Kinnaird, Daphne

Daphne Kinnaird was born in London, England in 1921.  She grew up in the Kensington neighbourhood, raised by her father and grandmother.  She recalls a relatively good life before the war, with fond memories of friends and school.  When the war came, she remembers listening to the declaration of war on the BBC, followed by an air raid siren.  In short order she and her friends joined up; her boyfriend joined the RAF, and Daphne joined the Women’s Auxiliary Air Force, or the WAAF.  Daphne became a plotter in the RAF Operations Room, a critical job during the Blitz; it was her task to map out the incoming Luftwaffe bombers and to aid in the defence of her homeland.  While on base, she met a Polish pilot, and the two of them struck up a romance and married after the war.  As the war began to wane, Daphne’s duties diminished, and she was able to enjoy the social side of the war, attending VE Day celebrations in London.  When the war ended Daphne and her husband emigrated to Canada, where they raised their family, falling into the rhythms of postwar Canadian life.

Daphne Kinnaird was interviewed for this project in June 2019, at the Sunnybrook Veterans’ Wing, by Arielle Meyer, Matthew Laslop, and Kian Torabi.