In 1941, Winston Churchill made an urgent appeal to the U.S. to provide war materials and pilot training for defense against a superior German air power which bombarded England during the Battle of Britain. Cadets where unable to train in England because of horrible weather conditions and " the Nazis had a nasty habit of shooting down anything that flew." President Roosevelt responded by implementing the Lend Lease Act, which called for the construction of six British Flying Training Schools in warm and sunny California, Arizona, Oklahoma, Texas and the #5 BFTS at Riddle Field near the town of Clewiston, Florida, which trained more than 1,700 cadets in the Royal Air Force.
Go flying with veteran RAF cadets and their barnstorming American civilian instructors, in vintage WWII planes, as they recall happy times they shared and the deadly reality of the skies over the English Channel.
Veteran RAF cadet Eric Loveland
recalls these times of hardship in England when food and clothes were rationed
and people lived in fear of the next air raid. The story follows Loveland and
the cadets from their treacherous journey overseas by boat to Halifax, Canada
to their train ride south to Clewiston. The British cadets were warmly received
by the locals and as flight instructor Reed Clary recalls, "They were royally
treated and to the cadets this was heaven in itself."