Danish WW2 Pilots

Ingvardt Bonde

(1900 - 1966)

Ingvardt Bonde is born on 25 August 1900 in Lem, Denmark. He is the son of Jacob and Marin Bonde (née Jensen).

He serves with the Danish cavalry from April 1921 to 19 October 1922 and later in October 1923 and in September to October 1928.

He is educated in Denmark as among other things a mechanic and follows a night course in business. He is employed as a machinist by Slipper Factory, Copenhagen from 1926 to 1930. [1]

Arriving in Canada

In 1930 he immigrates to Canada. He arrives in Halifax, NS, from Copenhagen on 19 April 1930 on-board SS FREDERIK VIII.

During the 1930s in Canada he is employed in different areas of business. From 1930 to 1932 he works as farmlabour for Frank O'Connor of Huntingdon, Quebec. He leaves because the wages are too modest. The next two years he works as painter for Benny Shenfied, Montreal. In 1934 He is employed as a carpenter by Larsen's Woodwork, St. John, NB. From 1936 to 1940 when the business is sold he works as shoe store manager for M. Koval, St. John, NB. In 1940/41 he works at the St. John TB Hospital. [2]

On 5 March 1941 he is naturalized (184717 A). According to the Canada Gazette his occupation is shoemaker and he is living in Saint John, NB. [3]

In Royal Canadian Air Force service

Ingvardt Bonde enlists in Moncton, NB, on 11 September 1941 with the rank of Aircraftman 2nd Class and trade of Nurse Orderly (R.126348). He is posted to No. 5A Manning Depot, Valcartier, Quebec, where he received his initial training.

On 14 October 1941 he is posted to Station Dartmouth, Nova Scotia. He is posted here before the next couple of months before being posted to No.16 Explosives Depot, Debert, NS, 23 December 1941.

On 14 March 1942 he is posted to No. 10 Air Observer School, Chatham, NB, and a few days later, on 23 April 1942, he is reclassified as an Armourer (Guns) and promoted to Aircraftman 1st Class. He is posted to No. 9 Bombing and Gunnery School, Mont Joli, Quebec, on 27 September 1942. On 1 January 1943 he is promoted to Leading Aircraftman.

He is then transferred to the "Y" Depot at Halifax on 8 February 1943 and was struck off strength to RAF Pool Overseas on 8 March 1943. [4]

Overseas Service

Ingvardt Bonde disembarks in the UK on 17 March 1943. He is posted to RAF Station Digby on 27 March 1943 only to be posted further to RAF Station Dunsfold on 29 March 1943.

No. 39 (Reconnaissance) Wing RCAF had been formed in Army Co-operation Command at this station on 3 December 1942 with No. 168, 400 and 414 Squadrons (Mustang I and IA). The Wing is disbanded and reformed as No. 39 (RCAF) (Reconnaissance) Wing in No. 83 Group on 9 July 1943 still at Dunfold. One of the tasks of the Wing is to administer and control No. 128 and 129 Airfields. The latter is formed on 4 July 1943 at Gatwick within No. 39 Wing.

Ingvardt Bonde is posted to No. 129 Wing with No. 414 and 430 Squadrons (Mustang I) on 10 July 1943. Apart from a brief attachment to No. 125 Wing at RAF Station Detling from 2 to 12 December 1943, he is with No. 129 Wing until January 1944. The postings suggest that he is specialized in servicing the Mustang fighter.

In February he is posted to RAF Station Clifton, York, and from 22 February to 13 March to 6 or 16 AF, Dundonald (possibly No. 16 Airfield). I am not able to relate these postings to the rest of the service history.

Following this posting Ingvardt Bonde is posted to No. 6168 Servicing Echelon. This unit, responsible for servicing the aircraft of No. 168 Squadron, moves from Gatwick to Odiham on 31 March 1944 preparing for the invasion of France. The unit moves to B.8 Sommervieu on 29 June 1944.

Ingvardt Bonde is reposted to No. 129 Wing on 1 July 1944. Therefore it is uncertain if he actually follows No. 6168 Servicing Echelon to France. At this point No. 129 Wing is at B.10 Plumetot, but it is disbanded on 12/14 July 1944. His exact whereabouts are not clear to me following the disbandment.

