“Dear Son, What On Earth Are You Doing In A Prison Camp?” A B-24 Pilot Recollects
Vincent G. Lisanti
Vincent Lisanti was a sophomore in college when World War II started, and he sought to do his part by becoming a bomber pilot. After training in Florida, he flew his B-24 from the United States, to South America, and on to Algeria before finally arriving in Italy. On his first mission he was shot down. He ditched in the Adriatic, but was picked up by the British and made it back to his base. He flew several more missions before being shot down again. This time he was captured and sent to Stalag Luft III, the camp from which the “Great Escape” was made. He spent over a year in the prison camp before he was finally freed.
In this interview, he talks about pilot training, flying missions, and being a prisoner. He recounts several fascinating stories about his experiences in Algeria, and his interactions with prisoners from other nations, including the British and the Russians. He also describes different methods of resisting the Germans while in prison camp. Finally, he discusses his post-war experiences.