I’ve just been to New Zealand to interview the last surviving Dams Raid pilot, Les Munro, who although 91, is fit, well, and with a mind as sharp as ever. From a humble background growing up on a sheep farm in north-east New Zealand, Les went on to become a highly successful – not to say lucky – Lancaster pilot. Not only did he survive 58 operations without a scratch, he lived to tell the tale of the Dams Raid, became the leading Lancaster pilot during the Cheshire era with 617 Squadron, and was involved in the Munich Raid in April 1944, Operation Taxable in June that year, as well as being among the first pilots to drop Barnes Wallis’s Tallboys on the Saumur Tunnel and then on the S-Boat pens at Le Havre and Boulogne.
I will be posting the interview in due course once it is subscribed, but I have to say meeting him was not only a huge honour, it was utterly fascinating too. A great man.