On the 7th of May, the day before V.E. Day, Ralph Sparrow was posted to ‘R’ Depot; the RCAF Personnel Despatch Centre (PDC) at Houghton Green, Warrington, Yorkshire, to be processed and await repatriation back to Canada.
He didn’t have to wait long and embarked in the last week of May, arriving back in Canada on the 6th of June.
Ralph was discharged from the RCAF on 27 July 1945:
He kept in touch with Jack Cash, but sadly lost contact with the others in the crew.
In a 1986 newspaper article he described his experiences:
“You never felt anything for the other person (the enemy), you didn’t know how many were killed down below.
It’s the top brass that fight each other. The top political parties, the little guys are in the middle. After it’s all over you’re all friends again.
It wasn’t like on television. This stuff you see on TV where they have a big hullabaloo in the barracks about somebody going and somebody else going; if a guy got killed, he got killed.
Even when we lost the youngest boy of our crew … he was killed by the flak … he was killed … that’s just the way it was.
I’ve thought more about it later than I did during the war … You didn’t sit there weeping in the dark, they just put that in the movies to make it more interesting.
Part of the problem is that we were young, we never knew any better. We didn’t think it was going to happen to us.”
Ralph Charles Sparrow passed away on November 19, 1995 at Port Alberni, British Columbia, aged 70.