Sunday, 24 January 2010

R J Mitchell.What if he had died before he designed the Spitfire ?

This is a question that has crossed my mind on numerous occasions over the years. What if he had never lived long enough to design the most famous fighter aeroplane of the centuary ?

Reginald Joseph Mitchell died in June 1937 of Rectal Cancer aged 42 (he was first diagnosed in 1933), and was thus not around at the outbreak of the 2nd World War to witness the impact that his iconic aeroplane had to the people of the UK and more importantly to the course of the war effort in the air. The Spitfire was not simply a weapon of war, it was a symbol of hope and inpiration for millions of people...and still is to this day.

Reginald probably knew that his chances of surviving cancer in the 1930's were very slim, but he still dedicated himself to his work and in doing so he gave the RAF an unimaginably potent weapon in their fight against the might of the Luftwaffe.

I just wanted to share this thought with you really,simply to point out that a diagnosis of cancer does not mean that we have to throw in the towel and wait to die.Maybe we can all still do something amazing with whatever time we have.Maybe we won't make such an important a contribution such as that of Reginald Mitchell, but maybe we can do something equally amazing all the same.

To read about the life of R J Mitchell, click HERE to view the Wiki Website.

RIP Reginald Joseph Mitchell,designer of the Spitfire.20th May 1895-11th June 1937.

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