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Trivia | Bagatelle

Who am I?

  • I was born in Ottawa on 30 July 1906 and educated at Loyala College (Montreal, 1916-1919), Ashbury College (Ottawa, 1919-1925).
  • I entered Royal Military College on 26 July 1927. I was commissioned on 24 June 1929. I was awarded my wings on 20 September 1929. I served as F/O 1 September 1930.
  • I flew with the Siskin aerobatic team in 1930s.
  • My career was marked by several crash landings. I crashed at Camp Borden on 10 July 1929, 22 May 1930 and 13 August 1930.
  • On 9 February 1931, I crashed a float plane in Vancouver. In Trenton, my Siskin 23, collided with F/L H.W. Hewson, cutting the latter’s machine in half. Although I parachuted to safety; Hewson died the next day.
  • I was promoted to F/L on 6 April 1935.
  • In Croft, Lancashire, on 10 January 1940, my Hurricane turned over in forced landing.
  • I served overseas as an officer of the RCAF in 1937. I was assigned to No.10 Flying Training School, Ternhill, 3 April 1939.
  • As Squadron Leader of 242 (Canadian) Squadron, October 1939 to June 1940, my
    first task was to fill out the Squadron with Pilot Officers from
    various RAF squadrons and the Training Pools and push them through to
    operational efficiency.
  • I was on strength of No.4 BGS, 7 December 1940 to 31 July 1942 and travelled to Ferry Command Headquarters, Dorval, 31 July 1942. I was awarded the Air Force Cross – No.45 Group – effective 17 August 1943 as per London Gazette dated 27 August 1943 and AFRO 2258/43 dated 5 November 1943.
  • I was appointed Commanding Officer, No.1 Instrument and Flying School
    (Deseronto), on August 1945. I remained in postwar RCAF with much
    time spent at Trenton as staff officer (personnel administration).
  • I was appointed Commanding Officer of Station Toronto on 5
    May 1953.
  • I was awarded the Queens Coronation Medal, 23 October 1953. I retired 1 April 1956. Thereafter spent 25 years with Canadian Scholarship Trust Foundation and Canadian Heritage Scholarship Trust.
  • I moved from Toronto to Ottawa, 1986.
  • I died in Ottawa, 13 December 1994.

a) 1780 Air Commodore (ret’d) Martin M Costello (RMC 1924)
b) 1848 Wing Commander (ret’d)Fowler Morgan Gobeil (RMC 1925)
c) 1952 Group Captain (ret’d)Gordon GL Best (RMC 1927)
d) 2015 Group Captain (ret’d)Douglas DG Keddie (RMC 1927)
e) 2061 Air Commodore (ret’d)Gordon G. Truscott (RMC 1928)

fowler-morgan-gobeil.jpg1848 Wing Commander (ret’d) Fowler Morgan Gobeil’s (RMC 1925) service with No.242 Squadron was described in H.A. Halliday, 242 Squadron: The Canadian Years (Canav Books, 1978). The AFC events were cited with W/C Seys (RAF), F/L Longhurst (CAN/RAF). For account of glider flight, see Gobeil’s narrative in Spring 1976 issue of Journal of the Canadian Aviation Historical Society. For account of Siskin flying see Spring 1977 issue of Journal of the Canadian Aviation Historical Society.