No. 411 Squadron
County of York, Grizzly Bear
Motto: INIMICUS INIMICO - "Hostile to the enemy"
Formed on Supermarine Spitfire Mk I's and II's at Digby in June 1941, the unit converted to the Spitfire Mk Vb in October and moved to the Hornchurch sector the following month to commence operations over the Channel. In March 1942 it left No. 11 Group for the Digby sector in No. 12 Group, where it remained for year, the returning to 11 Group, to Kenley. A move to Biggen Hill in September brought Spitfire Mk IXb's and incorporation into 126 Wing to the 2nd TAF (Tactical Air Force). Operations as part of this wing were to continue throughout the rest of the war. The unit moved to France in mid June 1944 with Spitfire Mk IXe's replacing the Mk IXb's in September. A move to Holland followed in October with much action being seen during the Ardennes offensive in December, and in the closing months of the war. By mid april the unit was in Germany, ending the war at Wunstorf as re-equipment with the Spitfire Mk XVI's began. The Squadron claimed 86 victories. The Squadron's code letter during this period were DB.
No. 411 was reformed at Toronto as a Fighter Squadron (Reserve). In 1952 it was changed to No. 411 'County of York' Fighter Squadron (Auxiliary). No. 411 Squadron was integrated into the Canadian Armed Forces as an Air Reserve Squadron operating the Beech Expeditor in the light transport role. Later it converted to the deHavilland CSR-123 Otter and operated it in the light transport and search and rescue roles. With the retirement of the Otters in the late 70's the Squadron gradually converted to rotary wing operations with the CH-136 Kiowa Light Observation Helicopter. With the retirement of the CH-136 Kiowa No. 411 Squadron was stood down and is currently inactive.
Defence of Britain 1941-44, English Channel and North Sea 1942-43, Fortress Europe 1941-44, Dieppe France and Germany 1944-45, Arnheim Normandy 1944 Rhine