From 20 August to 25 September 1944 he is attached to No. 410 Repair and Salvage Unit. This unit moves from B.2 Bazenville to B.26 Illiers l’Eveque on 30 August 1944. This unit is one of 12 identical units established within 2nd Tactical Air Force (2TAF) between April 1943 and February 1944. Following a reorganization of 2TAF in July 1944, five RSUs are attached to both No. 83 Group and No. 84 Group.

The units were specialized in certain aircraft. In the case of No. 10 RSU these were Spitfire, Hurricane and Typhoon. A RSU were responsible for the collection and repair of all 2TAF aircraft crashed within its area. Collection was carried out by salvage sections whose armourers were responsible for removing explosives and making armament equipment safe for transport. Ingvardt Bonde could have been one of these armorers.

He is then taken on strength of No. 6421 Servicing Echelon servicing No. 421 Squadron, 127 Wing (Spitfire IXb) at B.68 Le Culot. Again it is highly uncertain that he actually served at this unit as he is reattached to No. 6168 Servicing Echelon on 27 September 1944. This unit had moved to B.66 Blankenberg on 21 September 1944 and moves to B.78 Eindhoven on 4 October 1944.

He is then briefly back in England attached to No.17 Armament Practice Camp, RAF Station Warmwell, from 3 to 17 January 1944. This included ground defence training with Bren and Sten guns.

Returning to France, he is reposted to No. 6421 Servicing Echelon now servicing the Spitfire XVIEs of No. 421 Squadron. The unit moves from B.56 Evere to B.114 Diepholz (Germany) on 2 March 1945 and to B.154 Reinsehlen near Lünebuger Heide on 28 April 1945. [5]

After VE-Day

In the period immediately after VE-Day, it seems as if the authorities are a bit uncertain about how to make the best use of Ingvardt Bonde. On 18 May 1945, he is transferred to RCAF Overseas Headquarters, London, and on 25 May 1945 he is granted the acting rank of Sergeant, while acting as Interpreter.

He is then attached to No. 84 Group Headquarters in Delden, Holland, on 5 June 1945, but from 6-9 June 1945 he is posted to No.9 Personnel Dispersal Centre, Regents Park, London.

On 30 July 1945 he is posted to No. 8403 Air Disarmament Wing responsible for the disarmament of Luftwaffe in Denmark following the German surrender in 1945. The squadrons of the Wing incorporate a number of Danes as liaison officers during this period. The Wing had its Headquarters in Aarhus, Denmark. [6]

Repatriated to Canada

On 26 January 1946 he departs No. 84 Group. He is repatriated to Canada via No. 1 Repatriation Centre, Lachine, on 15 February 1946 and transferred to No. 1 Release Centre on 23 February 1946. He is discharged from the Royal Canadian Air Force on 12 March 1946. His stated intention was to return to Denmark. [7]

Repatriated to Denmark

Ingvardt Bonde returns to Denmark after the war and evidence suggests that he is re-naturalized as Danish citizen.

He is in service in the Danish Royal Naval Air Service from 1947 and later, when established in 1950, the Royal Danish Air Force.

Ingvardt Bonde is awarded King Christian X’s Medal for Participation in the War 1940-45, 1939-1945 Star, France and Germany Star, Defence Medal, 1939-45 War Medal and Canadian Volunteer Service Medal with Maple Leaf Clasp. [8]

Sources:

  1. Service record, courtesy of Hugh Halliday and Jørgen Bonde
  2. Service record, courtesy of Hugh Halliday and Jørgen Bonde
  3. Canada Gazette, 9 August 1941
  4. Service record, courtesy of Hugh Halliday and Jørgen Bonde
  5. Service record, courtesy of Hugh Halliday and Jørgen Bonde, Shores and Thomas, 2006, Shores and Thomas, 2008, Sturtivant, 2007
  6. Service record, courtesy of Hugh Halliday and Jørgen Bonde
  7. Service record, courtesy of Hugh Halliday and Jørgen Bonde
  8. Jørgen Bonde, HfF, 1956