Second World War veteran reunited with crash landing plane

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A Second World War RAF veteran has been reunited with the plane he was shot down in over enemy lines in 1942.

George Shepherd, 91, had a close call when the Handley Page Hampden torpedo bomber was shot down by German fighters in 1942.

He avoided serious injury and managed to escape. He went on the run for 32 hours before being captured by German forces, and was eventually put in a prisoner of war camp in Poland. He was later forced on the Nazi death march before being rescued by the allies in Germany.

The wreckage of the twin-engined plane, which had been providing air support for Allied fleets taking supplies to Russia, was eventually recovered by the Russians and put in storage.

Now the plane, one of just two believed to have survived, is being restored at the RAF Museum in Cosford, Shropshire.

He said of being reunited with the plane, registration number P1344: "I did not know it until now that the Russians had found my plane and salvaged it. When I was invited to see it, it brought back so many memories."

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