Posted 20 hours ago

Gentleman Jim: The Wartime Story of a Founder of the SAS and Special Services

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In camp, they all owed it to each other, and to the good name of their new Unit, to maintain the highest possible standards of dress and behaviour.

You were freed dear son, after four years of weary waiting, Just to say farewell; You have left behind sweet memories, And broken hearts as well, Your sorrowing Mam and Dad and Granny. L Detachment was to experiment with a new form of attack on his airfields and lines of communication — from the rear.It was not the easiest preparation for the next day, when Almonds had to make his first parachute jump.

Stirling’s first operation against enemy airfields, by parachute, was a total failure, chiefly because atrocious weather resulted in the would-be saboteurs being dropped wide of their targets. He showed great resource in managing to extricate this party with only one casualty, although all but one of his trucks had been destroyed. He was in Ghana as officer commanding the boys' company of the West African Frontier Force and there was all this wonderful timber available that he decided he would make a 32-ft ketch and sail her back to England. He and three others escaped on 4 February 1943 but, after travelling for 12 days over hills in poor weather to reach the coast, were forced to give themselves up due to weakness and being unable to find a boat [3]. Most of the enemy aircraft had been moved at the last moment but they destroyed those that remained.

Many military men over the years have displayed one trait or the other but to achieve both is anything but easy. Almonds had twice gone to sea without knowing where he was going: first from Britain with 8 Guards Commando to the Middle East in early 1941, then on an Italian warship through the Corinth Canal to Taranto.

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