Remember All Who Served...

WW I    We honour them all - In this Year of the Vet*   WW II
May we always remember - Let us never forget
Dedicated with gratitude to Parents, Ancestors, Relatives and Friends

*This site was originally built in 2005 - Thus my short poem Year of the Vet


My Dad, Paul Righetti

F/O Paul Adam Righetti
May 25th, 1922 - April 9th 2011

Dad left us to join Mum on April 9 th, 2011. He was born May 25th 1922 in Odessa Sask. the second youngest of a large family. His first training was as a teacher, and he taught before the war. Link to the service years here
After the war he settled back into farming with his new bride Jean, but eventually the crop dust was too hard on his lungs and he returned to teaching in various Saskatchewan teacherages, until the birth of their first two children, when they settled into the small town of Montmartre. Except for the dining stuff, most of the necessary wooden furniture, indoors and out were made by his own hands. The outdoor trellices, patio brick & furniture were painted white and his favourite colour, RED!

Dad was active in the Legion, on various boards and town council, taught and eventually became Principal of the elementery school. When most of his family had grown to their teens they all moved to Davidson Sask. where he continued to teach in the capacity of Principal. He loved children, teaching, and crafts, and he even created his own learning aids for his classroom. He added gardening to his list of skills & hobbies, and he eventually had as green a thumb for vegetables as Mom had for flowers.
With the summers off, we'd all go to the Odessa farm for the summer . I remember us planting rows and rows of potatoes, then having to clean all dad's garden tools in the sandbox until they shone! I wondered if the vegetables cared.
Must mention, while on the subject of gardens, how dad would make us a huge skating rink every winter, with a jam-can curling rink along the side.None of us were great skaters, but we were strong ones. and most of us were curlers as well. He promoted athletics not just for us, but for all the children in his life.*

He was a stern but effective teacher, as an educator and father....and his few but lucky grandchildren and greatgrandchildren will cherish the memory of the most playful and sharing times they had with him.
He's now joined Mom and many of his cherished wartime Q-Queenie crew....Adam, Bill & Army. They are probably singing some old wartime songs together as you read this.
He may not have let the gang know how much he cherished their company in the scary war times...but he always let us know how important they were.
The R.A.F. reunions were a joy to him, and we were blessed to be a part of it & to have met so many of his Q-Queenie pals...



Every year dad would have his grade 6 students out for a picnic & Baseball game.

I just found this and had to put it up here...

* )

Newspaper article, April 25, 1956 ...Yikes I was two!!!

At a banquet honouring Montmartre Curling & Hockey teams:
“stunt man”; Mr. Paul Righetti, president of the Montmartre Legion branch.'
is mentioned...
I guess he may have been showing off a bit of skating prowess....



My Mom, Jean Righetti
Cpl. Jean M. Thomson (Tommy Thompson)

Oct 7th, 1918 - June 11th, 2009

My mummy had a stroke when I first got there in May ... and although I saw her rallying, it was not meant to be, as she had another major one a week later...
She hung on for quite a long as we needed her to, I imagine, to get used to the idea that we were losing her...

Mom's obit

  When the second world war came along, Mom was happy to do her part as a civilian, collecting aluminum and donating her time doing office work.   Mom became an Airwoman in 1941, then late in 1942 was posted overseas.
More about the service years here

  She met my father in Spring 1946 , and they were married on their return to Winnipeg later that fall... More about her and her ancestors here


Before signing up...Mum & her best pal
Isabelle Jones collecting aluminum pots & pans for the war effort

Mom's a WAF! Dec. 13 1941 Winnipeg

Found these in Winnipeg Free Press at the libray

Jan23 1942 - Anglican Young People Association

Sept.14, 1942

Mom wasn't a farm gal, nor was she a cook, but she quickly became both. I think we all admired her for her creativity and skills. She sewed all our clothes and made crafty things from nothing. She grew a huge veggie & fruit garden and canned and preserved much of it for our winter enjoyment.
She would do artwork for people for practically nothing, and was always happy to do it. The local 4H were lucky to have her happily share her skills.

A beautiful woman, inside and out....


