The Hero’s Hero: The Forgotten Life of William Barker

Being a fighter pilot in the First World War was a little like signing your own death warrant. The planes were primitive and there was little training. The average life expectancy of a pilot was less than three weeks, yet William George Barker logged more time in the air than virtually any other pilot. To other pilots Barker was their hero—The Hero’s Hero—earning an unprecedented 12 medals for courage and valour. Yet, the very talents that made him an Ace, would ultimately betray him in a peace time life that was marred with disappointment and, ultimately, tragedy.

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