Reach for the sky

Paul Brickhill

Excelling in everything, Douglas Bader represented the Royal Air Force in aerobatics displays, played rugby for Harlequins, and was tipped to be the next England fly half. But in December 1931 all his ambitions came to an abrupt end when he crashed his plane doing a difficult and illegal aerobatic trick. His injuries were so severe that surgeons were forced to amputate both his legs to save his life. He did not fly again until the outbreak of the Second World War, when his undoubted skill in the air convinced a desperate air force to give him his own squadron. Flying Hurricanes in the Battle of Britain he led his squadron, keeping them all going with his unstoppable banter. Shot down in occupied France, his German captors had to confiscate his tin legs in order to stop him trying to escape. Bader faced it all, disability, leadership and capture, with the same charm, charisma and determination that was an inspiration to all around him.

Soft cover, photographs, 384 pages.

Reach for the sky
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