World War: Tales of Heroism

Britain hands out many lesser decorations, but the Victoria Cross is awarded sparingly, only for "conspicuous bravery . . . in the presence of the enemy." Last week were awarded the seventh, eighth and ninth V.C.s of World War II, for deeds of extraordinary daring: Acting Flight Lieutenant Roderick Learoyd, 27, pilot of one of five Hampden bombers assigned on Aug. 12 to destroy a special objective on the Dortmund-Ems Canal. His story:

"The moon was about half full, everything was quiet until we got to the point where the canal forked just before the two aqueducts. Then suddenly everything started...

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