Historical Aircraft

412 Squadron

 

Badge: A falcon volant

Motto: Promptus ad vindictam (Swift to avenge)

Authority: King George VI, September 1944

The falcon is indigenous to all parts of Canada. Known for its skill and aggressiveness in dealing with its enemies, it has been used for hunting from an early date in history.Formed at Digby, Lincolnshire,
England on 30 June 1941 as the
RCAF’s tenth – seventh Fighter – squadron formed overseas, the unit flew Spitfire aircraft on offensive and defensive air operations; and in support of ground forces in North-West Europe. After hostilities in Europe, the squadron served as one of four RCAF day fighter units assigned to the British Air Forces of Occupation (Germany) until disbanded at Utersen, Germany on 21 March 1946.

Brief Chronology Formed at Digby, Lincs., Eng. 30 Jun 41. Disbanded at Utersen, Ger, 21 Mar 46.

Title or Nickname: Falcon

Adoption Parkdale Lions Club, Toronto, Ont. (13 May , 1943)

Commanders

  • S/L C.W. Trevena 30 Jun 41 – 11 Nov 41.
  • S/L J.D. Morrison 12 Nov 41 – 24 Mar 42.
  • S/L R.C. Weston 1 Apr 42 – 27 Jul 42.
  • S/L J.C. Fee, DFC 28 Jul 42 – 26 Nov 42.
  • S/L F.W. Kelly, DFC 27 Nov 42 – 24 Jun 43.
  • S/L G.C. Keefer, DFC and Bar 25 Jun 43 – 11 Apr 44.
  • S/L J.E. Sheppard, DFC 12 Apr 44 – 1 Aug 44 MIA.’
  • S/L D.H. Dover, DFC and Bar 2 Aug 44 – 28 Jan 45 OTE.
  • S/L M.D. Boyd 29 Jan 45 – 29 May 45 2 OTE.
    S/L D.J. Dewan 30 May 45 – 21 Mar 46.

