Tipple, Graham

Graham Tipple was born March 1, 1924 in Burin, Newfoundland.  His father was a fish merchant in that small town, but his mother longed to get away from the area, having lost multiple male relatives to the sea.  The family – with their young son Graham – resettled in Toronto in 1925, and Graham grew up in the Earlscourt Park neighbourhood and attended Oakwood Collegiate.  He remembers his father signing Canadian citizenship papers during this time.  Graham was in high school when the war came along, and he remembers losing several friends during that time.  He chose to join the RCAF and went into the BCATP, attending training schools from coast to coast.  Graham was in Quebec, Ontario, Nova Scotia, Saskatchewan and Manitoba!  He was on the pilot training path, but was later selected for tower training and night flying operations, and on one occasion he was in a crash truck when he was ejected, sustaining a severe head injury.  The recovery from that ended Graham’s active service, and he was in hospital in Calgary for a considerable time.  His condition slowly improved, and the air force tried him at library duty.  That stimulated his desire to return to education, and Graham used his veterans’ benefits to pursue postgraduate studies in divinity.  He went on to become a minister in the United Church, serving communities in northern Ontario and helping to establish Algoma University.  Graham Tipple was interviewed by Scott Masters at the Parkwood Veteran Centre in London, Ontario in August 2023.