The following account of Royal New Zealand Air Force
man Jim Osborne, while brief, is perhaps one that outlines
in a simple manner the way in which so many Royal New
Zealand Air Force men came to know Canada during World War
the age of 17, Jim Osborne applied to join the Royal New
Zealand Air Force (RNZAF). As his passport had been lost
in a fire and his mother was not at all keen on him
joining the RNZAF, he had some difficulties to overcome.
He wouldn't be accepted for another year.
On his 18th birthday, Jim Osborne moved to Whenaupai, New Zealand
where he began elementary flying training on Tiger Moths.
As facilities to train large numbers of men to fly were
not available in New Zealand, men were chosen at random
to train in Canada under the British Commonwealth Air Training
Plan (BCATP). While Osborne was not included in the initial
120 men chosen, he was able to take the place of another
man who was not able to make the trip.
Arriving first in Vancouver, Osborne was posted to
Service Flying Training School (SFTS) in Dunville, Ontario, completing the course and earning
his Wings in March of 1942. Upon completing his flying training
in Canada, Osborne was posted to Bournemouth in Great Britain,
going on to fly over 300 sorties throughout the war.