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RCAF Station Moose Jaw



General Information

Base / Station: Moose Jaw

Province:

Period(s) of Use: 1941 – Present

Site Plan:

Elevation:

Units:

Structures:

Commanding Officers:

  • Group Captain C.E.H. James, M.C. (Military Cross)
    • 1 January 1941 – 14 August 1942
  • Group Captain N.E. Morrison, A.F.C. (Air Force Cross)
    • 14 August 1942 – 26 June 1943
  • Group Captain E.J. George
    • 26 June 1943 – at April 1944

Aircraft Flown:

RCAF Aerodrome Moose Jaw, Saskatchewan. Image from the RCAF Pilots Manual of Aerodromes and Seaplane Bases c.1942

Financial Impact:

Date / Reason for closure:

Site details:

  • Aerodrome:
  • Runways: On 29 May 1952 it was announced that the runways would be expanded with the reactivation of the station post war.

Married Quarters:


Site Evolution:

This section was developed with the assistance of Edward P. Soye

  • The Publication On Track…the Pilot’s Air Travel Guide (First Annual Edition – 1978) lists the Aerodrome as “Moose Jaw” – See photos on this page.
  • At Some point between 1941 and 1952, Hangar 1 was removed (Supposedly by fire, need to confirm and date)
  • Between the war and 1952 the vast majority of the ancillary buildings were removed. (Source 1952 site plan) and the base side site was expanded to the north west.
  • Bushell Park Private Married Quarters (PMQ’s) were constructed in the early 1950’s (Dates to be confirmed)
  • In the 29 May 1952 edition of the Winnipeg Free Press it was announced that the Station was going to be reactivated. At this time it was announced that the Flying Training School that was located at Gimli would be relocated to Moose Jaw. With the announcement came an investment of 6.5 million dollars to reconfigure and extend the Runways, construct a new:
    • control tower,
    • supply building,
    • messes, and
    • quarters.
  • Hangar 5 was removed or destroyed at some point (2003-2022, when?)
  • Riffle Range Butt Structure was removed at some point (when?)
  • Many if not most of the buildings built in the 1950’s have also been removed (it would be great to find out which ones and when?)
  • It also appears that some of the PMQ’s have been removed. (if so when?)

Current Status:

  • as at December 2023, information provided by Edward P. Soye.
    • Wartime Drill Hall remains, now the Base Skating Rink.
    • The Snowbirds (431 Air Demonstration Squadron) occupy Wartime hangar 6 and 7
    • Base Operations and 2 Canadian Forces Flying Training School (2 CFFTS) occupy Wartime hangars 2,3,4, these hangars may be replaced in the not so distant future as part of the FAcT Program (Future Aircrew Training Program)

Site Plan – 1941

Site Plan, No 32 Service Flying Training School, Moose Jaw Saskatchewan (Circa 1941) (Source Canadiana)

Site Plan – Moose Jaw – 1952 – Source Station Historical Report.

On Track – 1978

On Track…the Pilot’s Air Travel Guide (First Annual Edition – 1978)
Moose Jaw Aerodrome (Part 1)
On Track…the Pilot’s Air Travel Guide (First Annual Edition – 1978)
Moose Jaw Aerodrome (Part 2)

Historical Satellite image captured from Google Earth – July 2003

Historical Satellite image captured from Google Earth – August 2022

Location – Google Map


Station Magazine
“Prairie Flier”

Hangar Line from Air of CFB Moose Jaw.
(National Defence Image – MJ69-215)
Standing majestically behind a Harvard trainer is the control tower at RCAF Station Moose Jaw. (National Defence Image – PL-93055)
Student Pilots O/Cdt. Jon Vervoort, left and O/Cdt. Norman Patterson walk past the Control Tower at CFB Moose Jaw.
(National Defence Image – IW78-54)


1944

January

February

March

April

May

June

July

August

September


Formation and Organization Orders – RCAF Station Moose Jaw

1 June 1952 – 30 November 1952

1 December 1952 – 30 November 1953

1 December 1953 – 31 May 1954

1 June 1954 – 30 November 1955 – Missing

1 December 1955 – 31 May 1956

1 June 1956 – 31 May 1957 – Missing

1 June 1957 – 30 November 1957

1 December 1957 – 31 May 1958

1 June 1958 – 30 November 1958 – Missing

1 December 1958 – 31 May 1959

1 June 1959 – 30 November 1959

1 December 1959 – 31 May 1960

1 June 1960 – 30 November 1960

1 December 1960 – 31 May 1961

1 June 1961 – 30 November 1961

1 December 1961 – 30 May 1962

30 May 1962 – 1 July 1962 – Missing

1 July 1962 – 30 November 1962

1 December 1962 – 31 May 1963

1 June 1963 – 31 December 1963

1 Jan 1964 – 31 December 1964


Fatalities

This list was compiled from the entries in the Daily diaries of No 32 Service Flying Training School, No 2 Flying Training School, and No 431 Squadron and other sources.  The list likely does not include all fatalities of personnel who died while stationed at RCAF Station Moose Jaw, and likely includes some errors. Currently this list contains 75 personnel.

