George Noel Keith

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George Noel Keith, DFC (1921 - 1943) was a war pilot during World War II. He enlisted at the age of 19 in the Royal Canadian Air Force. After flight training, he joined 402 Squadron in November, 1941 and was commissioned in May, 1942. He was posted to the Mediterranean theatre in January, 1943 and joined 72 Squadron in March, 1943.

A good pilot with hunting skills honed in the areas around his hometown of Taber, Alberta, Keith was credited with 8.5 victories (5.5 Messerschmitt Bf 109 fighters, 1 Macchi C.200 fighter, and 2 Junkers Ju 88 bombers), 2 probable victories, and 2 damaged. On two occasions he had a 2-kill day. In one 48-hour period he was credited with 3.5 kills.

While strafing ground targets on Aug 4, 1943, Keith's Supermarine Spitfire Mk V was struck by anti-aircraft fire and he was forced to bale out near Sicily at 2,000 feet (600 m), but the tailplane of the Spitfire struck him and broke both his legs. His parachute did not open until 300 feet (100 m) and he landed in the sea. He was picked up quickly by air-sea rescue but died of his injuries shortly after.

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