Wings of Fury: From Vietnam to the Gulf War the Astonishing True

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They are America's best fighter pilots -- from the Navy, Air Force, and Marines. Heroes who push the envelope with their machines, their bodies, and the will to fight and win on their...

WINGS OF FURY

Here, these airborne warriors reveal themselves as never before. Ride shotgun with TOPGUN pilot Dale "Snort" Snodgrass as he becomes the first student pilot ever to land an F-14 Tomcat on an aircraft carrier. Silver Star winner Rob Graeter recalls a Cold War close call as he flew his F-15 Eagle over Soviet waters -- almost triggering World War III. Feel the adrenaline as Brian "Rocky" Fitzpatrick remembers test-flying the F/A-18 Hornet when it suddenly went haywire, leaving him with a crippled plane, a faulty parachute -- and a very long way down....

From the training grounds of Miramar to combat in Vietnam and Desert Storm, these are the stories of those who defend our skies -- and the dramatic evolution of modern air warfare.
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About the author

Robert K. Wilcox is the award-winning, bestselling author of such military works as Wings of Fury, Japan's Secret War, and Black Aces High. In addition to his writing for film and television, he has reported for The New York Times, contributed to the Miami Herald's Tropic magazine as well as numerous other publications, and was an editor at the Miami News. During the Vietnam War, he served as an Air Force information officer. He lives in Los Angeles. Please visit his website at www.robertwilcox.com

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Additional Information

Publisher
Simon and Schuster
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Published on
May 11, 2010
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Pages
368
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ISBN
9781439139561
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Language
English
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Genres
History / General
History / Military / General
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Content Protection
This content is DRM protected.
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Eligible for Family Library

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A riveting account of a modern fighter squadron at war and the exploits, triumphs, and traumas of its pilots.

The Black Aces. Their courage, ferocity, and instincts made them legendary in military aviation. Flying F-14 Tomcats, they played as much a part in recent US operations in Kosovo as did any air squadron in the theater, air force or navy, and probably more. Because of its superior performance, sophisticated equipment and the two-man crews who took it upon themselves to do something extra, the Tomcat and its aviators distinguished themselves over and over.

Forced to locate Serb fighters operating covertly in a mountainous land much like Afghanistan, with almost no help from ground spotters, VF-14 pilots and backseaters spearheaded new methods for the navy to pinpoint, identify, and destroy enemy troops and weapons. These were tasks that fighter crews had seldom had to do before. The Aces had to break rules and frequently go in harms way in order to be successful. And they performed so well that for the first time in aviation history, a fighter squadron - theirs - was awarded The Wade McClusky Trophy, the navy's premier bombing honor. The award, named for a World War II dive bomber pilot and post-WorldWar II admiral, had been won previously only by bombing squadrons.

Robert Wilcox spent two weeks with The Black Aces aboard the aircraft carrier USS Roosevelt and here provides a long-awaited, never-before-seen glimpse into the world of a modern navy fighter squadron. Wilcox takes readers into the cockpits as the pilots go out and attack targets while avoiding anti-aircraft weaponry. He takes us into the war room as they plan their strikes and into their cabins as they contemplate the danger they are facing. And the reader can't help but worry for these men as they head off into battle, can't help sitting on the edge of the seat as they try to land at night, in a rainstorm, with waves crashing against the ship, and can't help ducking with them as they dodge missile attacks. And in the end, it is impossible not to feel for these aviators as they question their own courage, or to cheer for them when they finally return safely.

Black Aces High is a story of fear and courage, mishap and success, fighting spirit and military innovation. It's a human story that goes behind the smiling, sunglass-wearing facade of aviators flashing a "V", the sterile, slow motion target video that has become a staple of Pentagon briefings, and the rock 'n' roll cowboy image of fighter crews seen in the movies. Instead, it is a story that shows who these aviators really are and what they do beyond what we know, a story which probably will be repeated again and again as our carriers continue to be deployed in the new, 21 century war our nation is fighting.

Stephen E. Ambrose’s iconic New York Times bestseller about the ordinary men who became the World War II’s most extraordinary soldiers: Easy Company, 506th Parachute Infantry Regiment, 101st Airborne Division, US Army.

They came together, citizen soldiers, in the summer of 1942, drawn to Airborne by the $50 monthly bonus and a desire to be better than the other guy. And at its peak—in Holland and the Ardennes—Easy Company was as good a rifle company as any in the world.

From the rigorous training in Georgia in 1942 to the disbanding in 1945, Stephen E. Ambrose tells the story of this remarkable company. In combat, the reward for a job well done is the next tough assignment, and as they advanced through Europe, the men of Easy kept getting the tough assignments.

They parachuted into France early D-Day morning and knocked out a battery of four 105 mm cannon looking down Utah Beach; they parachuted into Holland during the Arnhem campaign; they were the Battered Bastards of the Bastion of Bastogne, brought in to hold the line, although surrounded, in the Battle of the Bulge; and then they spearheaded the counteroffensive. Finally, they captured Hitler's Bavarian outpost, his Eagle's Nest at Berchtesgaden.

They were rough-and-ready guys, battered by the Depression, mistrustful and suspicious. They drank too much French wine, looted too many German cameras and watches, and fought too often with other GIs. But in training and combat they learned selflessness and found the closest brotherhood they ever knew. They discovered that in war, men who loved life would give their lives for them.

This is the story of the men who fought, of the martinet they hated who trained them well, and of the captain they loved who led them. E Company was a company of men who went hungry, froze, and died for each other, a company that took 150 percent casualties, a company where the Purple Heart was not a medal—it was a badge of office.
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