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About Dennis Connolly

Lest We Forget

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4Dennis

There is a story behind that picture.

I will tell you after the funeral.

Dennis passed away at Ste. Anne’s (Veterans) Hospital on April 25, three days after his 95th birthday. He is predeceased by his eldest son, Michael.
Memories of Dennis will be cherished by, Lilian, his loving wife of 71 years; his children, David (Christina), Patricia (the late Stephen Shaar), Terry (Lee) and Sharon (Mike Schofield); his grandchildren, Andrea, Brian C. (Crystal), Brian S., Christopher, Jessica (Richard Ferrell), Katie (Derek Lagimodiere), Kevin (Rachel), Lauren (James Bush), Lynn (Mike Taylor), Mark (Leah), Matthew (Renata), Shawn and Will (Julie); his great-grandchildren, Adam, Aeden, Alexandria, Arianna, Cameron, Cassidy, Emilia, Jade, Liam C., Liam T., Lola, Michael and Sofia, and his dear friend, Dennis Copley. He was our hero.
Dennis was born in England but raised and educated in New Brunswick. From the time he was a young lad…

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In Memoriam: Dennis William Patrick Connolly 1918-2013

I got this comment this afternoon.

Hello ,

My name is Patrick Daunais.

I was a good friend of Dennis Connolly. He was in the Ste-Anne Veterans Hospital and sadly passed away April 24th, 2013.

He will be missed by all his family, friends .

He was a great man to know and it was an honnor to have been able to call him my friend.

Dennis William Patrick Connolly deserves all the respect and the admiration for he gave all for his country.

500 hours on a Spitfire… Participated in the Dieppe Raid… Back in Canada as a flight instructor to train pilots at Bagotville with 130 Squadron…

His recollections are here on this siteI found him in a book about 91 Squadron written by Peter Hall.

I paid him a visit in 2012.

 

I wanted to go back and see him once more. I would have like to show him the movie I made about him on You Tube.

Never had the chance.

Comment I received from his daughter…

Thank you so much for your tribute for Dennis Connolly.    I am Dennis’ youngest daughter; he had his 95th birthday on April 22 and he passed away on the morning of April 25.  He was an amazing fighter and only succumbed after enduring an operation after a fractured hip approximately a week before.  He leaves behind, Lilian, his wife of 71 years, 4 children (and one who passed on before him), 13 grandchildren, and 13 great grand children – a legacy to be sure.  We are all proud of our hero and will cherish our memories.  

A funeral mass will be held for Dennis in Hudson on Tuesday, April 30 (2:00 p.m.) at St. Thomas Aquinas Church in Hudson, Quebec to be followed by a reception for family and friends at the Royal Canadian Legion Hudson Branch.

Dennis William Patrick Connolly a humble man and a true hero.

JE-J

About the question on the lettering of JE-J…

JE-J

In response to the question about the JE-J lettering font…..these markings were applied at unit
level and the correct stencils were not always available, so the erks who did the painting used whatever they had on hand. This was a particular problem with aircraft that switched subordination between groups. For example, 404 squadron shifted several times in 1944 and had to have new unit code letters added each time. Sometimes these were in the same size and fout as the aircraft ID letter, sometimes in a different size and/or a different font.

You can pay a visit to Layne Larsen’s Website.

Another Picture and a Story – The Liberator

Sometimes I can find a picture in my dad’s collection and match it with an entry from the Journal.

B-24

 American B24 Liberator Bomber – From My Dad’s Collection

 

July 12/1944 (As Written by Hand in the ERK Journal)

Quiet last night, what’s going on, American Liberator came in today had troubles, actually made a good landing on our crash strip and got stopped without landing damage. We don’t do any repair work in these situations, an American ground crew will come in and do the necessary.

I rather thought they really wanted to see what was going on, on the ground. I had a good talk with them and took them over to a German fort, a lightly buried Jerry had swollen up and rolled out of the bank, they were going to rebury him and one put a shovel on him and he deflated, the smell was horrible.

