Lieutenant Colonel David R. Ely, MBE
SAC 1925-1926, 1929

Lieutenant Colonel David Reynolds Ely was born June 3, 1911 and attended St. Andrew's College from 1925 to 1926 and from January to June of 1929.

He entered the Active Force from the Non-Permanent Active Militia on September 1, 1939 and served in unique roles with the Canadian Army's Air Observation Posts as outlined in the citation for his appointment as a Member or the Order of the British Empire.

He continued to serve with the Canadian Army after the war and reached the rank of Lieutenant Colonel. He died on August 18, 1968.

  • Oct. 1939 Lieutenant 9th (Toronto) Field Battery, Royal Canadian Artillery, Aldershot
  • Oct. 1940 Captain 9th Battery, 2nd Field Regiment, Royal Canadian Artillery Overseas
  • Mar. 1943 Major, subsequent training included a Royal Air Force course
  • Mar. 1943 1st Field Regiment, Royal Canadian Horse Artillery, Canadian Army Overseas.
  • May 1944 B. Battery, 1st Field Regiment, C.M.F.
  • May 1946 666 (R.C.A.F.) Canadian Air Observation Post Squadron C.A.C.
  • Jan. 5 1946 made a Member of the Order of the British Empire (M.B.E.),  Major, Royal Canadian Artillery
  • Jan. 21, 1948 Married to Sheila Simpson (to live in Brandon, Man.)
  • Oct. 1950 Posted to Central Command, Oakville, Ont. Rank of Lieutenant Colonel
  • Aug. 1962 Retired from the Canadian Army and joined Boeing Aircraft, Vertol Division, Morton, Pennsylvania, U.S.A.

Member, Order of the British Empire

"Major Ely entered the Active Force on 1 September 1939 from the Non-Permanent Active Militia. In 1942 he was the first Canadian officer to qualify as an Air Observation Post pilot, and in 1943 was the only officer so qualified in the Canadian Army. In that year he was returned to England to assist in the formation and training of three Canadian Air Observation Post squadrons being formed for First Canadian Army. He was appointed to command 664 Canadian Air Observation Post Squadron, and as pilots finished their initial training he organized the squadron and carried out its unit training. When this unit was fully trained, he was ordered to turn it over to a junior officer and make himself available to form and train 665 Canadian Air Observation Post Squadron. This he did, and was then called upon to form 666 Canadian Air Observation Post Squadron in a similar manner. The latter squadron he took to the theatre in May 1945 as Squadron Commander. 
        His outstanding ability and his unflagging interest in the development of these squadrons, despite the fact that it probably would have been more to his advantage to have served in the field, where he had been recommended to command a field regiment, contributed in large measure to the rapid development of these units, which became available to 21 Army Group at a critical time, when fresh divisions were arriving from Italy and no other Air Observation Post squadrons were available. This officer has shown unstinted zeal, energy and efficiency in the performance of his duties, and is considered worthy of high recognition."
Awarded as per Canada Gazette dated 5 January 1946
and CARO/6309 dated 7 January 1946.