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He Who Dared and Died: The Life and Death of a SAS Original, Sergeant Chris O'Dowd, MM [Abridged, Audiobook, Box set, Illustrated, Large Print] [Hardcover]

Gearoid O'Dowd
4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (3 customer reviews)
RRP: 19.99
Price: 17.99 & FREE Delivery in the UK. Details
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Book Description

18 Aug 2011
He Who Dared and Died is the action-packed account of a young Irish hero who selflessly risked and gave his life serving with elite Special Forces in the Second World War. Brought up in poverty in the West of Ireland, Chris O'Dowd ran away to join the Irish Guards aged 18. In no time he tasted bitter action in Norway but, hungry for more, he volunteered for the newly formed Commandos. After intensive training he sailed for Egypt, serving with Churchill's son Randolph, novelist Evelyn Waugh, George Jellicoe and, most significantly, David Stirling.When Stirling got the go-ahead to form the SAS, his handpicked team included the young Chris O'Dowd. After his outstanding performance on the early SAS behind-thelines raids on enemy airfields, O'Dowd was awarded the Military Medal and promoted to Lance-Sergeant.When Colonel David Stirling was captured, the SAS's future was in danger (it was always threatened by enemies within the Army) but Ulsterman Major Paddy Mayne managed to keep it alive. O'Dowd's courage and toughness typified the spirit of the SAS and he became a key member of this elite band along with legends such as Mayne, Jock Lewes and 'Gentleman' Jim Almonds.The SAS spearheaded the invasion of Sicily in July 1943 and then was ordered to the Italian mainland. Tragically Chris O'Dowd was killed in action along with fourteen others in October 1943. This book is a fitting memorial to a courageous soldier whose example has inspired, and been emulated by, successive generations of SAS elite.

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Product details

  • Hardcover: 208 pages
  • Publisher: Pen & Sword Military (18 Aug 2011)
  • Language: English, German, French, Italian, Spanish, Danish, Hindi, Chinese, Japanese, Korean, Welsh
  • ISBN-10: 1848845413
  • ISBN-13: 978-1848845411
  • Product Dimensions: 16.5 x 24.1 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (3 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 197,307 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

Gearoid O'Dowd, has spent most of his life working as a musician in Ireland and the UK. He has also lived for a time in Sweden and Denmark. In 2001 he obtained a B.A Honours degree in Journalism from Southampton Solent University and shortly after began working on the radical magazine, Synergy.
He returned to his native Galway in 2006 and began researching his uncle's life shortly after. He has a daughter, Saoirse, 26, and a son, Rossa 25.


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Most Helpful Customer Reviews
4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Shamrock in the Desert 22 April 2012
Format:Hardcover
A fascinating account of a young Irishman's role in the early days of the SAS. O'Dowd was keen to join the fight against Fascism, despite his country's neutral stance. Realising there would no accolades from his fellow-countrymen he was, nevertheless, prepared to pay the ultimate price.
The book moves along at a blistering pace that almost cajoles the reader to turn the next page. While not as detailed as other books on the early days of the SAS (eg. Stirling's Men by Gavin Mortimer, it is still an excellent read.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars A worthy testament to a brave young Irishman 4 May 2012
Format:Hardcover|Verified Purchase
This book is an excellent read, not without its lighter moments, away from the fighting. The author, nephew of Sergeant Chris O'Dowd, gives a narrative account of his uncle's bravery and exploits as part of an elite team of men in the Special Forces during World War Two who later became military legends. The book also gives background on the creation of the SAS and its early history. A worthy testament to a brave young Irishman.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
By Paul D
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
An easy to read, tragic and yet sometimes amusing book about a young Irishman joining the original S.A.S. The book follows his life from poverty stricken Ireland, and what led to his recruitment to this elite regiment. Written truthfully, without dramatization, it is a powerful reminder of the sacrifices made by so many young men. I would recommend this book to anyone who is interested in either the role that the Irish, or the S.A.S, played in World War II. A riveting read.
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