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Pathfinder Pilot (ePub)

The Wartime Memoirs of Wing Commander R A Wellington DSO OBE DFC

Aviation > Aviation Biography & Memoirs Military > Memoirs

By Wg Cdr R A Wellington
Imprint: Pen & Sword Aviation
File Size: 17.3 MB (.epub)
Pages: 176
ISBN: 9781526779717
Published: 17th September 2020


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During the Second World War, 55,573 RAF Bomber Command aircrew were killed, a shocking 44.4% death rate. A further 8,500 were wounded and 9,800 became prisoners of war.

The author of this thrilling memoir defied the odds becoming one of the few Lancaster Captains to survive his quota of sixty bombing missions. ‘Wimpy’ Wellington’s skills must have been exceptional. After serving in 106 Squadron under the legendary Guy Gibson, he and his crew moved to the elite 83 Pathfinder Squadron. As readers will discover, they nightly diced with death surviving enemy fighters, intense flak and mechanical problems.

On completion of flying duties Wellington was sent to the USA and South America to bolster support for the Allied cause.

The prolonged strain of constant mortal danger, night-time sorties to distant targets such as Milan and the steady loss of comrades must have been immense. Yet the tone of this vivid flying memoir remains positive and modestly understated. His numerous decorations and achievements speak volumes and it is a huge privilege to publish Pathfinder Pilot.

A story that deserves to be told
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Amazon Customer

Wellington's book is an interesting look at bombing missions and extremely important Pathfinder missions. But it is much more than a military memoirs because from the story emerges the humanity of its author, a man of extreme courage and modesty, who could have spent the war in Brazil but volunteered for a service for which he rightly collected decorations well deserved.
Another beautiful memoir from the Pen & Sword publishing house.

Read the full Italian review here

On The Old Barbed Wire

If you are interested in the lives of men who fought in World War 2 then this offering is well worth taking the time to read. I particularly enjoyed that he tells his story in a down to earth way with a good mix of light hearted content to keep the reader attached to the person. He does of course cover the rough with the smooth telling the reader about a landing in a badly shot up aircraft and members of his crew being ambulanced away from the aircraft, he typically lightens the story with alcoholic coffee. This book is one of those that makes me really want to have met him as he had an interesting life during the war and after it would seem. It is a real shame that the people who took part in this war are leaving us with just their written memories.

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I’d recommend this book. The sections on training and operations do give a blunt and unvarnished account of the author’s time in Bomber Command, filled with much information not found in other memoirs of the time.

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Army Rumour Service (ARRSE)

As featured on Scale Modelling Now

Scale Modelling Now

All-in-all this is an excellent unfiltered, authentic account from a typical Bomber Command flyer. In reading it one will be left with nothing but respect and admiration for the much-maligned men and women of a service arm who were pretty shoddily treated after the war ended. If this book plays a part in completing the rehabilitation of those who served with RAF Bomber Command then it will have done them – and us - a great service. Recommended.

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Phil Curme

An amazing story of an amazing and extraordinarily courageous Lancaster pilot.

Books Monthly

Article 'Pathfinders' flights to glory' as featured by

Daily Express, 31/10/20

About Wg Cdr R A Wellington

R A (Wimpy) Wellington left his farm in Brazil on the outbreak of the Second World War to join the Royal Air Force. After bomber pilot training, he joined 106 Squadron flying Lancasters before moving to 83 Pathfinder Squadron. On completion of his quota of sixty missions he carried out ‘flag flying’ lecture tours in North and South America before becoming Air Attache in wartime Lisbon. All these experiences are well recorded in this memoir.
He received the Distinguished Service Order, Order of the British Empire and Distinguished Flying Cross as well as the Brazilian Order of Rio Branco, a Polish medal awarded by Polish ex-servicemen and became a honorary member of the Polish Combatants Association.
He returned to Brazil in 1946 to farm before joining the Foreign Office. He wrote The Brazilians: How They Live and Work (David and Charles, 1974) and contributed financial articles. He died in 1992.

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