History – Forgotten Warriors

Forgotten WarriorsForgotten Warriors
By D. Ralph Young
Publisher: Dog Ear Publishing
Published: May 2016
ISBN: 978-1457545917 (pb)
ISBN: 978-1457547584 (hc)
ASIN: B01FWLXK1C
Pages: 348
Genre: History, War, WWII

Forgotten Warrios is the story of the aphibious march across the Pacific from the Aleutians to Okinawa from the experiences of shipmates aboard the USS J. Franklin Bell which includes the surprise attack on Pearl Harbor and the following battles: The Aleutian Campaign (Adak, Attu and Kiska); The Solomon Islands Campaign (Guadalcanal, Bougainville); The Coral Sea Battle (Naval Battle); The Battle of Midway (Naval Battle); The Battle for Tarawa; The Battle for Kwajalein; The Battle for Eniwetok; The Marianas Champaign (Saipan, Tinian, and Guam); The Battle for Leyte; The Battle for Iwo Jima; The Battle for Peleliu; The Battle for Okinawa. Refresh your memory with the what, where, when and why for each of these battles, the listing of the Medal of Honor Awardees for each battle, as well as a listing of casualties. Also included are the contributions made by Coast Guard, Submarine Service, and Seabees as well as the women of the USA toward victory over the Japanese in World War II.

It seem like we celebrate Normandy every year, which we should, but when have you heard about Peleliu, Tarawa, Tinian etc.During the invasion of Peleliu we had 3201 more casualties than D-Day at Normandy. At Tarawa 2 out of 3 marines never made it to the beach. Admiral Spruance called the invasion of Tinian the most brilliant amphibious operation of WWII. The two fake landings on the most suitable beach on the South caused the Japanese to move their troops in that direction, which allowed us to land on the North less desirable beach, with minimum resistance. I know this for a fact because I was there.

The book covers all major battles in the Pacific where statistic shows that when we are compared to our counterparts that fought in the European Theater we were 5 times more likely to be killed; 3 times more likely to be wounded and twice as likely to end up being a POW.

We fought a different kind of enemy in the Pacific. If the Germans or Italians were surrounded they surrendered. But, the Japanese would charge with or without a weapon. That explains why our wounded to death rate was 3 to 1. For the Japanese it was the reverse of 18 killed to each one wounded.

The book recognized all the Medal of Honor that were awarded in the Pacific with a brief description of why each was awarded.

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Forgetten Warriors Author D. Ralph YoungAbout the Author:
D. Ralph Young was born in central Kentucky in 1925 and was raised on a farm in Lincoln County. He served as a Gunner’s Mate on the USS J Franklin Bell for nearly 3 years during WWII.

After military service he obtained an engineering degree from the University of Kentucky. He was involved in developing electric power systems all over the USA as well as the Middle-east and South-east Asia. He retired to his place of birth in Kentucky 3 times before really calling it over from an active engineering career to become an author and write 2 books. The Power of a Mothers Prayer and Forgotten Warriors.

In 2006 he was inducted into the University of Kentucky, College of Engineering Hall of Distinction.

Forgetten Warriors Author D. Ralph Young 2     Author D. Ralph Young - in uniform

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Historical Military Fiction – Rolling Thunder

Rolling Thunder - Wings of War Book OneRolling Thunder
An Historical Novel of War and Politics
Wings of War Series, Book One
By Mark Berent
Publisher: Putnam Bros.
ASIN: B0019LNUVA
Pages: 416
Genre: Historical Fiction, Military Fiction, Vietnam, Airwar

Rolling Thunder is an historical novel about the decisive role politics played during the Vietnam War. Its characters range from men in the field to the Pentagon and the White House. Fighter pilots and Special Forces warriors try to do their best but are hampered by President Johnson, Secretary of Defense McNamara, and their staff members who despise the military. Only one aging USAF general, who fought in Korea and WWII, is on their side. His clashes with his Commander in Chief, Lyndon Johnson, are epic in proportion and startling in content.

