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INSIDE THIS Issue
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My Ancestors and the War for Independence
The Case That Was Frozen on Arrival The ‘Coming and Going’ Rule and Its Exceptions
What It Takes to File an Insufficient Security Claim
Good Morning Breakfast Kebabs
Inside the Biggest Escape Attempt of WWII
‘The Great Escape’
The Daring True Story of an Allied Getaway During WWII
conditions. And in the spring of 1943, he initiated a plan to get himself and 200 of his fellow prisoners out of the camp.
What do Steve “The King of Cool” McQueen, Richard Attenborough, and James Garner have in common? They all starred in the 1963 World War II classic “The Great Escape.” What makes the movie amazing to watch isn’t just that it’s full of legendary stars like McQueen and Garner or the fact that the action sequences were filmed using practical stunts, not special effects. What makes it truly incredible is that this story actually happened.
During the next year, over 600 prisoners helped with the effort of digging tunnels underneath Stalag Luft III. They had to be deep enough that the microphones couldn’t detect them and long enough to reach outside of the camp’s walls. On a chilly night in 1944 — a year after the endeavor began — one tunnel was finally ready, and the prisoners began their exit. In all, 76 Allied men managed to escape from Stalag Luft III. While freedom was short-lived for some, the escapees were successful in redirecting Nazi efforts from the front lines. And as veteran Jack Lyon said of the escape, “It did do a lot for morale, particularly for those prisoners who’d been there for a long time. They felt they were able to contribute something, even if they weren’t able to get out.” For the rest of the story, you’ll have to watch the movie or read the book. You can watch “The Great Escape” on Amazon Prime, and you can find Brickhill’s daring tale at most book retailers.
Based on WWII veteran Paul Brickhill’s book, “The Great Escape” depicts a group of Allied officers as they attempt to escape from Stalag Luft III, one of the most heavily reinforced prison camps under German watch. Loose sand, raised prison housing, and seismographic microphones were all meant to deter prisoners from digging their way out.
But one prisoner wasn’t discouraged. Squadron Leader Roger Bushell saw these factors as obstacles to overcome rather than inescapable
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