PBY books  

ISBN 0-646-24705-0
Brett Freeman
1995, Catalina Publications
296+ pages, hard cover

RAAF Museum, Point Cook

Brett Freeman was a young teenager during WWII, growing up in south-east Australia where great dust storms roam free. It was also where (at Lake Boga) the RAAF built a secret Flying Boat Repair Depot, far away from the threat of attack. Mr. Freeman paints a picture of a quiet and comfortable community that quickly became a beehive of activity during the war and, almost as suddenly, saw that excitement disappear at war's end. While this book contains lots of details about flying boats (mainly PBY/Catalinas) and crews (mainly Australian, American, and Dutch), it focusses on homefront life during the war - the efforts and sacrifices of the people back home. It's a good book and I enjoyed the story: it was both busy and "homey".

This particular copy has a rather confused history. It's inscribed to Masayo Duss, author of Tokyo Rose, from Mr. Freeman, but a pencilled note explains the book was actually from the library of Admiral Thomas H. Moorer (Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff and brave PBY aviator) whose biography is included inside the back slipcover.