Higher Formations and Squadron Locations
Fighter Command:
No. 12 Group,
Canadian Digby Wing,
Digby, Lines. 30 Jun 41 – 19 Oct 41.
Wellingore, Lines. 20 Oct 41 – 30 Apr 42.
No. 11 Group,
Martlesham Heath, Suffolk 1 May 42 – 3 Jun 42.
North Weald, Sussex 4 Jun 42 – 18 Jun 42.
Merston, Sussex 19 Jun 42 – 23 Aug 42.
Tangmere, Sussex 24 Aug 42 – 22 Sep 42.
Canadian Kenley Wing,
Redhill, Surrey 23 Sep 42 – 1 Nov 42.
Kenley, Surrey 2 Nov 42 – 28 Jan 43.
No. 10 Group,
Angle, S. Wales 29 Jan 43 – 7 Feb 43.
Fairwood Common, S. Wales 8 Feb 43 – 12 Apr 43. Perranporth, Cornwall 13 Apr 43 – 20 Jun 43.
Friston, Sussex 21 Jun 43 – 13 Jul 43.
Second Tactical Air Force:
No. 83 (Composite) Group,
No. 17 (RCAF) Sector (disbanded 13 Jul 44),
No. 126 (RCAF) Wing,
Redhill, Surrey 14 Jul 43 – 7 Aug 43.
Staplehurst, Kent 8 Aug 43 – 13 Oct 43.
Biggin Hill, Kent 14 Oct 43 – 14 Apr 44.Tangmere, Sussex 15 Apr 44 – 18 Jun 44.
B.(Base) 4 Beny- sur-Mer, Fr. 19 Jun 44 – 8 Aug 44. B.18 Cristot, Fr. 9 Aug 44 – 28 Aug 44.
B.28 Evreux, Fr. 29 Aug 44 – 1 Sep 44.
B.26 Illiers l’Eveque, Fr. 2 Sep 44.
B.44 Poix, Fr. 3 Sep 44 – 5 Sep 44.
B.44 Evere, Bel. 6 Sep 44 – 20 Sep 44.
B.68 Le Culot, Bel. 21 Sep 44 – 3 Oct 44.
B.84 Rips, Neth. 4 Oct 44 – 14 Oct 44.
B.80 Volkel, Neth. 15 Oct 44 – 5 Dec 44.
B.88 Heesch, Neth. 6 Dec 44 – 12 Apr 45.
B.108 Rheine, Ger. 13 Apr 45 – 15 Apr 45.
B.116 Wunstorf, Ger. 16 Apr 45 – 12 May 45.
B.152 Fassberg, Ger. 13 May 45 – 5 Jul 45.
British Air Forces of Occupation (Germany):
No. 83 (Composite) Group,
No. 126 (RCAF) Wing,B.174 Utersen, Ger, 6 Jul 45 – 21 Mar 46.
Bombing and gunnery training, Sylt, Isle of Sylt, Ger. 8-21 Dec 45.
Representative Aircraft (Unit Code VZ)
Supermarine Spitfire Mk.HA (Jul – Oct 41) P8086 B
P8145 K P8250 F P8369 G P8391 L
Supermarine Spitfire Mk.VB (Oct 41 – Nov 43) Supermarine Spitfire Mk.IXB (Nov 43 – Sep 44) Supermarine Spitfire Mk.IXE (Sep 44 – May 45) Supermarine Spitfire Mk.XVI (May – Jun 45, not on opera­tions)
Supermarine Spitfire Mk.XIVE (Jun 45 – May 46) Operational History: First Mission 31 August 1941, 2 Spit­fire IIA’s from Digby – uneventful scramble. First Offen­sive Mission 21 September 1941, 12 Spitfire IIA’s from Digby – Canadian Digby Wing fighter sweep with Nos. 411 and 266 (RAF) Squadrons over the north coast of France. Formation came under anti-aircraft fire and sighted enemy aircraft; no action, no casualties. First Victory 13 October 1941, 12 Spitfire IIA’s from Digby – Canadian Digby Wing patrol with No. 266 (RAF) Squadron from Boulogne to south of Hardelot, engaged an enemy force. Sgt. E.N. Macdonell in P7856 VZ-E credited with 1 Bf.109 destroyed ten miles off Boulogne. Triple Victory 24 July 1944, 4 Spitfire IXB’s from Beny-sur-Mer – weather recce, engaged a mixed force of 40-plus aircraft east of Lisieux and credited with 7 destroyed, no losses. FIL W.J. Banks credited with 2 Fw.190’s and 1 Bf.109 destroyed. Last Mis­sion 4 May 1945, 8 Spitfire IX’s from Wunstorf – armed recce of Elmshorn-Flensburg-Friedrichskoog area, claimed 1 locomotive and 5 trains damaged, 1 automobile destroyed. Summary Sorties: 12,761. Operational/Non- operational Flying Hours: 16,955114,359. Victories: Aircraft: 106 destroyed, 11 probably destroyed, 46 damaged. Ground: dropped 203 tons of bombs, credited with 86 rail cuts and destroyed/ damaged 2821721 motor vehicles, 421135 railway cars, 22/84 locomotives, 1110 tanks. Casualties: Opera­tional: 63 aircraft; 62 pilots, of whom 21 were killed, 14 presumed dead, 11 POW (1 died), 1 missing, 14 safe, 1 evaded capture. Non-operational: 9 personnel, of whom 6 were killed, 2 injured, 1 died of injuries. Squadron Aces FIL D.C. Laubman, DFC and Bar 14-0-2.2 FIL W.J. Banks,DFC and Bar 7-3-2. FIO D.R.C. Jamieson, DFC and Bar 6-0-0. FIO P.M. Charron 5-0-1. FIL R.I.A. Smith, DFC 5-0-0. Honours and Awards 7 bars to DFC, 16 DFC’s, 4 MiD’s. Battle Honours Defence of Britain 1941-1944.English Channel and North Sea 1942-1943. Fortress Europe 1941-1944: Dieppe. France and Germany 1944-1945. Nor­mandy 1944, Arnhem, Rhine. ‘Evaded capture and returned to England.
‘On 26 and 27 September 1944, in four sorties, SIL Laubman was credited with 4 Fw.190’s and 3 Bf.109’s destroyed and 1 Bf.109 damaged. All vic­tories were scored flying Spitfire IXB MJ393 VZ-Z.