In Rolling Thunder, the time is late 1965 and 1966 in war zone places such as Saigon, Hanoi, Bien Hoa, Da Nang, and Tahkli. While back in Washington, LBJ sits over lunch and personally picks bombing targets in an attempt to fight a limited war. In Vietnam the war knows no limits.

There, as the hostilities escalate, the fates of three men intertwine: USAF Captain Court Bannister, overshadowed by a famous movie star father who fought in WWII as a B-17 gunner, driven to confront missiles, MiGs, and nerve-grinding bombing raids in order to prove his worth to his comrades — and to himself…Air Force First Lieutenant Toby Parker, fresh from the States, who hooks up with an intelligence unit for a lark, and quickly finds his innocence buried away by the lessons of war…and Special Forces Colonel Wolf Lochert, who ventures deep into the jungle to rescue a downed pilot — only to discover a face of the enemy for which he is unprepared.

Four airline stewardesses, who fly the civilian MAC contract flights that bring American soldiers to and from the war zone in Vietnam, have difficult love affairs with G.I.s and fighter pilots. After one flight they come under attack while on an airbase.

Young American G.I.s are cursed and taunted as they return to the United States.

Through their eyes, and those of many others — pilots, soldiers, lovers, enemy agents, commanders, politicians, profiteers — Rolling Thunder shows us Vietnam as few other books have, or can. Berent captures all the intensity and drama of that searing war, and more, penetrates to the heart and soul of those who fought it. Rolling Thunder rings with authenticity.

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Other Books in the Wings of War Series

STEEL TIGER - Wings of Was Series, Book TwoSTEEL TIGER
ASIN: B001HN5J7S
Pages: 450

Five months after we left them in Rolling Thunder, Steel Tiger brings back USAF Major Court Bannister, Special Forces Lieutenant Colonel Wolf Lochert, and USAF First Lieutenant Toby Parker, now scattered to their new posts: Bannister in Test Pilot School at Edwards Air Force Base in California, Wolf Lochert at Lang Tri, Republic of Vietnam, carrying out covert operations in Laos, and Toby Parker, in the pilot training program at Randolph Air Force Base in Texas. Soon their diverse paths will lead all three men back to Vietnam for a second tour of duty — in the very heart of the conflict.

PHANTOM LEADER - Wings of War Series, Book ThreePHANTOM LEADER
ASIN: B001HN5L80
Pages: 448

In Phantom Leader (May 9, 1991) Berent, himself a highly decorated Air Force Pilot, once again captures the intensity of the most controversial war in modern history. Phantom Leader shows readers exactly what it was like to be a pilot caught between the immediate reality of death and the distant decisions of Washington.

EAGLE STATION - Wings of War Series Book FourEAGLE STATION
ASIN: B001HSNB6E
Pages: 396

In Eagle Station (June 8, 1992) the newest installment in his Vietnam War series, Berent puts on the heat and raises the stakes, creating his most electrifying tale of war to date. Beginning with a hair-raising cliff side helicopter rescue under heavy fire, and racing toward a climactic ground battle played out in the dark of night, engaging top secret USAF first special operations gun ships, Eagle Station is filled with adventure and acts of daring, woven into a compelling and powerful plot.

STORM FLIGHTSTORM FLIGHT
ASIN: B001G0M9Z2
Pages: 383

Storm Flight, (Book Five of Five) the intense conclusion to his saga, the action is touched off by a daring raid on the Son Tay prisoner-of-war camp that reveals some startling information. With American prisoners in terrible jeopardy and crucial national secrets in danger of being discovered, the characters we have met in Berent’s earlier books are put to the ultimate test. They must call upon all their skill, leadership, guts, and strength to complete their missions.

