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English Fog And 26 Dead Airmen

English Fog And 26 Dead Airmen

Mr. Kondra describes the safe return from a bombing run of his entire squadron, only to have four aircraft crash trying to land in dense English fog, resulting in the loss of twenty-six airmen.

The Civilian Cost

The Civilian Cost

Mr. Kondra acknowledges that civilians were the victims of 'collateral damage' on many bombing runs, often because Germany housed its slave labor adjacent to its factories.

Debriefing And Rum Tots

Debriefing And Rum Tots

Mr. Kondra discusses the types of information that bomber crews were expected to provide in order for Air Command to plan safer routes for their next bombing runs. This session was followed by a tot of rum, administered by the padre.

Flying Home In A Disabled Bomber

Flying Home In A Disabled Bomber

Mr. Kondra describes flying back to England against serious odds. After being shot up on a bombing run, his aircraft loses an engine, and ruptured hydraulics prevent closure of the bomb bay doors, causing excessive drag and extra fuel consumption. Coupled with landing gear that wouldn't lower, his trip home is stressful!

The Risk Of Formation Flying

The Risk Of Formation Flying

Mr. Kondra discusses some of the risks associated with bombers flying in proximity; mid-air collisions, bombs falling on aircraft flying at lower altitude, and even being fired on by other bomber crews.

German Defenses And Evasive Maneuvers

German Defenses And Evasive Maneuvers

Mr. Kondra describes the fact that bombers were anti-aircraft targets from the North Sea into Germany. He discusses the risk from night fighters, and from being coned, a German technique of isolating a bomber in beams of light.

Night Fighters And Fuel Tanks

Night Fighters And Fuel Tanks

Mr. Kondra describes the German strategy of attacking the unprotected belly of a Lancaster, where vulnerable fuel tanks led to many aircraft exploding in mid-air. He goes on to describe countermeasures to make fuel tanks less vulnerable.

Near Collision With An ME-109

Near Collision With An ME-109

Mr. Kondra describes one risk of flying, a near head-on collision with a German Messerschmidt 109. He describes the German pilot's skill in avoiding the fire of his crew's mid-upper gunner.

Night Bombing Challenges

Night Bombing Challenges

Mr. Kondra discusses the difficulty of locating and bombing targets at night. He describes the role of Pathfinders in dropping flares to help illuminate targets, and how a flash bomb helped to capture photos of the destruction in the targeted area.

Bomb Aiming - Technology And Technique

Bomb Aiming - Technology And Technique

Mr. Kondra describes the technology used in bomb aiming, and the variables, such as wind speed and visibility, that affect the accurate delivery of a bomb load.

Joining  an Air Crew

Joining an Air Crew

Mr. Kondra describes the circumstances and logistics by which he was selected as a member of a Lancaster crew.

Advanced Training In England

Advanced Training In England

Mr. Kondra discusses the additional training necessary to become crew on a Lancaster bomber.

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