Dennis Connolly was transfered to 411 Squadron after his posting with Treble Two, 222 Squadron.
I know nothing about that squadron just like I did not know anything about 403 Squadron before I met Greg in September 2011. I have come a long way since then as many of my readers.
Brian Davidson wrote me an e-mail asking me how was my visit with Dennis Connolly…
I sent him links to three of the articles I wrote about Dennis Connolly.
I also told him that I just can’t wait to visit Mr. Connolly again and go through his precious logbook and ask him more questions about this anecdote.
Last time he talked about an ASR mission (Air-Sea Rescue). He was with 91 Squadron.
We seek alone…
He found a downed airman in the Channel and the rescue planes looking for him flew over the spot without noticing him.
He had to “advise” them by shooting a few rounds in front of the rescue planes to get their attention.
Dennis Connolly recounts on this site the kind of missions he flew with 91 Squadron.
Also, we did the air-sea rescue work, which meant that when we lost somebody in the [English] Channel, they had air-sea rescue ready to go out and drop dinghies for them and send out high-speed launches to pick them up, if possible. And we would spot the people who were down for them and leave them. Then they’d pick them up and bring them in. Now, that was one of our duties.
I also want to talk about the Dieppe raid…
[The] Dieppe [Raid, August 19, 1942], yeah, which was just a few minutes. So we had time to refuel and re-arm and then away we went. That particular day, I can remember, we had breakfast before it was daylight and we took off just before daylight and we came back and forth, refueled and re-armed and we were ready to have a lunch but then we were scrambled again, we didn’t have lunch. And we went on until after dark. But it was a real tiring day, that one.
And his posting at Bagotville… where Dennis and his wife Lillian stayed with a French-Canadian family.
The [British Commonwealth Air] Training Plan that Canada had, they did a very great job of training pilots and a large number. But we had no one who had fighter experience. So our group went over[seas] and we spent a couple of years and then they brought us back to instruct in [Royal Canadian Air Force Station] Bagotville [in La Baie, Quebec], with the knowledge that we had, the present knowledge that we had from our operations and we were able to pass that on and make it part of the training course and so on. So that was one of the reasons why we were brought back.
As a footnote to all this before I forget… Dennis Connolly knew the “real” Johnnie Johnson!