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“Hostage of the Gothas” by Arch Whitehouse

Link - Posted by David on December 8, 2023 @ 6:00 am in

THIS month we’re celebrating the Christmas Season with The Coffin Crew! Yes, Arch Whitehouse’s hell-raising Handley Page bomber crew! Piloting the bus is the mad Englishman, Lieutenant Graham Townsend, with the equally mad Canadian Lieutenant Phil Armitage serving as reserve pilot and bombing officer with Private Andy McGregor, still wearing his Black Watch kilts, rounding out the front end crew in the forward gun turret. And don’t forget the silent fighting Irishman Sergeant Michael Ryan, usually dragging on his short clay pipe while working over the toggle board dropping the bombs with Alfred Tate and crazy Australian Andy Marks or Horsey Horlick manning the rear gun turret.

For more than a week old No.11 had been welcoming her new neighbours with T.N.T. and fulminite. For seven days they had been dealing out nightly headaches to Baron Harald von Wusthoff and his Gotha Griffons. Fed up with the nightly barrage and inability to get his Gothas in the air, the Baron engineers the capture of the Crew’s pilot and leader Graham Townsend and subsequent use as a hostage to keep the Coffin Crew at bay.

To the Coffin Crew:
      This should stop you from bombing our field any more. Your pilot will be held as hostage to ensure that fact. He will be staked out on the ground everytime your ’planes come across—so drop your bombs at your own risk, gentlemen. Perhaps now we can contend in the air on terms that are more equal.
                                          (Signed) The Golhas 33rd,
                                          Von Wusthoff, Commanding.

From the pages of the June 1935 number of the British Air Stories, it’s Arch Whitehouse’s Coffin Crew in “Hostage of the Gothas!”

When Treachery robbed the Coffin Crew of their Dare-devil Leader, that Crazy Band of Bombers carried their Hate through the Valley of Death into the very Lair of the Gotha Griffons. And in the Air, a Handley clashed with a Gotha in a Duel for which the Forfeit was a Flaming Death!

Be sure to drop by next week for another mad cap romp through hell skies with the Coffin Crew!

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