In 1943 he joined the Canadian Air Force, serving as a flying instructor during WWII

Tom Sweetnam

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One of the coolest characters I've ever met in my life was a WWII RCAF Lancaster bomber pilot from Vancouver who was at the Nanton, Alberta Lancaster Bomber Museum in 2000 ( now called The Bomber Command Museum of Canada) when my wife and I were on a three-month RV tour of Western Cananda. The museum was being officially dedicated that weekend by former Canadian Prime Minister, Brian Mulroney, who also had one other long overdue order of business to take care of.

He presented pilot's wings to a group of former Lancaster Bomber pilots who because they never went to flight school, never got their wings. That didn't stop them from taking over the left seat after OJT and becoming aircraft commanders who flew as many as 60 bombing missions over Germany. "Oh goodie" said the old timer from Vancouver, "I'm finally a pilot."

Bomber Command Museum of Canada
 

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