Robert Wilson was born in Loretto Pennsylvania in 1917.
The son of a British born father and an American mother. He worked in New York City as a
musician in a number of the cities many clubs.
In July 1941 he came to Canada to enlist in the RCAF, his education opened to him two Trades
in Air Crew. He asked for Air Crew duties and had Air Gunner and Wireless Operator to choose from.
He trained and served as an Air Gunner.
He came to 419 Squadron with the F/S Benoit Levasseur, the first appearance in the Squadron ORB is on January 21st. 1943.
Loss of DT639
On the night of February 18, 1943 he and his crew were on a Gardening Op. when their air craft was lost.
Halifax DT639 took off for a mine laying operation off the
Frisian Islands on February 18th at 1751. The night was bright moonlit
and almost perfect visibility. The sky was also full of enemy fighters who were on patrol over the
No word was ever heard from the crew after they left the base. There were other Moose aircraft taking part
in the Gardening Operation. Two of which were attacked by the fighters. One Moose Halifax claimed a Probable on
a fighter that came in at it for the attack. The second Halifax drove off it's attacker with a burst of the rear guns.
DT639 may not have been so lucky, although with the night sky described as it was gave no visible evidence to the
other six 419 crews in the area.
The Gardening Operation was made up of almost 90 aircraft. During this operation two Halifax bombers were lost the
other was to 158 Squadron.
A larger raid of 195 bombers were targeting Wilhelmshaven on the same night.