Now piloting a Spitfire, Bader and his wing of three squadrons concentrated on engaging with and bringing down Messerschmitt 109s. He was rushed to the Royal Berkshire Hospital where surgeons amputated his legs, one above and one below the knee. He died aged 72 on the 5th of September 1982 from a heart attack while being driven home from an event honouring Arthur ‘Bomber’ Harris of Bomber Command. This hero was an inspiration to all- His attitude was nothing is impossible with an attitude "if you grit your teeth you can do anything" I was told though by a man who I admired greatly (Ted Pearce-navigator on a Sterling Bomber and shot down over Germany becoming a prisoner of war himself) that sometimes Bader's "Goon Baiting" sometimes had an detrimental effect on other prisoners of war plans to escape. Email:, price £29.95 plus p&p. Numerous aircraft were shot down over St Omer. By October, it was clear to the Nazi high command that they were never going to gain control of the skies over England, and any hope of an invasion of the United Kingdom was abandoned. It contains a number of previously unpublished photographs from the collection of Lady Bader, his second wife. Bader was sent to hospital in the small French town of Saint-Omer. Bader spent the remaining years of the war in various prison camps where he made several unsuccessful escape attempts. One notable escape came when he was a prisoner at Stalag Luft III B. Bader and three other prisoners managed to escape the camp and planned to make their way to the Polish border. The Germans then realised that their prisoner was the legendary "flyer with tin legs" and in an incident that harked back to the chivalry of the First World War fighter pilots, offered safe conduct to a plane bringing a replacement for the lost leg. With his stricken plane spinning towards the ground, he realised there was nothing for it and deployed his parachute, snapping the leg’s retaining strap and successfully ejecting from the vehicle. Bader took his final flight on the 4th of June 1979. A true hero who deserves to be remembered. Use of this site constitutes acceptance of the Terms and Conditions, Douglas Bader, the double-amputee flying ace of the Battle of Britain, The Caribbean, Indian and African RAF pilots of WW2, Sir Keith Park: Battle of Britain's 'Defender of London', Lancaster: The Forging of a Very British Legend, Edith Wilson, America's First (Acting) Female President, Listen to Not What You Thought You Knew S2, The Second Officer who survived Titanic and saved 130 lives at Dunkirk, 'The Harlem Hellfighters': WW1's African-American regiment. He made a rope out of bed sheets and escaped out of the window. Without men like Sir Douglas Bader The Battle of Britain may well have been lost. Bader pestered the RAF top brass into taking him back on to the roster as a regular flying officer, eventually succeeding in 1935. He and his companions were soon recaptured. In that time Bader’s wing twice engaged with Adolf Galland, the German fighter ace who would later become Bader’s lifelong friend. Bader repeated the trick the following month, taking down another Dornier off the coast of Great Yarmouth, again with no survivors. On the 11th of July, Bader - flying solo - was directed towards a Dornier 17 bomber that had been spotted flying up the coast of Norfolk. It would later be observed crashing into the sea off Cromer with no survivors. He had vowed to be a 'plain, bloody nuisance to the Germans', and he was a man of his word.

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