Item description for FIVE OF THE FEW by Steve Darlow...
Churchill's 'Few' will forever be remembered by history as men who thwarted the seemingly invincible German war machine, when all seemed lost. They countered the full force of the Luftwaffe in the daylight battles during the summer of 1940, and in the night skies of the winter and spring of 1940/41. They were at the time, and still are, perceived as knights of the air, as our heroes. Now, five distinguished RAF airmen, four pilots and one radar operator/navigator, who fought that air battle during the Battle of Britain and the Blitz, have recounted their experiences in detail to author Steve Darlow. Their stories have never before been published, and they talk engagingly of their service life, combats, losses, injuries, friendships and fears - flying Spitfires, Hurricanes, Blenheims, Beaufighters and Havocs. One pilot tells of the time he fell victim to the enemy - 'My Spitfire stopped being a flying machine, it became a lump of metal. I was going down with it and I couldn't get out. I broke the seat by standing on it. The pressure throwing me into the bottom was terrific...' A Beaufighter radar operator remembers being involved in shooting down a German aircraft - 'He took a vertical dive, struck the ground and exploded with a shower of incendiaries. I felt like a child with a new toy. I had at last proved myself but for some reason I suddenly felt a little sad.' But Five of the Few is not just about the experiences of these men during 1940/41. They would also distinguish themselves in subsequent air campaigns - night defense of the UK, offensive operations over the continent and support to D-Day and beyond. In between the aerial combats and ground attack operations, promotions, decorations and command responsibilities would come their way. But not all would make it through safely to the end of the war. One would end up behind barbed wire. Collectively Five of the Few is a war story of youth maturing, through aspiration and idealism, courage and bravado, fear and heroism, memory and reflection. It is a reminder of why so much was owed, and still is, by so many to so few.
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Est. Packaging Dimensions: Length: 9.2" Width: 6.2" Height: 1.1" Weight: 1.2 lbs.
Publisher Grub Street
ISBN 1904943586 ISBN13 9781904943587
Availability 0 units.
More About Steve Darlow
Steve Darlow is an established and well respected military aSteve Darlow is an established and well respected military aviation author and researcher. He has written six previous bviation author and researcher. He has written six previous books, including D-Day Bombers: The Veteransa Story and Five ooks, including D-Day Bombers: The Veteransa Story and Five of the Few, which recount the experiences of Allied aircrewsof the Few, which recount the experiences of Allied aircrews during WWII. during WWII.
Reviews - What do customers think about FIVE OF THE FEW?
Five Who Survived the Battle of Britain Jan 9, 2007
The few are, of course, the pilots of the RAF about whom Churchill made his famous quotation, and here are the stories of five of them who fought through the Battle of Britain. In the tradition of most of these kinds of stories the men, now in their eighties, universally claim to not be heros at all, but to be just ordinary blokes doing their bit. I don't agree. One of the men talking about his unit of 32 men when the war started ended the war with six still alive.
The Battle of Britain was at the beginning of World War II, so all of these men had engered service before the war. This means that they had had the more leisurely training of the peacetime RAF. By the time the war came around, they were well trained and as ready as they could be for the battle.
Their stories of the battles are as matter of fact as can be. It was work, their kind of work, and it wasn't until later that they really recognized the impact of all they had done. The book is written as straight forward as their stories. Here is what happened as these participants saw it.
Very enjoyable reading that gives you a sense of having been their.