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On Laughter-Silvered Wings (Paperback)

The Story of Lt. Col. E.T (Ted) Strever D.F.C

Aviation > Aviation Biography & Memoirs Aviation > Royal Air Force Aviation > WWII WWII

By Gail Strever-Morkel
Imprint: Pen & Sword Aviation
Pages: 240
Illustrations: Integrated black and white images
ISBN: 9781399074988
Published: 30th April 2022
Last Released: 11th May 2022



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This is the thoroughly researched account of the life and times of a South African WW2 pilot, the author's father, Ted. It is highly
personal, drawing on family history and changing lifestyles as the central figure fights his way through a series of experiences, flying coastal strike missions in the Mediterranean and North Africa, then in the Far East against the Japanese.

The story gets off to an engrossing operational start before tracking back to the personal family story to provide a context. Images of a lost world haunt pages that relate to an era in which a decisive individual could challenge the system and get results.

As the story of Coastal Command is often overlooked, the exploits recorded here serve as an overdue reminder of the unit and the
part it played in the Allied effort.

Ted's wartime exploits include the first mid-air skyjacking in history; the daring solitary attack on the Italian fleet after he had lost the rest of his strike team; narrowly surviving being burned in a horrific air crash
in the Ceylon jungle; many emergency crashlandings; and finally – as commander of 27 Squadron – carrying out dangerous rescue
operations behind enemy lines for members of the Indian Resistance Movement operating in the Burmese jungle. These exploits, written largely in the voice of Ted Strever, and extensively illustrated with photographs, come vividly to life.

As seen in Discover Your History magazine.

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About Gail Strever-Morkel

Gail Strever-Morkel was born in 1951 in Bulawayo, Zimbabwe. She was educated at St. Peter's Diocesan School, the Bulawayo Technical College of Art, where she obtained a first class BA Fine Arts degree. Her body of work 'In Absentia' dealt with issues of colonialism and feminism, based on her research of southern African history, particularly the history of Bulawayo where she grew up.

This book, her first, marks a determination on her part to record her father's stories as he told them. She spent a series of years recording their conversations. This book is the result of that discussion. She lives in Uniondale with her husband Mike Morkel, and has two children and a grandchild.

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