010697 - THE DEBDEN WARBIRDS: The 4th Fighter Group in World War II
By Frank E Speer
The P-51 Mustangs of the 4th Fighter Group were the first to escort bombers over Berlin during World War II, the first to escort bombers from England to Russia, and at war’s end ranked first in the number of enemy aircraft destroyed (over 1,000). The Debden Warbirds describes in detail the everyday workings of this record setting fighter group, from their Eagle Squadron beginnings in Hurricanes and Spitfires, to their unprecedented triumphs in Thunderbolts and Mustangs. This authentic account, gleaned from the Squadron and Tower Diaries, is enhanced by dozens of combat reports and personal accounts from pilots and crews whose day-to-day encounters are faithfully recorded. Author Frank Speer became an ace within seventeen missions over Germany flying P-51 Mustangs with the 4th FG, having been credited with destroying six enemy aircraft. On a flight over Poland his aircraft was shot down. He walked nearly 400 miles from the site of his crash landing before he collapsed from exhaustion and was captured by the Germans. He was incarcerated in three different Stalags prior to his escape and repatriation. He was awarded the Distinguished Flying Cross, and the Air Medal with three Oak Leaf Clusters. He lives in Pennsylvania.