 Anyway they collected up a bunch of ammunition and some other German junk including dirty underwear, gas masks, to take back with them. I would like to hear the tales they told when they got back to their Sqd. in England.

An old Anson aircraft brought in some supplies. I had to go over to start it as the crew on flight control didn’t have a clue.

Mark White

April 11, 2013.

Rare Spitfire Picture From George White’s Collection: Take Two

127 Wing Most Famous Spitfire

403 Erks Working on the Wing Commander’s Spitfire

James Edgar “Johnnie” Johnson commanded the RCAF Spitfires of 127 Wing.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Johnnie_Johnson_%28RAF_officer%29

This picture from George White’s collection was taken in Eindhoven Holland during Operation Market Garden.

JE-J

JE-J back

Caption from Back of photo

Mark has something to ask my readers…

Hi Pierre,

I wonder if any of your readers knows why the JEJ lettering on the picture I posted is so different from the lettering that appears  on all the models or replicas of JEJ Spitfires I have ever seen.

I understand Johnson used the same aircraft for the majority of his victories. Does anyone know the identity of the aircraft in the picture I posted from my dad’s collection?

Perhaps Pat Murphy or Dean Black have the answer.

I combed through the Erk Journal looking for any references to Johnson and JEJ and I found a couple. They are typed from the handwritten notes and attached to this email

Cheers

Mark

April 11, 2013.

From the ERK Journal (As Written by Hand):

July 15/1944

We really got a lemon today KH-D 403 Squadron. Explosive cannon shell still in the starboard radiator. Nice mess, glycol line, hydraulics, ave gas, holes and undercarriage. Pilot was lucky to get it down in one piece if was flying at the time. 144 airfield split up. 443 squadron is forming 127.  Their C/O is Johnny Johnson R.A.F. one of the top scoring fighter pilots still flying. They originated as a Canadian Squadron, West Coast for protection against Japan. You can tell them easily from us. Their uniforms are clean.

August 3/1944

Not many repair jobs, doing lots of inspections. Each squadron has ideally 20 aircraft on inventory, operating 12 aircraft as a squadron in the air, 13 aircraft take off in case one has a drop in revs, if not he comes down right away.

Our oldest aircraft belongs to Wing Commander Johnny Johnson R.A.F. who has flown it for all his victories and it doesn’t carry his squadron letter but his own initials JEJ.

Something big is in the wind, each aircraft has it’ own fuel dispersal, usually ringed by 4 gallon gas cans, so the fuel supply is not concentrated in one spot. Right now, each dispersal has a selection of numbered bombs (250-500 pounders), the numbers appear on the pilots maps as designated targets, bridges, road crossings, key targets etc. Our aircraft have been restricted from shooting at vehicle traffic using the roads in daylight, they keep reporting more and more German movement on the roads in daylight.

Sgt. George Bub, December 22, 1943

Sergeant Bub was with the Electrical Section. Well at least that was my assumption.

bagpipe

He’s also on this picture with Flight Sergeant Leonard Weston, Warrant Officer Norm Cheevers and Flight Sergeant McKenzie.

air shelter 1

F/Sgt. Leonard Weston, W/O Norm Cheevers, F/Sgt. McKenzie, Sgt. George Bub

Sergeant Bub is on the right in the first row.

This might be trivial unless you are related to Sergeant Bub and have no pictures of him or for that matter you are related to Warrant Officer Norm Cheevers and Flight Sergeant McKenzie and have no pictures also.

Now you have.

Rare Spitfire Picture From George White’s Collection

127 Wing Most Famous Spitfire

403 Erks Working on the Wing Commander’s Spitfire

James Edgar “Johnnie” Johnson commanded the RCAF Spitfires of 127 Wing.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Johnnie_Johnson_%28RAF_officer%29

This picture, from my father George White’s collection, was taken in Eindhoven Holland during Operation Market Garden.

JE-J

JE-J back

Caption from Back of photo