23 January 1941

26 April 1941

5 May 1941

20 May 1941

2 July 1941

12 July 1941

27 August 1941

28 August 1941

6 January 1942

14 January 1942

28 January 1942

11 March 1942

18 July 1942

25 July 1942

20 September 1942

9 January 1943

12 April 1943

7 May 1943

17 June 1943

8 July 1943

21 July 1943

11 August 1943

18 August 1943

4 September 1943

13 March 1944

5 August 1953

29 October 1953

30 December 1953

8 April 1954

  • Acting Pilot Officer Thomas Thorrat
  • Mrs Martha Hadwen
  • Crew:
    • I.H. Bell
    • D.W. Guthrie
    • Lou Penner
    • L.M. Quinney
  • Passengers
    • Rodney Adamson
    • Mrs Rodney Adamson
    • George Sweny
    • Mrs George Sweny
    • Alan Craig
    • H.F. George
    • Mrs Carol Nelson
    • Caroline Nelson
    • D. Wilson
    • E.F. Cameron
    • A. Smart
    • O.A. Blanck
    • G.H. Gillett
    • Mrs C.G. Nelson
    • A. Belzberg
    • W.T. Reid-Hunter
    • R.D. Baugh
    • Pat Reid
    • Mrs Pat Reid
    • D. Matheson
    • Gerald Stanton
    • J. Crossen
    • A. McVey
    • W.I. Brook
    • C.G. Hutton
    • R. McLean
    • George R. Goodall
    • Mrs M. Pirie
    • Mrs A Douglas Edwards
    • Miss J. Finney

22 September 1954

5 May 1955

6 July 1956

9 January 1957

21 May 1958

6 October 1964

27 July 1965

28 July 1965

8 October 1966

13 June 1967

13 July 1969

30 July 1969

20 March 1972

10 June 1972

22 August 1973

31 May 1976

3 April 1978

3 May 1978

30 October 1979

16 April 1980

5 June 1989

3 September 1989

10 December 1998

21 July 2003

10 December 2004

18 May 2007

9 October 2008

17 May 2020


Notable Alumni


Aircraft List


Courts Martial

The following personnel were recommended for courts martial and a file was created on the Charged Offence, not all Offences were tried. This list is not complete but I will be working my way through the reels in the upcoming months.

  • Squadron Leader Henry Marsden (RAF-70445)
    • Charges stem from service at Assiniboia, Saskatchewan
    • Charged with:
      • 7 Counts of In a daily flying log and flight authorization form, signed by him. Being privy to the making of a false statement.
      • 2 counts of Neglect to the prejudice of Good Order and Air Force discipline.
    • Trial Date – 11 October 1943
    • File is 246 pages
    • member was found not guilty of all charges.

  • Mutiny – from the ORB.
    • on 16 July 1943 a group of airmen decided to stage a protest of orders issued by the commanding officer of No. 32 SFTS. There is no mention of this, on the date of the offence in the ORB. The first mention of the mutiny was on 4 October 1943 in the ORB when the men were put to General Courts Martial. The Courts Martial continued until 14 October. At that time 2 members were acquitted. Between the October and November sections of the ORB there is a discipline appendix dated 16 July 1943 that details the event. On 12 November 1943 the station was ordered on parade and the sentences of the 13 remaining airmen was promulgated. The pulmigation is detailed starting on page 1136 of the ORB. All members found guilty of participating in the mutiny were sentenced to between 9 and 18 months of detention. At some point in the future I will add more to this.

Related documents:


Course List
No 32 Service Flying Training School



This Post Has 4 Comments

  1. Merle Hattersley (daughter)

    Am wondering if you can help me. My father, Kenneth Ian McLean D.o.b. 19.8.1933 has just turned 90 years old. He was in the RAF around the early 1950s and has very fond memories of being based at Moosejaw around those years with the Canadian Airforce. As a special Christmas present, I was wondering if you have any records of him that you could send me a photograph of; or a photo of the base as it looks now; or indeed any memorabilia relating to the years during 1950. Any information would be much appreciated.

    1. Nathan Kachur

      Thank you so much for your recent comment. Unfortunately I have very little from RCAF Station Moose Jaw in the post war years. I may be able to find the Annual historical reports for this time period but they are unlikely to hold much in the type of information you are looking for. As for recent photos or photos from the 50’s I can take a look at some resources, but can not promise anything.

      1. Will Chabun

        RCAF’s fighter ace Bert Houle was a grad of 32 SFTS in 1941.

  2. Will Chabun

    British novelist JG Ballard (perhaps best known for the autobiographical coming-of-age book Empire of the Sun) went through Moose Jaw as an RAF cadet around 1953 or 1954. His memoir makes him seem like a typical English fop, always finding fault with the colonials.

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