The autobiography of Tony Bentley-Buckle, a child of the Empire who was left to grow up in the care of maiden aunts. Having joined the Royal Navy before the war, he found himself on the Northern Patrol during the blockade of Germany and as a teenager in command of captured ships. When he brought a ship through the minefields into Scapa Flow, the young Midshipman Bentley-Buckle was interviewed by the famously ferocious Admirax Max Horton who recommended him for advanced promotion. In a fit of derring-do he volunteered for ‘special service’ without knowing what this meant and began training for one of Britain’s secret navies. As a beach commando he was one of the first ashore at the Allied landings on Sicily and one of the first Allied officers to cross the Straits of Messina. On Reggio beach he became one of the few people to order General Montgomery to stop talking and not to block the exit of the beach!
He was soon seconded even deeper into British secret services when he was lent to MI9, the escape and evasion agency, helping to rescue hundreds of British prisoners of war in Italy. He was captured in a fierce hand-to-hand battle with the Germans, escaped, recaptured and was badly-beaten, eventually reaching Prisoner-of-War Camp ‘Marlag O’. There he helped organise one the cheekiest escapes from a prisoner-of-war camp by making the eyes for a dummy known as ‘Albert RN’. Post-war he learned to fly, sailed a small boat to East Africa and founded a shipping empire and an airline.
This is a remarkable and exciting true story including escape and evasion behind enemy lines in Italy, Yugoslavia and Germany; life in a prisoner-of-war camp and adventure in the Indian Ocean.