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A man of many words. Profane, profound, loyal to a fault and a right rat bastard. I love the finer things in life: expensive cigars, cheap women and all the salted, cured meats I can eat. A friend to dogs, lover of humanity and despiser of people. If I were King the world would be a better place, because, well...I would be King! Oh, and I like ice cream.

Saturday, August 23, 2014

Here's Something To Think About

My late wife Jan's uncle Joe Topolosky was a bombardier in this B-17 during World War II. On May 29,1944 they were on a mission over Germany. Two German fighters made head on attacks against the ship. Joe was in the nose blazing away. Both outboard engines were shot out. A third was sputtering and coughing. The hydraulics were gone, so no landing gear. The pilot said they couldn't make it back to England. Their only choice was to try for neutral Sweden. They were unbolting and tossing everything out to lighten the load, guns and everything. But, as you can see, they slid in for a belly landing.

The crew was interned for the rest of the war. Shot up planes from all sides were there. Allies on one side of the airfield, nazis on the other. They had to wear civilian clothes. But long story short they lived. 

Joe's son, my cousin Ray, has supplied all the information I know about this. He has posted Joe's diary of his missions on Facebook. The most compelling thing (to me) that he wrote was "I thought we were going to die on this mission." I never knew any of this when Joe was alive. Wish I had.

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