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18Jul20 Avro Lancaster

BeyondTheNow

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The Lancaster was out today and I was disappointed I didn’t have my proper camera out. It was quite low and cool to see, as always.

It flies regularly enough around here, as the Canadian Warplane Heritage Museum is close by. But just wondering if anyone knew if there was a particular reason for the trio today? Other than Remembrance Day or other special occasions/events, I can’t recall seeing it accompanied by other craft. (Unless they were just flying them today to give them all a run?)

 

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mariomike

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I think of a lot of things when I hear the Lancaster engines overhead. Among them, one out of every four Canadians killed in the war died in Bomber Command. 
 

Remius

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My grandfather was a tail gunner in one of those.  Shot down over Italy after a full tour over France and Germany.  Survived luckily.

 

Walt

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The museum offers flights in several of their aircraft in order to raise funds. Cost for a 1 hour flight in the Lancaster is $3,600.

Walt
 

BeyondTheNow

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Walt said:
The museum offers flights in several of their aircraft in order to raise funds. Cost for a 1 hour flight in the Lancaster is $3,600.

Walt

Really?! That’s fantastic! I had no clue. Unfortunately I’d need a GoFundMe, but my son would love it. Maybe one day.
 

observor 69

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de Havilland Canada Chipmunk$225.00  ;)
per seat

Number of Passengers: 1
Length of Flight: 20 Minutes
Membership Required: Yes
Tax Receipt Amount: $70

https://www.warplane.com/aircraft/flights/buy.aspx   
 

BeyondTheNow

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Awesome, thanks. I’ve been to the museum a few times, but hadn’t really looked at the website closely, and never heard about that. ‘Learn something new every day! (The Lancaster would be exciting though.)
 

dapaterson

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Baden Guy said:
de Havilland Canada Chipmunk$225.00  ;)
per seat

Number of Passengers: 1
Length of Flight: 20 Minutes
Membership Required: Yes
Tax Receipt Amount: $70

https://www.warplane.com/aircraft/flights/buy.aspx 

What does it cost for a fully loaded Lancaster flight where you get to choose the target?





Or maybe I have said too much...

#JustKidding
 

mariomike

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Remius said:
My grandfather was a tail gunner in one of those.  Shot down over Italy after a full tour over France and Germany.  Survived luckily.

My uncle's last target was in France. Near the Ornain River in the district of Marne, 80 km S/E of Reims, in July 1944.

It was a railway marshalling yard on the route from the Ruhr to the Normandy battle zone.

41 Lancasters, each with a crew of seven, were shot down. 231 aircrew were killed.

Your grandfather, was both brave and fortunate, Remius. He must have known the odds of successfully bailing out of a flaming Lancaster were not good.

 

Remius

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He never bailed out.  The plane crashed and he was still in it. 

But you have it right.  Only he and the co pilot of his plane survived that crash.  Lost his leg.

Brave doesn’t even begin to describe those men.
 

lenaitch

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The Edenvale Classic Aircraft Foundation (east of Barrie ON) offers flights in their Tiger Moth and Cornell.  I've done the Tiger Moth for the open cockpit experience. 

https://www.classicaircraft.ca/

I've done the ground tour of the Commemorative Air Force's B-17, B-25 and B-29 when Ontario was part of their tours a few years ago.  Their flights rates depend on seating position but were too rich for my blood.  I can only imagine what it costs to keep these historical air craft in the air.
 

observor 69

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Just a bit more on buying a seat for a warbird flight:

http://lonestarflight.org/flight-experiences/flight-pricing

$250 to $300 US

I used to work/volunteer in this museum. Well worth a visit if you are ever in the area.
Everything's big in Texas.  ;)
 

Weinie

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Remius said:
He never bailed out.  The plane crashed and he was still in it. 

But you have it right.  Only he and the co pilot of his plane survived that crash.  Lost his leg.

Brave doesn’t even begin to describe those men.

Remius, They were called the "greatest generation" for a very good reason. My most humble thanks to your grandpa, I stand in awe of what they did.
 

mariomike

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Remius said:
He never bailed out.  The plane crashed and he was still in it. 

