One Man's War: the RAF from 1939-46
This book is the story of a country boy from west Somerset who joined the RAF as soon as war was declared in September 1939, when he was 18 and an apprentice motor mechanic. Within months he was driving big lorries and cranes in the Battle of Britain, recovering crashed planes. He went on to the North African Western Desert, Egypt, Libya, Tunis and El Alamein. From there to Italy: Naples, Monte Cassino, invasion of Sicily. Then Corsica followed by France, landing near St Tropez in the D-Day of the South. Finally after four years abroad, back to the UK, a wedding and release from the RAF. Along the way he was blown up, bombed, burnt, and ill.
He was not one of the commanders, or the shooting and bombing action heroes. He was responsible for the transport that contributed to everything else being possible. He tells of the problems in organising vehicles, keeping them on the road, repairing, bodging, cannibalising, improvising and inventing.
This is the not often heard voice of an ordinary young bloke going through a terrible time, and doing what he could. That surely makes him a hero too.
- Joe Nethercott, January 2013
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