Play / pause One of The Few

One of The Few

  • Sean Maffett
  • Interview by: Ewan Burnet


My uncle was, of course,

I didn't realize at the time

but subsequently came to realize,

he was one of The Few, you know.

Churchill had instigated this name, you know,

in his great words,

"Never was so much owed by so many to so few."

He gave them that name,

and they've been called "The Few" ever since.

So, being aware of that, automatically made him a hero.

In fact, I think the important thing is that,

rather more than something a bit Shakespearean,

which is what Churchill used to do,

the people themselves

didn't think of themselves that way at all,

and it was much more like

Sir Christopher Foxley-Norris's wonderful poem, Au revoir.

Which, I can probably read a little bit to you,

which I think the important thing is:

He was no Galahad, no knight sans peur et sans reproche.

Sans peur?

Fear was the second enemy to beat.

No, he was a common, unconsidered man,

who, for a moment of eternity,

held the whole future of mankind in his two sweating palms.

And did not let it go.

And I think that describes the Battle of Britain pilot,


And, I began to realize

that's what it was all about,

and I began to think of my Uncle Jared

as that common, unconsidered man.

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