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Thread: Skinner 21 Victories?

  1. #11
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    I just got off the phone with the editor of the Richmond News to alert her to the concerns. She said thanks and said she would pull the story while she took it up with her reporter.

    Now, the question is, can someone get to the Canadian Forces Blogger people and get it pulled from there too? (Chris maybe). It would be a shame to have this become more of an embarrassment for the tale-teller, who is a 93-year-old widower, than it already is.
    David

  2. #12
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    Default William Skinner

    David Fuller (by e-mail) asked for my input (I had somehow overlooked this thread) and I must conclude that this is a very unhappy story. The only William Skinner decorated was William Archibald Skinner, already mentioned, who was born in 1919 and did not enlist until 1942. I have no record of a William Skinner enlisting in the RAF.

    I do not know if the William Skinner of this story is an RCAF veteran or not. I would like to think that he is simply a man with a relativelty mundane but otherwise honourable record who either felt he had to "juice up" his story or had some ill-informed reporter do it for him (or to him).

    I have a small file listing obituaries of a few men who either claimed awards to which they were not entitled or whose families had no idea of what had been the service records of their lately departed. It includes an RCAF Wing Commander whose obituary credited him with a DFC and DFM - neither of which was awarded.

  3. #13
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    I registered on your site earlier today, but I really just wanted to comment on/check in on a thread I encountered while searching for articles about my late Great Uncle Bill. As ten years has elapsed since the article came out, I cannot access the original article, so I'm not sure about the original content. Perhaps it was shoddy reporting. But I can confirm the Canadian W.A. Skinner identified by Paul McMillan was my Great Uncle, and I am somewhat horrified to think that his memory and reputation may be slandered on this forum for the rest of time (while nothing else of his memory appears to remain in the public forum). I'm not sure what I can contribute, as I'm no military historian, but I thought I'd reach out on this day that should be reserved for honouring - rather than questioning the integrity - of those who have put their lives on the line for us. I learned about his story by reading the letters he sent to my grandmother while he was stationed overseas, and have always held him in high regard. He was a reluctant hero, and really just wanted to get on with his life. With thanks and respect, Joanne

  4. #14
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    Re Joanne's post, I'm sure no-one on here would wish to slander anyone's name, but it does nobody any honour if memories or remembrances are based upon accounts which cannot be shown to be true. If things seem unusual, inconsistent or simply wrong, all we would wish to do are check and if possible verify them. If that becomes impossible we are left with no option other than to question their veracity. Sorry if that offends or distresses anyone.

  5. #15
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    I have not had the benefit of reading the original article as they are no longer available.
    There is a good account of William Archibald Skinner's achievements here
    https://rcafassociation.ca/heritage/...tname&type=all
    He earned his DFC on his 27th mission. Joanne should rightly be very proud of her Great Uncles war service. I have not had the opportunity to go through all the 103 Squadron ORB's but the first one I looked at (January 1945 Record of Events) showed him as captain of Lancaster PB103 on a raid to Nurnberg. I am sure by going through more of them there will be some very hairy experiences.

    Chris

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