b. 27/09/1922 Norkoping, Sweden. d. 10/11/1941 Calgary, Canada.
DATE AND PLACE OF GC ACTION: 10/11/1941 Calgary, Canada.
Born in Sweden in 1922, he emigrated with his family to Canada in 1937 and became a Canadian citizen in July that year. He joined the Royal Canadian Air Force in March 1941 from his adopted home city of Vancouver. After completing his basic training, he was posted to No 2 Wireless School in Calgary, Alberta.
He was 18 years old and serving in the Royal Canadian Air Force when his Tiger Moth's engine cut out and the aircraft crashed into the yard of the Big Hills Springs School. The fuel tank exploded on impact. Gravell managed to get clear but lost an eye and his clothes were on fire; nevertheless, without any thought for his own safety, he rushed back to the blazing wreck and tried to pull the pilot, Flying Officer James Robinson, from the wreckage. Mrs Frances Walsh, a teacher, grabbed Gravell from behind and hauled him to the ground, rolling him over to put out the fire in his clothes. She called to her pupils for help. They carried the unconscious Gravell into the school where Mrs Walsh gave first aid and sent for a doctor. When medical help arrived, she didnt allow them to treat her burns before helping Gravell. Gravell died subsequently from his injuries and Walsh was awarded the George Medal.
LOCATION OF MEDAL: 1 WING RHQ, WINNIPEG, CANADA.
BURIAL PLACE: MOUNTAIN VIEW CEMETERY, VANCOUVER, CANADA.
Cemetery Plan courtesy of Kevin Brazier