December 22, 1944 The Battered Bastards of Bastogne

December 22, 1944 The Battered Bastards of Bastogne

Every story has to be told.

Today in History

The largest German offensive of the western front burst out of the frozen Ardennes forest on December 16, 1944, aiming to drive a wedge between British and American forces and to capture the Belgian port of Antwerp, vital to the German need to re-supply. It was called “Unternehmen Wacht am Rhein”.  “Operation Watch on the Rhine”.

The tactical surprise was complete, allied forces driven back through the densely forested regions of France, Belgium and Luxembourg. Wartime news maps showed a great inward “bulge” in the lines, and the name stuck. The Battle of the Bulge was the largest and bloodiest battle fought by the US in WWII, fought in the harshest winter conditions in recorded history and involving 610,000+ Americans.

54626e3c46ec3.image

The seven roads leading to Antwerp converged in Bastogne, in what the Germans called “Straße Oktopus”, “Road Octopus”. The town was strategically indispensable to the German drive on Antwerp, and…

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We’ll Meet Again… A Love Story

About a love story

Harry James Goodwin DFC DFM

A Love Story

This photo is part of Harry James Goodwin’s collection. 

Jimmy has he was called by others when he was with 78 Squadron had a girlfriend when he was stationed in England. I believe this photo was taken at Linton-on-House late 1943 or early 1944.

On what occasion was it taken that I don’t know.

What I know is that Jimmy’s daughter would like to know more about Jimmy’s girlfriend.

Hi Pierre,

My Dad is in the front middle of this photo and the girl I told you about is kneeling behind Dad with her hands on his shoulders. I would love to know who she was. I know you will find her, no pressure LOL
Regards, Gayle

A Love Story

We'll meet again - a love story Harry's girlfriend

We'll meet again - a love story Harry's girlfriend zoom in

I have asked Gayle for more information sending her this montage.

A Love Story identification

Hi Pierre, I think the girl you circled in green is the one Dad was going out with, the one in red…

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Lt. Sam Marett & the Seversky P-35

Forgotten no more…

The Java Gold's Blog

An unsung hero and a forgotten plane.

On December 10, 1941, the US Far East Air Force in the Philippines was still reeling from the disastrous Japanese attacks on Dec. 8 and 9. Two thirds of its heavy bombers had been destroyed on the ground and its remaining fighter force had been nearly halved.

P35_landing_Ipa_Dec-1941 A Seversky P-35A landing in bad weather at Iba Airfield, Luzon

What remained of the battered fighter and bomber squadrons had been dispersed to emergency fields, some of them lacking even the most basic items such as food, water and toilet facilities. As was the case with the pilots of the 34th Pursuit Squadron; they spent a foodless and nearly sleepless night at the primitive San Marcelino field.  They took off before dawn and flew their 16 remaining Seversky P-35’s back to Del Carmen airfield, only to find orders to attack a Japanese invasion fleet off…

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Les souvenirs de guerre de Jimmy Goodwin

The memoirs of Flight Lieutenant Harry James Goodwin, DFC, DFM

RCAF 425 Les Alouettes II

Goodwin

On the 10th July 1940 two contingents from Rhodesia were attested directly into the Royal Air Force and subsequently sent to England for training.
Having done our basic training at Bridge North in England and some were sent to 44 Rhodesia Squadron as ground staff working on Hampdens and subsequently on Lancasters.

I was subsequently sent to St. Athens in Wales for training as a Flight Engineer before being posted to No.78 Squadron at Linton-on-Ouse for operational flying, on Halifax Bombers, and completed my first tour of operation over enemy territory.

This included flights to the Rhur, Berlin, Turin, Muzenburg and also mine laying in the Baltic Sea in the region of Sweden.

During one trip to Berlin, having reached Hannover, I discovered the overload tank in the bomb bay had the fuel cap left off and was giving strong fumes into the cabin. I spent considerable time trying to…

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Remembering another Alouette

About a Rhodesian Flight Engineer in the RAF

RCAF 425 Les Alouettes II

Goodwin Harry James
RAF160061
Flight Lieutenant DFC
Flight Engineer
crew M.J. Dugas
Rhodesia
Tour history:
06-12-1942 to 23-05-1943 (26 trips)
18-03 to 09-08-1944 (13 sorties)
9-15 Sept 1944 (6 sorties)

filenewspaper clipping

Transcript

Rhodesian Airman’s Escape

F LT. H. GOODWIN, D.F.C., D.F.M., BACK IN LONDON

LONDON, Saturday: The daring escapades of three Air Force officers — two South Africans and one Rhodesian — in captivity  in Germany was told to me recently when I met Lieutenant Southwood, S.A.A.F., of Zeecrust and Flight Lieutenant Harry Goodwin, D.F.C., D.F.M., of Bulawayo in London.

The third man, Lieutenant De Bruyn, S.A.A.F., is also from the Transvaal.

Goodwin was shot down over the Ruhr early in November, 1944, bailed out and was taken to Stalag Luft III where he joined the two South Africans. Southwood said : “We made a secret radio set from tins and all kind of oddments out of Red Cross parcels and the…

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HMAS Australia

About HMAS Australia and her valiant service during World War Two.

Pacific Paratrooper

HMAS Australia, imagery scanned from Navy Historic Archive

Possibly the ship with the most colorful World War II history was HMAS Australia, fondly known as “The Aussie”. The Aussie fought for almost the entire duration of the war. A county class cruiser commissioned in 1928 she was the second ship to bear the name of her country.

With the outbreak of WWII Aussie sailed for the Atlantic to begin her long wartime career that she was to fight on all fronts and against all enemies.  In September, 1940, she was in Operation Menace off Dakar, French West Africa.  Bombers of the Luftwaffe tried in vain to sink her whilst she was berthed alongside in Liverpool during the period when the city suffered its worst blitz. During her war service Aussie went everywhere.

n December 1941 when Japan entered the war Aussie became the flagship or Rear Admiral Crace, followed…

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