John was born at London, Ontario on August 31, 1919. John was a printer by trade before enlistment, having taken job-printing course at Lowe Technical School.
He enlisted in the RCAF at Windsor in April, 1941.
He did his ITS at Dartmouth NS; AOS Three Rivers; Crumlin (London, Ont.); B&G Fingal, ANS at Pennfield Ridge NB. He received his Observer Wing at Fingal in February 1942.
He was posted to the UK in May 1942. He trained at #3 AFU Bobbington; #20 OTU Lossiemouth, Scotland;
#1656 HCU Lindholme.
John did his first tour at Elsham Wolds, Linc. and his second tour at North Killingholme and both on Lancs.
Then posted to #168 (Mail Squadron) RCAF Ottawa.
He served on Squadrons #103, 550 and 168.
On his first tour Sid Burton RAF (pilot); George McKenzie (F/E); Pat Baird, RAF (WOP); Spence Cartwright RAF
(B/A); Bob MacCrae, RAF (Rear A/G); Les Brady RCAF(MU A/G).
John has written about some of his pre wartime and post-war experiences in a self-published book entitled
“The Dancin’ Navigator”. In his book, John discusses many “memorable” moments in his flying career, most
“on duty” but some highly entertaining ones “off duty”. The book is well-illustrated with photographs taken throughout his career by and of John. John left the RCAF at Trenton in October, 1945.
John went directly from RCAF to Trans-Canada Airlines/Air Canada, flying as a navigator for 30 years on their Trans-Atlantic, Caribbean and trans-polar(magnetic) routes. He retired from Air Canada in December 1976.
John married a Welsh girl while overseas and have five children, two girls and three boys and eight grandchildren. John had quadruple heart by-pass surgery in the late 1980’s but still travels extensively includint travel to ACA meetings in Canada and the UK. August 13, 2001