Leading Aircraftman Theodore Bates

In 2012, the remains of Leading Aircraftman Theodore Bates were recovered from Lake Muskoka, Ontario. He and Flight Lieutenant Peter Campbell went missing when their Nomad 3521 aircraft collided with another aircraft (Nomad 3512) on December 13, 1940, during the Second World War.

Theodore Scribner Bates was born in January 1913 in Guelph Ontario. Prior to enlistment, he was a musician and salesman. He was married to Ruth Schultis.

In October 1937, he joined the Dufferin and Haldimand Rifles of Canada. Bates had a private pilot’s licence prior to the outbreak of the Second World War, and as a result he was recommended for enlistment in the RCAF, which he joined in November 1939.

The day before his fatal accident, Leading Aircraftman Bates had graduated from his pilot course and received his wings.

While participating in a search for a missing fellow trainee airman, his plane, Nomad 3521, collided with another and crashed into Lake Muskoka on 13 December 1940.

When the Ontario Provincial Police’s dive unit surveyed the lakebed surrounding the crash site, they found the personal effects of Leading Aircraftman Bates and Flight Lieutenant Peter Campbell. Among these items were Bates’ ring, RCAF buttons, and RCAF wings.

Leading Aircraftman Bates was buried in September 2013 at Woodlawn Memorial Park Cemetery alongside Flight Lieutenant Campbell.

For further information on Leading Aircraftman Bates, you can consult his personnel file at Library and Archives Canada.

Information about casualty identification

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