1940 - 1949
December, 1941 the United States enters the war after the
on Pearl Harbour
1945 – WW2 ends..
Aug. 19: Nearly 1000 Canadians die and 2000 are taken prisoner in the
failed raid on Dieppe.
Rationing and consumer goods shortages become a way of life.
Manitoba Power Commission decides to extend service to more rural
and the R.M.
Construction begins on buildings to be used by the Royal Canadian Air
Force training program.
Announcement that 700 novice pilots from Trenton ON will be transferred
First family to arrive was that of Flt. Lieut. J.Hone.
Housing becomes scarce. Town council encouraged conversion of all
available space into apartments.
War Services Committee organized.
Hall on Second Street renamed the “Tailspin Inn”
First Navigation School tradgedy – five Canadian die as a plane
crashed on takeoff
The Air Navigation School renamed in May 1942 under
Commonwealth Air Training Plan (BCATP) as No.1 Air Navigation School
In 1942, No.1 ANS merged with No.2 ANS from Pennfeld Ridge (New
Brunswick) to form No.1 Central Navigation School (No.1 CNS)
The Town of Rivers launched Aid to Russia, Milk for
and Greek WarRelief Funds
A troop train and a general passenger train collided at St.
Lazare and planes from the No.1 CNS were used to tranposrt injured to
the air station hospital
The first army parachutists to jump in Canada flew from Rivers in June
1943 in a Lodestar aircraft to "drop" at Camp Shilo. They had been
trained in England and the United States.
The six ton bomb that destroyed the German battleship
released by Rivers-born F/O Walter Daniel. He was awarded the
Distinguished Flying Cross
A trade group arranges a V-E Day Celebration, and
twelve-member Rehabilitation Committee.
1 Week after V-J Day , No1. CNS, the largest training centre of its
kind on the North American continent, closed (temporarily) . The event
was marked by Air Force Day – an event that drew about 12000
people – the greatest crowd to ever assemble in the region.
In five years No. 1 CNS saw 126 classes graduate. Personnel at its peak
In October 1945 a plan for Army/ Air activities in Canada resulted in
the formation of No. 1 Airborne Research and Development Centre located
at Camp Shilo. By April 1947 sufficient progress had been made to
permit the unit to be called the Joint Air School and it was moved to
Jan. 15- RCAF Guards took charge of Rivers
In 1947 the Canadian Parachute Training Centre, established at Camp
Shilo in 1942, merged with the Airborne School of the Canadian Joint
Air Training Centre and moved to RCAF Station Rivers, making the
station Canada’s main para-training centre.
Joint Air School and it was moved from Camp Shilo to Rivers under the
command of G/C M. G. Doyle.
Its function was to meet all the requirements of training and
development for the Canadian forces in tactical support of land and
May 3 – first group of 300 trainees were traqnsferred from Camp
Carol Yvonne Schmitz was the first “air school child” born
in Madden Nursing Home.
Also in 1947, the Army Aviation Tactical Training School was
established at Rivers to provide pilot training to Army aviators, as
well as helicopter instructor training for the Army, RCN and RCAF
444 Air Observation Post Squadron was formed on October 1st 1947, but
disbanded on April 1st 1949.
Royal Canadian Navy personnel were added to the Joint
school in August 1948.
In 1948, the Joint Air Photo Interpretation School opened at Rivers.
The school closed in 1960 and its personnel merged with the Air Photo
Interpretation Centre at RCAF Station Rockcliffe (Ontario) who became
fully responsible for training photo-interpreters.
Contracts were let for the building of 100 housing units for the base
followed by contracts for a further 375 dwellings. 150 of them were to
be built in Rivers.
A change in organization in March 1949 created the Joint Air Training
Centre out of the elements of
the Joint Air School. The station was divided into Air Training,
Technical, Administrative and Land/Air Warfare Wings.
444 Air Observation Post Squadron was disbanded on April 1st 1949.
Prime Minsiter Louis St. Laurent visits Rivers and the base
Renovations to the roundhouse and the station
- for the first time in 40 years “Continental”
passengers were afforded a quarter hour stop at Rivers for lunch.