American Spitfire pilot - a short documentary with rare home movies

Southern

Well-Known Member
This is a short documentary put together by professional film makers, from the personal movies taken by their grandfather, a US Army Air Corps pilot and flight surgeon, of Americans flying Spitfires out of England, 1942 - 1945.

SPITFIRE 944 - YouTube
 
That was a great short film . I loved the point where he realized he was watching himself belly in the Spitfire , priceless .

AB
 
Magical to see the reaction of the pilot to film footage he had never seen before. Excellent thanks for posting.
 
The greatest aircraft during WW2, flown by the bravest of men. What a remarkable piece of history, and a brave man who along with many others we owe our freedom too.
 
Don't disagree Malc about the bravery of the men but as fine as the spitfire was it's really a matter of debate as to whether it was the finest aircraft or for that matter even the finest fighter of the era.
As to our freedom don't even get me started, what happened to our pistols and self loading rifles never mind hunting with dogs.:evil:
 
What a wonderful short film - thanks so much for posting that.

They really were incredible men in an incredible age - to think a lad in his early 20's would fly to Berlin....Berlin mind...in an unarmed Spitfire to take photos. Amazing, and humbling.

Mount Farm is around 20 miles from where I live, so a really nice local link as well.
 
This was very real to me, because my father took hundreds of photos from 1942 through 1945, of his time as a pilot in the CBI theater, and one of my four uncles who were stationed in England during 1943 and 1944 was a reconnaissance officer and flew with this group of Americans flying Spitfires. He later became commander of an RAF base.

Right now, I am trying to get my hands on the hundreds of photos my oldest uncle took as an infantry officer in France, 1917-1918, at Meuse Argonne, Chateau Thierry, Belleau Wood, and other major battles. His fellow officer, a friend from his home town who had enlisted with him, took a hand crank movie camera and filmed life in the trenches and the actual battles.

So this documentary excites me. It is very well done, and very personal, to all involved.
 
In that case you might find this book as fascinating as I did: Tommy Words and Photographs: Amazon.co.uk: Richard van Emden: 9781408844366: Books

It tells the story of the Great War using photos taken by private soldiers at the front - taking a camera was against the rules - rather than through the often staged photographs of the official war photographers.

Also worth getting hold if you can is "Armed with Cameras: The American Military Photographers of World War II". I had to source my copy, a discarded library edition, from the US.
 
Fantastic,thank you really enjoyed that laying on my recovery bed,

Priceless footage of priceless people who we owe so much too,

Bob,
 
I used to live right next to the old Mount Farm airfield, we had a memorial erected in the village to the photo recon crews

We still buy the grain for our shoot from the owner of Mount Farm

Chris
 

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Thanks for the book links, willie_gunn.
I will go after those.

If you have not red the book, "Unbroken", or seen the movie, do so. The scenes of the men inside the B-24 with bullets coming through it were just as my father described it to me. Same for the crash landing ( he survived three of those, after running the fuel dry and giving his crew a soft spot for a bail out.
 
Thanks for the book links, willie_gunn.
I will go after those.

If you have not red the book, "Unbroken", or seen the movie, do so. The scenes of the men inside the B-24 with bullets coming through it were just as my father described it to me. Same for the crash landing ( he survived three of those, after running the fuel dry and giving his crew a soft spot for a bail out.

Funnily enough I have the paperback of Unbroken sitting right here by my desk. I've not seen the movie, though, so will try to catch it. Thank you.

Most years in summer we head up to the West coast of Scotland. There's a loch we visit that's the site of a B-24 Liberator that crashed in June 1945. It is a beautiful and peaceful spot.

The wreckage still lies there, along with a plaque in memory of the brave men who gave their lives. Much of the wreckage is in remarkably good condition, considering its location.

It's hard not be moved when visiting the site. Young men who had risked everything to protect our liberty and freedom, only to be cruelly taken as they flew back to their homeland.

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Oh, wow, to those pieces of B-24 wreckage left there as a memorial, and to the Brits for erecting that monument.

I sent this video to some other friends, and my cousin, whose father was a US Army Air Corps commander of RAF Welford, passed it to a friend of his, who flew F-4 Phantoms for reconnaissance, in this same squadron, in Vietnam. He just relayed back to me that his friend was so touched that he had to stop watching it a few times, then watched it straight through a few more.
 
Thoroughly enjoyed that, thanks for posting.....unreal to think of what those boys were doing on a daily basis....and what did you do today.....?
 
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