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29 To him, the job meant heavy reand mind-numbing routine: "We were like truck drivers. Take a load from here and drop it over there and come back and get another one. I mean, how glamorous can that really be? " Behind the routine and mechanics of flying into combat was always the specter of responsibility. The pilot knew that his actions tion that his job was glamorous. sponsibility could lead to the demise not only of himself but also of his friends. His word was law. any potential tended to be a He crisis.

Crew's pecking order was usually the naviga- His responsibility was almost as enormous as the pilot's. gator had to plot the course to and from the target, A navi- know the and try to direct the pilot away from known flak concentrations. A good navigator could save lives and a poor one could get a formation of bombers lost over enemy skies something that could lead to the deaths of many men. David Mcplane's location at all times, Carthy, a navigator in the 381st Bomb Group, helped guide his plane on some of the toughest missions of the war, including the October 1943 Schweinfurt-Regensburg raid over Germany.

Came the psychological, mental awareness The motor skills tests were used to measure manual dexterity and . . The mental tests were a little scary. After all, who wants to tell some sinister stranger what he sees in ink blobs. We all wanted to fly and we surely didn't want to lose this opportunity just reaction time. like spilled ink, a naked lady, or some other screwy imagined image or hallucination. We found ourselves giving answers to questions we didn't even understand. " John Crowe, who became a bomber copilot in the 491st Bomb Group, had a vivid memory of one of his psychological interviews: "The interviewer made a special effort to bring the discussion down because an ink blob might look to a very informal level with questions related to ethnic background, religion, school, and so forth, and then right into the gut He appeared to be somewhat uncomfortable with his role when he asked me how I felt about the opposite sex, but then warmed up to his task when I told of the issue of sex and sexual preference.

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