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    Default N Davies-Williams "Gerald's War"

    N Davies-Williams Gerald's War: The true and tragic tale of one man's life in peace and war (Davies-Williams 2021).
    Released December 2021 on Amazon as Kindle, print-on-demand paperback and hardback, at

    This book is a novel about the life and RAF service of the author's uncle, Gerald Davies of Flintshire, derived from much original material, with added fictional events vividly described.

    Davies, then aged 18, joined the RAF in 1936 as an AC2: Aircraftman 2nd Class, the usual entry level for service as an airman. First trained and qualifying as an armourer, he re-mustered for training as an Air Observer in 1939, qualifying late that year and made Sergeant with 207 Squadron. Commissioned Pilot Officer in July 1940 Davies was soon posted to the Middle East for service as an Observer in Egypt. He badly wanted to be a pilot and that year was twice recommended for pilot training.

    Joining 211 Squadron RAF in September 1940, by the Spring of 1941 P/O Davies, flying as Observer to the CO Sqn Ldr JR Gordon-Finlayson DSO DFC with P/O Arthur Geary DFC in the turret, had about 70 Blenheim I ops to his credit over the Western Desert and later in Greece.

    On 13 April 1941, Davies was posted missing from an unescorted daylight operation by 211 Squadron over Northern Greece. That afternoon, the six Blenheim Is were all shot down by the Luftwaffe. Of the 18 aircrew, there were just two survivors on the day. Sqn Ldr AT Irvine as the new CO, Davies as his Observer, and Geary as WOp/AG were among the dead. Much later, the missing were recovered and interred in Phaleron War Cemetery.

    The author's years of effort in gathering so many original personal and other records, all included in the book, is highly creditable. On that framework he has aimed to create a life for Gerry Davies, in fictional form. This the author is careful to explain, from start to finish. His aim was to create, for the general reader, a memorial to the life and RAF service of a cherished relative, and in this the book succeeds.

    While historical purists may find plenty to shake their heads over in this novel, in gathering so much historical documentation the author can hardly be faulted, nor can he in the sincerity of his vivid fictional account. For example, readers should not regard the tale of Gerald as pilot leading a Blenheim Delivery Flight out to to the Middle East as fact.

    If it eventually turned out that Alan Godfrey's death in 1946 was other than as long rumoured, that news only later reached the author. Reading the tale as written, best not to be distracted by the remaining typos, such as the now common but mistaken "Aircraftsman" for the correct Aircraftman.

    I've known Nigel Davies-Williams since 2001 and I am most grateful to him and his late mother Ruby Williams for making much personal information available to me, from which I was able to compile a more formal summary of his Uncle Gerald's RAF service. My 211 Squadron webpage for Observer P/O G Davies 44072 is at
    I understand from Nigel that his book, in all forms, has achieved a quite considerable number of sales.

    Don Clark
    Last edited by Don Clark; 7th September 2023 at 23:11.
    Toujours propos

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