Bill Malins DFC

Retired Wing Commander Bill Malins was 23 when he joined the RAF in 1938. In 1940 he was awarded the Distinguished Flying Cross, following a daring reconnaissance mission in Belgium. And he was one of the first officers to set foot on Sicilian soil when the Allies invaded in 1943. At the closing stages of the war, Mr Malins was there when Allied troops crossed the Rhine in 1945. His squadron was one of the first inside the gates of Belsen, Germany, where its concentration camp was liberated. In his 2010 memoirs, Coming In To Land, he wrote: "It justified every single day that I had spent fighting in the war." He visited the prison where SS and Gestapo guards were held, and met Irma Grese, dubbed the "Blonde Beast of Belsen". He retired from service in 1952 and went back to the family farm, Lords Farm, off Lords Lane, Bicester, expanding it from production of 40,000 litres of milk a year to two million today. RIP, Bill.
 Bill Malins DFC

By same author

At the age of 95, Bill Malins still remembers growing up on an Oxfordshire farm in the 1920s, where he would help.....

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T'was the Night Before Christmas... 

 (With apologies to Clement Clarke Moore, may he forgive my doggerel...)

...and all through the shop,
all we minions were working,
   until ready to drop.

The ebooks were flying,
the covers were spare,
The edits were crazy,
   with "one more thing I must share!"

We waited for Santa,
'Cuz we love old Saint Nick,
But Hitch made us work,
   Waving 'round an old stick!

So slave we all did,
And made all your books,
So that Hitch would say now,
   that we're off the hook.

Come today we're off,
to rest up our fingers,
Our hats we will doff,
   No books they do linger.

But we'll all be back,
Don't give it a thought,
for like all wage slaves,
   we're easily bought.

We'll be back on the fifth,
all eager and fresh,
All ready for you,
   after a well-deserved rest.

So Hitch wants to say,
very strongly and loud,
THANKS ALL YOU GUYS,
  you're the best type of crowd.

Indy and Len and Hitch and the gang,
will be back on the 5th,
to do books with a BANG!

In the meantime don't worry,
if you're in a hurry,
'cuz some poor guy got stuck
   sitting here like a duck.

Your emails we'll receive,
so no need to grieve.
We'll be a bit slow,
but we're raring to go.

Your books will be worked on,
your edits still made,
we're just resting a bit,
   before we all fade.

So please excuse the delays;
It won't be for days;
we'll jump on your queries,
   for your wondrous new series.

We waited for Santa,
'Cuz we love old St. Nick,
And sure 'nuff he came,
   It wasn't a trick.

And as he rode off,
into the night,
I could swear I heard Hitch yell,
   "That Edit's Not Right!"

~~~~~~~~~~

We'll be back on the morning of January 5th; we'll be here parttime between now and then, thanks.