UNEF - Introduction


Abu Sueir

El Arish / Marina


Gaza City

Sharm El Sheik

Photograph of Marina - the Canadian living quarters courtesy of the Canadian War Museum.


This page has general information on RCAF participation in UNEF. Click on the menu at left for more information, photographs, and stories realted to each specific base/location.


Part of the Canadian commitment to UNEF I was 115 ATU based in El Arish (click to view map). For a history (in progress) of 115 ATU, please see the following documents by Gord Jenkins (all reports require Adobe Reader to view):

If you have any suggestions or corrections for the above documents, please email Gord Jenkins (click here to email).

Useful links and documents:

Aircraft assigned to 115 ATU included Dakotas, Otters, and Caribous. Additional RCAF aircraft provided support to 115 ATU and UNEF operations. Support activities including bringing personnel and equipment into theatre. Aircraft included the Canadair North Star, Fairchild CC-119 Flying Boxcar, Canadair CP-106 Yukon, and CC-130 Hercules. See our AIRCRAFT page for more information.


Fatal 115 ATU casualties were (click on names to see information at The Canadian Virtual War Memorial site):

  • W/C Earle D. Harper (photo 1, photo 2) - was CO of 115 ATU and died on November 2, 1963 at Camp Rafah, Egypt. While returning from a function in Rafah, W/C Harper was driving his staff car with the supply officer as a passenger, when he crashed into an army wrecker parked on the opposite side of the road. The supply officer suffered injury but Harper died at the scene.
  • Sgt John K. Hermann - died on December 26, 1963 as the result of "a single-vehicle jeep accident on the same stretch of road" between Rafah and El Arish where W/C Harper was killed (from "In the Eye of the Storm - A History of Canadian Peacekeeping" by Fred Gaffen).
  • F/O Richard V. Edwards - was a pilot with 115 ATU, died at El Kuntilla, Egypt on April 28, 1966 due to the April 25, 1966 Otter accident reported below.
  • F/O Paul M. L. Picard - was a pilot with 115 ATU, died at El Kuntilla, Egypt on April 30, 1966 due to the April 25, 1966 Otter accident reported below.

All are buried in the Gaza Commonwealth Cemetery.

F/O Paul M. L. Picard and F/O Richard V. Edwards both died as a result of injuries sustained in the crash of Otter 3678 while on a "a routine transport mission to two bases". For a brief overview of the incident, click on the following link (report requires Adobe Reader to view):

There were four people on the Otter at the time of the crash. The only survivor was James (Jim) H. Glenn. Following the crash, he was in the hospital at Rafah, where he stayed until he was well enough to travel back to Canada. Jim Glenn is currently living in Alberta where the crash has had it's affects on him still to this day. He did not fly again until July 67 out of Edmonton in a CC130. Following is a picture of Jim Glenn taken before going over to Egypt, and an excerpt from his flight logbook for the month before the accident (click on images to see them full size):

The fourth person on the aircraft was a Yugoslav observer with the United Nations. He was killed instantly in the crash. If you have any more information on the identity of this person, please email Gord Jenkins.


Key locations include:

  • Capodichino - airport near Naples, Italy used as a staging base for UNEF, used by RCAF 114 Communications Flight
  • Abu Sueir - initial air base used by RCAF 115 Communication Flight in Egypt
  • El Arish - air field used by 115 ATU
  • Marina - the Canadian living quarters located about 10 miles north of the El Arish
  • Rafah - Headquarters for all Canadian UNEF Units (except RCAF)
  • Gaza City - including UNEF HQ and Gaza Air Strip, and Gaza Commonwealth Cemetery
  • Sharm El Sheik - UNEF base located on the southern tip of the Sinai Peninsula

Click on links above (or menu at left) for more information, photographs, and stories for each base/location.


Stories and photographs for specific bases/locations can be access using the menu at left. The following are general diaries/memoirs from UNEF I (requires Adobe Reader to view):