Crowd gathers for annual Battle of Britain ceremony

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The Battle of Britain was remembered in Stellarton Sunday with a service held at the cenotaph on the 78th anniversary.

Major David S. McIntyre, who retired after nearly 40 years of military service in 2012, spoke about the importance of the battle, noting it was the first that took place almost exclusively in the air.

“Sunday, Sept. 15, 1940, 78 years ago, was the high point of battle now celebrated as Battle of Britain Day. The contribution by members of the Royal Canadian Air Force, while comparatively small in numbers, was important to the overall success of the battle and something which all Canadians should be proud. Let us never forget the contributions made to the defence of Europe and in particular to the Battle of Britain by members of the Royal Canadian Air Force,” McIntyre told the crowd.

The Luftwaffe, the German air force, attempted to gain air superiority over England during the battle, which took place from July until October 1940.

“The campaign was Germany’s first major defeat in World War II, but it didn’t mark the end of the blitz against Britain. By the time the campaign finally ended in May of 1941, some 40,000 people had been killed,” McIntyre said.

Canadians fought in the Royal Canadian Air Force’s No. 1 Squadron, as well as the Royal Air Force’s No. 242 Squadron, other RAF squadrons and served on the ground crew.

The Pictou County Brass and Reed Band supplied music for the service, with a prayer for peace from Rev. Charles McPherson, a benediction from Rev. Aiden Kingsbury, and opening remarks from Brian MacIntosh.


Major David S. McIntyre, who retired after nearly 40 years of military service in 2012, spoke at the Battle of Britain service in Stellarton on Sunday, Sept. 16. (Jess photo)