16th August 1944 | Reg Miles Biography
Now all eyes were searching the sky even harder than they had been, searchlights were weaving their way across the sky, catching a plane which was lit up and looked just like a moth around a lamp, sometime they slid out of the light, some times they suddenly flashed into extinction, and some times the flashing of guns was seen as a fighter chanced his luck amongst the bursting anti aircraft and was answered by the bomber gunners.
The flashing of bursting bombs, rattle and crash of anti aircraft shells bursting, searchlights sweeping the sky and settling on some lone 'plane to be followed by the stream of incendiary bullets, all make the hearts of the night bomber crews halt for just a fraction as they go about the job of beating the foe into submission.
Hearts once young and tender soon become hardened to this show of defiance, but not to the sudden eruption of flames at their height as one of their own is hit and spirals to destruction. "Bastards" comes through the intercom from all quarters, and the empty bottles, bricks and old iron brought for this occasion are pushed out of gun turrets, and down flare and 'window' chutes. The rage is personal, "You can't do this to ours" is the feeling.