Danish WW2 Pilots

Plt Off. Eiler Villy Andersen

(1923 - 1997)

Eiler Villy Andersen is one of the Danes who volunteers for the Royal Canadian Air Force. His aircraft is shot down over Germany and he is injured and taken prisoner in March 1944.

Ejler Villy Andersen is born on 16 February 1923 in Denmark. He is the son of Villy Carl Otto Andersen and Anna Andersen (née Petersen). His father arrives in Halifax, N.B., Canada, on 4 May 1929. Ejler is naturalised British subject on 31 May 1935 (36051B) [1]

Enlists in the Royal Canadian Air Force

He is in service in the Royal Canadian Air Force during the Second World War. He enlists in London, Ontario, on 31 October 1941 (R.129717). He is accepted for training as Wireless Operator/Air Gunner with the rank of Aircraftman 2nd Class. He is posted to No. 1 Manning Depot, Toronto.

On 22 November 1941 he is posted to a unit that I have not been able to identify. The source only refers to the unit as E. On 10 April 1942 he is posted to No. 3 Wireless School, Winnipeg, Manitoba, for training as Wireless Operator. He is appointed Leading Aircraftman on 12 May 1942.

He is then posted to No. 7 Bombing and Gunnery School, Paulson, Manitoba, for further training on 21 December 1942. He is appointed T/Sergeant on 25 January 1943.

On 13 February 1943 he is posted to No. 36 Operational Training Unit, Greenwood, Nova Scotia, and about a month later, on 22 March 1943, to No. 9 Air Observer School, St. Jean, Quebec, where he ends the training in Canada. He is promoted T/Flight Sergeant on 25 July 1943. [2]

Overseas duties

On 26 November 1943 he is posted to No. 1 ‘Y’ Depot, Lachine, for overseas duties. He is posted to No. 3 Personnel Reception Centre, Bournemouth. In other words he waits a couple of months before finally being posted to United Kingdom.

Following his arrival he most likely was posted to an Operational Training Unit before being posted to No. 76 (RCAF) Base for conversion duties before finally being posted for operational duties.[3]

Operational Service

Andersen is posted to No. 432 Squadron on 4 March 1945. A few days later, on 15 March 1945, he participates in the attack on Hagen. Airborne at 1707 hours from RAF Station East Moor, Halifax (QO-M NP689 ‘Moonlight Mermaid’) and crew heads of the Hagen. The aircraft fails to return. The cause of the loss and the site is not established. [4]

Four of the crew are killed;

  • Flying Officer Stewart Millen Bonter, J.42472, RCAF KIA
  • Sergeant Douglas Colquhoun, R.1681850, executed
  • Sergeant D C Lawson, KIA
  • Sergeant Thomas Delmer Scott, J.95497, RCAF executed

Sgt Scott and Sgt D Colquhoun bail out, but a captured and executed by the Gestapo in Hagen. They are buried at Hagen (Remberg) Friedhof on 3 April 1945.

The rest of the crew, including Andersen, are injured and confined to hospital until the liberation;

  • Flying Officer H E Vachon, RCAF
  • Flying Officer A T Hincliffe, RCAF
  • Warrant Officer 2nd Class E V Andersen, RCAF

On 10 May 1945 Eiler Villy Andersen is safely back in United Kingdom. At some point he is appointed Warrant Officer 1st Class. He is commissioned as Pilot Officer on 11 May 1945 (J.96583). [5]

Returning to Canada

On 7 July 1945 he is posted to No. 1 Repatriation Depot in Canada and on 20 September 1945 he is posted to No. 4 Release Centre. He is retired from Royal Canadian Air Force on 6 October 1945. [6]

  1. Odense, Sct. Hans parish record, Canada Gazette, 9.7.1935, Ancestry.com. Canadian Passenger Lists, 1865-1935 [da-tabase on-line]. Provo, UT, USA: Ancestry.com Operations Inc, 2010
  2. RCAF ser-vice card, Directorate of History
  3. RCAF service card, Directorate of History
  4. NA: AIR 27/1860, Franks, 2000, www.angelfire.com
  5. Canada Gazette, volume 79, num-ber 45, 10 November 1945
  6. RCAF service card, Directorate of History