403 ERKS in German Camouflage Working on the Auster

More Pictures from George White’s Collection

The Auster was used during WWII by the RCAF primarily as an Air Observation Post (AOP).

It was also used for communications and casualty evacuation purposes.

I have some pictures from my father George White’s collection of the ERKS working on 127 Wing’s Auster.

The boys are wearing captured German camouflage jackets.

The journal I have mentions that RCAF personnel in their dirty blue battle dress were often mistaken for Germans.

I often wonder if the boys felt safer wearing German camouflage jackets as opposed to dirty RCAF battle dress.

The German jackets look very comfortable and practical.



Auster and the Boys

Boys camo

Boys camo 2

Boys and Auster

Auster 3

The aircraft in the photo above is a Taylorcraft Auster Mark V.
Auster series aircraft gave invaluable service in the war in southern and northern Europe. At their peak, Austers equipped 19 squadrons, often using their remarkable short-field performance to operate very close to the front line.

Specifications (Auster V)

General Characteristics
• Crew: Pilot plus observer sitting side by side and one crew (if needed) in the space behind the two front seats.
• Length: 22 ft 5 in (6.83 m)
• Wingspan: 36 ft 0 in (10.97 m)
• Height: 8 ft 0 in (2.44 m)
• Wing area: 167 ft² (15.51 m²)
• Empty weight: 1,100 lb (499 kg)
• Max takeoff weight: 1,850 lb (839 kg)
• Powerplant: 1× Lycoming O-290-3 flat-four piston, 130 hp (97 kw)

• Maximum speed: 130 mph (209 km/h)
• Range: 250 miles (402 km)

 Auster 4


Mark White
February 2013

403 Squadron’s Captured BMW Sports Car

A Captured Jerry Car

Although the quality of this picture leaves a lot to be desired, it is one of my favorites from my father George White’s collection.

The captured “Jerry Car” shown in this picture with the ERKs of 403 Squadron, is a pre-war BMW 328 sports car. You will recognize the two ERK’s from some of my dad’s other photos.

A Captured Jerry Car

This car was likely built from the 1937 – 1939 period.

Note the Roundels, the star on the hood and the blackout headlight(s).

The truck in the background I believe is a 3.0 Bedford QL sporting the Maple Leaf and belonging to 127 Wing.

The number of regular 328’s produced until the start of the War is estimated at 426.

Over 200 cars still exist, a remarkable feat for a country where many cars were confiscated by the Nazi authorities. What apparently has contributed to its survival is that the engines of the 328 required very high quality petrol, which was hardly available, making the car unusable during the war and not attractive to the ruling party. And besides that, by the end of the war, Goering was probably too fat to fit into a BMW a BMW 328 Roadster.

It was however very popular with the pilots and ERKs of 403 Squadron. I recall my dad telling me how impressed the “boys” were at how fast this car was.

No doubt, the Luftwaffe enjoyed this car also. They would have had a good supply of high octane, high quality aviation gas for the Messerschmitt 109s and Focke Wulf 190s to keep the cars’ high performance high compression engine happy.

I often wonder if this particular car survived the war and where it might be now.

It would be worth a small fortune today if it was still around.


Mark White

December 28 2012.

A Thank You to the Men that Served in the 2nd Tactical Air Force

Victory in Europe

Victory in Europe back


I found this card in my dad (George White’s) collection.

It’s a personal message from Air Marshall Sir Arthur Coningham, to the relatives and friends of all members of the 2nd Tactical Air Force.

My dad, “Whitey” sent it to his girlfriend “Rene”.

Rene was my mother. Catherine Elizabeth Forman was from Reston, Manitoba.

Rene and Whitey met at an Air Force dance, at Rivers Manitoba. Whitey was training at No. 1 Air Navigation School at the Rivers Air Base.

 Rene and Whitey

“Rene and Whitey”

They married after the war and settled in Calgary.

I still have many of the letters he wrote her while he was overseas.

The letters were heavily censored by the Air Force, but I also have a wonderful journal that fills in many of the blanks created by the censors.

It will make a great read when I have the time to put it all together.

It might even make a great movie.


Mark White

December 27, 2012. 

Aviators Will Like This Site

Peter Lecoq sent me this message…

Aviators will like this site.

Aviators site

Click here…

I like this one…

He also sent this link. 

With the link below, you will be able pull up every airplane that was built in every country in the world and every aircraft company. Want to check out almost any airplane ever built in the world? Old, new, military, civilian?


Browse this site for a few minutes. You will be amazed at what has been done in airplane design. The amount of info available is unbelievable. Virtual Airplane Museum

I like this one.

Who Remembers LAC Medforth?

Luc Vervoort does…

He is one of my readers from Belgium.


If interested I can e-mail you a photograph of his grave, taken in 2010.

Best regards from Belgium


He sent me this picture.

The worse part was when some of the crew went back to the MQ’s to see how Bob was doing, they found that he was exactly the way they had left him on the stretcher, only now he was dead – from shock. The MO staff had done nothing for the seriously wounded and had only treated some of the minor injuries and hadn’t even put a blanked over Bob to prevent shock.