All
Spitfire
Pilots


Belcher, Francis H

Stats:

rank: WO
status: pow
airforce: RCAF    (no: 71258 )
born: Roblin Canada

added by: Calvin Wickham
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All Images:

Bio / Text:

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Francis Hugh Belcher was the son of Frank Belcher a farmer from Roblin, Manitoba who had emigrated from England in 1906.

Frank served in the Canadian Expeditionary Force in France during WW1, being awarded the Military Medal.

Francis joined the RCAF completing his initial training in Canada in March 1941. Travelling to England he completed his training and joined the newly-formed Canadian 412 Squadron as a Sergeant pilot at the beginning of July. He was posted to 403 Squadron on 23 August 1941.

Having been promoted to Warrant Officer he left 403 on 6 April 1942 for an overseas posting. The ORB states that 'W/O Belcher was away today for his overseas posting. Nice chap, Belcher, quiet and unassuming, he does his work well; we wish him the best of luck.' Before the end of the month he flew to Malta as part of Operation Calendar joining 601 Squadron.

While on Malta he claimed for a damaged Re2001 (Spitfire serial unknown).

At the end of June he travelled with 601 to Egypt. On the 6 July he took part in an operational flight of four Spitfires. They met 3 Ju 88s and 3+ Me 109s and flak was also experienced. Belcher and one other pilot, William John Edgar Hagger, failed to return. Belcher became a POW but Hagger was killed.

Francis returned to Canada after the war and died in 2000.

Squadrons:

Squadrons add
AirforceSqdrnDate
RAF 403 Squadron 1941-08-23
RAF 412 Squadron 1941-07-03
RAF 601 Squadron 1942-04-14

Aircraft:

Aircraftadd
SerialNoteDate
W3109 Practice Formation 1941-08-24
P8380 From Hornchurch to Debden 1941-08-25
P7368 Formation Flying 1941-08-28
P7911 Convoy Patrol 1941-08-28
P7352 Training Combat 15000' Note: ORB says 7350 but that is not 403 sqdn 1941-08-29
P8090 Local Formation 1941-09-02
P8380 Local formation. Note: ORB has ‘F’ 8580 but that is not a Spitfire 1941-09-13
P7438 Local formation 1941-09-15
P8380 Local formation 1941-09-15
P7438 Formation Jumping Practice 1941-09-17
W3938 Cannon firing 1941-09-17
P8380 Battle climb. Note: ORB has ‘F’ 8560 1941-09-18
W3604 Local formation 1941-09-20
W3426 Operation: Search for unidentified aircraft 1941-09-21
AB982 Local formation 1941-09-25
Air test. No ID given 1941-09-25
R6890 To Martlesham 1941-10-03
AD317 Cannon test 1941-10-04
R6890 Cloud flying 1941-10-05
AD273 Convoy patrol. Note: ORB has ‘C’278 1941-10-06
AB981 Convoy patrol 1941-10-11
AD258 Local formation and cloud flying 1941-10-11
P7438 Convoy patrol 1941-10-12
AA834 Engine test 1941-10-12
W3426 Convoy patrol 1941-10-13
W3426 Convoy patrol 1941-10-13
W3426 Convoy patrol 1941-10-14
AD317 Formation and cloud flying 1941-10-14
R6890 Convoy patrol 1941-10-17
W3426 Convoy patrol 1941-10-18
W3604 Convoy patrol 1941-10-18
AD208 Scramble 1941-10-19
P7438 Convoy patrol 1941-10-20
AD317 Practice interception on a Blenheim 1941-10-20
AD258 Convoy patrol 1941-10-21
AD208 Local flying 1941-10-22
AD208 Convoy patrol 1941-10-23
AA835 Convoy patrol 1941-10-23
P7438 To Sutton Bridge for air-to-air firing 1941-10-24
AA834 Air-to-air firing 1941-10-26
P7438 Convoy patrol 1941-10-28
AD258 Convoy patrol 1941-10-28
AD208 Camera gun practice 1941-10-29
W3822 To Sutton Bridge for air-to-air firing 1941-11-01

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