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Name: George Neil Rattee Rank: Flying Officer Service No: J/13765 Regiment/Service: Royal Canadian Air Force Rank: (Navigator) 306 FTU RAF Date of Birth: November 6, 1922 Place of Birth: New Amsterdam, British Guyana Date of Enlistment: September 6, 1941 Place of Enlistment: RCAF Recruiting Centre, Halifax, NS Address At Enlistment: Yarmouth, NS Age at Enlistment: 18 Height: 6 feet Weight: 167lbs. Complexion: Fair Eyes: Blue Hair: Light Brown Trade: Student Marital Status: Single Religion: Presbyterian Next of Kin: Rev. Neil MacLean Rattee (Father) Yarmouth, NS Date of Death: August 23, 1943 Age at Death: 20 Memorial: Runneymede Memorial (Surrey, England) Memorial Reference: Panel 174. The 94th name on the WWII list of the Yarmouth War Memorial (Listed as G. Neil on the Yarmouth War Memorial) Commemorated on page 206 of the Second World War Book of Remembrance Displayed in the Memorial Chamber of the Peace Tower in Ottawa on April 26 George Neil Rattee was the son of the Rev. Neil M. Rattee, B.A., and Frances Elizabeth Rattee. In August, 1925, the family returned to Canada from British Guiana. Rev. Rattee was born in Noel, Nova Scotia and Frances was born in New Richmond, Quebec. The family lived in Yarmouth, Nova Scotia when George enlisted and the family was living in Westville, Nova Scotia when he was killed in 1943. He was the brother of Eleanor Lois, born 1927, Edward Kinnear, born in 1929 and Francis John, born 1933. All the Rattee children were actually known by their middle name and George was known as “Neil”. He attended the Yarmouth Academy between 1937 and 1939 and Queen’s University between 1939 and 1940. He was employed between May and September, 1940 and between April and his enlistment in 1941 with the Department of National Defence at the Yarmouth Airport as a chainman, [surveyor's assistant]. He completed Initial Training at Toronto, Ontario from December 22, 1941 to February 14, 1942, an Air Observer’s Course at Portage La Prairie from February 16, 1942 to May 5, 1942, Armament Training at MacDonald, Manitoba from May 25, 1942 to July 4, 1942, Advanced Air Observer’s Training, Rivers, Manitoba and Navigation Reconnaissance Course, at Charlottetown from August 31, 1942 to September, 16, 1942. He disembarked in the United Kingdom on January 7, 1943 and was assigned to 306 Unit on July 7, 1943. No 306 Ferry Training Unit formed at RAF Templeton in January 1943 training Bristol Beauforts crews in long distance flying and to ferry new Bristol Beauforts to RAF stations across the world. The unit was transferred to RAF Maghaberry, County Antrim, Northern Ireland between June 15 and October 15, 1943. Flying Officer, George Neil Rattee was listed as missing on August 23, 1943 when his aircraft, Beaufort 1 JM.499, departed Portsmouth, England, for Gibraltar, on August 23rd, 1943. The crew consisted of A.S. McPherson (Pilot), G.N. Rattee (Navigator), R. G. Needham (Sergeant), and J.L. Perkins (Flight Sergeant). Despite search efforts over land and sea no trace of the plane was discovered.
George Neil Rattee
Runneymede Memorial
Sources and Information: Canadian Virtual War Memorial Photos: Courtesy of Jennifer (Rattee) Arndt