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Thread: Sgt Fontaine records and Arnold scheme

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    Default Sgt Fontaine records and Arnold scheme

    Hello,

    Can you confirm that KTS Trenton stands for "Composite Training Scholl" 10/1942

    H.E is it correct Home Embarkation, where is it located ? Halifax ? 03/1943

    What does mean W.C.A.D. 11/1943 date KIA

    I also received for Sgt Fontaine family a book where stands the following
    52ND AAFFTD / DARR AERO / Albaby
    I was surprise to see the photos and name of all UK personnel and candidates pilots

    What was sgt Fontaine doing at :
    Turner Field 01/06/1942
    Darr Aero 06/07/1942
    Gunter Field 07/09/1942

    On Internet it mentioned :
    DARR Primary Flying Training School
    Turner Advanced School
    Nothing concerning Gunter Field

    Any advice will the most appreciated and will permit me to send
    the information to Sgt Fontaine family

    Best regards

    Rene

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    Hi Rene

    I can't help with everything but

    HE = Home Establishment, which means he had been posted back to the UK and was therefore transferred from the establishment of the unit in Canada. It does not indicate the date he left Canada or arrived in the UK just the date responsibility for him was transferred on paper.

    Gunter Field - see http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gunter_Annex

    Malcolm
    Last edited by malcolm_raf; 5th May 2012 at 10:14. Reason: typo

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    WCAD is War Casualty Accounts Department

    Gunter Field is known as Gunter Annexe now http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gunter_Annex There are a alot of references to Gunter Field in "The Arnold Scheme" by Guinn.

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    Based on your dates, the last sentence in the following extract from the Arnold Scheme website may give a clue as to why he was at Turner Field before Darr Aero:

    The RAF Arnold Scheme's connection with Albany began in 1941 with Turner Field and Darr Aero Tech being selected as flying training bases. Darr Aero Tech was designated a Primary Flying Training School and Turner Field an Advanced School, although between 24th January 1942 and 6th August 1942 it was also an Acclimatization Centre for the intakes of Classes 42H through 43B.

    Just a thought

    Regards

    Pete
    Main areas of research:

    - CA Butler and the loss of Lancaster ME334 (http://rafww2butler.wordpress.com/ )
    - Aircrew Training (Basic / Trade / Operational / Continuation / Conversion)
    - The History of No. 35 Squadron (1916 - 1982) (https://35squadron.wordpress.com/)

    [Always looking for copies of original documents / photographs etc relating to these subjects]

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    Rene,

    Yes, KTS does mean Composite Training School.

    The abbreviation was originally CTS but later changed to KTS, as CTS was also the abbreviation for another unit, the full name of which I cannot recall at present.

    Errol

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    Default Sgt Fontaine records and Arnold scheme

    Rene,
    I think PeteT is right. LAC Fontaine (as he presumably was then) will have attended Turner Field for the acclimatization course. Course SE-43-A; 3 June to 6 July 1942 match the dates you give quite well.

    From there he was posted to the 52nd Army Air Force Flying Training Detachment (Darr Aero Tech was the civilian contactor) at Albany, Georgia to do his Primary training on Stearman PT-17s. Course SE-43-A was posted to primary flying on or around 6th July 1942.

    From Albany he went to Gunter Field to do his Basic flying training on Vultee BT-13As. Course SE-43-A was posted to Basic training on 7th September 1942.

    As you give no further dates or U.S. locations I feel LAC Fontaine did not complete his Basic flying and the posting to Trenton in October 1942 is the result of this. Had he have completed the basic stage he would have moved on to another USAAF training field to fly single engined or twin engined advanced trainers. Many RAF students found the Arnold Scheme training was demanding and one rarely got a second chance.

    As Sheldonesque suggested Quinn's book is a very good guide on the Arnold Scheme. I was able to suggest the course no. by using the tables in his appendices.

    The course photograph is an excellent resource.

