WHITTON and RITCH -Surname Studies and people from the Island of GRAEMSAY, Orkney

James Gerald Ritch

James Gerald Ritch

Male 1922 - 2010  (87 years)

Personal Information    |    Notes    |    All

  • Name James Gerald Ritch 
    Born 25 Oct 1922  Toronto, Canada Find all individuals with events at this location 
    Gender Male 
    Died 28 Aug 2010  Woods Park Care Centre, Barrie, Ontario, Canada Buried St Thomas, Shanty Bay, Simcoe, Ontario, Canada Find all individuals with events at this location 
    Person ID I15198  My Relatives
    Last Modified 22 Jan 2019 

    Father James William Ritch,   b. 12 May 1886, Cupar, Fife, Scotland Find all individuals with events at this location,   d. 31 Aug 1935, 12 Lynwood Avenue, Toronto, Canada buried Mount Pleasant Find all individuals with events at this location  (Age 49 years) 
    Relationship natural 
    Mother Elsie Isobel Gray,   b. 30 Nov 1884, Toronto, Ontario, Canada Find all individuals with events at this location,   d. 7 Jan 1969, Toronto buried Mount Pleasant Find all individuals with events at this location  (Age 84 years) 
    Relationship natural 
    Married 3 Jul 1918  York, Ontario, Canada Find all individuals with events at this location 
    Family ID F2558  Group Sheet  |  Family Chart

    Family 1 Nancy Mills,   b. Abt 1920,   d. 1970  (Age ~ 50 years) 
    Children 
     1. Living
     2. Living
     3. Living
     4. Living
     5. Living
     6. Katherine Janet Ritch,   b. 1955, Adopted see notes Find all individuals with events at this location,   d. 12 Dec 2014, Canada Find all individuals with events at this location  (Age 59 years)  [natural]
     7. Heather Ritch,   b. 3 Apr 1960, Ontario, Canada Find all individuals with events at this location,   d. 13 Oct 2012, British Columbia, Canada Find all individuals with events at this location  (Age 52 years)  [natural]
    Last Modified 22 Jan 2019 
    Family ID F5654  Group Sheet  |  Family Chart

    Family 2 Ragna Marie Conradi,   b. 25 Jan 1921, St Catherines, Ontario Find all individuals with events at this location,   d. 10 May 2000, Barrie, Ontario, Buried St Thomas Anglican Cemetery, Shanty Bay, Simcoe County, Ontario Find all individuals with events at this location  (Age 79 years) 
    Married Dec 1972  Ontario, Canada Find all individuals with events at this location 
    Last Modified 22 Jan 2019 
    Family ID F5655  Group Sheet  |  Family Chart

  • Notes 
    • Travelled 5-6-1936 from Montreal to Plymouth on "Aurania" UK address Howden Court Manor, Torquay
      Travelled on the "Letitia" Glasgow to Quebec 21st August 1936 address c/o Canada House, Trafalger Square, London

      Gerry was born on October 25, 1922 at Toronto, Ontario. He attended Brown School at Upper Canada College.
      He enlisted in the RCAF in Toronto, did his Manning Depot at Toronto and his ITS also at Toronto. Then his EFTS at Oshawa; Gunnery ITS at Quebec City; #9 B&G at Mont Joli where he received his Air Gunnery wing on June 8, 1943 and was posted to the UK in September of 1943.
      He was posted to #83 OTU, Peplow, #1656 Conversion Unit, #1 Lancaster finishing school, #635 Squadron, Kelston; #12 Base Binbrook, special duties flight. He was posted to #625, 12 Squadron RAF, Bomber Command
      His Crew on Ops: F/L J.N.Marks (Pilot); F/O S. Telford (BA); F/O A.Tomkinson (Nav.) P/O R.T. Roman (FE)
      Sgt. H.Cook (WOG); F/L F.N. Fard (rear AG); Sgt. J.G. Ritch (MUG).

      Gerry cites bombing operations against Stuttgart on March 14, 1944 when his aircraft was attacked by an ME 110 which the air gunners successfully repelled with damage and probably destruction. During a target marking operation against Mailly-le-Camp, Gerry’s aircraft was attacked three times by a ME 110 while trying to find the aiming point. On June 23/24, on another target marking operation the aircraft marked the target - railway yards at Saintes, France - and had to re-mark it four times after the 175 aircraft of the bomber force knocked out the initial markers. Gerry adds: “We did this as bombs rained down. Why we survived I’ll never know”. The entire crew was awarded DFC or DFM medals in recognition of their outstanding effort.

      RITCH, P/O James Gerald (J86868) - Distinguished Flying Cross - No.625 Squadron - Award effective 4 November 1944 as per London Gazette dated 17 November 1944 and AFRO 239/45 dated 9 February 1945. Born 1922 in Toronto; home there (sales clerk); enlisted there 21 October 1942. Trained at No.9 BGS (graduated 6 August 1943). Commissioned May 1944. Invested with award 22 June 1949.

      Throughout an operational tour of outstanding merit, Pilot Officer Ritch has at all times displayed a fine fighting spirit, endurance and devotion to duty. During a sortie in May 1944, his aircraft was attacked by a Messerschmitt 410. Largely owing to his skill in handling his guns, his aircraft escaped damage. Another time in May 1944, when on a mission to Aubigny, he successfully delivered several bursts at a Messerschmitt 109 which was hit and damaged.

      Name: James Gerald Ritch Estimated birth year: abt 1922 Age: 22
      Gender: Male Port of Departure: Toronto, Ontario
      Arrival: 24 Nov 1944 - Laguardia Airport, New York, New York
      Place of Origin: Scottish Nativity: Canada
      Line: 1 Microfilm Serial: T715
      Microfilm Roll: T715_6884
      Birth Location: Canada
      Birth Location Other: Toronto
      R198166 Pilot Office RCAF on CF-CTK Trans Canada Airlines

      Gerry left the service in June 1945 in Toronto and attended the U. of T. in business.
      address 1957 45 Eastbourne Avenue, Toronto a Sales Manager
      1963 Voters List at 45 Eastbourne Avenue, Eglinton, Ontario a Salesman
      Gerry’s first wife, Nancy died in June 1970. In December 1972, he and Ragna were married. They moved from Toronto to Shanty Bay in October 1984.

      Ritch, James Gerald survived combat in World War II, the loss of two wives, Nancy Mills Ritch and Ragna Taylor Ritch, and several bouts of cancer to die peacefully at Woods Park Care Centre, Barrie, in the early morning of Saturday August 28, 2010. He will be dearly missed by all his family and friends. A visitation will be held from 7 – 8 p.m. on Wednesday September 1, 2010 at the St. Thomas Anglican Church, 28 Church St., Shanty Bay. Memorial service to be held in the Church at 2:00 p.m. on Thursday September 2, 2010. Donations may be made to the Canadian Paraplegic Association, Ontario.