SAINT-JEAN, S/L Joseph Edward Gaston (J25368) – Distinguished Flying Cross – No.425 Squadron – Award effective 5 February 1945 as per London Gazette dated 16 February 1945 and AFRO 563/45 dated 29 March 1945. Born in Ottawa, 10 April 1921; home there (ex-Royal Canadian Artillery); enlisted there 11 July 1940. Trained at No.5 ITS (graduated 12 September 1942), No.13 EFTS (graduated 11 December 1942) and No.2 SFTS (graduated 16 April 1943).
Commissioned 1943. Award sent by registered mail 20 April 1949. Served in postwar RCAF. No citation other than « completed…numerous operations against the enemy in the course of which [he has] invariably displayed the utmost fortitude, courage and devotion to duty. » DHist file 181.009 D.1730 (PAC RG.24 Vol.20607) has recommendation dated 11 November 1944, at which time he had flown 21 sorties:
On September 28th, 1944, Flight Lieutenant St.Jean and his crew were detailed to bomb a synthetic oil plant at Bottrop in the Ruhr Valley. On the run in to the target, the flak barrage was intense. Predicted flak riddled the aircraft, severing the hydraulic line, thus rendering the hydraulic system unserviceable. Determined to drive home a successful attack, the pilot continued on track and the target was bombed successfully. Directly after the bombs had been released, it was necessary to feather the starboard inner engine. Flight Lieutenant St.Jean succeeded in flying the aircraft back to base on three engines.
Flight Lieutenant St.Jean is a pilot of a Halifax bomber who has had many sorties over enemy territory. He has taken part in raids over the heavily defended targets of Stuttgart, Hamburg, Osnabruck and Kiel.
The exceptional skill of this pilot, coupled with his keen judgment and sense of timing, have on numerous occasions brought the aircraft out of danger. A tribute to his success as captain of the aircraft is the confidence that the other members of his crew have in his ability.