|Birth: ||Apr. 6, 1923, Canada|
|Death: ||Apr. 1, 1943, France|
Warrant Officer Class II (Pilot), No. 421 Squadron, Royal Canadian Air Force, R/93983. Son of Lieutenant Colonel George David Kenneth Kinnaird and Margaret Ethel Kinnaird (nee Monteith), of Edmonton, Alberta, Canada. Age: 20.
William Johnstone Kinnaird was born in Edmonton, Alberta. He joined the army in 1939, serving as a signalman until he volunteered in the RCAF on May 9, 1941. He was awarded his flying badge at No. 4 SFTS Saskatoon, Saskatchewan on January 2, 1942.
Transferred to the UK in February, Sergeant W. J. Kinnaird was posted to No. 53 OTU on April 28, 1942. On June 7, 1942, he flew a very special sortie with a Spitfire Mk I while still on training. His report reads:
"Having crossed the Channel at 25.000 [feet] I descended through the clouds and estimated my position as being over the Cherbourg peninsula.
Flying north at 100 [feet] I passed over Quineville and was fired on by a motor vessel, cruising in the mouth of the river. I turned and attacked it from the direction of land giving it 2 two-second bursts closing in to 50 [yards].
I repeated this attack with another two-second burst. On both occasions I could see my bullets hitting around the vessel.
On pulling up the second time I saw 4 radial-engined aircraft crossing my path at 800 yards. I closed in to 500 yards firing a two-second burst.
The [Fw 190s] then split up, two of them swinging in behind me. I pressed the boost cut out and headed for the clouds."
Sergeant W. J. Kinnaird fired three hundred .303 rounds on this occasion and made it back to base unhurt.
Upon completion of training, he was posted to No. 401 Squadron on October 10, 1942 and transferred to No. 412 Squadron on December 23, 1942. Eventually, he was posted to No. 421 Squadron on January 23, 1943.
On April 1st, 1943, he was killed in action during an operational sortie over Le Molay-Littry, Normandy, France -- strafing a locomotive, he failed to pull out of a dive, hit a poplar tree and crashed against a small hill in Saon, a nearby village. His body was first buried there, before being transferred to the Bayeux War Cemetery.
Note: BELOVED ONLY SON OF LT. COL. & MRS. G.D.K. KINNAIRD, EDMONTON, CANADA. "MIZPAH"
Bayeux War Cemetery
Departement du Calvados
Plot: Plot XXIX. Row K. Grave 3.
Maintained by: Francois Oxeant
Originally Created by: CWGC/ABMC
Record added: Aug 06, 2010
Find A Grave Memorial# 56275760
Remembering with respect and gratitude Warrant Officer Class II Kinnaird and his service to Canada.|
Added: Dec. 3, 2016
Added: Mar. 8, 2013