began his training at the "Pine
Plantation" Gisborne, (The Air Defence
All the aircrew trainees
eventually assembled at De-Bretts Hotel Rotorua
and attended lectures in various halls around
He was posted to the
Ashburton airforce base, where he trained and soloed on
He re-mustered as a navigator. Training continued at
Rongatai and Rukuhia (Mystery Creek).
leave, Noel embarked with other trainees on the ship 'New
sailing to San Francisco - then a 5-day train journey to
Toronto, Canada, with hundreds of others
training under the Empire Training Scheme.
continued at Portage La Prarie in the various
from November 1943 to April 1944.
After graduation, he sailed on the 'Ile De
France' to Liverpool, UK,
and posted to West Freugh, where the navigators
trained on Ansons.
Avro Anson XII
He later transferred to
Oakley, crewing-up on Wellingtons with night+day
exercises in advanced navigation.
the Bomber Crew
drawn by Frank
navigator, Noel's crew were...
(Skipper), Ken Mitchell
(Wireless Operator), Reg Smith
and now crewed-up, the team were posted to North
Luffenham, then to 75 Squadron NZRAF Mepal.
Their first bombing raid took place 9th.Feb.1945,
on targets around Hohenbuo Berg, flying
Noel returned to New
Zealand and took up farming at Rangiahua, Wairoa, Hawke's
and the old crew, like many others,
formed a bond
through those dark days and always kept
in touch. This photo was taken
at one of their last get-togethers at Te
Puke, January 1983. Reg Smith
(Rear Gunner) and Monty
Adamson (Skipper) are now
Sadly, Noel passed
away at the Hawkes Bay Regional
Hospital Wed.18th.August 2004.