Alan Smith was a Spitfire Ace in his own right, however is best remembered as Douglas Baderís wingman during the exhilarating air fighting period in 1941 as part of the Tangmere Wing. Smith later flew operationally with 93 Sqn taking part in the invasion of North Africa.
Bader led the Wing flying with 616 Sqn and Alan Smith therefore flew in the Tangmere Wingís leading Ďfinger-fourí formation with Douglas Bader, Cocky Dundas and Johnnie Johnson on fighter sweeps over France. Grounded with a heavy cold, he was not flying as his number 2 on the day Bader was brought down. He was twice decorated for gallantry in the air.