Essay, Research Paper
A Simulated Journal for Chuck Yeager
It is January of 1944, My 357th fighting squad and I are stationed at Raydon Wood Airdome in a country called Suffolk, a little east of England. The Germans have the European coast from the North Sea down to Spain. Our forces have damaged the German Air Force (the Luftwalffe) but they are still highly dangerous. I found out yesterday that our unit would be receive a new fighter called the P-51 Mustang built by North American Aviation. I heard it was a fast plane that exceeded four hundred miles per hour! I can’t wait. I also found out that a nonstop flight between London and Canada occurred the other day for the first time is history!
March 4, 1944-
I had my first dogfight today. Our bombers were making a daylight raid over Berlin, Germany. As usual I was flying escort. I spotted a German fighter, a Messerschmitt (Me) 109. I then dropped my excess wing tanks and opened the throttle, and dived at the Nazi. I was going so fast that I overshot my target! I then turned around and found the Me-109 was trying to escape! Yeah Right! I fired my guns at that Nazi and blew apart the engines and I saw the pilot bail out of his messed up airplane. The action wasn’t over though. Soon I spotted a Heinkel (He) 111. I went at it and fired like a bat out of (you know what). The He-111 had a gunner in the back of the plane, I just kept firing and firing ’till the guy stopped, probably dead. One of the engines was smoking as the darn Nazi disappeared into a cloud. The fighting was over for that day.
March 5, 1944 (the next day)-
I am escorting another group of fighters to Bordeaux in southeastern France along with forty-five other P-51 Mustangs. A small group of Focke-Wolf (FW) 190s caught us by surprise. I am the last person in the formation, so they went after me. They had the advantage and their bullets ripped my Mustang apart. My airplane fell into a spin and I was scared to death. The Glamorous Glen was going down into flames.
I safely drifted down to earth under the canopy of my parachute. I landed in a forest, gathered up my parachute and hid.
Fortunately a French farmer found me, not a German soldier. They took me into their home and hid me, knowing that if the Germans found out they would shoot us all. The family helped me get to the snow-covered Pyrenees Mountains. The family that was helping us get into Spain then turned and headed back leaving my friends that I found along the way and I to get over the mountains and into the neutral country, Spain.
March 9, 1944
I spotted a cabin and decided to spend the night there. During the night a Nazi patrol spotted us and opened fire. My companion and I quickly jumped through the window on the opposite side of the cabin and started sliding down the side of the mountain.
When we got to the bottom I found that my companion had been shot in the leg. Although he looked dead, he was still breathing. I checked my map and found that Spain was just over the ridge. I waited until night and dragged the man up the hill. We were finally in Spain and it was over.
After the whole ordeal, I received a Bronze Star for saving a companion’s life with “no regard for my personal safety” and a Purple Heart for my wounds.
April 6, 1945-
Today I heard that Germany surrendered! And that their leader, Hitler, cowardly shot himself for fear of getting caught! I get to go home!
August 6, 1945-
The atomic bomb was dropped on Hiroshima in Japan today and Japan surrendered to the Americans, I wish it did not have to go this far…
October 14, 1947-
The high cloudless Mojave Dessert sky was calling me, waiting for me, taunting me. Today is the day I am supposed to fly a rocket called the XS-1 to break the “big brick wall in the sky” that is a fancy name for the sound barrier.
The plan is that a B-29 will take me all the way up to twenty-six thousand feet then drop me and I will burn my fuel supply in two and a half minutes which consisted of a tank full of diluted alcohol and liquid oxygen cooled to two hundred, ninety degrees below zero, Fahrenheit.
As the B-29 reached drop height, he dropped from it and light off each of the engines one at a time.
I am going to go up there and punch a hole right trough that old sound barrier. If I do, I will go down in history as the first person to fly faster than sound. If I fail…
Failure is not a word I know.