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The Airmen's Stories - P/O N N Campbell


Norman Neil Campbell was born in St. Thomas, Ontario, Canada, the son of Isabel and Alex Campbell. The latter worked for the Michigan Central Railroad.

NN Campbell went to Myrtle Street Public School and later the Arthur Voaden Technical School. After graduation he went on to St Thomas Collegiate School.

His first job was driving cars from the factory at Windsor to the St Thomas showrooms of Disbrowe Motor Sales.



In 1938 Campbell began flying at the London, Ontario Flying Club and obtained his civil pilot’s licence. He applied for a short service commission in the RAF in late 1938. After provisional acceptance, he sailed for England on 14th January 1939 in the Duchess of Athol.

Campbell began his initial training course on 23rd January 1939. He went to No. 1 RAF Depot Uxbridge on 1st April for a two week induction course, after which he was posted to 11 FTS Shawbury. With his training completed, Campbell arrived at 6 OTU Sutton Bridge on 5th April 1940, converted to Hurricanes and went to PDC Uxbridge on 15th May 1940, for allocation to a squadron in France.

It seems that instead he was posted to 32 Squadron at Wittering, arriving on 24th May. On 3rd June he moved to 242 Squadron at Biggin Hill. Five days later he flew to France with the squadron, to help cover the rearguard actions being fought by the British Army as it retreated to the Atlantic coast.

Campbell flew back from Nantes-Chateau Bougon on 18th June. With no maps, he ran out of fuel and made a forced-landing on a beach near Minehead. His Hurricane P3149 LE*N was repairable.

By mid-July 242 was operational again and on 15th September Campbell damaged a Do17 and on the 18th he claimed two Ju88s destroyed, shared in shooting down another and damaged a fourth.

On 17th October 1940 Campbell was in Hurricane V6575 which crashed into the sea after possibly being hit by return fire from a Do17 engaged off Yarmouth.

His body was later recovered and he was buried on 31st October in Scottow Cemetery, Norfolk. He was 27.









His brother Sergeant Dougald Alexander Campbell (born 1905) was employed as a civilian training instructor under the British Commonwealth Air Training Plan (BCATP) at 3rd Elementary Flying Training School in London, Ontario. He died on 2nd November 1941, a result of injuries sustained in flying accident on 30th October 1940.



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