Famous Pigeons Part 2
KENLEY LASS was dropped into France with an agent codenamed Phillippe who was parachuted behind enemy lines. In October 1040 Kenley Lass flew back to her loft, the first successful receipt of secret communications from an agent working in occupied Europe. She received her Dicken Medal in March 1945.
The weather was bad and the search was called off. But White Vision was released from the boat and arrived at her home loft at about 5 pm, having flown over 60 miles of heavy seas against a head wind of 25 mph, in poor visibility, to deliver the coordinates of a stranded Catalina Flying Boat. All 11 crew members were rescued.
the first ever Dicken Medal recipient.
On Feb 28th 1942 a British Beaufort bomber was forced down in the North Sea. Winkie thrown free of her onboard container, wings clogged by oily water flew to the Scottish coast 129 miles away. Meanwhile the bomber crew huddled in a dinghy shivering from the cold. Shortly before dawn, Winkie arrived in Scotland and a code tied to her leg helped lead the rescue team to the downed plane. The crew later gave a dinner in London to Winkie and her owner in appreciation of her life saving fly.
During WWII the delivery of a message that needed to be relayed back to headquarters was entrusted to a member of a special brigade, a homing pigeon named Black Halligan. The journey to headquarters should have taken just 20 minutes, but Blackie was shot down in the Japanese fire. Five hours later the maimed and bloody bird managed to complete its trip bearing the important message.
She flew during 5 years for the Allied Powers, was wounded 22 times, and killed in action. When her body was found, it was covered with wounds. Mary was decorated with the Dickens Medal, and buried with full military honors.
the most famous pigeon prisoner of war, Kaiser, a German bird captured during WWI was born in 1917 and captured in 1918 by American forcs in the battle of the Meuse. He was used in the Signal Corp breeding program and sired over 100 children, during his long life. Kaiser died in 1949, at 33, making him not only the oldest recorded Pigeon on record, but also the only pigeon to have served in both world wars.
Other famous pigeons decorated and buried with military honour:
“William of Orange”
“Duke of Normandy”
See also Famous Pigeons Part 1
Famous Pigeons Part 2