Veteran Stories:
Lorne Anderson

Air Force

  • Lorne Anderson in Skellingthorpe, Linconshire, England, May 1944.

    Lorne Anderson
  • Lorne Anderson pictured in the rear gun turret of his Lancaster bomber. The turret was equipped with 303 Brownings, and could fire 1555rounds per minute.

    Lorne Anderson
  • Upper Gunner Don Gibbs pictured on his bicycle in Skellingthorpe, England, May 1944.

    Lorne Anderson
  • A page from Lorne Anderson's Logbook, showing details of operations over Germany and France.

    Lorne Anderson
  • Mickey the Moocher's pilot, Delbert White, was awarded the DFC(Distinguished Flying Cross) for his grace under pressure.

    Lorne Anderson
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""When we returned from one of our missions we ran into flack - anti-aircraft guns firing at us - in London, England, because London was our turning point to go back to base.""

Transcript

My name is Lorne Anderson from Sudbury, Ontario. I joined up in the service on September 20th, 1942, to fight in World War II. We flew in a Lancaster bomber. It was called Mickey the Moocher. I did thirty-five trips over Germany, France and Belgium, dropping bombs on anything from ammunition dumps to submarine pens in the Bay of Biscay, or ammunition factories and V-2 sites in Belgium or along the coast. I was stationed to 61 Squadron in Skellingthorpe, Linclonshire, England, with the RAF No. 5 Group, and we completed our thirty-five complete missions.

On one trip, certain members of the crew were awarded the DFC [Distinguished Flying Cross] for bravery in war. The problem was that we were shot up and we lost our... the oil from the opening of our bomb bay doors so we could drop our bombs. The skipper asked me how many gallons I had in my lines to operate my guns and turret. I said, "50 gallons," and they said that was ample to open the bomb bay doors so we could bomb. Right away, they bled the oil from my turret lines, and I would have to manually operate the guns, and also the turret. We dropped our bombs and made it safely back to base. When we returned from one of our missions we ran into flack - anti-aircraft guns firing at us - in London, England, because London was our turning point to go back to base. The Germans simultaneously started to open up operations - buzz-bombs, or V-1s - and they were firing them on London, England. So the troops that were manning the anti-aircraft guns on the ground didn't know what was coming up and they fired up in air at our planes, and in fact one of our planes was knocked down. We were firing cartridges to identify that they were friendly aircraft. All in all, we came through everything good. There were no casualties amongst any of our crew, and we all came back. I was discharged from the service in May of '45.

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