During the early years of WW2 it soon became apparent that the system for tracing the remains of RAF aircrew deemed 'Missing Believed Killed' was totally inadequate. The Missing Research Section (MRS) of the Air Ministry was set up in 1941 to deal with this problem. It collected and collated intelligence reports from a wide variety of official, unofficial and covert sources in an attempt to establish the fate of missing aircrew, using forensic or semi-forensic work to identify personal effects passed on through clandestine channels or bodies washed up on Britain's shores. In 1944 the MRS a small team of fourteen men was sent to France to seek the missing men on the ground. With 42,000 men missing, the amount they achieve was limited, although a lot of useful work was carried out through contacts in the French Resistance. The book explains why, men volunteered for the job, and why they worked for so long at such a gruesome task. Facing difficulties in terrain and climate, from the Arctic Circle to the jungles of Burma and Germany and not knowing if the local people would be friendly or hostile. The book also explains how to trace RAF members through both personnel and operational records, where these records are kept and how to access them.
Amelia Earhart, Amy Johnson, Glenn Miller and the Duke of Kent
Author: Roy Conyers Nesbit
Pubpsher: Pen and Sword
The uncertain fates of Amelia Earhart, Amy Johnson and Glenn Miller have fascinated readers and aviation historians ever since they disappeared. Even today, more than half a century after their final flights, what happened to them is still the subject of speculation, conspiracy theory and controversy. This has prompted Roy Conyers Nesbit to reinvestigate their stories and to write this perceptive, level-headed and gripping study. Using testimony from new witnesses and hitherto undisclosed public records, he seeks to explain why they were reported Ômissing: believed killedÕ. He describes why American aviatrix Amelia Earhart vanished in the Pacific on her round-the-world flight in 1937, what caused the death of BritainÕs aviation heroine Amy Johnson over the Thames estuary in 1941, and what really killed band-leader Glenn Miller on his doomed flight to Paris in 1944. And he applies the same expert forensic eye to other tragic aerial mysteries of the period including the flying-boat crash that claimed the life of the Duke of Kent in Scotland in 1942. This classic study, issued here for the first time in paperback, will be fascinating reading for students of aviation history and for anyone who is intrigued by tales of flights into the unknown.
In 1964, just eight years after being commissioned to work as a missionary in the Congo, Margaret Hayes was caught up in the Simba rebellion. Her miraculous escape from the massacre of all her colleagues, her capture and harrowing experiences at the hands of the rebels, and her eventual release, are described in Missing, believed killed. Originally published in 1966, this new edition brings Margaret Hayes' story up-to-date. Book jacket.
The Remarkable Story of a Japanese POW Camp Survivor
Author: John Baxter
Pubpsher: Aurum Press
Category: Prisoners of war
In 1942 corporal John Baxter, a royal engineer, was captured by the Japanese in Indonesia. For the next three years he was held as their prisoner, during which time he was starved; beaten; and contracted malaria, dysentry, and diphtheria, for which he received no treatment. He spent the last two years of the war working in the hard labor mines in Kyushu, from where he witnessed the dropping of the atomic bomb on Nagasaki 40 miles away, and felt the scorching wind from the blast. Remarkably Baxter survived these experiences, made it back to Britain, and in February 2009 he celebrated his 90th birthday. Having written up his diaries from this time, he has now decided to tell his story. It is a story not just of survival but of ingenuity, resourcefulness, and quiet heroism. Using his training as a heating engineer, he found numerous ways of helping to disrupt the Japanese war effort, for example by sabotaging rifles the guards gave him to repair. For other prisoners he built radios, cooking and lighting equipment, and artificial limbs. The book also offers revealing insights into the complex relationships between the prisoners and their guards, overturning many of the stereotypes we are often presented with—for example John managed to befriend a guards, who risked his life to bring him extra food rations.
A definitive new edition of a classic memoir, published in association with the RAF Museum, complete with more than 100 photographs and notes from leading historians. Guy Gibson was the leader of the famous Dambusters raid and Enemy Coast Ahead is a vivid, honest account, widely regarded as one of the best books on World War II. It is also an insider's account that sets down in clear, honest detail the challenges that the RAF faced in the war against Germany’s Luftwaffe. Tragically, Gibson died in September 1944, when his Mosquito crashed near Steenbergen in the Netherlands. He was aged just 26. This new book has been published to mark the 75th anniversary of his death and includes an introduction by James Holland, a historian and broadcaster; notes by Dr Robert Owen, the Official Historian of the No. 617 Squadron Association and many images that have never been published before.
Someone very, very clever planned this murder: the place, a remote shelter on the promenade at Selby-on-Sea; the occasion, a blustery evening in late November; the victim, somebody ready-made for a crack-of-doom from a coal hammer. Diary notes indicate someone had been planning the "ideal" murder, one which no police, no detective could solve. The murderer's gratification would be wholly cerebral, a triumph of mind over matter. However, the murderer had not counted on the clever, tenacious, unpredictable mind of that unique schoolmaster, Carolus Deene.
Following the success of British Battalions on the Somme, the author has produced a source book of the same quality on the Gallipoli Campaign. It has come about as a result of many years of enquiries from researchers and family historians.