Dave Leicester - Dangers of Bomber Command

Running time
1 min 54 sec
Date made
Department of Veterans' Affairs


When you think that 4,000 Australians in bomber command alone died during the war, it's hard to take in. Bomber command had the highest death rate of any other service, 44 per cent. No other service in army, navy had that rate.

Well, most of these towns were guarded by so many thousand ack-ack guns, and even if they didn't hit an aircraft, the shells would explode and shrapnel would go everywhere. And if a chap came back on three engines, on four engines, we used to joke, "Haven't you been there?" A number of times I came back on three engines. Unreal.

Well, next morning we used to always go out and have a look at the planes that were damaged. Some of them, how they ever got back, you'd never know how they ever got back. But a place like Essen I always put down as the worst place that they wanted to go because Essen was reportedly to have been guarded by about 30,000 enemy ack-ack guns, and they're all firing at you.

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