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War baby releases the biography of his father’s journey to be the first Australian airman to fly a Lancaster bomber in WWII and make it safely home.



Norm - Bomber Command: The story of Francis Norman 'Norm' Crouch

As a fifteen-year-old boy growing up in Sydney, Francis Norman ‘Norm’ Crouch knew he wanted to be a pilot after he saw his first airplane-a low-flying Tiger Moth Biplane. He was so transfixed he crashed his bike into a nearby thicket. It was a fascination which led him to become a trainee pilot in the RAAF where he became notorious for his low-flying antics.

Part of an early group of Australian airmen who went to Canada with the Empire Air Training Scheme, Norm survived the perilous Atlantic crossing to Scotland. He was then sent to Coningsby, England in 1941 to join Squadron 97-one of the many RAF squadrons in the legendary ‘Bomber Command’-where he became the first Australian to fly a Lancaster bomber in air raids over Germany.

‘It was the air force that incurred the highest casualty rate of all Allied forces in WWII. Of the 50,000 killed in action 3,480 were Australians.’

Norm also survived the war and was one of the lucky few to return home.

‘Of those Australians who left in early 1941 and completed a full tour, 30 missions or more and then spent the rest of the war flying and training others in Operational Training Command, only 8% returned.’

When the family home burned down in 1957, Norm lost all his war records including his personal logbook. He wrote his memoir to ensure his story would not be lost. His son, James Crouch, used his father’s handwritten notes and other sources to produce this, his first book, Norm – Bomber Command.

James Crouch is available for interviews and informal chats on all media outlets. To schedule, please contact: info@footprintspublishing.com.au

Norm – Bomber Command is available in paperback and eBook formats from all major online retailers, priced $19.95 and $7.95 respectively.

https://www.footprintspublishing.com.au/family-stories