|159 Sqn Liberator damaged 23 July 1942||Hi, Col,
Like you, I could only find references to a W. R. Austin on 159/160 Squadrons in the Middle East. But in a google search I found this spring 1945 reference to a F/Lt W.R. Austin, not that it's the correct man:
[I]W/C F. R. Sharp and [B]F/L W. R. Austin[/B], both of the Goose Squadron, and F/O J. O. Stewart of the Bluenose were mentioned for their work on the Essen raid when awarded their D.F.Cs.[/I]
That link: [url]http://www.cmp-cpm.forces.gc.ca/dhh-dhp/his/docs/rcaf_overseas_vol3_e.pdf[/url]
Aha...MAYBE he was RCAF, and because this particular W. R. Austin was awarded a DFC, I thought I might be able to find his full name in an awards listing, such as this one which likely was sourced from the research of our own (well, we're grateful to you contributing so much here) Hugh Halladay:
[I][B]AUSTIN, F/L Warren Russell (J8939)[/B] Distinguished Flying Cross No.408 Squadron Award effective 6 July 1945 as per London Gazette of that date and AFRO 1453/45 dated 14 September 1945. Born 1918 in Hamilton, Ontario; home in Sudbury or Paris, Ontario; enlisted Hamilton, 13 January 1941. Trained at No.3 ITS (graduated 3 July 1941), No.10 EFTS (graduated 20 August 1941) and No.5 SFTS (graduated 21 November 1941). Commissioned 1941. Award sent by registered mail 17 June 1946. Photograph PL-36890 is a portrait.
Flight Lieutenant Austin is a highly skilled and resolute pilot. He has completed very many sorties against enemy targets and has set a fine example in pressing home his attacks. On one occasion in March 1945 he piloted an aircraft detailed to attack Essen. When nearing the target one engine became unserviceable owing to an oil leakage. This did not deter Flight Lieutenant Austin who continued to the target when he eventually bombed at a height much lower than planned. His determination to make every sortie a success has won the greatest praise. He is a fine captain whose example has been well reflected in the operational efficiency of his crew.[/I]
Mind you, this has nothing of any Middle East Liberator flying, but it has potential.
The above came from: [url]http://www.forfreedom.ca/?page_id=1192[/url].
In the hope that there would be slightly more biographical detail on Hugh's full listing of award winners, I peeked at this site: [url]http://rcafassociation.ca/uploads/airforce/2009/07/ALPHA-AR.html[/url].
No luck; same details.
I did, however, find another reference that ties nicely with the DFC citation details:
[I]Course 37: September 1 - November 17, 1941
Wings Parade was held Monday evening in the Drill Hall. Group Captain Bertram Johnson, station C.O., presented wings and addressed the graduates.
You are leaving at a very important time. It is important because we are now numerically on par wit ....Read More.||Matt Poole on 10th August 2014 02:58:10|