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“Exquisitely funny, these letters are also an historical treasure that gives tremendous insight into the day-to-day life of a typical USAAF fighter group” (Jay A. Stout, author of Vanished Hero).
Ted Fahrenwald flew P-47s and P-51s with the famed 352nd Fighter Group out of Bodney, England, during the critical tipping-point period of the air war over Europe. A classic devil-may-care fighter pilot, he was also a distinctively talented writer and correspondent. After a typical day of aerial combat and strafing missions over Nazi-occupied Europe—and of course, the requisite partying and creative mischief on base—Ted would sit in his Nissen hut at a borrowed manual typewriter and compose exquisitely humorous letters detailing his exploits in the air and on the ground to his family back home.
But these letters are not the mundane missives of a homesick young man who missed his mother’s cooking. Rather, this journalistically educated and incurably comedic pilot detailed his aerial exploits in a hilarious and self-effacing style that combines the vernacular of the day with flights of joyful imagination rivaling St. Exupery. And he didn’t sanitize his letters—much. Ted enthusiastically narrates the day-to-day rollercoaster ribaldry that was the natural M.O. of the young men who were tasked to kill Hitler’s Luftwaffe. His descriptions of near-constant drinking, skirt-chasing, gambling, and out-and-out tomfoolery put the lie to the notion of the Greatest Generation as an earnest band of do-gooders.
Praise for Ted Fahrenwald’s Bailout Over Normandy
“A 1940s masterpiece with a heart and soul unlike anything that’s been published.” —Jay Stout, author of Fortress Ploesti
“Get to know one of the more rambunctious members of the Greatest Generation with this memoir.” —Book News, Inc.