Less We Forget Poppy

The Life and Times of Hubert Brooks M.C. C.D.
A Canadian Hero

Less We Forget Poppy

Chapter 13: January 1954 to July 1962: R.C.A.F. MARITIME POSTINGS

13.1 East Coast: R.C.A.F. Station SUMMERSIDE (PEI) Aug–1954 to March–1955

I was stationed at Canadian Forces Station SUMMERSIDE Prince Edward Island from 6–January–1954 to 12–March–1955. I was assigned to the 2 MOTU detachment.

2 MOTU stood for number 2 Maritime Operational Training Unit. Various air operations, fighters, transport etc get their aircraft–type trained personnel from Operational Training Units or training Squadrons. 2 MOTU was established in Summerside 1 Nov 49 for the specialized training of maritime aircrew.

From January 1954 until 1–September–1954 I was navigator in Dakota and Lancaster aircraft flying to various points in Canada and to the Azores.

From 1–September–1954 until 4–March–1955 I was engaged with the formal 2 MOTU training course (Course 26). Again we used either Dakota or Lancaster aircraft. During the course I accumulated almost 73 hours of day time flying and almost 15 hours of night time flying.

This training unit was a first of three step process that the RCAF was setting up for me. I was to take the training I acquired at SUMMERSIDE and apply in my next posting at operational maritime base in COMOX BC, and finally with that experience under my belt transfer to the third and ultimate destination, maritime liaison officer providing air force aerial reconnaissance and analysis information at (major) Canadian Naval station at Esquimalt BC.

I was away training a good deal of the time while we were stationed at Summerside. The rest of time was spent on navigation courses and the like. I had problems with the math. I struggled here. I had completed grade 10 back in 1940 before enlisting in the air force and had spent the last 14 years in the field. Just adapting again to the studying process never mind the mathematical background and concepts were all challenging for me. Fortunately at Summerside, I had a course instructor that was willing to work closely with me.

While I was training, my wife Bea and son Ralf stayed in a rented house near the beach. We caught the tail end of a beautiful summer which was great next to PEI's fabulous beaches. But we, and this was predominately my wife, paid for it as winter rolled in. It was bitterly cold and unfortunately our rental house did not have the best insulation.

Training time was up and I was off to my next posting at Comox BC on Vancouver Island. My son Ralf and I drove our car across the country (stopping in to see my sister Doris and her family in Montreal) and Bea and daughter Diana flew out to meet us.

Other Events – Speaking Engagements

From time to time I was asked to speak about my war time experiences and to represent the Military at Polish War Veteran functions. I was always pleased to do this.

Photo: Letter to Air Marshall Slemon requesting Hubert Brooks spaeak at 10th Anniversary of Warsaw Rising
Photo: Newspaper Article on Hubert Brooks Veteran of Polish Freedom Fight
Photo: Newspaper Article on Warsaw Uprising and Hubert Brooks Veteran of Polish Freedom Fight
Photo: Inscription thanking Hubert Brooks comrade in arms
Photo: News article on Hubert Brooks talk in Summerside

Epilog: By the 1980's, the Summerside's primary role was surveillance support for Fisheries and Oceans Canada. As a result of planned reductions in Canada's Air Force, Summerside's importance declined, especially given that its role as a Maritime support base could effectively be covered by CFB Shearwater and CFB Greenwood. In 1991 the base was closed for the final time.


The Life and Times of Hubert Brooks M.C. C.D.

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