One of the Famous Dambusters’ Pilots Was An American

“…chisel-jawed American pilot Joe McCarthy circled over the heart of Nazi Germany’s industrial machine.”

comment on his American pilot from interview with John “Johnny” Johnson, last survivor of the famous Dambusters from the Bristol Post of 13 May 2013

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Dambuster’s American pilot Joe McCarthy

p_joemccarthy1

Then Flight Lieutenant RAF, American Joseph Charles “Joe” McCarthy DSO DFC and BAR, being introduced by Wing Commander Guy Gibson, VC to His Majesty King George VI after the Dambusters’ Raid.

Comments Charles McCain: “Joe McCarthy had made his way to Canada before the USA became a belligerent in World War Two and joined the Royal Canadian Air force. Many RAF bomber crews were comprised of men from different parts of the empire including the Royal Australia Air Force, Royal New Zealand, etc. So McCarthy was officially in the Royal Canadian Air Force but the only way to know that would have been a small patch on the standard RAF uniform which said, “Canada”.

Also, after they completed training and were dispatched to the manning depots, the men self selected into their bomber crews. On a specific day, the command would put all the different men in their different specialties in one large hanger and they would mill about until they had found a crew they liked. The higher-ups never got involved.”

As the war went on, however, the Canadian Government insisted that all Canadian squadrons be created and they were. Unlike the other self-governing Dominions of the British Empire, the Canadians didn’t want to mix in their men in either Bomber Command or the Royal Navy. They created their own navy, the Royal Canadian Navy. Unfortunately, without the presence of the highly skilled and trained Royal Navy or Royal Navy Reserve or experienced Royal Navy Volunteer Reserve officers, their navy took several critical years to achieve even the lowest level of competence.

After the war, Joe McCarthy became a Canadian citizen and enjoyed a successful career in the Royal Canadian Air Force. You can read more about him here:

http://www.bombercommandmuseum.ca/s,joemccarthy.html

 

LEST WE FORGET

133 RAF aircrew participated in the Dambusters attack. Of those, 53 lost their lives–a casualty rate of almost 40 percent. The dead were all young men in the prime of their lives. 

Life, to be sure,
Is nothing much to lose,
But young men think it is,
And we were young.

From the poem

Here Dead We Lie

by A.E. Housman

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Posted by writer Charles McCain, author of the World War Two naval epic:

An Honorable German.

SAYS NEW YORK TIMES BEST SELLING AUTHOR NELSON DeMILLE

“A truly epic and stirring tale of war, love, and the sea. An Honorable German is a remarkable debut novel by a writer who…seems he was an eyewitness to the history he portrays in such vivid detail. An original and surprising look at World War II from the other side.”

To purchase copies including Kindle and Nook click here:

http://charlesmccain.com/an-honorable-german/

For a signed and personally inscribed first edition hardback go to this specific link on author’s website:

http://charlesmccain.com/buy-an-honorable-german/

 

and

The Frat House Fire Escape Plan: Sigma Nu, Tulane and the 1970s

“LOL funny, revealing & satirical account of college life in 1970s New Orleans.”

http://charlesmccain.com/

Published by

Charles McCain

Charles McCain is a Washington DC based freelance journalist and novelist. He is the author of "An Honorable German," a World War Two naval epic. You can read more of his work on his website: http://charlesmccain.com/