WWII: Describe the first time you were shot down, General.
Galland: This was on June 21, 1941, when JG.26 was stationed at Pas de Calais. We had attacked some http://www.tarrif.net/wwii/techs/blenheim4.htm" target="_blank">Bristol Blenheim bombers and I shot down two, but some http://www.tarrif.net/wwii/techs/spitfire1.htm" target="_blank">Supermarine Spitfires were on me and they shot my plane up. I had to belly-land in a field until picked up later, and I went on another mission after lunch. On this mission I shot down number 70, but I did something stupid. I was following the burning Spitfire down when I was bounced and shot up badly. My plane was on fire, and I was wounded. I tried to bail out, but the canopy was jammed shut from enemy bullets. So I tried to stand in the cockpit, forcing the canopy open with my back as the plane screamed toward earth. I had opened it and almost cleared the 109 when my parachute harness became entangled on the radio aerial. I fought it with everything I had until I finally broke free, my parachute opening just as I hit the ground. I was bleeding from my head and arm, plus I had damaged my ankle on landing. I was taken to safety by some Frenchmen.
WWII: You survived being shot down twice in one day. How did it affect you?
Galland: I was worried that my wounds might ground me for a long time--that was my greatest concern, not to mention I had lost two airplanes.
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