As always, Berent highlights his knowledge of little known facts about the war, and his keen insight into the minds of members of the fighting forces. In one exhilarating sequence, Parker and his instructor pilot Ken Tanaka each shoot down two MiGs in the course of one fight, involving four MiGs and an unarmed transport. Despite the chewing out that they receive later from their superior officer, the two fighter pilots refuse to shoot down the transport. Ironically, that decision was the one that saved the life of one of their strongest critics, Jane Fonda, who had once called fighter pilots “professional killers.” (This incident is based on a true story.) Parker later makes “ace,” a title given to the rare fighter pilot who shoots down five MiGs.

About the Author:

Rolling Thunder Author Mark Berent
Mark Berent is admirably suited to have written his historical fiction five-book Vietnam Wings of War series for he lived each story. He served four years and one day in the Vietnam War during the period from November 1965 until August 1973.

When asked why he kept going back, he replied: “A lot of reasons; because it was there, because I wanted a MiG, because when the threat goes up the paperwork goes down and the weinies run for cover, but mostly because the guys were still fighting. Everyday I’d pick up a paper and find another buddy KIA, MIA, or POW. I just couldn’t stay on the beach.”

Now he writes about these men. He has five books in print and Ebooks; Rolling Thunder, Steel Tiger, Phantom Leader, Eagle Station, and Storm Flight. Although historical fiction, the books are about the men and women who gave everything they had in a war they weren’t allowed to win. FAC pilots, Phantom crews, Thud, Hun, and Buff crews, gunship pilots and gunners, green berets, grunts, carrier jocks, MAC contract stews, boomers and tankers, from corporals to colonels; the whole nine yards about the day-to-day heroism and heroes we all know and loved . . . and some we hated. By way of contrast, LBJ in the Oval Office and McNamara in the Pentagon E Ring are included and the words they spoke as they picked strike targets over lunch are included in great detail, yes indeed. As are those of Jane Fonda and Tom Hayden.

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World War II Aviation History – Shot Down

Shot DownShot Down
The true story of pilot Howard Snyder and the crew of the B-17 Susan Ruth
By Steve Snyder
Publisher: Sea Breeze Publishing
Published: August 2014
ISBN: 978-0986076008
ASIN: B00N5CL5XG
Pages: 376
Genre: History, Military, World War II, Aviation

Belgium … February 8, 1944 … Shot Down and Alive

For the first time, the full and complete story of the B-17 Flying Fortress Susan Ruth is shared in unbelievable detail. Author Steve Snyder’s story of his father, Lieutenant Howard Snyder, and the Susan Ruth crew, provides in-depth details about many aspects of World War II few understand or know about including the:

  • separation for young families as men went off to war;
  • training before heading to foreign soil;
  • military combat operations;
  • underground and resistance and what Lt. Snyder did when he joined it;
  • German atrocities toward captured crew and civilians;
  • behind-the-scenes stories of the Belgium civilians who risked all to save American flyers who were in the air one moment, spiraling down in flames the next;
  • creation and dedication of the monument to the Susan Ruth and its crew located in Macquenoise, Belgium in 1989

Shot Down was created from the vast number of letters and journals of Howard Snyder; diaries of men and women on the ground who rescued, sheltered and hid the crew; and interviews conducted by historians. Centered around the 306th Bomb Group in Thurleigh, England, it is informative, insightful and captivating.

For most, 70 years is a long time ago. World War II fades in importance as each year goes by. Shot Down moves history out of the footnotes into reality, keeping the stories of real people alive as they experience being shot down. You are there, almost holding your breath as Lt. Snyder gets his crew out of his B-17 when bailing out over Nazi occupied Europe.

Shot Down has received several prestigious awards, including:

  • Foreword Reviews’ 2014 INDIEFAB Book of the Year Award Finalist War & Military (Adult Nonfiction)
  • 2014 USA Best Book Awards – Finalist History: General
  • 2014 USA Best Book Awards – Finalist History: Military
  • 2014 Southern California Book Festival – Honorable Mention General Non-Fiction

About the Author:
Shot Down AuthorSteve Snyder graduated from UCLA with a B.A. degree in Economics and has lived in Seal Beach, California since 1972. After 36 years in national sales and sales management, he retired from Vision Service Plan (VSP) in 2009.

