The text below is from the book The Lost
Hopes - Polish Fighters over France in 1940. This book looks at
the World War II over the French skies, through the eyes of
Polish pilots. Here is a sample passage from the book about
a combat mission flown by those brave pilots.
...on June 2, the squadron moved to the airfield at Dreux.
The aircraft were dispersed on the edge of the field and carefully
camouflaged. Two days later, the Poles finally received the
long-awaited radio. Till that time, they scrambled at the signal
of an automobile horn. To beef up the GC II/10, on May 5,
the squadron was ordered to patrol in the Rouen area. This was
done by Flight "B". Half an hour later, Flight "A"
was moved to Bretingy-sur-Orge, south of Paris, with the task
of defending the French capitol. The next day, the squadron was
charged with the same duties. In the evening of June 6, the
squadron was attached to the 42nd Fighter Group, defending a
sector of the Seine between Vernon and Meulan.
Two three-aircraft reconnaissance flights on the route
Meulan-Magny-en-Vexin-Fleury-sur-Andelle-Vernon and along
the Seine were the squadron's only activity on June 7th.
The next day found the squadron with twenty-one planes in good
order. The other thirteen needed a lot of fixing. Some were being
generally checked after forced landings, while multiple tasks were
performed in others: changing a stabilizer or rudder, replacing
Plexiglas in a cockpit, a carburetor, parts of an electrical
installation, and so on. That day Flight "A" was assigned
to GC II/10. At 3:54 p.m., a section of five aircraft, led by
kpt. Wczelik, took off to patrol over the Vernon-Meulan area.
South of Rouen, the Poles attacked a group of about twenty
Messerschmit 110s and had a good scrap with them. They landed at
5:10 p.m. Officers Wczelik and Czerwinski claimed victories,
but none of the other pilots saw the enemy aircraft crash.
Commander Kepinski recognized only one of them as probable but
soon after, around the area of that clash, the wrecks of five
Me-110s were found. After a fight analysis, por. Tadeusz Czerwinski
was credited with two enemy aircraft shot down, while kpt. Wczelik,
ppor. Aleksy Zukowski, and ppor. Jerzy Godlewski with kpr. Piotr
Zaniewski were credited with one Bf110 each. The squadron suffered
no losses, but most of the aircraft were shot-up and temporarily
unserviceable. At Bernay, on June 9, the squadron was joined
up with Flight "B", to sweep in full force in the
front-line area. Eighteen aircraft took off at 2:30 p.m.
Led by maj. Kepinski were Commandant de Marmier, kpt. Laguna,
kpt. Wczelik,por. Zdzislaw Zadrozinski, por. Jan Obuchowski,
por. Julian Kowalski, ppor. Czeslaw Glowczynski, ppor. Jerzy
Czerniak, ppor. Lech Lachowicki-Czechowicz,ppor. Jerzy Godlewski,
ppor. Bronislaw Skibinski, sierz. Jan Palak, plut. Andrzej
Niewiara, plut. Mieczyslaw Parafinski and kpr. Edward Uchto.
Over Vernon, the squadron attacked an enemy formation of about 50
Do 17s escorted by about 20 Bf 109s. Due to the radio malfunction
the attack was poorly coordinated.
Czeslaw Glowczynski recalls: My radio didn't work so I wasn't
aware of any warnings. I soon noticed a group of about 30 BF
109s, some 3,000 feet below. Since our leader didn't react.
I come close to him and waggled my wings. I pointed down; he
nodded that he sees them and continued to fly straight. I
gave him a sign that I will attack. I thought that at least a
part of our group would follow me in this attack, but I found
myself alone, with the exception of my wingman, ppr. Czerniak.
Our position was advantageous since we attacked from above, with
the sun behind us. With full speed, I swooped down on the rearmost
Bf109. The swiftness of my attack caused the whole German formation
to break up. One of them went down steeply, smoking heavily.
Immediately, I went after another one, which, after few bursts,
crashed in a forest south of Rouen. I was then shot at from behind.
Several bullets came near my head and shattered my instrument
panel. I managed to force land on a front-line strip at Evreux.
Czerniak got one Bf109 as well, and he landed with me. It took
the whole evening to fix my plane, and I returned to the unit the
Jerzy Czerniak's account of this flight: The weather was beautiful
and, flying in the direction of the area of operation, we were
climbing slowly. At 12 or 15 thousand, we started to look for
game. For over thirty minutes, the flight was uneventful, and
looking at Czeslaw, I could tell that he was greatly disappointed
with not seeing any Huns around. That's when I sow silver planes
below us. I gave Czeslaw a sign, and we altered our course a
little to have the sun directly behind us. Next, Czeslaw dived
and I followed him, unlocking my guns in case there would be a
scrap. It happened that there was one. We approached the
Messerchmitts and Czeslaw coolly positioned himself right
behind one of them and started to shoot. Others maneuvered
themselves behind Czeslaw who continued spraying his wiggling
victim. All this time, I flew behind my colleague, observing
the scene. One Messershmitt started to shoot at him and that's
when I intervened. I jumped at the German and gave him a burst
right in the cockpit. He must have got it since he flipped over,
going down. I served him another portion and stayed with him
till he crashed into a French farmer's yard.
Ppor. Glowczynski was credited with one Bf 109 destroyed and one
damaged, while ppor. Czerniak got one Bf 109 destroyed. Plut.
Parafinski also scored, destroying a Bf 109, while kpt. Wczelik
and sierz. Markiewicz shared one Dornier 17 destroyed. Two planes
crashed south of Andelys and others near Louviers. This time, the
squadron suffered a loss of three pilots. Killed in action were
por. Obuchowski, ppor. Lachowicki-Czechowicz and kpr. Uchto. por.
Kowalski was slighty wounded, while ppor. Godlewski force landed
at Villacoblay. The rest of the pilots landed at 3:50 p.m. A few
Aircraft were unserviceable. Godlewski tried to join his unit on
a new plane but nose-dived during the takeoff. He come out of the
accident unscathed, but couldn't up with the squadron. The Poles
fought with German fighters from II/JG27. The pilots from this
unit claimed three Moranes shot down. Credited with victories were:
Gruppenkomandeur Hauptmann Werner Anders, Feldwebel Karl Witzel
and Feldwebel Karl-Heinz Bendert. In reality, Luftwafe lost three
Bf 109s. Leutnant Hans Bosch ( Hptm. Anres wingman ) and Feldwebel
Karl-Heinz Kranich become POWs. Leutnant Hermann Kugler went
missing. Slightly wounded, Hptm. Andres force landed near Creil.