Shot Down and in the Drink

True Stories of RAF and Commonwealth Aircrews Saved from the Sea in WWII

Shot Down and in the Drink cover

Shot Down and in the Drink

True Stories of RAF and Commonwealth Aircrews Saved from the Sea in WWII


Enthralling stories of adventure and bravery from RAF pilots shot down in the sea during World War II – and those who rescued them.

The RAF's Air Sea Rescue Service saved thousands of RAF, Commonwealth and Allied airmen between 1939 and 1945. Those shot down at sea faced terrifying dangers, from weather extremes to enemy fighters, and rescue by airborne or seaborne craft was fraught with difficulty.

This fascinating account draws on first-hand interviews, photographs and official documents to reveal some of its most dramatic missions in northwest Europe, the Mediterranean and the Far East.

These incredible stories celebrate the courage, persistence and ingenuity of the men who found themselves 'in the drink' and those who saved them.

Table of Contents

Author's Note

Part One: The Air Sea Rescue Organization
1 Background
2 Early Wartime Organization
3 Aircrew Training
4 Survival Equipment
5 Location Aids

Part Two: Northwest Europe
6 Rescue Craft
7 The First Three Years
8 Battle of The Atlantic
9 The Bomber Offensive
10 Return to Europe

Part Three: Mediterranean and West Africa
11 The Early Years
12 Invasion of Sicily and Italy
13 The Italian and Balkans campaign
14 West Africa

Part Four: India and The Far East
15 Air Sea Rescue Organization
16 Rescues

Author's Acknowledgements
Picture Acknowledgements

Product details

Published Jul 18 2017
Format Paperback
Edition 1st
Extent 288
ISBN 9781472827272
Imprint Osprey Publishing
Illustrations 40 black and white photographs
Dimensions Not specified
Series General Military
Short code GNM
Publisher Bloomsbury Publishing

About the contributors


Graham Pitchfork

Graham Pitchfork MBE served in the RAF for 36 year…


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