Tomahawk/Spitfire pilot interview

Discussion in 'Aviation' started by biltongbru, Dec 15, 2011.

  1. biltongbru

    biltongbru New Member

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    In my quest to find and interview surviving ww2 fighter pilots I came across Cecil Golding and did this interview at his house during November 2011.:)


    View: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KbWc-dZT74c


    Animation is done with IL-2 flight sim :p

    Cecil did service in the SAAF during ww2 from 1942- 1945.
    He flew Curtiss Tomahawks in North Africa and was shot down claimed by Joachim Marseille. (Very much disputed rightfully by Cecil and South African historians!)

    He later flew Spitfires in Malta, Sicily and Italy until the end of the war.

    Cecil ended the war as a squadron leader and a DFC recipient.

    I traced the stuka pilot in Austria and he also is still around. He sent me the photographs of himself that was shown in the video. An Internet connection was organised and the two gentleman had a good conversation the past Sunday.

    Your questions to Cecil are welcome!









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    Cecil being commissioned and got his wings in 1941




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    Cecil with his Spit in Italy



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    On leave in South Africa :)

    [​IMG]
    1945
     
  2. vanir

    vanir Banned

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    Brilliant interview. Would like to thank him for his time to bring us his experiences, and of course take a moment to appreciate the tremendous bravery of all servicemen in war.

    Naturally I'm interested in any particular techniques/tactics he used or knew of which were common or successful when flying the P40 against the 109. Perhaps like Chenault's advice for his pilots going against Japanese aircraft, ways of using strengths against weaknesses.
    Anything like that at all is very interesting, though I appreciate it's a different world when you're actually in the pilot seat on the day. The impression I got from the seminars given by other fighter vets is that quite often such things were very ad hoc and the fighting could be much more off the cuff and desperate in nature than some kind of academic appraisal of fighter tactics from an armchair.
    But still, if there is anything like that, I'd be interested to hear it.
     
  3. biltongbru

    biltongbru New Member

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    Hi and thanks: here some interestings things he said to me:

    He told me performance wise the Spit was far superior to the Tommie (as he calls it) Mid '42 in North Africa there were very few Spit squadrons (think they were preserved to save the motherland?) The mainstay of Allied fighters was Hurricanes, Tomahawks and Kittyhawks, all very much inferior to the 109. Cecil's 5 SAAF squadron suffered exceptional high casualty rate.....in 3 weeks, 3 successive OC's were KIA and Cecil told me he was not aware of any of his pilot mates that were not shot down at some stage.

    Regarding tactics: usually when a 109 is on your tail you "duck sharply left or right in 180 degrees; never roll" the one thing where the Tomahawk was superior to the Bf-109 was the manoeuvrability in turning; but as he said the 109's never or very seldom "tangled" with them, they came down in high speed sweeps and then climb up above them again, being much faster with far better rate of climb.

    Regarding the guns; two of the .303 Brownings were accessible to be manually cocked by the pilot in the cockpit: these two fired through the prop space. He said on some occasions the browning firing sync mechanism went faulty and then the prop blades got damaged by bullets, causing a terrible vibration that shaked the whole plane.

    He said that their squadron did not do the defensive circle tactic as many of the other SAAF squadron did when bounced by 109's; hence the dispute whether Marseille actually did shoot down the 6 SAAF 5 squadron planes on 3 June 1942 as being claimed by Marseille.

    When I see him again I will ask him some more on tactics.
     
  4. nigel.boyd

    nigel.boyd New Member

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    #4 nigel.boyd, Jan 3, 2012
    Last edited: Jan 3, 2012
    lady godiva.jpg
    Hi great interview and video. Thanks to Cecil for sharing his experiences with us.

    My question to Cecil is, does he remember my father Lt. D N Boyd who served with 5 Squadron in the desert and Italy? He was shoot down over Yugoslavia in a P51 Mustang and managed to get back to his squadron. He survived the war but has since passed on.

    In your video I saw his registration number GL-O on a Kitty Hawk. He also had an emblim of a stork carring a bomb instead of a baby (Dad called this Lady Godiva.). Dad would not speak much about his war years and sadly most of his photos were destroyed in a house fire.

    I would be very pleased to share or obtain any information/photos about 5 Squadron and my father Lt. D N Boyd. My email is [email protected]

    Regards
    Nigel boyd
     

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  5. chu082011

    chu082011 Banned

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    #5 chu082011, Mar 6, 2012
    Last edited: Mar 7, 2012
    Dear friends

    I like Tomahawk/Spitfire pilot interview very much.

    Very useful for me.

    If you have some time, pls visit my blog at: Pilot interview questions


    Rgs
     
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