Soon after retirement, Steve began his quest to learn about the World War II experiences of his father, pilot Howard Snyder, and his crew of the B-17, Susan Ruth, named after his older sister. It became his passion and has resulted after several years of dedicated research in his book, Shot Down. One result of his new career as a World War II historian is that he is a member of numerous World War II associations and is Vice President of the 306th Bomb Group Historical Association.

In 1994, he traveled to Belgium for the 50th Anniversary of the Liberation of Belgium with his parents and then again in 2004 for the 60th. His attendance at the 70th Anniversary Celebrations in 2014 marked the official European launch of Shot Down.

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Political/Vietnam/Whistleblower Memoir – Goodbye Junie Moon

Goodbye Junie MoonGoodbye Junie Moon
By June Collins
ISBN: 978-0646582726
ASIN:B008B265ZI
Pages: 330
Published: January 2014
Genre: Political/Vietnam Memoir

Goodbye Junie Moon is a memoir written by June Collins, co-author of The Khaki Mafia.

A curvaceous Australian dancer entertains the troops in Vietnam. She uncovers a get rich quick scheme involving the sergeants running the American Army clubs. Discovering that she has reported them to the CID, they place a high price on her head. She learns they are watching the only airport out, preventing her escape. Then fate steps in, triggering an unexpected turn of events. Goodbye Junie Moon is a memoir which reads like fiction and is guaranteed to keep you turning the page. This true story is verified by numerous newspaper and magazine articles.

Racy, action-filled, heart stopping, poignant; it is all of these!

Recent Reviews:
“June Collins takes the reader into a world many of us have never heard about: Corruption in the Army clubs and entertainment system during the Vietnam War, so vast, it boggles the mind. From a fascinating yet humble upbringing in small towns and rural Australia, we get to know the author from her early girlhood dreams and personal tragedy, to her life as a struggling sheep rancher, dance club entertainer and eventually a dancer in strip shows. She rejects the later and sets out on a fateful adventure to 1960’s Vietnam as a booking agent for foreign bands that are there to entertain the troops.

As a Marine Corps veteran of Vietnam, I was unaware of the level of corruption and “kick backs” which the author exposes in this fine book. We didn’t have access to most of the entertainment and clubs that this story involves. Artfully and intelligently written; “Goodbye Junie Moon” keeps the reader interested with a format that sling-shots back and forth between her earlier upbringing and her 3 years working in Vietnam.

Get ready for a wild ride – June Collins bares it all in her honest account of corruption, intrigue, danger and adventure in a world most have not heard about before. This is an illuminating book!” – Robert Peter Thompson, Author of: “Everything Happened In Vietnam: The Year of the Rat”

Goodbye Junie Moon Sell Sheet (pdf)

About the Author:
Goodbye Junie Moon AuthorJune Collins made international news headlines in 1969 when she became a whistle-blower and testified before a U.S. Senate Committee. An ex exotic-dancer / rock-band agent, she pointed the finger at a group of corrupt American Army sergeants who managed the military clubs and made millions during the Vietnam war by demanding kickbacks from all booking agents and sales people. Hated by some, she was called a heroine by many and became part of the history of the Vietnam War. The Khaki Mafia, a slightly fictionalized account of the events became one of the best selling books on Vietnam. It was co-authored with Robin Moore (author The French Connection.)The Khaki Mafia was only the first of June’s books about the Vietnam war. She has since written two true stories; Goodbye Junie Moon and a sequel,Junie Moon Rising.During her many years living in Asia, June had become appalled by the plight of the abandoned street children. She later adopted six children, ranging in age from 3 to 13, from India, Korea, Columbia and the USA.

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