Monday, January 9, 2017

“Black Mike” McEwen

Clifford MacKay “Black Mike” McEwen was born on 2 July 1896 in Griswold, Manitoba and grew up in Moose Jaw, Saskatchewan.

A graduate of the University of Saskatchewan, McEwen joined the Canadian Army in 1916. In April 1917 he was seconded to the Royal Flying Corps. A founding member of 28 Squadron, he served in Italy as a Sopwith Camel pilot, scoring 27 victories. For his wartime service, McEwen was awarded the Military Cross, the Distinguished Flying Cross with Bar, and the Italian Bronze Medal for Valour.

In 1919 "Black Mike" returned to Canada where he served as an instructor with the Royal Canadian Air Force. From 1932 to 1941 he was commander of air training operations at Camp Borden, Ontario, then at Trenton, Ontario, Toronto, Montreal and Halifax, Nova Scotia.
During World War II, he commanded two bomber group bases, assuming command of 6 Bomber Group in England in 1944. He attained the rank of Air Vice-Marshal and retired in 1946 but continued working as a consultant to various aircraft manufacturers. He was 69 when he died.

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