The Last Navigator
By Paul Goodwin (with Gordon Goodwin)
Published by Allen and Unwin | RRP $32.99 in paperback
This is a compelling first-person account of Gordon Goodwin’s life, beginning with his early difficult life on the family farm in the Sunshine Coast hinterland of Queensland, through his training in Canada as part of the Empire Air Training Scheme to his several postings in RAF’s Bomber Command during World War II.
He ended his career as the Chief Navigator for QANTAS, in fact the ‘last navigator’ for QANTAS, when the role was made obsolete by the technological developments of the early 1970s.
During the war, he served in probably the most dangerous occupation of all, flying with the Pathfinders as they led bombing raids into Germany.
He undertook 32 Pathfinder missions, including nine over Berlin, and 65 missions over enemy territory. He flew his first mission with 460 Squadron in March 1942 in a Vickers Wellington and was later to become part of the crew of the famous ‘G for George’ Lancaster. Gordon Goodwin passed away in July 2012.
His son Paul has ensured his father’s remarkable life story has not died with him.