    Tony Broadhurst

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    CTS was also used for the Composite Training Squadron, which was also known in later years as No. 1 (CT) Squadron. I have seen various names used interchangeably in records for this unit, and it appears to have been at Trenton at some time. The Composite Training Squadron was responsible for grading and upgrading cvilian pilots hired as staff pilots for the various Schools in Canada, and also in some cases gave short conversion courses for pilots returning to Canada from operations before they went on as staff pilots. Note that a staff pilot was not an instructor, but rather a "driver" for things like observer and navigator schools. I have also seen one story that suggests that at least one student was sent to CTS after barely passing SFTS, before further training. Sort of a catch all unit, I think.

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    Default Sgt Fontaine records and Arnold scheme

    Hello

    Thank you for all your answer, permits me to provide a more
    complete information to sgt Fontaine's family.

    Tony :
    I do not know the departure date from Gunter Fields
    but he arrived at KTS Trenton on 14/10/1942

    Bill
    From trenton he was posted to 31 B&G Picton on 24/10/1942

    What the surprise was during a war that the US have produced books
    where picture of all pilots candidates is on
    For Darr on 07/1942
    UK cadidates are in 2 groups:
    Senior class : 132 names and photos
    Junior class : 146 names and photos

    Best regards

    Rene

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    Default Sgt Fontaine records and Arnold scheme

    Quote Originally Posted by Rene Romainville View Post
    Hello

    Thank you for all your answer, permits me to provide a more
    complete information to sgt Fontaine's family.

    Tony :
    I do not know the departure date from Gunter Fields
    but he arrived at KTS Trenton on 14/10/1942

    Bill
    From trenton he was posted to 31 B&G Picton on 24/10/1942

    What the surprise was during a war that the US have produced books
    where picture of all pilots candidates is on
    For Darr on 07/1942
    UK cadidates are in 2 groups:
    Senior class : 132 names and photos
    Junior class : 146 names and photos

    Best regards

    Rene
    Rene,
    I should have added that Course SE-43-A which entered Gunter Field on 7th September was posted to advanced training on 11th November 1942. LAC Fontaine would appear to have been assigned to Trenton before that date.

    Because Gilbert Quinn's "The Arnold Scheme" does not include an index I cannot quickly find any reference to Trenton. However I feel sure this was the usual destination of who did not complete their training at an Arnold Scheme school or at a British Flying Training School in the USA.

    At Trenton the student would be assessed and could be assigned to another aircrew trade. LAC Fontaine being posted to 31 B&G Picton on 24/10/1942 seems to suggest that is what happened to him..

    It sounds as those you have what the Americans call a "class book". There is a collection of these various AAF flying schools available to download on the Internet. From those I have seen I think most issues were very similar to the last but with a new set of photographs of the members of the relevant course.

    I will send you a PM.
    Tony

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    QUOTE "What the surprise was during a war that the US have produced books
    where picture of all pilots candidates is on
    For Darr on 07/1942
    UK cadidates are in 2 groups:
    Senior class : 132 names and photos
    Junior class : 146 names and photos" ENDQUOTE

    Hi Rene,
    I am interested in the names of the books that have the class names/photos. I am trying to track Sgt. Salvage who would have started in the Arnold Scheme most likely at Albany for EFTS in early 1942 (working backwards as he crewed up 10 OTU Dec 1942 so would still need to have completed AFU back in the UK prior to that). I don't know know if he also took his SFTS at Albany or one of the surrounding airfields near Albany. Actually it appears the training sequence was Acclimitization (4-6 wks), Primay Flight Training (8 wks), Basic Flight Training (8 wks), Advanced Flight Training (8 wks). Upon graduation I estimate it would be another three/four weeks, maybe longer, before getting back to the UK (leave and travel time). Anyways I am interested in the above books you mention.

    Cheers
    Rodger
    Last edited by rmventuri; 21st May 2012 at 17:58. Reason: typo

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