Canadian Air Force 439th Squadron
had sent from its Germany base of Solingen a beautiful and
colourful canadair CF-104. The 439th Sabre Tooth Tiger Squadron
had origins traced from the overseas Army cooperation Squadron
123 born in November 1943, at Bournemouth in England and became
officially N°439 Squadron in December of the same year. Pilots
received complete operational training on Huricanes and Typhoons
at the Ayr OCU in Scotland. On 27 March 1944, ready, the squadron
began operations over territories occupied by German Army. And as
seen in the caption devoted to USAF 79th Tactical Squadron, from
D Day to end of war the unit was engaged in the systematical low
level ground attack operations (sweeps) decided by Allies and 439th
distinguished by a great majority of its sorties against rail
networks and so, with Hawker Typhoons operating from the
Continent, destroyed a great number of trains. After regaining
England with peace, the squadron dibanded in August 1945.
Reactivation occured during 1951 and 439th became the first Canadian unit to fly the Sabre fighter, this from Rockcliff in Ottawa to prepare itself for an eventual move overseas. It received new Canadair Sabre IIs and, in May 1952, evolved a ferry operation dubbed Leap Frog 1 to land their Sabres at North Luffenham, England where the squadron operated during the next three years with Sabre Vs. next with VIs. During 1955 it was for France, at Merville air base, that 439th Squadron moved and learned, it changed then Sabre Vs for the VI model, to French populations what was the sonic bang!!! In this Good Time, no restrictions existed concerning this and exagerations were common, before all bringing joy and pleasure to young boys who all wished to become supersonic pilots on their bikes and going until to generate bangs by exploding two latex balloons when thinking to be at maximum speed ...!!!
The squadron had flown Sabres during eleven years when it was disbanded in November 1963 after having fulfilled all the NATO commitments in the air superiority role, participating to many full scale major exercises and maintaining continuous standby alerts and deployments during stay in France. Finally, the deactivation period was relatively short because operational requirements dictated to rebuild 439th Squadron to work as an integral part of NATO Forces, this time for a completely new role, reconnaissance and attack, with other Canadairs: the CF-104 Starfighter. Their base was Solingen in Germany to fulfill their new task.