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Thread: POWs RCAF

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    Default POWs RCAF

    Hello,

    To get back to a previous thread,can somebody point me in the right direction how to obtain information about Canadian Airmen who became POW?
    I did receive the service records of Canadian airmen who were killed in and around my hometown but I don't think it is possible to obtain the service records of Canadian who became POW (or escaped).I read something about debriefing reports of POW's.
    Is there somebody who can tell me more about that of is there some other way to find a starting point to research a Canadian airman who survived?

    Thanks

    Mike

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    Mike,

    Give me more info. I am hitting the Kew WO344 records on POW's on Friday and may be able to help.

    Regards,

    Nick

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    Default RCAF POWs

    Mike,

    If there were RCAF men who were killed while your other RCAF were captured there MAY (I have to stress the word "may" now) questionnaires (not the kind found at Kew) in the service files of those RCAF KIAs in Ottawa. These are held by the Library and Archives Canada in Ottawa

    I have a few examples of them and they range in detail anywhere from War and Peace size to the Reader's Digest condensed version with "yes" or "no" answers.

    In looking up certain things at the Department of National Defence's Directorate of History and Heritage in Ottawa a few months back I noticed that as late as 1949 (and quite conceivably beyond that date - I only went about a tenth of the way down the file) the RCAF were sending these questionnaires to liberated aircrew and informing them of their obligation to fill them out.

    I am not sure statistically what percentage of ex RCAF POWs responded and what, if anything, the penalty for not responding was.

    And, a bit off topic, but despite the goodies contained in the service files of KIAs in Ottawa I found that DHist had some very interesting information and, get this, they do not charge for photocopies.

    Very rare these days.

    Regards,

    Dave

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    Hi Nick,

    Thanks a lot for that!I will give you some more details.It concerns the crewmembers of two bombers who came down in and around my hometown Zwolle the same day.May 5 ,1943.
    One of the plane was a Wellington from 428 squadron.The crew was:

    Sgt. D.W. Johnson RCAF- KIA
    Sgt. J.L. Boyd RCAF - POW
    Sgt. J.Prosnyck - RAF - KIA
    Sgt. D.E. Thomson RCAF - POW
    Sgt. J.J. Levasseur RCAF - POW

    The other plane was a Halifax of 419 squadron.The crew was:

    F/O C.J.L. Vaillancourt RCAF POW
    Sgt. A. Jaynes RCAF- POW
    P/O D. Grimshaw RAF- POW
    Sgt. N.M. Douglas RAF - POW
    Sgt. A.S. Morrison RCAF - POW
    Sgt. J.L. Peck RCAF - POW
    Sgt. F.T. Stanley RCAF - KIA

    I have the service records of the three killes men Johnson,Prosnyck and Stanley but unfortunately no info on the POW's.

    Dave also a thank to you for your respond.As you could read above no info about the POW's in the service records.But I must say I received the genealogy package.What additional info you get when you order the full packet?Anyway reading your respond I could always try the Department of National Defence's Directorate of History and Heritage in Ottawa.

    Thanks again guys.

    regards
    Mike

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    Sorry Nick,

    Of course you could use the POW info from rafcommands.com:

    L6 1145 Levasseur J J R/113949 RCAF



    L6 1273 Thomson D E R/79019 RCAF

    4A 78 Boyd J L 428 HE864 R/61778 RCAF 04/05/43

    7A 1155 Peck J L R/120248 RCAF

    L6 1151 Morrison A S R/91314 RCAF

    L6 1141 Jaynes A R/18054A RCAF

    L3 1284 Vaillancourt C J L J/12563 RCAF

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    Default RCAF POWs

    Mike,

    Sometimes there just aren't any POW repatriation questionnaires in the files and sometimes the staff at LAC, despite the best of intentions, miss certain documents that a researcher may find critical to his or her research.

    I will give you an example. Someone from this board requested the telegram from a Canadian KIA's service file. This telegram listed the names and addresses of the next of kin of all aircrew aboard this aircraft when it was lost. It did not matter that there was only one RCAF man aboard. The telegram listed all whether they were RCAF or not.

    They were told that despite having looked that no such telegram existed in this man's file.

    When I was last home in April of this year I pulled up the same file and found the specific document exactly where it should have been.

    That I found it does not make me a good researcher. It merely indicates that the staff at the LAC are overworked and judging from the current four month backlog it isn't going to ease up anytime soon.

    Have you considered hiring a researcher in Ottawa to pull the files of the three KIAs to ensure that there is, in fact, no POW information in the files? The LAC website lists some and Richard Koval, who visits this board, may be able to recommend the people he uses.

    The entire file is sometimes worth having a look at as things do get misfiled. There was a relatively recent thread on here:

    http://www.rafcommands.com/forum/showthread.php?t=4968

    but at 40 cents per page photocopying charge you're looking at an $80.00 gamble that there may or may not be anything substantive.

    Regards,

    Dave

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    Default RCAF POW's

    Mike: Contact me from the 6 group site. I'll send the POW questonnaires.
    Richard

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    Mike,

    Further to Richards note, are you sorted?

    Nick

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    Nick,

    Yes I will contact Richard for the POW questonnaires.Thank you anyway for offering your help in first place.

    Dave, thank you for your respond.Your example of the telegram is an interesting one because that sort of information I am looking for to try to learm more about the POW's.
    I received the last two years about twelve service records of killed Canadian airman and the files did only contain records of training and attestation papers which by the way I was happy with because it told me a lot about these men and helped me to trace relatives.However no further info which lead me to the other crewmembers on board.

    regards

    Mike

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