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How to fly a Spitfire: RAF vets take to the skies one last time


Killingholme
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I remember many many years ago I used to drink at the White Lion at Warlingham in Surrey.

An old boy was telling me his story of how he baled out of his Hurricane, and on the way down a local farmer shot him in the backside as everyone believed what the BBC was saying. That Germans were being shot down in great numbers; it therefore seemed unimaginable to the farmer that the man in the parachute could be anything other than enemy.

I bet he wasn't the only one to get a warm greeting after baling out.

 

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Very well  written article and quite  moving. All  these veterans are fading away. Once you'd  meet  them everywhere. But we took them  for granted. One  day I was playing with my Frog Spitfire in the  school playground when a passing man  stopped outside the railings. He looked at my model and said 'That's a Spitfire isn't it?'. I nodded 'I used to fly Spitfires' he said matter of factly  and then  just walked on. I wish he'd elaborated.

 

I love the part where 101 year old Bill, took the controls of an aeroplane for the first time in many years and was soon  back to  his 20 year old self. 

 

I'm  currently about to renew my Pilot's license aged 62 and was a bit worried l was past it but if Bill  can  a youngster like  me shouldn't  have  a problem.🙂🙂

Edited by noelh
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I'm  currently about to renew my Pilot's license aged 62 and was a bit worried l was past it but if Bill  can  a youngster like  me shouldn't  have  a problem.

 

Bobby Gibbes, Wing Commander Flying of a Spitfire wing in 1945, was still flying in his late 70s, in an aircaft he built himself. He did have a non-aerobatics endorsment in his license however.

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12 hours ago, Magpie22 said:

Bobby Gibbes, Wing Commander Flying of a Spitfire wing in 1945, was still flying in his late 70s, in an aircaft he built himself. He did have a non-aerobatics endorsment in his license however.

Yes of course and there was  also Neville Duke who died aged 85 after becoming  ill while flying his own aeroplane. He landed safely but died later in hospital.

 

Truly great men.

 

 

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