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Thread: Rear Gunner Parachute Storage

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Nov 2007
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    England
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    Default Rear Gunner Parachute Storage

    Hi,

    Can anyone please tell me by the winter of 44/45 was the storage of parachutes for rear gunners in the turret or in the fuselage behind the turret.

    Or was the gunner issued with a seat type parachute?

    TIA

    Steve
    No.218 (Gold Coast) Squadron Association Historian
    No.623 squadron Research

    ~~IN TIME ~~

  2. #2
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    Default

    Hi Steve

    I always thought it was in the rear fuselage just outside the turret.

    From the turrets I've seen (eg the display up at Elvington) there wouldn't have been room (esp the height) inside a turret for the gunner to perch on top of one?

    Mind you, others may know otherwise! ...

    Ian

    ps There is a demo picture of an RG getting out between the two guns of a Rose rear turret wearing a seat-type parachute, but I don't think those turrets were all that common?
    Last edited by ianh; 10th November 2017 at 14:35.

  3. #3
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    Berkshire
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    Default

    Hi Steve
    In a book by Paul Brickhill in which he details a number of lucky/miraculous escapes from airgraft, published in 1946 entitled "Escape to Danger" he mentions a rear gunner Sgt Alkemade who baled out from a burning a/c without his parachute and survived, The Germans later confirmed the presence in the a/c of the unburnt metal portions of his parachute and the fact that the harness that he was wearing when captured still had thr red cotton restraining loops unbroken. Alkemade chose to jump ratherthan be burnt alive after he had seen that his parachute on fire in the fuselage. This was March 1944 at the same time as the Great Escape was developing
    Gegards
    Dick

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