The Female Few: Spitfire Heroines of the Air Transport Auxiliary

Overview

The fascinating accounts of the female pilots who transported the aircraft flown during the Battle of Britain, based on previously unpublished interviews with four pilots

Through the darkest days of World War II, an elite group of courageous, gifted women risked their lives as courier pilots, flying Lancaster Bombers, Spitfires, and many other aircraft in hundreds of perilous missions. The role of these women pilots of the Air Transport Auxiliary was to deliver the planes to the...

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The Female Few: Spitfire Heroines of the Air Transport Auxiliary

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Overview

The fascinating accounts of the female pilots who transported the aircraft flown during the Battle of Britain, based on previously unpublished interviews with four pilots

Through the darkest days of World War II, an elite group of courageous, gifted women risked their lives as courier pilots, flying Lancaster Bombers, Spitfires, and many other aircraft in hundreds of perilous missions. The role of these women pilots of the Air Transport Auxiliary was to deliver the planes to the male RAF pilots who would take them into battle, dangerous work which the women carried out unarmed and without radios. Fifteen would lose their lives. Here, four of these astonishingly brave women tell their stories for the first time—awe-inspiring tales of incredible risk, tenacity, and sacrifice. Their spirit and fearlessness in the face of death still resonates years later, and their accounts reveal a forgotten chapter in the history of World War II. As Yvonne Macdonald, now 90 and living in Cape Cod, says, "It was a kind of freedom you never get any other way, it was as if you had wings sewn on your back. A lot of people here in Cape Cod don’t even know I was in World War Two. Or what I did." They do now.

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780752480961
  • Publisher: The History Press
  • Publication date: 4/1/2013
  • Pages: 192
  • Sales rank: 836,005
  • Product dimensions: 5.70 (w) x 8.60 (h) x 0.70 (d)

Meet the Author

Jacky Hyams is a journalist and the author of The Real Downton Abbey. She has written for many newspapers and magazines, including London Evening Standard, Rolling Stone, the Sydney Morning Herald, and the Times.

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Table of Contents

Foreword Richard Poad 7

Introduction 13

1 A Brief History 25

2 Joy Lofthouse 43

3 Yvonne MacDonald 73

4 Molly Rose 93

5 Mary (Wilkins) Ellis 117

6 Margaret Frost 141

Appendix I Ranks of the ATA 161

Appendix II ATA Ferry Pilots and Flight Engineers 163

Appendix III Five Lives Lost 173

Appendix IV Famous Pilots of the ATA 179

Index 189

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