By Gill Griffin, Barry Griffin
The 20-year-old Len Thorne joined the RAF in might 1940. After traumatic excursions of operational accountability as a fighter pilot (including a few desperately harmful low-level flying at Dunkirk) he was once published to AFDU (Air combating improvement Unit) and remained there as a try out pilot for the remainder of the conflict. He flew either Allied airplane and captured enemy planes and was once a colleague of the various fighter 'aces'. thankfully for us, Len saved an insightful diary, which, set along his log e-book, tells the original tale of a member of the AFDU, tasked with constructing oeprational strategies and trying out captured enemy airplane. Len presents not just an perception into the superb paintings performed by way of the try out pilots but in addition into the most recognized flyers of the RAF, with whom he labored, together with Wing Commander Al Deere and Spitfire Aces SL 'paddy' Finucane, Ernie Ryder, and so on. Len's diary for September 21 1942 files the 1st sighting of the dreaded FW190: 'The pilot played a chain of fast rolls... metaphorically sticking up the proverbial fingers.' In might 1943 Len will be flying a similar variety after pilot Heinz Erhardt mistakenly landed one at Marston!
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Additional info for A Very Unusual Air War: From Dunkirk to the AFDU--The Diary and Log Book of Test Pilot Leonard Thorne, 1940-45
US made FE patch with HE color sections. Fig. I20. Interwar/World War II. I" Army Ordnance. FE. Fig. I22. Interwar. I" Army Quartermaster. Felt on wool. 43 United States Army Shoulder Patches and Related Insignia Fig. 123. Interwar. I" Army Quartermaster. ME on wool. Figs. 126. InterwarfWorid War II. 1" Army Signal Corps. FE. Fig. 124. InterwarfWorld War II. I" Army Quartermaster. FE. Fig. 127. Post World War II, Germany. I" Army Signal Corps. HE on cotton with felt color panel. 44 Armies Figs.
56 Armies Fig. 6. World War 1. CS on wool. Fig. 7. World War 1. CS on satin with a cord border. Fig. 8. World War T. Sou tache "A" and CS border on wool. Fig. 10. World War 1. Unidentified 3"' Army Infantryman. Of note are the blue felt backing circles behind his collar disks. Fig. 9. World War T. Soutache "A" and ribbed tape border on felt. 57 United States Army Shoulder Patches and Related Insignia Fig. 11. World War I. ME on felt. Fig. 12. World War I. Liberty Loan. Fig. 13. World War r . HE on wool with bullion "A".
44 Armies Figs. 129. Interwar. I" Army Finance Department. FE. Fig. 130. World War II. Major General Gerow, commander of the 5 1h Corps, congratulates Lieutenant Colonel Carl I. Isley on winning the Distinguished Service Cross for bravery under fire in France, September II, 1944. S. Army Signal Corps. During World War r and the Interwar period I" Army patches with no symbols or color sections were intended for Headquarters personnel. Shortly after America's entrance into World War II the unadorned designed was adopted for wear by all members of the I" Army.