This history is chronological so “Flying Log Books” may not be in sequence.
Within every page of Dads Flying Log Book as I scanned, reread and then typed up each one of these pages, what I never really took into consideration was Dads age. He and so many of his Tahitian compatriots were so young they required written parental permission.
The realisation that Dad had only just celebrated his 22nd birthday two months earlier really left me in awe (and in tears) of what he had achieved in that period of time which included flying 51 bombing missions and countless training flights plus serious moments where he could have lost his life.
What’s so sad is thousands upon thousands of these young women and men from all sides of the war gave their lives.
LEST WE FORGET
Original “Observer’s and Gunner’s Flying Log Book” image at the bottom of the page!
TOUR IS ENDED 51 Sorties 101
I have always wondered how Dad felt being retired, from active duty
FRENCH: Avec cette équipage, MARA fera encore deux dizaines de sorties et, après voir atteint le chiffre total de cinquante et une missions, il fut retiré des opérations et muté : « Jugeant que j’avais eu assez de chance comme cela, on m’envoya comme instructeur dans une école d’Ecosse. Puis dans l’île de Man à la base de Jurby comme adjoint du Sous-lieutenant de Roquement, un ancien du Lorraine, qui était alors officier de liaison. Enfin, après un séjour de plusieurs mois au Groupe de Transport 1/15 Touraine, commandé par le capitaine Barberon, j’ai demandé à être démobilisé. Je voulais retourner, maintenant que la guerre était finie dans le Pacifique, dans mon pays. »
TRANSLATION: With this crew, Mara completed another couple of dozen missions before reaching fifty one missions and was muted and withdrawn from all operations. “ They judged that I had had enough luck as it was and they sent me to a school in Scotland as an instructor. Followed by being sent to the Jurby Base on the Isle Of Man as assistant to Second Lieutenant de Roquement, also a past member of Lorraine, who was a liaison officer. Finally after a stay of several months with the Groupe de Transport 1/15 Touraine, with Commander Captain Barberon, I requested to be decommissioned. I wanted to return, now that the war was over to my homeland in the Pacific”
COMMENT: Dad had married my mother Joyce Elisabeth RILEY on the 7th of July 1945, of course this is another story in it’s own right.
© Paul L T Mara 2020