Letter 46: June 2, 1943
From his father
This letter was returned with his personal belongings
We just got over the radio at 5:30 pm on Friday night that you had got into the egg Dropping Business as they told then that in the big Raid on Esson the machines flown by P.O Heinz of Regina & F/Sgt Piper of Tuxford had been damaged but that you had got the machine back to there Bases the it appeared in the Moose Jaw Paper every one I meet is telling me about it. I cabled you that night what did it feel like to be getting you machine peppered with flak we are sure all glad you got her back & hope your luck stays good. We had Ellen down for the weekend 2 weeks ago & her friend Lydia was here to & we sure had a swell time of it. This last week we have Veda or Mrs Merkle staying with us that one of you new step sisters, her husband is in the RCAF & has been in Labrador for about 6 months, she is on the was to her husbands home at Langbank, we are taking her into Regina tomorrow. It is raining to beat hell here today. I have been working very hard for awhile so a day off won’t hurt me & besides your new ma has never been in Regina yet so I’ll take the day off. We took some snaps when Ellen was home. I’ll send you some of them to you. I was talking to Mrs Lowther today & she is bearing up good about Dave she says she wishes her boys had got hold of a piece of land & bought a Bull or two you know they are all getting exempt around here now, When you boys get back here you should simply scorn them, cold footed lot bunch of hounds, I even seen big Hugh & Pmk Barry & Tom Wilkinson & all the rest of them you know who they are , big Black got into Moose Jaw Police Force. Well Fred Mrs Gebhand called to see me the other night Her & another lady had been for a trip to Eastend by car & she told me that Claud had been missing for about a month, it has never been in the paper yet did you know, one of her other sons has got his wings & is going overseas or he is now, she seems a swell woman & she told me to tell you she was just as swell as her parcel & I believe her to be so. I was sure sorry to hear about Claud did you know. John Edwards is attached to the Moose Squadron. Well Fred I got lots of inquiries about you. One of Ezra Winns boys has joined the Air Force as general duties. You remember Browny who used to be night clerk in the Park Hotel his son who is a Pilot F.Sgt got the CGM for his part in the raid on the big Dams.
Now Fred we all join in wishing you the best of luck & a happy landing from you loving Dad & Ma
Have not had a letter from you for a while hope to get one soon
On 23rd May 1943 Fred was assigned to the 419 Squadron.
This Squadron was located in Middleton, St George, Durhamshire, England
On the 27th/28th of May he was on his first Bombing Mission over Essen, Germany,
his position was 2nd Pilot
From the Moose Jaw Times Herald
27/28 May 1943 Essen
This was the fifth raid on Essen during the Battle. 518 aircraft - 274 Lancasters, 151 Halifaxes, 81 Wellingtons, 12 Mosquitos dispatched to Essen. 23 aircraft - 11 Halifaxes, 6 Lancasters, 5 Wellingtons, 1 Mosquito - lost, 4.4 per cent of the force. The weather was cloudy and 11 Mosquitos used red TI to skymark. The main bombing was rather scattered due to efficient German use of decoys, with many aircraft undershooting. The limited damage caused in Essen itself was mainly in the central and northern districts. The most successful part of the operation was the devastation caused to the Krupp works was hit, undoing much of the repair work and causing heavy new damage. The damage wrought by fire to the Krupp works was enormous, it was still burning two days later. Bombs fell in 10 surrounding Ruhr towns.