  I think of all the diapers Mom changed and washed in a decade ...the fairy stories she told... The fabulous meals she cooked for seven...the clothes sewn & mended...bandaged knees. The hot chocolate in the wee cups as a treat when out at the farm in Odessa for the summer. Climbing trees that seemed so high, and then looking down at  Mom's worried face!....
The sound of meadowlarks in the field, larkspur scattered everywhere...The yummy garden produce.   The scent of lanolin as she put on lipstick and wanting to kiss her right away so my lips could be red too! Eating onions raw and broadbeans... Because she liked them and I wanted so much to be like her!
Dream on...she was one of a kind...



Just found their wedding announcement in the Wpg. Free Press archives so adding it...
Luckily, the Legislative Libray and the Manitoba & HBC Archives are but a bus ride away!

November 12 1946


November 03, 2009

The passing of Q-Queenie crew member, poet & friend
Sgt. Graham Armstrong - Mid Upper Gunner WW2
( Army Armstrong) (1924-2009)

Graham was a prolific poet...with many war memories penned and shared. We were most honoured to have hosted two gatherings while the crew gathered for Air Crew reunions here in Winnipeg in 1984 and 1992. He happily shared his poetry with us and others...
Here is one of his poems about his war experience.

( 1944-1945)

Somewhere in England was all the home folks knew
Where there had been a farm, stood bombers with their crew.
Those of us in Service - we knew where we were;
Beyond the gate folks hardly knew that we were even there.

Young Airmen, fresh from training, got acquainted, formed a crew
From all walks of life - for a job they had to do.
A team, yes like no other, brought together in a war,
To take their mighty Bomber to the enemy and score.

We found a handsome pilot who had earned a coupla rings;
A big navigator from B.C. with maps and things.
Bomb Aimer and Tail Gunner from way out West they came;
Mid Upper and the wireless “OP” from Windsor and it’s fame.

Wellington ( two engines) to start our training as a team;
Used earlier in the war, now shoved aside, as it would seem.
Then on to Conversion to the “Hallibag” - big four;
Hear a R.A.F. Engineer to make those engines roar.

Time welded us together with more training - crew complete.
Soon we found a squadron -432- and felt the heat.
“Q” for Queenie was our Bomber for the best part of our tour;
Though we flew in several others we have special thoughts of Her.

Between the “Ops” we had our fun in pubs so handy by,
And furloughs in Scotland with gals and Scotch and Rye.
We lost some real good buddies that we never shall forget;
There were some “hairy” missions that are fresh in memory yet.

Pete and Army sat behind to man the Browning guns;
Fired not a single shot - not bothered by the “Huns”.
We give all the credit to Skipper Bill at the controls;
To Frank and Paul and Barry - Bill ”The Bloke” for bombing goals.

The years have found us scattered, out of touch and growing old
But memories of the action days still make the blood run cold.
Good fortune got us back in touch, except for Pete - now gone;
If the rest can get together--how we’ll sing and carry on.

Graham Armstrong April 15/86
Graham's son has written more about his father here




Squadron Leader W.E. Bill Miller DFC RAF
Mar.7, 1917 - Aug.24, 1997

It was a pleasure to have met Bill and his lovely wife at our reunion gatherings. It was always known that he was well thought of and highly respected by the Queenie crew for his piloting skills. Every time he took them into the skies they knew their lives were in capable hands. We thank him for that..he is remembered often.



Thinking about Q-Queenie Crew ...added this photo from a reunion here....

Here is the crew list. My Dad Bomb Aimer Paul Righettii, Pilot Bill Miller
and Gunners Adam(Pete) Petaske
and Graham ( Army) Armstrong now together for a new reunion.

CREW : ("Q-Queenie")
Pilot - J8654 F/L Miller William E.
A/Bomber - R192392 Sgt. Righetti Paul A.
M/U Gunner - R261470 Sgt. Armstrong Graham E.
F/E - 1890485 Sgt. Chubb William F.
Nav - J28783 F/O Hall Barry E.
Wop - R168220 Sgt Dupuis Frank R.
R/Gunner - R212407 Sgt. Petaske Adam

More about the crew here












Righetti Pair WW2


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