Phil Elger/Bill Evans - He was only nineteen

Running time
2 min 22 sec
Date made
Department of Veterans' Affairs


Phil: There was, up near Flushing Island, opposite Antwerp, and it's below sea level, and around it there was a big dyke and on the dyke there was a German gun emplacement and they were shelling Antwerp and we had to go and put an end to it.

There were twenty-five planes, we were the leading plane and the instructions given to the bomber was if the flak was not too bad, he was to drop a sighting bomb for accuracy.

Anyhow, he dropped it and that woke all the Germans up and they start firing. So the other twenty-four planes dropped their load and got the Hell out of it.

We had to go round in a big circle and come in again, well I was up in the astrodome and you could see the fire coming closer and closer and at last it hit the tail and knocked half the tail off and knocked the gunner as well, took all the hydraulics and that and the wheels were hanging down and the flaps were down and the pilot, Bill, he nursed that plane right back there.

We were nearly an hour late getting back and when you get back to England there's only two places you can cross the coast and you have to have a code to get in.

Well we were so late that the code had changed and they wouldn't let us in and they sent up two fighters and escorted us in so that's how still got back but we lost a little English bloke. He was dreamy and he was a lovely little fella and he was only nineteen. So it was, you know, terrible, but anyhow, that was what happened.

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