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LIPTON, Moses Squadron Leader, No.410 Squadron, C868 Mention in Despatches - Air Force Cross RCAF Personnel Awards 1939-1949
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LIPTON, S/L Moses (C868) - Mention in Despatches - No.410 Squadron - Award effective 9 June 1942 as per London Gazette dated 11 June 1942 and AFRO 1000-1001/42 dated 3 July 1942. Born 21 June 1916 in Sydney, Nova Scotia as per RCAF Press Release reporting award and Ferry Command records. Graduated from Station Trenton, 17 June 1939. Instructor in surveying at Dalhousie before enlisting. Chief Flying Instructor, No.3 SFTS, October to December 1940. Deputy CFI, Central Flying School, May 1941. Had completed 2,339 flying hours to date, 1,525 flying hours as instructor, 42 hours in previous six months. Attached to Ferry Command, 5 April 1944. Departed Montreal, 14 April 1944 in Boston BZ448 to Sydney; to Gander, 15 April 1944; to Goose Bay, 16 April 1944; to Greenland, 17 April 1944; to Reykjavik, 18 April 1944; to Britain, 20 April 1944. Photo PL-4312 (ex UK-29) shows him. Photo PL-4638 (ex UK-376) is captioned as follows: “Flying Officer F.R. Davey of Parry Sound, Ontario, and Squadron Leader Morris Lipton of Halifax, Nova Scotia, adjutant and Officer Commanding respectively of an RCAF night fighter squadron, which is now actively engaged against night flying enemy bombers over Great Britain.” Photo PL-4673 (ex UK-415) show him introducing members of the squadron to the Honourable Vincent Massey, during the High Commissioner’s visit to the unit. Photo PL-4791 (ex UK-564) shows him standing beside his night fighter “somewhere in England”. NOTE: He uses "Maurice" and "Moses" but the latter appears to be his final (postwar) choice. // LIPTON, W/C Maurice (C868) - Air Force Cross - AFHQ - Award effective 14 June 1945 as per London Gazette of that date and AFRO 1127/45 dated 6 July 1945. // This officer was first employed in the Royal Canadian Air Force as a flying instructor. He proved highly efficient in this capacity and amassed over a thousand instructional hours. He was then posted overseas and upon his return he organized No.129 Fighter Squadron and subsequently commanded No.1 Flying Instructor School, Trenton, Ontario. At the Empire Central Flying School he obtained the highest all-round assessment ever granted for air and ground work. His knowledge and attitude to flying have been and are exceptional. In the various positions he has held in the Air Force he has always carried out his duties in an exemplary manner and the contribution he has made to service flying is very great. // RCAF Press Release No.431 dated 14 June 1942, transcribed by Huguette Mondor Oates, readsL // “It’s a piece of cake – night fighting in the summer in this part of the world, with such short periods of darkness.” Wing Commander Maurice Lipton would rather do without the cake, however. So would the entire personnel of his RCAF night fighter squadron for, all rehearsal and no performance, is one thing they surely want no part of. // “Our turn will come, I guess, when the calendar changes over. Just now, the day fighters are having their fun, with such long stretches of daylight. “That is what it does for us in the meantime, though, plenty of opportunity for training,” he indicated, as the pilot of a Beaufighter “revved” up its twin engines, and roared across the well turfed aerodrome, followed almost immediately by a second, which soon was airborne, heading cross-country on a practice flight over the Scottish highlands. // Greatest complaint with his aircrew is lack of patience Wing Commander Lipton finds. Falling off in German bombing raids over the United Kingdom has been relief for the populace, but hardly salve for the night fighters. They crave Huns, and plenty of them, so they can put into practice what they have been learning for many months past. “At readiness” for them, particularly during recent months, has not harboured all the excitement which a young pilot might expect. // Holding wing commander’s rank at the age of 26 is a distinction enjoyed by few, if any, Canadians. This Sydney, Cape Breton, flier is not the youngest commanding officer of a Canadian squadron overseas, but he is the most youthful C.O. holding that rank. It reflects the manner in which youth has responded to opportunity in the air force, and is capable of shouldering the many responsibilities imposed, both in the air and on the ground. // “I wouldn’t change jobs with anyone. I haven’t seen anything I’d prefer to air force life,” smiled the boyish-looking Lipton. He’s happy in the service, and has no regrets that he put on air force blue back in July of 1938, after emerging from Dalhousie University, Halifax, with an Engineering degree. // Life began to look like one long round of training for Lipton, until May of last year brought change of fortune. Up to that time, like so many permanent force men, he had been delegated to the vital job of training instructors, as a member of the staff of Central Flying School at Trenton. // When the RCAF made a change in policy, and sent three instructors overseas last year, Lipton was a fortunate member of that select group. Wing Commander Paul Davoud, of Kingston, and Winnipeg, who also commands a Canadian night fighter squadron, and the late Squadron Leader N.B. Petersen were the others. They came over the fast way, ferrying Hudson bombers. They were attached to R.A.F. squadrons for practical operational experience. Later, with the “Canadianization” of squadrons, they received their calling as commanding officers. Davoud and Lipton formed the present squadron. The former took over another Canadian squadron, and with the move came Lipton’s promotion to his present rank. // “Night fighting is no matter of luck. It is very definitely a skillful job,” says Lipton. “The boys who shoot down the Huns ARE good,” “Bright moon on cloud base is ideal from a night fighter’s standpoint, but the visibility varies. Sometimes, with a full moon, one might see two miles, but visibility varies radically,” he added, “sometimes down to 50 yards, in fact”. “You don’t shoot until you have absolute identification, and that takes a lot of silhouette drill on the ground, among other things”. // Although young in years, W/C Lipton is a veteran in flying time. His log book shows a great accumulation of flying hours, built up on many types of aircraft. // Flying had not been his hobby while attending Dalhousie, nor during this schoolboy days in Sydney, Cape Breton. He started from scratch in that respect when he enrolled in the RCAF hardly 14 months before war broke out, and took his elementary course at Trenton. It proved to be his address for a far longer period than first anticipated. With the declaration of war, and the immediate need to recruit as many experienced pilots as possible to fit into instructional roles, Lipton found himself groomed for that type of work. He was a member of the original instructors’ class at Central Flying School, Trenton, under W/C Ralph Davenport, and it was his lot to be retained on the staff there, to instruct instructors-to-be. He experienced a break in that routine when he assisted in opening the No.3 Service Flying Training School, later returning to Trenton to resume his tasks. // With such a background, and experience in England with an RAF night fighter squadron, Lipton has been right in character grooming his night fighters for operational duties. At one time, his squadron contained a strong percentage of R.A.F. personnel. Now it is nearly one hundred percent Canadian, in keeping with a policy which has been put into effect this year. // “It has meant training all the time, working in new men,” said Lipton. “ A still bigger job was the conversion of our pilots from single engines to twins, as we switched from Defiants to Beaufighters. The boys took readily to the fast ‘Beaus’, and without a single accident. They’re keen to get on with the job, just straining to mix it with the Huns, in fact.” // Versatility is a strong point in the Lipton make-up. He never loses enthusiasm for flying, either. “Put him in almost any type of aircraft, and see him react,” advised an associate. “He can really fly!” // Central Flying School at Trenton has given this youthful Commanding Officer such a well-rounded foundation. Opportunity is what he wants to put it to the test.