The Dambuster Who Cracked the Dam (Hardback)
The Story of Melvin 'Dinghy' Young
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On 25 September 1939 Melvin Young reported to No.1 Initial Training Unit. He was selected as a bomber pilot and promoted to Flying Officer.
Having undertaken a Lancaster conversion course Melvin and his new crew were posted to 57 Squadron at Scampton - soon to become 617 Squadron. On 15 May the Order for Operation Chastise was issued - the raid to be flown the next night, 16/17 May. The plan for the operation was that three waves of aircraft would be employed. The first wave of nine aircraft, led by Gibson, would first attack the Mohne Dam, then the Eder followed by other targets as directed by wireless from 5 Group HQ if any weapons were still available. This wave would fly in three sections of three aircraft about ten minutes apart led by Guy Gibson, Melvin Young and Henry Maudslay. At 00.43 Melvin and his crew made their attempt on the Mohne dam. Gibson recorded that Young's weapon made 'three good bounces and contact'. Once the dam had been breached Gibson with Melvin as his deputy led the three remaining armed aircraft towards the Eder Dam. On the return trip Melvin Young and his crew fell victim to enemy guns. At 02.58 gunners at Castricum-an-Zee reported shooting down an aircraft and several batteries also reported firing at it. AJ-A crashed into the sea. Over the North Sea, Guy Gibson called Melvin on the radio – there was no reply
'Long awaited authorised edition' 617 Squadron of 5 Group RAF Bomber Command was without doubt the most famous RAF Squadron in World War II. It was formed to carry out the precision low-level attack on the Mohne, Eder and Sorpe Dams, using Barnes Wallis's newly developed rotating mine, now commonly referred to as 'The Bouncing Bomb'. The raid was a tremendous success, although at great cost to the squadron, and proved to be a great moral booster for the war-weary British public. Guy Gibson VC was tasked with organising the formation and training of the new squadron and the 'Dambusters' have been…By Chris Ward
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