Flying into Hell

The Bomber Command Offensive as Seen Through the Experiences of Twenty Crews

Mel Rolfe

Date Published :
July 2008
Publisher :
Grub Street Publishing
Illustration :
32 pages of b/w photos
No associated books available.


Best-selling author Mel Rolfe brings the reader vivid real-life stories of bomber command at war with his new book Flying into Hell. Following the success of his two previous books for Grub Street, To Hell and Back, and Hell on Earth this contains more vivid stories of wartime experiences. Thoroughly researched by the author, these twenty dramatic stories of brave men and their adventures are told with vigour and authority.

Returning to a French village three years after baling out from a blazing bomber, a former rear gunner was shown the site of his supposed grave. He had been so badly burned a French doctor had left him alone in a graveyard to die. He met again the brave people who had looked after him until he was well enough to join a group walking to freedom across the Pyrenees.

Other stories include a bomber that came down so low over the sea to escape ack-ack guns that it struck the water, and managed to claw its way back up into the sky; the Lancaster pilot who wore Hermann Goering's Iron Cross around his neck as a lucky charm; a gunner incarcerated in Buchenwald; and a flight engineer who lost his fingers to frostbite after the bomber's rear door was blown open.

Many of these stories demonstrate the amazing resilience of the human spirit, and the unwavering courage of the young men who helped bomb the enemy into submission. They are illustrated with photographs, most of which have not been published before.

A journalist by profession, Mel Rolfe has conducted his interviews and prepared the stories in such a way as to take the reader into the events as they happened. To read these accounts is to step back into the war itself.

About The Author

Mel Rolfe is an author and historian specializing in World War 2.

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