Rick Rawlings
No 24 Squadron
Aug 7, 1916
Bertangles West

First jaunt into the belly of the beast as it were since moving to scouts. I was with Major Hawker and there was a flight of four of us with "A" flight following close behind, so I wasn't too worried. We went down by Peronne, crossing the front at 9000 feet at 8:30 AM, visibility good. As we got a few miles over the lines, I saw the Major and the others peel off to the left, descending slightly. I looked over that way and saw three dots slightly below us headed for the front. As we closed on them, I saw to my amazement that they were Eindeckers! As it was four to three and "A" flight was on our tail, I was feeling pretty excited for the merge. They saw us, of course, and turned to meet us at altitude. I turned and descended on the one on the back right side of their formation and tried to settle in behind him. He was decidedly feisty, swaying and bucking and descending as I fired. I am not fully up to speed on not having my observer do most of the firing and I was finding it hard to crouch behind the gun sight to line him up properly! After sending the best part of a Lewis drum his way, I must have hit something important as he slowly curved down to crash into the ground below. As the enemy fire was coming up at us pretty hot, I decided to head for home, with the others following after they had sent down the other two huns. Back at the airfield they backed up my claim and I was awarded the confirmation this morning!

The older I get, the more I realize I don't need to be Han, Luke or Leia. I'm just happy to be rebel scum...