The Youngest and the Oldest

Discussion in 'Aviation' started by Glider, Oct 19, 2015.

  1. Glider

    Glider Well-Known Member

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    I am sure that we have all come across people who have remarkable stories and over the last week I have come across two who stand out for opposite reasons.
    One is the youngest pilot to fly combat missions for the RAF and quite possibly the youngest combat pilot of any airfirce. The other is the oldest person to take part in active combat in regular service for the UK but I admit he served at sea and on land not in the air.

    First of all I give you the youngest combat pilot in RAF service.

    Flight Sergeant Dobney
    In August 1940 Tom Dobney applied to join the RAF, He lied about his age but blagged his way through the initial selection process and medical and was accepted for training at the age of 14 and three months.
    On 12 May 1941 he had his first training flight in Tiger Moth at the age of 15 and four days and soloed three weeks after his fifteenth birthday.
    Tom was awarded his wings when 15 four months and three days and with that his promotion to flight sergeant. Selected for bomber aircraft he flew three missions as the pilot in Whitley bombers including one combat against German fighters when his father tracked him down and he was grounded aged 15. Finally discharged from the RAF in January 1942 while still aged 15 he was told in writing that when he was the right age he could apply for the RAF and would be qualified to wear his wings from the first day.

    Personally I would have loved to be there when the rest of his crew was told. Can you imagine it, sorry guys the skipper wont be coming back, Why? he was only fifteen!! Next move a rush to the bar
     
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  2. GrauGeist

    GrauGeist Well-Known Member

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    My Uncle Earl (youngest of my Mom's two older brothers) lied about his age to join the U.S. Navy on December 8th, 1941...but he wasn't that young!
     
  3. Milosh

    Milosh Well-Known Member

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    My grandmother's brother was a boy soldier in WW1. He was sent home but rejoined when of age and went MIA on the first day of the Battle of Cambrai.
     
  4. vikingBerserker

    vikingBerserker Well-Known Member

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    How embarrassing. You're flying combat missions until "dad" shows up and ruins everything!

    "So Tom, what did you do during the summer?"
    "Oh I flew combat missions over Germany......"
     
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  5. FLYBOYJ

    FLYBOYJ "THE GREAT GAZOO"
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    #5 FLYBOYJ, Oct 19, 2015
    Last edited: Oct 19, 2015
    My uncle joined the USAF at 16 - stole my mother's birth certificate and forged it. His name was "William," my mom was "Lillian" so you could see how easly this was done.

    Here's someone who might be worthy of note:

    "After the Yom Kippur War, Epstein received the Medal of Distinguished Service, one of Israel's highest military honors. He went on to command Mirage and Kfir squadrons and was flying "ready" missions in the F-16 up until his 60th birthday."

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Giora_Epstein

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]
     
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  6. Gnomey

    Gnomey World Travelling Doctor
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    Remarkable story, would be have been funny to see the faces of the crew when dad came to pick his 'boy' up.
     
  7. Airframes

    Airframes Benevolens Magister

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    Great story.
    "Hey Skipper, why aren't you coming to the pub with us?"
    "Cos teacher said I have to stay behind for missing the Maths exam!"
     
  8. FLYBOYJ

    FLYBOYJ "THE GREAT GAZOO"
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    #8 FLYBOYJ, Oct 20, 2015
    Last edited: Oct 20, 2015
    To bring up the IAF again, the oldest "ace."

    "Uri Gil, born April 9, 1943, is a retired Brigadier General in the Israeli Air Force. In 2007, he was listed as the most senior combat pilot in history in the Guinness World Records. In 2008, Gil was featured in an Israel documentary titled The Best Pilot in the World. The film was directed by Dr. Amir Har-Gil. In the film, Gil talks about his over 41 years of service in the Israeli Air Force, and the many enemy planes he shot down. Gil stated in the film that he was the only pilot who had downed planes in all the wars"

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Uri_Gil

    [​IMG]
     
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  9. wheelsup_cavu

    wheelsup_cavu Well-Known Member

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    Not quite but darn close.
    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_wars_involving_Israel#Table
    (Definitely not counting those in the list after he retired)


    Wheels
     
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