a trainer, a large number of them were sold off to civilian operators. The RCAF soon regretted this, for by 1949 the Cold War with the Soviet Union was in full swing and the RCAF urgently needed trainers again. 100 T-6J Texans were leased temporarily from the USAF and a further 270 Harvards, the Mk. IV version, were ordered from Canadian Car & Foundry, Thunder Bay. The RCAF used the Harvard Mk. IV for a further fifteen years, before finally retiring it in 1966.

A total of 20,110 Harvards were built between 1938 and 1954, 3,370 of them in Canada. Countless numbers of privately owned Harvards are still flying today.

Canadian Warplane Heritage Museum's Harvard Mk. IV was built by Canadian Car & Foundry, Thunder Bay, Ontario in late 1951. The aircraft saw service at four RCAF flying schools across the nation until it was sold to a civilian owner in 1965. It was the third aircraft to join the Museum after Dennis Bradley, Alan Ness and John Weir donated it in 1973. Canadian Warplane Heritage Museum

YouTube Harvard Advanced Trainer

Wkikpedia Wikipedia Harvard Advanced Trainer

General Harold A Skaarup Web Page

CASPIR Aircraft Groups:
RCAF On Strength (2196), RCAF 400 Squadron (1), Canadian Aircraft Losses (374), RCN On Strength (3)
last update: 2021-10-19 20:12:13

Harvard Mk. II AJ912

Delivered to stored reserve at Calgary, issued to No. 39 Service Flying Training School at Swift Current, Saskatchewan on 17 December 1941. Category C damage at Swift current at 17:00 on 22 January 1942. Destroyed in mid-air with Harvard AJ953 on 7 (or 12?) January 1943. Both aircraft with No. 37 Service Flying Training School at Calgary, Alberta at the time. Total of 3 fatalities, including LAC D.A. McAuley, RAF in this aircraft.
1941-11-26 Taken on Strength No. 4 Training Command 2019-08-20
1942-January-22 Accident: 39 Service Flying Training School Loc: Swift Current Saskatchewan Names: Mcmillan
1943-January-07 Accident: 37 Service Flying Training School Loc: Conrich Names: Corlett | Leder | Mcauley
1943-03-11 Struck off Strength Struck off, reduced to spares and scrap 2019-08-20


Harvard Mk. II AJ953

Delivered to stored reserve, issued to No. 39 Service Flying Training School at Swift Current, Saskatchewan on 21 May 1942. Destroyed in mid-air with Harvard AJ912 on 12 (or 7?) January 1943. Both aircraft with No. 37 Service Flying Training School at Calgary, Alberta at the time. Total of 3 fatalities.
1942-03-27 Taken on Strength No. 4 Training Command 2019-08-20
1943-January-07 Accident: 37 Service Flying Training School Loc: Conrich Names: Corlett | Leder | Mcauley
1943-03-11 Struck off Strength Struck off, reduced to spares and produce by No. 10 Repair Depot 2019-08-20

37 SFTS- Service Flying Training School (RAF) (37 Service Flying Training School)

Graduates of the EFTS "learn-to-fly" program went on a Service Flying Training School (SFTS) for 16 weeks. For the first 8 weeks the trainee was part of an intermediate training squadron; for the next 6 weeks an advanced training squadron and for the final 2 weeks training was conducted at a Bombing & Gunnery School. The Service schools were military establishments run by the RCAF or the RAF.

There were two different types of Service Flying Training Schools. Trainees in the fighter pilot stream went to an SFTS like No. 14 Aylmer, where they trained in the North American Harvard or North American Yale. Trainees in the bomber, coastal or transport pilot stream went to an SFTS like No. 5 Brantford where they learned multi-engine technique in an Airspeed Oxford, Avro Anson or Cessna Crane.

Air Navigation Chart Calgary 1944

Noteable RAF Instructor pilots based at No. 37 SFTS during the war, was F/O Peter Middleton, the grandfather of Catherine Middleton who is now the Duchess of Cambridge and the wife of Prince William.

For More Information on RCAF Station Calgary see here

  • RCAF Roundel RCAF.Info - RCAF Station Calgary AB

  • RCAF Roundel RCAF.Info - Relief Landing Field Airdrie AB

  • RCAF Roundel RCAF.Info - Relief Landing Field Inverlake AB

  • Museum Bomber Command Museum Of Canada - 37 SFTS

  • Calgary Wings SFTS37 History

  • General Clarence Simonsen - Calgary Wings 37 SFTS History.pdf

  • 1941-10-22 Primary Location Calgary AB Canada Current site of Calgary International Airport CYYC
    1941-10-22 Relief Field Airdrie AB Canada Current site of Airdrie Airport CEF4
    1941-10-23 Relief Field Inverlake AB Canada Approximate location. Turf runways returned to agriculture.

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