By Gregory Fremont-Barnes
Gregory Fremont-Barnes examines the lives of the yank Bomber Crewmen of the 8th Air strength, ''The potent Eighth'', who crewed, maintained and repaired the Boeing B-17 Flying Fortresses and the B-24 Liberators that flew from the airfields of Norfolk and Suffolk and different counties of britain. He highlights the actual and mental pressure put on those courageous males. lengthy bombing missions known as for brute power to manage the plane and notable patience to fly for hours at 20,000 ft at temperatures under freezing in unheated, unpressurized cabins. Then there have been Luftwaffe warring parties and anti-aircraft hearth to take care of and it required magnificent ability and a few success to come back from a project unscathed. This e-book is a becoming tribute to those frequently uncelebrated heroes who took the conflict deep into the 3rd Reich, in addition to a desirable historic account of the studies they went via.
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Extra resources for American Bomber Crewman 1941-45
Most, however, viewed strategic bombing as a necessary evil. (NARA) BELOW View through the nose of a B-29 Superfortress during a bomb run over Japaneseoccupied Manchuria, August 1944. Once over enemy territory radio silence was observed, which meant that the radio operator had nothing to do but relieve the position of any man who was hit. Men within the aircraft could of course communicate with one another by interphone. (Library of Congress) 47 ABOVE A rear-belly turret gunner. In combat the floor around him would be covered in hundreds of spent shell casings.
Lieutenant Carl Fyler, the pilot of a B-17 called Thumper Again, witnessed the destruction of another bomber in his formation: ABOVE LEFT A B-17 fatally damaged by flak which has blow off one of its wings. Any surviving crew would have only moments to bailout before the aircraft descended into a tailspin in which centrifugal force would render escape all but impossible. (NARA) ABOVE Men wait on and beside their British-made crash tender and ambulance, in case of emergency, as a B-17 Flying Fortress lands at an American airfield in Britain after a mission over the Ruhr.
As such, it was almost impossible for him to move his fingers, although a gunner always left one finger free to work the trigger. Gunners rarely unplugged their electric suits, which were connected to the battery system of the aircraft, for without the heat they provided a man could die of exposure in a matter of minutes. Indeed, frost regularly formed on a man's eyebrows and cases of severe frostbite due to inadequate layers of clothing were not uncommon. It was impossible to fly with a cold, for one's oxygen mask would freeze up with ice and cut off the supply of oxygen.