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Thread: Alone I Fly: 104 Sqn

  1. #1
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    Default Alone I Fly: 104 Sqn

    Does anyone have a copy of 'Alone I Fly A Wellington Pilot's Desert War.' by W/O Bill Bailey?

    I gather it includes an accont of a 104 Sqn loss, of which he as second pilot was the only survivor, but of which i have no knowledge.

    If you have the book, could you please let me know the date, and any details included of crew etc etc. It is likely to be in 1942.

    Thanks,

    David

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    On line I found the first few pages of Alone I Fly, and this gives me the pilot as Stevens RCAF, navigator as Rogers, and W/Op (unnamed) as RAAF.

    BUt I cannot find a Stevens RCAF on the CWGC website fitting this loss.

    Help!

    David

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    David
    By chance I have just ordered this book, secondhand, from a seller on www.amazon.co.uk. A friend recommended it .

    It will take a few days to arrive but if no one else has come up with an answer for you I can email you direct if I can find the answer. My father was in 104 RAF - before he was seconded to 31 SAAF in summer 1944 .

    Anne

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    Default Alone I Fly - crew

    Hi - excuse me for popping up on this forum! I found the post on a google search of the title.

    I am the son in law of the late Bill Bailey who wrote this exciting account of his time in the war.
    He actually changed the names of the crew in the book rather than use their real names.

    If it is still important to you I think I have some of his logs from his time flying so if I can be of furher help let me know.

    The book is still very much available and in fact the hard back copy is on sale at pen & Sword for just 10
    http://www.pen-and-sword.co.uk/Alone-I-Fly/p/2077/

    Its a shame that Amazon have the second hand market in a way because it reduces the sale for authors of their books.

    This book really is worth reading and I am not just saying that due to a family connection. It is exciting, well written and different from a lot of war memoirs published.
    Bill lived long enough to see it in the paperback edition and would have been thrilled to see it published by an established publisher. It isn't easy to get a book properly published which to me tells you that it merits a read.
    Thanks
    Last edited by aloneifly; 8th October 2012 at 11:05. Reason: clarity

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    Hi there welcome to the forum,

    could you clarify the real names of the men on that particular loss to asnwer Davids question above?

    What was the date of the loss?

    Cheers and welcome too the board.
    Dennis Burke
    - Dublin

    Foreign Aircrew and Aircraft Ireland 1939-1945
    www.ww2irishaviation.com

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    Ronnie and I are direct contact now, so no doubt he will let me know what the logbook reveals. I will then post.

    David

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    Default alone i fly

    I have answered David but I am afraid the extracts I had were inconclusive as to any details.

    Sorry if I have given false hope in the research!

    Ronnie

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    Hi David,

    You mentioned in an earlier post, that you would provide details of what Bill Bailey's Log Book revealed.

    Your thoughts would be appreciated.

    Col.

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    The family does not have the logbook, so it was down to checking on the ORBs, and in F.R. Chappell's Wellington Wings. Since Roy was the Intelligence Officer of 104 Squadron, kept a diary, and always talked about survival stories such as Bill Bailey's, I checked there first. Nothing. I then checked the ORBs and there is nothing vaguely resembling the loss described in the opening chapters of Along I Fly. I can only conclude, therefore, and with regret, that the account of his being the sole survivor of the desert crash is fiction.

    David

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    David,

    l'll shelve it with two other classics of the genre; Lewis Whitnell's, Engines Over London, and Whirlwind Squadron by Eric Thomason.

    Thanks,

    Col.

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