I want to ask you if it is permissible to make a post on the WW-I forum about the Royal Flying Corps memorial service I am involved with here in Fort Worth? About 1200 pilots earned their wings here under the tutelage of RFC instructors. 38 RFC were killed here in accidents or sickness, and 12 are buried here in an official British Commonwealth War Grave Commission Cemetery, as well as one Canadian defendant child. 1978 was the last service involving the local "WW-1 Flyers Club." I revived the service in 1986, regrettably, after the last actual WW-1 vets had passed, and we have continued these services since, usually every two years.
On May 27th, Memorial Day, we will have Canadian Lt. Gen. J.A.J. Parent, OMM, CD, deputy C in C of NORAD, here. I think there is a small chance the British Air Attaché, Air Commodore McCann, may come; fallback for that is the RN liaison LT here in the F-35 program.
Due to the Sequester, no F-16s, but we will have a 3 or 4 Stearman fly by, weather permitting.
Its actually sad not only around the Commonwealth and various nations that joined RFC and others such as L'Escadrilles - but particularly in UK that thr RFC and comrades are rarely remembered in Public Services ... it usually gets overshadowed by the later RAF service.
Many Americans, Canadians and others flew magnificently and bravely in those machines.
Americans knowingly getting into Nieuports that were infamous for shedding wing covering ... engines catching fire etc.
The RFC pioneered so much and remembered so little.
Thanks for the warm response. The Ceremony will be Monday, May 27th, Memorial Day, probably at 10:30 or 11 AM as I still have some coordinating to do with some of the participants.
It is an interesting period of Fort Worth history. We had three fields here set up by the RFC. A few of the structures are left, as well as some gunnery targets. Concrete pools about the size of a D-7 were filled with water about a foot deep so the splash could be watched for hits while strafing. Aircraft used here were mostly Jennies,
JN-3 "Canucks" and JN-4Ds. There were a few DH-4s used for bombing training and there are photos of a few Thomas Morse Scouts and at least one SPAD.
38 RFC died here. Of the 12 buried here six are Canadians, three are Britons, and three are U.S. volunteer officers. The Canadian child is baby Ruth Dore, daughter of Canadian Captain Charles Dore. The most famous fatality here was the silent film star/dancer and Croix de Guerre awardee Captain Vernon Castle, who is buried in New York. The bodies were initially buried at the fields but in 1924 they were moved to this new plot at Greenwood Memorial Park, purchased by the Imperial War Graves Commission.