Veteran Stories:
Edgar Herbert “Ed” Hollyer

Air Force

  • Edgar Hollyer's certificate of service.

    Edgar Hollyer
  • Edgar Hollyer's Medals (fromt left to right): Military Cross, Canadian Volunteer Service Medal, 1939-1945 War Medal, Canadian Korea Medal, Canadian Volunteer Service Medal for Korea, Special Service Medal, Peacekeeping Medal, United Nations Service Medal for Korea and the Canadian Decoration.

    Edgar Hollyer
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"I got letters from my brother of course, what had happened. He’d gone and he became an air gunner. And on one of the big bombing raids, over in Dusseldorf, he was in the aircraft that did this and that aircraft after, was shot, when it was over Dusseldorf."

Transcript

[I was] working at an elementary flying training school in Oshawa, Number 20 Elementary Flying Training School as a civilian. I was packing parachutes there. I figured that I would join the air force, that’s aboutwhere it starts and stops I think. The war in Europe was over at that time but I was still in the army. I switched from the air force to the army at that time. And I remember we were out doing this training and it came time I volunteered to go to Korea. I figured that where the war was at that time and I was serving as a soldier and that I wanted to do my bit. And also, the fact that my brother ended up killed in the Second World War, in the air force, flying in the air force. And when we asked those who could go, I volunteered. My brother joined the air force. He got air crew and I had joined the air force about the same time as he did. But I was washed out for flying after I went to the initial training school, when they gave me another medical. And so I wasn’t able to do that. Like I said, my brother, he joined about the same time as I was going to join, the air force that is. And he then went as an airman. And of course, I was still here, I hadn’t gone anywhere. So that’s when I really decided that I would like to go to Korea. I got letters from my brother of course, what had happened. He’d gone and he became an air gunner. And on one of the big bombing raids, over in Dusseldorf, he was in the aircraft that did this and that aircraft after, was shot, when it was over Dusseldorf. The pilot saw this good field that he could do the crash landing in and he did the crash landing and he had decided that that’s what he would do. On the edge of that field, there was about seven I think they said, seven big trees. It just so happened though that they had the wounded from the anti-aircraft artillery and that they weren’t able to see very well. And the pilot, he crashed into these trees and the whole aircraft, all the people flying in that aircraft were killed.
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