Veteran aviator Stocky Edwards signs print


Second World War ace “Stocky” Edwards (left) with Comox Valley artist Brian Scott, who is holding his new painting “19 Wing Perspective.”

Artist Brian Scott was thrilled when veteran Canadian aviator James Francis “Stocky” Edwards agreed to sign his print “19 Wing Perspective”, which depicts 19 Wing Comox, B.C., and the Comox Valley.
“There’s a natural connection between Stocky and 19 Wing Comox,” says Scott. “Stocky’s achievements as a [Royal Canadian Air Force] ‘ace’ pilot during the Second World War, and his post-war leadership, are legendary in aviation circles. He retired in the Comox Valley in 1972, is an honorary member of the Comox Air Force Museum and a lifetime member of the 19 Wing Officers’ Mess.”
The prints, signed by Edwards, are available to the public and can be purchased from the Comox Military Family Resource Centre and at Scott’s art studio and gallery in Black Creek, B.C.
About James Francis “Stocky” Edwards
Wing Commander (Ret’d) Edwards was the top Commonwealth “ace”, flying Kittyhawks against Rommel’s Afrika Korps during the North African Campaign of the Second World War. He was often mentioned in Royal Air Force dispatches for his prowess as a crack shot and his flying skills.
Victorious throughout the dangerous Desert Campaign, W/C Edwards then flew Spitfire operations in Europe. He was the first flight instructor on the Vampire, Canada’s first post war jet.  He also led the first wing of F-86 Sabres and served for three years in Europe as part of Canada’s premier front line air defence during the early years of the Cold War. Prior to his retirement in 1972 he also flew Lancaster bombers, Canso flying boats, CF-100s and T-33s.
Edwards is a highly decorated veteran. He’s been awarded the Distinguished Flying Medal, the Distinguished Flying Cross with Bar and the Order of Canada and was inducted into Canada’s Aviation Hall of Fame earlier this year.
About Brian Scott
Artist Brian Scott acknowledges that his childhood experiences as an “air force brat” are the main reasons he became an artist.
“Travelling around the world provided me with experiences to draw upon as an artist that I would never have received otherwise,” he says.
One of his favourite trips was in a CC-130 Hercules flying across Canada.
“I had a bird’s eye view of the Canadian landscape.”
Scott’s father, Warrant Officer Ralph Scott was in the Air Force for 32 years and was posted to England, France, Germany, Fort Nelson, Sea Island, Trenton, Ont., North Bay, Ont., as well as Comox, B.C.
During Scott’s youth, he sometimes flew on military aircraft as a dependant. While attending the University of British Columbia and the Vancouver School of Art, Scott made numerous trips to Lahr, West Germany, as well as Nicosia, Cyprus. From there he travelled on his own to Greece, Israel, Egypt, Khartoum, Addis Abba and Nairobi.  
“At one point I found myself at Dar Es Salaam on the Indian Ocean for a visit with my older brother who was working with foreign aid at the time. Sometimes my mother was convinced she would never see me again,” he recalls with a smile.
Scott’s mural “19 Wing Perspective” will be officially unveiled at Rexspo on Saturday, Sept. 14, as part of the Fitness and Community Centre mural project.
Prints of the mural were donated to the Comox Military Family Resource Centre as a fundraiser for both the 19 Wing Youth Centre and a special scholarship that Scott is establishing for dependants and military spouses at North Island College.
Scott is also donating $5,000 from his late father’s estate to help establish this new scholarship, the third scholarship he has helped to create.

-Comox MFRC

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