Jost Biographies:

Burton Norris Jost


Burton Norris Jost , son of A.C. Jost, author of the much-quoted genealogy book, Guysborough: Sketches and Essays,
was killed in Holland when his plane went down during World War II.

Full details of the event have been included on Aircrew Remembered, a website dedicated to the memory of Canadian military men, thanks to researcher and RCAF specialist Colin Bamford:

Burton on

I recently received an email from a gentleman in Holland who googled my website. His email read:

"I live in the Netherlands in a town called Roermond and I just bought a new house. Our (new) street is called the Burton Jostweg (weg = road) and someone told me that Burton Jost was a pilot on a plane in WWII that was shot down by the Germans in this area. I searched the internet and I found your site. Was he a relative of you and do you know anything about this story? Just curious, I like to know where my street is named after."

In a later email, he went on to say:

"The local government told me that Burton Jost is regarded as a local hero because he made sure his plane crashed just outside of Roermond, so he avoided a disaster for the citizens. And that is why they wanted to name a street after him, the location of the plane-crash is only a few hundred meters from the Burton Jostweg."

He kindly sent me photos of the street sign as well as the monument near the crash site. He hopes to later sent a photo of Burton’s grave itself, which is located some distance from his home. He also sent a translated portion of a newspaper article about the old cemetery in the town of Roerdmond, which tells the story of the crash. Photo and article included below.

Excerpt from news article about the old cemetery in Roermond, Holland:

The grave on the left is Robert Oscar Goodwin's, who crashed in the night of the 24/25 of June 1943 on the farmland of farmer Thijssen on "Hammerveld", and died. The Halifax MD147 VRC from the 419th "Moose" squadron got a briefing on the 24th of June 1943 at 19.00 with information about the raid, the weather forecast, the flight-route, the flight-height, the time and place to join the formation and the expected position of the German FLAK.

Goodwin's Halifax JD 147 was the first plane of 16 to receive the 'take off'-order and squadron leader Burton Jost was its pilot. At 22.40 on the 24th of June the Halifax took off, followed by the other 15 planes one after another. After about half an hour they joined a formation of 630 planes, heading for Wuppertal-Elberfeld in Germany. The distance between the planes was about 30 metres and they had to fly without their lights turned on. Anyone who would miss the formation had a big problem because of the German fighter-planes and the FLAK. The crew of this plane:  3 Canadians (Goodwin, Johnson and Jost) , 3 British and 1 New-Zealander.  Goodwin (age 24) was a Flying Officer, radio-operator and air-gunner. He lived at the Canadian Niagara-Falls, joined the Royal Canadian Air Force at the age of 21 and moved in 1941 to England.

On the 25th of June 1943 at 00.40 the German “Nachtjagd” spotted a Halifax and shot it somewhere between Maastricht and Maasmechelen (Belgium) from an certain angle so that rear-gunner Austin couldn’t see them. The right wing and engine of the Halifax caught fire. Navigator Pope reported that they were flying near Venlo. Jost tried to extinguish the fire with a nose dive, but because the fire got worse (the plane’s body was now on fire) he ordered his crew to bail out. The plane was now heading towards Roermond. The first one to jump was bomb-aimer Bruce (near Maasbracht), the second one rear-gunner Austin (near Leropperveld). Jost noticed he was flying toward an urban area and he turned left, while parts of the plane dropped after some explosions. Because he used flares, he probably tried to land on the fields called ‘Hammerveld’. Now navigator Pope and second gunner Barker jumped, so only the Canadians Jost (pilot), Johnson (flight engineer) and Goodwin (radio operator) remained on board while the plane was only about 100 metres above the ground. The undercarriage of the plane fell burning in a cornfield and then Goodwin jumped.

Finally the plane crashed, with Jost and Johnson still on board. Their burned bodies were found by the firebrigade, in their cockpit that was separated from the rest of the plane. The German Wehrmacht took over the command of the area and started looking for the other members of the crew. Bruce, Austin, Pope and Barker were wounded and got arrested. They were deported to Prisoner of War Camps in Germany and survived the war. Goodwin jumped out of the plane too late and his parachute didn’t open. He was severely wounded and he was lying in the fields, heard moaning and crying for help all night. Because of the German guards it was not possible to help him and the Germans found him 15 days after the crash. The state of his body made them decide to bury him in Roermond, and after the war his widow decided that his remains should stay there. 2 Members of the RCAF and 7 members of the RAF are buried next to each other on this 18th century cemetery in Roermond.


An excerpt from the book, They Shall Not Grow Old:
JOST, BURTON NORRIS, Squadron Leader, pilot, DFC. From Guysborough, Nova Scotia. Killed in action 25 Jun 43, age 31, 419 Moose Squadron. Halifax # JD147 was turning towards the target, Wuppertal, Germany, when it was hit by cannon fire from a Luftwaffe night fighter. The Halifax caught fire so the bomb load was jettisoned and the aircraft turned for home. As the fire could not be extinguished the crew was ordered to bail out. Sergeant Julius Bjorn Johnson, from Gimli Manitoba, flight engineer, age 27, and Flying Officer Robert Oscar Evans Goodwin, Wireless Air gunner from Niagara Falls, Ontario, age 20, were both killed trying to extinguish the fuselage fire. Four RAF members of the crew bailed out and were taken prisoner. Jost had just begun his second tour when he was killed. He is buried in Jonkerbos War Cemetery, Nijmegen, Holland, along with Sgt. Johnson. F/O Goodwin is buried in Roemond, Holland.


George Sweanor, one of the survivors of the 419th Squadron, had this to share:

"Here are the names of the four who bailed out and became prisoners of war:
Flight Sergeant A.W.A. Bruce, bomb aimer, Royal New Zealand Air Force, and 3 Royal Air Force: Sgt. E.B. Pope, navigator, Flight Sergeant L. Barker, mid-upper gunner, and Sergeant R.E. Austin, rear gunner. Their aircraft was a Halifax Mark II, VR-C (VR was 419 Squadron’s identity code). They took off from Middleton St. George at 2240 (10:40 PM), 25 Jun 1943.
This data is from my friend Rob Davis of Telford, Shropshire, England, who maintains a data base of all Bomber Command losses.
Burton Jost earned the Distinguished Flying Cross during his first tour of 30 operations. The survival rate in Bomber Command averaged 5 operations, so Burton exceeded that by far. I was shot down on my 17th. Only 17% of those shot down survived. Burton was among the 83% who did not."


With the assistance of Diane Vorpaieff, a native of Guysborough and friend of the Josts, a photo was found of Burt Jost, taken June 12, 1942, a year before his death. Burt is second from the right, facing forward.

419th Canadian Squadron Leader D.L. Wolfe Regina (second from left) , introduces his flight to England's King George VI (middle, facing left) while Group Captain D. Macfadyen (extreme left), station commander, listens.

The three officers facing his Majesty are:
Pilot Officer A.C. Raine, Brampton, Ont.;
Pilot Officer Bert Jost
and Pilot Officer H.W. Thompson, Oxford, N.S.

National Defence Image Library of Canada, PL-7816 UK-1598


See also:

See also:



green meadow divider

The Christian Counter

February 5, 2016
Polli Turner


View My Stats

The Lord is righteous in all His ways, and kind in all His deeds!
The Lord is near to all who call on Him, to all who call on Him in truth!
Psalm 145:17&18 (NASB)