Flight Sergeant Bernard Edwin Samuels (R/117592) served in the Royal Canadian Air Force. He was a wireless operator and air gunner with 12 Squadron. The young pilot was born on 28th December 1919 to Harold and Rose Samuels of Montreal, Quebec, Canada.
Samuels graduated from Strathcona High School. He was also a member of the Young Men’s Hebrew Association and the Junior Congregation Shaar Hashomayim. His father was prominent in the Federation of Jewish Philanthropies. His mother was a member of the Next of Kin League of the Canadian Jewish Congress.
Before enlisting in the army in May 1941, he was employed by a Montreal insurance firm. In July he received a transfer from the army to the Air Force and got his pilot’s wings at Haggersville, Ontario. He had been serving overseas with the RCAF in Northern Ireland since 6th November 1941.
Wellington HX430 Crash
Flight Sergeant Samuels died when his Wellington HX430 crashed while attempting to land at RAF Limavady, Co. Londonderry. The plane was part of an 7 Operations Training Group with the Royal Air Force.
On the night of 31st January 1943, Samuels was part of a crew that took off on a non-operational night training flight. The plane came down at 2115hrs near the Limavady airfield in Co. Londonderry. The impact killed all those onboard.
With the plane coming into land, at a height of around 100 feet, it appeared the pilot lost control. The plane rose, stalled, dropped one wing and dived into the ground.
Remembering Bernard Edwin Samuels
Bernard Edwin Samuels’ grave is in Line J, Grave 4 at Carnmoney Jewish Cemetery, Newtownabbey, Co. Antrim. The young Flight Sergeant never married. He was survived by parents Harold and Rose of 5791 Plantagenet Avenue, Montreal. He also had two brothers – Arthur Samuels and Private Peter Samuels of the Royal Canadian Army Service Corps – and a sister Ruth Estelle Samuels.