In the years immediately after WW II governments in Western Europe became
alarmed at what appeared to be significant expansionist tendencies by the USSR.
Several events such as the coup in Czechoslovakia and the illegal blockade of Berlin spurred these countries towards a common policy of defense. In 1949 Belgium, France, Luxembourg,
the Netherlands and the United Kingdom, joined by USA and Canada, formed the North Atlantic Treaty Organization. As part of Canada's contribution to NATO, No. 1 Air Division was formed with its
headquarters in Metz, France. Initially equipped with F-86 Sabre jets, CF-100s were added to 1 Air Div a few years later. By 1956 there were two squadrons of Sabres (day interceptors)
and one squadron of CF-100s (all-weather interceptors) at each of Marville and Grostenquin in France, and Zweibrucken and Baden-Soellingen in Germany. These squadrons were
supported by various training, communication, and other units. A transport squadron provided support from Langar in England, and an air weapons unit was
established in Sardinia. As France reassessed her participation in NATO the two bases in France were closed, and as the F-86 and CF-100 became obsolete, they were replaced by the F-104.
Many members of the RCAF were killed while serving with NATO as part of 1 Air
Division. They, and a few members of other forces assigned to this division, were buried in the cemetery at Choloy, near Nancy. Buried in a separate section of the
same cemetery are dependents of RCAF personnel and other civilians serving with the RCAF who died while in Europe. Adjoining is a large cemetery for those of the
Commonwealth forces who gave their lives in WW II.
The cemetery is administered by the Commonwealth War Graves Commission.
This web site has been created so that the families and friends of those buried in Choloy who cannot visit the cemetery may pay at least a virtual visit to the graves.
Contact web page editor/author: MalcolmCromarty@hotmail.com