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Aircraft Crash Axe

Article about: Aircraft Crash Axe::::: From the estate of a B-17 Pilot......BILL

  1. #1

    Default Aircraft Crash Axe

    Aircraft Crash Axe::::: From the estate of a B-17 Pilot......BILLAircraft Crash AxeAircraft Crash Axe
    "As long as there are brave men and warriors the halls of Valhalla will never be silent or empty"

    In memory of my father William T. Grist December 26, 1920--September 10, 2009..
    901st. Ordnance H.A.M. North Africa, Italy, Southern France....ETO
    Also in memory of my mother Jane Kidd Grist Feb. 22, 1920-- September 27, 2009... WWll War bride May 1942...

  2. #2

    Default Re: Aircraft Crash Axe

    Thanks for sharing that pic. I have only seen pictures of these. Are there any maker marks and also how big is it and how much would you say it weighs?
    Semper Fi

  3. #3

    Default Re: Aircraft Crash Axe

    First two numbers are the date.
    Gliders have them also.

  4. #4

    Default Re: Aircraft Crash Axe

    Glider ones usually did not have the spike - too many people in a confined space to start swinging it around!

  5. #5

    Default Re: Aircraft Crash Axe

    Through the course of my work I come into contact with many elderly people, some of them veterans. I will always ask them about their experiences and one such patient of mine was a Horsa glider pilot. He told me he landed at Pegasus Bridge (not in the first wave but later on within the first 24 hour period) and was then quickly removed to Blighty because it was thought that the transport of troops and equipment would have to coninue by glider despite the terrible losses incurred.

    This was not the case however and his next and last mission was to be 'Operation Market Garden'. He told me he had a hell of a job landing the glider because he realised that he would have to land it with the wind behind him rather than 'against the wind' which of course would act as a natural brake.

    He managed to put the glider down but found that he was racing at breakneck speed towards another Horsa surrounded by troops. There was nothing else he could do but put the stick forward and bury the nose. It came to a halt in an almost vertical position and thankfully without casualties. They then had to pull it back down and chop it in half with the hatchets fixed inside to free a Jeep they had been carrying.

    He went on to be captured during Market Garden and spent the rest of the war as a POW. I always feel incredibly privileged to have met these men and women and always make a point of jotting down their tales in my little black book!
    Last edited by canti44; 05-09-2013 at 10:38 PM.

  6. #6
    CBH is offline

    Default Re: Aircraft Crash Axe

    I have one of these , but it has a conventional blade , no downward loop . Was it issued to a certain aircraft type ?

  7. #7

    Default Re: Aircraft Crash Axe

    These axes have a high voltage resistance rubber handle, and were used throughout many services ... (In England, ARP, fire service etc ).

    The British Air force issues are normally stamped "AM" (air ministry) and dated on the steel part of the shaft.

    Gary J.

  8. #8
    CBH is offline

    Default Re: Aircraft Crash Axe

    Thanks Gary , I can read AM AX on the shaft but can't make out a date . I'll try to get a photo later today . Thanks again .
    Cheers Chris

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