Last Dambuster , 96, is given special flight to mark 75th anniversary

The spectacular view from a Lancaster bomber as last Dambuster Johnny Johnson, 96, is given a special flight to mark the 75th anniversary of the daring raid

  • Mr Johnson was taken for a ride in a Lancaster bomber over the Derwent Valley
  • He had spectacular views from the bomb-aimer’s position where he sat in 1943 
  • The 96-year-old is Britain’s last survivor of the mission to destroy Nazi dams

George ‘Johnny’ Johnson, Britain’s last surviving member of the Dambusters, has been taken for a ride in a Lancaster bomber to mark the anniversary of the raid.

Footage posted online by historian Dan Snow shows Mr Johnson, 96, being taken up by the RAF’s Battle of Britain Memorial Flight (BBMF). 

The video shows Mr Johnson’s spectacular view over the dams of the Derwent Valley, Derbyshire, as he sat in the bomb aimer’s position, the same he occupied in 1943.

It comes in the week of the 75th anniversary of the mission to destroy three German dams, in an attempt to flood the factories supplying the Nazi war machine.

Mr Johnson, 96, had a spectacular view over the Derwent Valley from the Lancaster bomber

The flight had been meant for Wednesday but had to be cancelled because of bad weather.  

Officer Commanding BBMF, Squadron Leader Andrew Millikin, said: ‘We are thrilled that we were able to finally mark this amazing anniversary in such a poignant way.

‘It was always our intent to pay tribute to Johnny as the last British Dambuster by carrying out this sortie and we were bitterly disappointed that the weather stopped us yesterday.

‘We seized the opportunity to complete this mission today with Johnny on board, flying a shortened sortie. 

‘We felt it was important to fly Johnny on this historic day.’   

He was taken up in the Lancaster bomber by the RAF’s Battle of Britain Memorial Flight

Mr Johnson sat in the bomb-aimer’s position, the same one he occupied on the 1943 mission

Mr Johnson was awarded an MBE in the Queen’s Birthday Honours last year following campaigns to get him knighted. 

On the night of May 16, 1943, he was one of 113 airmen from the Royal Air Force 617 Squadron to fly to Germany for one of the most complex military operations of the war.  

Operation Chastise set out to destroy three dams deep within Germany’s Ruhr valley in order to set back the Nazis’ war effort.  

Canadian front-gunner Fred Sutherland is the only other surviving member of the squadron.

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