Andrew Thomas describes the service careers of several airmen involNved in the Great Escape.

As soon as World War Two began on 3 September 1939, the RAF started its bomber campaign, one that ultimately led to thousands of downed aircrew being captured and held as prisoners of war (PoW). Bomber Command operations began immediately and its losses began when Blenheim IV N6240 of 107 Squadron was shot down on 4 September. Pilot Sgt Albert Prince from Chester was killed, but his crew of Sgt G F Booth and AC 1 L J Slattery survived to become the first British PoWs of the conflict. The following day, during a line search in the North Sea, Anson K6183 of 206 Squadron Coastal Command was lost in action and its badly injured pilot, New Zealander Plt Off Lawrence Edwards, became the first officer PoW.

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