Historical Aircraft

439 Squadron

 

No. 439 Squadron
Badge none
Formed in Canada as No. 123 (Army Co-operation Train­ing) Squadron on 15 January 1942, the unit was the second of six home squadrons transferred overseas (complete in personnel but without aircraft) in preparation for the Allied invasion of Europe, and was redesignated No. 439 (Fighter Bomber) Squadron at Wellingore, Lincolnshire, England on 31 December 1943. It flew Typhoon aircraft in the pre-in­vasion softening up of the German defences and, after
D-Day, gave close support to ground forces by dive-bomb­ing and strafing enemy strongpoints, bridges, rail and road traffic. The squadron was disbanded at Flensburg, Ger­many on 26 August 1945.
Brief Chronology Formed as No. 123 (ACT) Sqn, Rockcliffe, Ont. 15 Jan 42. Redesignated No. 439 (FB) Sqn, Wellingore, Lines., Eng. 31 Dec 43. Disbanded at Flensburg, Ger. 26 Aug 45.m Title or Nickname “Westmount”
ri Adoption City of Westmount, Que. Commanders
S/L W.M. Smith 31 Dec 43 – 9 Mar 44.
S/L H.H. Norsworthy, DFC 10 Mar 44 – 12 Sep 44 2 OTE. SIL K.J. Fiset, DFC 13 Sep 44 – 8 Dec 44 OTE.
SIL R.G. Crosby 9 Dec 44 – 22 Jan 45 WIA.
SIL J.H. Beatty, DFC 25 Jan 45 – 26 Aug 45.
Higher Formations and Squadron Locations
Air Defence Great Britain:
No. 12 Group,
Wellingore, Lines. 31 Dec 43 – 7 Jan 44.
Second Tactical Air Force:
No. 83 (Composite) Group,
No. 22 (RCAF) Sector (disbanded 13 Jul 44),
No. 143 (RCAF) Wtr1_g,
Ayr, Scot. 8 Jan 44 – 17 Mar 44.
Hurn, Hants. 18 Mar 44 – 1 Apr 44.
Funtington, Sussex 2 Apr 44 – 18 Apr 44.
Hurn, Hants. 19 Apr 44 – 26 Jun 44.
No. 16 Armament Practice Camp, Hutton Cranswick, Yorks. 11-20 May 44.
B.(Base) 9 Lantheuil, Fr. 27 Jun 44 – 30 Aug 44.
B.24 St Andre, Fr. 31 Aug 44 – 2 Sep 44.
B.48 Glisy, Fr. 3 Sep 44 – 6 Sep 44.
B.58 Melsbroek, Bel. 7 Sep 44 – 24 Sep 44.
B.78 Eindhoven, Neth. 25 Sep 44 – 29 Mar 45.
B.100 Coch, Ger. 30 Mar 45 – 2 Apr 45.
No. 17 Armament Practice Camp. Warmwell, Dorset, Eng.
3-21 Apr 45.
B.150 Hustedt, Ger. 22 Apr 45 – 28 May 45.
B.166 Flensburg, Ger. 29 May 45 – 26 Aug 45. Representative Aircraft (Unit Code 5V)
Hawker Hurricane Mk.IV (Jan – Apr 44, not on operations) Hawker Typhoon Mk.IB (Jan 44 – Aug 45) R8926 B R8977 D EK219 X JP401 P JR299 S JR326 F JR444 J JR506 X MN427 Y MN464 N MN516 W RB257 S RB441 Z SW423 J SW460 D
Operational History: First Mission 27 March 1944, 9 Typhoons from Hurn – fighter sweep over the Cherbourg Peninsula. Last Mission 4 May 1945, 7 Typhoons from Hustedt, each with two 500-pound bombs – anti-shipping strike against vessels in Kiel Bay, claimed 2 probably destroyed, 4 damaged. Summary Sorties: 3996. Operational/Non-operational Flying Hours: 4206/3426.Victories: Aircraft: 11 destroyed, 1 probably destroyed, 9 damaged. Ground: dropped 2108 tons of bombs (2664 1000- and 3100 500-pound), credited with 360 rail cuts: destroyed/ damaged 6/0 bridges, 237 /321 motor vehicles, 17/13 tanks, 5/92 locomotives, 65/396 trains, 10/27 barges. Casualties: Operational: 41 aircraft; 37 pilots, of whom 19 were killed, 9 missing, 6 POW; 3 proved safe. Non-opera­tional: 5 pilots killed. Honours and Awards 12 DFC’s. Battle Honours Fortress Europe 1944. France and Germany 1944-1945: Normandy 1944, Arnhem, Rhine.