Greenwood Military Aviation Museum
A special thanks to Orren's sister and her daughter who provided the story and artifacts.
Corporal Orren Willard Carey
1921 - 1944
Born in Wallbrook, Nova Scotia on August 26, 1921, Orren Willard Carey (Duck) was the second child of Everett John and Cora Mae Carey. He attended school in Avonport and obtained his grade eleven at Wolfville High School.
As a young boy, Orren became close friends with neighbours in his community. One such family in Avonport from whom he would collect weekly payment for the daily newspaper was the Neiforths. Regularly, Orren would guide Grampy Neifuorth, who was blind, from his house to a small area near the barn to feed the ducks. From this time on, members of the community referred to Orren as Duck. Orren’s many acts of kindness to those in his community of Avonport endeared him to all. He was particularly fond of children. His sister recalls that, when the older children wanted to send the younger ones home, Orren would always include them and allow them to play on his team.
Orren was an enthusiastic participant in community organizations. He joined the Boy Scouts at a young age and became a group leader. His father, the Boy Scout leader in Avonport, would complain that all the little boys wanted to be in Duck’s group and, worse still according to him, Duck would create some reason for each child to be included. As a high school student in Wolfville, Orren played both hockey and baseball with the school teams. Although he was not a particularly gifted athlete, he enjoyed playing sports.
Upon graduation from high school, Orren joined his father in the masonry trade. It was expected that, when he returned from military duty, Orren and his father would go into the masonry business as business partners.
Feeling a responsibility to his country, Orren decided to join the Royal Canadian Air Force. His posting was at Ancienne Lorette in Quebec. There, he studied to become a wireless operator and rose in rank to a corporal. Tragically, on October 30, 1944, days before he was to graduate and before he was to be posted in Charlottetown as an instructor, Orren was killed in a plane crash. As a final act of kindness, he had agreed to fly in the stead of a friend who had had a date on that fateful night.
It was a snowy night on October 30 when Orren and three other members of the R.C.A.F. along with their civilian pilot were on air navigation exercises. The Anson aircraft crashed on the side of a mountain near Megantic, Quebec. There were no survivors.
Orren’s body was accompanied home by the friend who had originally been scheduled to fly that night. It so happened that Cora Mae’s sister Minnie was on that same train. She did not know of her nephew’s tragic death. She noticed, however, that the young man sitting with her was quite distraught and kept leaving his seat to go to the rear of the train. When she asked where the young man was bound, he replied that Avonport was his destination and that he was bringing home the body of his dear friend. When it was discovered that the body was that of her nephew, she immediately thought of her sister who had been very ill. She was very overcome by his revelation.
Orren was survived by his mother and father, two sisters and a brother: Edith Kenney, Mauretia Carey, who was at home at the time, and Earl Carey who was training in the army in Yarmouth, Nova Scotia. The funeral took place at his home in Avonport. Friends and relatives from all over the province attended the funeral for a young man who had been held in very high esteem by his community, his fellow workers, and his family. A long procession of cars wended its way through the streets of Wolfville to the Willowbank Cemetery. Full military honours were accorded and the trumpeter sounded the Last Post as the flag draped coffin with his remains were laid to rest.