Heroes of the Skies
"Every veteran has a story. Sometimes these stories become part of family folklore. Sometimes they are too terrible to speak of. In April 1943 Cyril Burcher bombed a German U-boat, killing its entire crew. Thirty years later, a letter arrived for him out of the blue from the daughter of the U-boat captain. Cy Borsht jumped out of his burning Lancaster and parachuted into even more danger, being taken prisoner by the Germans for the duration of the war. Stan Pascoe can still remember the tension of the briefing room before every mission, which disappeared the minute he was in the aeroplane. For each of these airmen and the many others interviewed in this book, the very fact that they survived the war is miraculous enough; that they are still with us today to tell their stories is another amazing feat. Michael Veitch, long-time recorder of wartime tales, has sought out WWII pilots and navigators from across the country to record and honour their service all those years ago. In these thrilling, heart-stopping, haunting stories, the day-to-day bravery and luck of these men is brought into fierce focus once more."
Actor, writer and broadcaster Michael Veitch began his career in television comedy programs before freelancing as a columnist and arts reviewer for newspapers and magazines. For four years he presented Sunday Arts, the national arts show on ABC television, and has broadcast regularly across Australia on ABC radio. He has produced two books indulging his life-long interest in the aircraft and airmen of the Second World War, Flak and Fly as well as The Forgotten Islands in which he explores the little-known islands of Bass Strait. In 2015, he began touring a one-man stage version of Flak nationally.