|About the Book|
It takes brains, grit, and maybe a dash of humour to be a survivor. Nobody knew that better than John Gordon Scruffy Weir, the subject of The Survivor. Heathcote tells how Toronto-born Weir, the son of investment dealer Gordon Weir, went on toMoreIt takes brains, grit, and maybe a dash of humour to be a survivor. Nobody knew that better than John Gordon Scruffy Weir, the subject of The Survivor. Heathcote tells how Toronto-born Weir, the son of investment dealer Gordon Weir, went on to become a World War II fighter pilot, POW, participant in the Great Escape - and spy. Drawing on skills he had learned from an Ojibway hunter and in special operations training, Weir endures a fiery plane crash and four grim years in POW camps, capped by a 350 mile trek in 1945s infamous Winter March to Lübeck. Heathcote reveals how Weir was trained almost from birth for conditions neither he nor those who taught him could ever have anticipated.From the book:If John accepted, he could never talk about any assignment he was given, nor could he speak of, or in any way acknowledge, the existence of the Network with anyone but his Uncle Adrian. What’s more, he would be accountable and on call for the rest of his life.The work would never be particularly easy. There would always be danger and there would be no medals or decorations. The only reward was the assignments themselves. If no-one was aware of him, or what he had done, then he had succeeded. In that regard, the work was the definition of thankless.There would come a time, as there inevitably did in all intelligence work, when John would be asked to take an assignment that he did not want. But refusal was not an option. Volunteering meant there was no turning back.This is the story of John ‘Scruffy’ Weir, a key figure in WW2’s Great Escape, and a most unremarkable man.