Name: Donald Irwin Rose

Service Personnel InformationFlight Sergeant (Air Bomber), Royal Canadian Air Force
  • Name: Donald Irwin Rose
  • Service Regimental Number: R-157415
  • Rank: Flight Sergeant Air Bomber
  • Height/weight: 5 ft. 9 1/4 inches
  • Colour of eyes: Hazel
  • Marital status: Single
  • Religion: Protestant
  • Address: 194 Kennedy Dr
  • Next of Kin (and relationship): Mr. Rose - Father
  • Date of enlistment: March 16, 1942
  • City and province of enlistment: Winnipeg, Manitoba.


Name: Quinn Castelane
Course: Canadian History
Teacher: Ms. Lussier
Date: May 9, 2012

Donald Irwin Rose

The Second World War was a tragedy bringing many Canadian soldiers’ parents despair. Donald Irwin Rose was one of the Canadian soldiers that fought and died in war. He was born on April 19, 1923 on 194 Kennedy drive in Winnipeg, Manitoba. He was born to his mother named Annie Marian McLiam who was born in Shoal Lake, Manitoba and his father Herbert Cecil Rose. He had two brothers named Douglas and Norman Rose and one sister name Marion Rose. Donald’s nature of employment before his enlistment was in aircraft. He engaged in a few sports such as hockey extensively, baseball moderately, and would occasionally play basketball before he enlisted in war. He was raised in Protestant household and continued to carry on his faith. Donald attended Stony Mountain Public School from 1931 to 1939 then attended St. Paul’s High School from 1939 to 1942. After high school, he was an employee at MacDonald Bros. Aircraft to enlist into war. (Military service files)

March 16, 1942 was the day Donald Irwin Rose joined the Royal Canadian Air Force with no flying experience prior to enlistment. One of his older brothers was in the Royal Canadian Air Force as a sergeant observer. His oldest brother was a fighter pilot in the Royal Air Force and both of Donald’s brothers died in action. For his two older brothers to enroll in the Air Force, this could be a reason of why he would enlist. Donald was a Flight Sergeant Air Bomber and he was also an Air Craftman second class starting on March 19, 1942. He was 5 feet and 9 1/4 inches tall and weighed 149 pounds. He had hazel eye, 20/20 vision in both eyes, light brown hair and he had a fair skin complexion. There is a photograph of him provided. He was then given his own service number which was R-157415. His next of kin during his enlistment was his father, Mr. Rose, who had an occupation of a farming instructor in Stony Mountain, Manitoba. (Military service files)

Donald Rose and his aircrew flew the aircraft called the Halifax V. LK. 649. It was stated that nothing was heard of this aircraft from the time it became airborne at 2359 hours on January 28, 1944. It had been ordered to attack Berlin, but there is no information to show whether it reached the objective or not. German documents conflict on details and state, “Halifax aircraft crashed 29.1.44. East of Zinndorff South of Strausberg, near Berlin” Donald Irwin Rose died in a aircraft crash on January 29, 1944. There were three of his passengers that were “unknowns” and the rest died. There was an identity disc that was found for Sergeant Donald Rose. His crew consisted of seven flight sergeants, his pilot was R.R. Stanley, his navigator was R.C. Crompton, and Donald Rose was the bomb aimer. Donald was mentioned in the Winnipeg Evening Tribune - March 10, 1944. It was the casualty list of the Royal Canadian Air Force. (Military service files)

Donald Rose was awarded for six different service awards. He was awarded for the 1939-1945 Star, the Air Crew European Star, the defense medal, the war medal, and C.V.S.M. award and another C.V.S.M. award and clasp. The 1939-1944 star is a six point star in the middle saying royal cypher GRI VI with a circle saying “The 1039-1944 Star”. To be awarded this medal is to be in service in World War 2 between September 3rd 1939 and September 2nd 1945 (The 1939-1945 Star) The Air Crew European Star was earned for flying from UK bases over Europe and the UK for a minimal period of two months. Air Crew duty however had to be assigned for at least four months. There had to be at least one operational flight over the territory. This medal is a six pointed star with the Royal Clipher GRI-VI in the centre with the words “Air Crew Europe Star” above it. (The Air Crew Europe Star) . Next the defence medal was made out of 0.800 silver that should the uncrowned head of King George VI and on the reverse side is a crowned oak tree on a symbolic land, guarded by two lions. To be awarded this medal, you need to be to service personnel and many civilian organizations for three years service in non operational areas subjected to air attack or closely threatened. (The Defence Medal). The war medal is awarded to soldiers who served full time in operational or non-operational service between September 3rd 1939 and September 2nd 1945. This is a silver circular medal with the crowned King George VI and on the reverse is a lion standing on the body of a double-headed dragon. The two heads on the dragon signify the occidental and oriental enemies. (The War Medal 1939-1945). The C.V.S.M (Canadian Volunteer Service Medal) is received to anyone of any rank in the naval, Military or Air Force of Canada who voluntarily served on Active Service and have honourably completed eighteen months total service. It is a silver circular medal with seven marching figures representing men and women of the army. The reverse shows the coat of arms of Canada. (Canadian Volunteer Service Medal)

Donald Irwin Rose is was buried in the Berlin 1939-1945 War Cemetery in Germany. It is located in the district if Charlotteriburg which is 8 kilometers west of the city centre, on the south side of the heerstrance. To locate his grave reference is Coll. grave 2. z. 3-7. Donald served his country well and will always be remembered. R.I.P. (Military service files).

Military Service Record**

  • Age (at death): 21 years
  • Force:Air Force
  • Unit:Royal Canadian Air Force
  • Service Number:R-157415
  • Honours and Awards: 1939-1945 Star, Air Crew European Star, Defence Medal, War Medal, C.V.S.M. award and award and clasp.
  • Photograph:yes
  • Next of Kin (and relationship): Mr. Rose - Father
  • Date of Death: January 29, 1944
  • Country of Burial:Germany
  • Cemetery:Berlin 1939-1945 war cemetery.
  • Grave Reference:Coll. grave 2.z. 3-7.
  • Location:The Berlin 1939-1945 War Cemetery is in the district of Charlotte
  • Book of Remembrance: see Additional Information picture B.O.R.

Grave Reference

  • Name of Cemetery:Berlin 1939-1945 war cemetery
  • Grave Reference:Coll. grave 2.z. 3-7.


Additional information/links

Similar to the Halifax V. LK. 649 that Donald Rose flew in.

Book of Remembrance.

Berlin 1939-1945 War Cemetery

Works Cited
"The 1939-1945 Star." North East Medals. N.p., n.d. Web. 8 May 2012.

"Air Crew Europe Star ." North East Medals. N.p., n.d. Web. 8 May 2012.

"The Defence Medal ." North East Medals . N.p., n.d. Web. 8 May 2012.

"Campaign Stars and Medals (1939-1945) - The War Medal 1939-1945." Veterans
Affairs Canada . N.p., n.d. Web. 8 May 2012. <__

"Campaign Stars and Medals (1939-1954) - Canadian Volunteer Service Medal."
Veterans Affairs Canada . N.p., n.d. Web. 8 May 2012.

"Flight Sergeant (Air Bomber( Donald Irwin Rose ." Find a Grave. N.p., n.d. Web.
14 May 2012. <__

Military service files of Donald Irwin Rose obtained from Library and Archives Canada, 395 Wellington Street, Ottawa, Ontario.

Archival Reference

example from LAC