What beauty. I saw clouds and their light shadows on the distant dear earth.... The water looked like darkish, slightly gleaming spots.... When I watched the horizon, I saw the abrupt, contrasting transition from the earth's light-colored surface to the absolutely black sky. I enjoyed the rich color spectrum of the earth. It is surrounded by a light blue aureole that gradually darkens, becoming turquiose, dark blue, violet, and finally coal black.
I was broke, hungry, jobless … yet despite the fact that all three of us are old-time aviators who did our part for the development of the industry, we were left out in the cold in the Administration's program of job making. Can you blame us for accepting the lucrative Spanish offer?
The Allied airborne operation in Sicily was decisive despite widely scattered drops which must be expected in a night landing. It is my opinion that if it had not been for the Allied airborne forces (82nd) blocking the Hermann Goering Armd. Div. from reaching the beachhead, that division would have driven the initial seaborne forces back into the sea. I attribute the entire success of the Allied Sicilian Operation to the delaying of German reserves (by the 82nd ABN Div.) until sufficient forces had been landed by sea to resist the counterattacks by our defending forces, the strength of which had been held in mobile reserve.
And what have we now in Germany? A land of bankers and car-makers. Even our great army has gone soft. Soldiers wear beards and question orders. I am not ashamed to say I believed in National Socialism. I still wear the Iron Cross with diamonds Hitler gave me. But today in all Germany you can't find a single person who voted Adolf Hitler into power. Many Germans feel guilty about the war. But they don't explain the real guilt we share — That we lost.
Setting off unknown to face the unknown, against parental opposition, with no money, friends, or influence, ran it a close second. Clichés like "blazing trails," flying over "shark-infected seas," "battling with monsoons," and "forced landings amongst savage tribes" became familiar diet for breakfast. Unknown names became household words, whilst others, those of the failures, were forgotten utterly except by kith and kin.
Now my playmates never failed to wink and smile mockingly at me when one of them called 'Man flies!' for at the word I would always lift my finger very high, as a sign of absolute conviction; and I refused with energy to pay the forfeit. The more they laughed at me, the happier I was, hoping that some day the laugh would be on my side.
Leveling off at 42,000 feet, I had thirty percent of my fuel, so I turned on rocket chamber three and immediately reached.96 Mach. I noticed that the faster I got, the smoother the ride. Suddenly the Mach needle began to fluctuate. It went up to.965 Mach - then tipped right off the scale... We were flying supersonic. And it was a smooth as a baby's bottom; Grandma could be sitting up there sipping lemonade.
Perhaps the toughest call for a coach is weighing what is best for an individual against what is best for the team. Keeping a player on the roster just because I liked him personally, or even because of his great contributions to the team in the past, when I felt some one else could do more for the team would be a disservice to the team's goals.