Same with my uncle and his crew-mates. All seven rode it down together. There were no survivors. It was a Schrage Muzik attack.

Remius said:
Only he and the co pilot of his plane survived that crash. 

Wartime Lancasters did not have co-pilots.

There were 7 crew positions:

Pilot Seated on the left hand side of the cockpit. There was no Co-Pilot
Flight Engineer Seated next to the pilot on a folding seat
Navigator Seated at a table facing to the port (left) of the aircraft and directly behind the pilot and flight engineer
Bomb Aimer Seated when operating the front gun turret, but positioned in a laying position when directing the pilot on to the aiming point prior to releasing the bomb load
Wireless Operator Seated facing forward and directly beside the navigator
Mid-Upper Gunner Seated in the mid upper turret, which was also in the unheated section of the fuselage
Rear Gunner "Tail End Charlie" seated in the rear turret this to was in the unheated section of the fuselage and was also the most isolated position. Most rear gunner's once in their turret's did not see another member of the crew until the aircraft returned to base, sometimes 10 hours after departing
 

Remius

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mariomike said:
Same with my uncle and his crew-mates. All seven rode it down together. There were no survivors. It was a Schrage Muzik attack.

Wartime Lancasters did not have co-pilots.

There were 7 crew positions:

Pilot Seated on the left hand side of the cockpit. There was no Co-Pilot
Flight Engineer Seated next to the pilot on a folding seat
Navigator Seated at a table facing to the port (left) of the aircraft and directly behind the pilot and flight engineer
Bomb Aimer Seated when operating the front gun turret, but positioned in a laying position when directing the pilot on to the aiming point prior to releasing the bomb load
Wireless Operator Seated facing forward and directly beside the navigator
Mid-Upper Gunner Seated in the mid upper turret, which was also in the unheated section of the fuselage
Rear Gunner "Tail End Charlie" seated in the rear turret this to was in the unheated section of the fuselage and was also the most isolated position. Most rear gunner's once in their turret's did not see another member of the crew until the aircraft returned to base, sometimes 10 hours after departing

He was a rear gunner.  I%u2019ll have to go back and read the letters and the news clippings.  My recollection was that it was %u201Cco pilot%u201D but you are likely right.  Neither him or my grandmother are around anymore so I can%u2019t get it from the horses mouth. 

Thanks for that info.

Edit: did a bit of research and found something that leads me to believe he wasn%u2019t even shot down in a Lancaster.  It looks like a it was a Wellington.  And a mixed RAF crew with some New Zealanders and him being RCAF.  Not sure if that was common.  His second tour was in the Mediterranean and his first flight out over Italy was when he was shot down.  38 Squadron RAF.  Not sure anymore what his first Squadron would have been but given he was shot down at the end of 1941 he likely never flew in Lancasters. 

Thanks for the info MM.  We are currently researching as much as we can and this correction of yours has lead me to find a few things including the names of his crew mates.  One in particular that I am keen to try and contact his family as he wrote letters for My grandfather while he was in an Italian hospital.

 

mariomike

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Remius said:
And a mixed RAF crew with some New Zealanders and him being RCAF.  Not sure if that was common. 

Yes, it was common, Remius. Most RCAF in Bomber Command ( 60% is my understanding ) were posted to RAF squadrons.

For example, the Lancaster crew my uncle was a member of had 5 RCAF ( Pilot, Bomb Aimer, Navigator, upper and rear gunners ) and two RAF ( Flight Engineer and Wireless Operator ). But, they were posted to an RAF Lancaster squadron.

Remius said:
Edit: did a bit of research and found something that leads me to believe he wasn%u2019t even shot down in a Lancaster.  It looks like a it was a Wellington.  And a mixed RAF crew with some New Zealanders and him being RCAF.  Not sure if that was common.  His second tour was in the Mediterranean and his first flight out over Italy was when he was shot down.  38 Squadron RAF.  Not sure anymore what his first Squadron would have been but given he was shot down at the end of 1941 he likely never flew in Lancasters. 

The Lancaster was not introduced until 1942.

38 Squadron flew Wellingtons. They lost 7. They were posted to the Middle East in Nov. 1940.


 
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