Intrepid Aviators: The American Flyers Who Sank Japan's Greatest Battleship

Intrepid Aviators: The American Flyers Who Sank Japan's Greatest Battleship

by Gregory G. Fletcher

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The true story of the World War II Pacific naval battle that pitted the USS Intrepid’s naval aviators against Japan’s superbattleship Musashi during the Battle of Leyte Gulf.

October 24, 1944: As World War II raged, six young American bombers from Torpedo Squadron 18 were sent on a search-and-destroy mission in the Sibuyan Sea. Their target: the superbattleship Musashi, the pride of the Imperial Japanese Navy. The pilots were tasked with preventing the immense enemy warship from inflicting damage on American supply ships. Little did these men know that they had embarked on the opening round of history’s greatest—and last—epic naval battle.
Two bomber crews launched in the first wave of attackers were shot out of the sky. Only pilot Will Fletcher survived the crash landing. Adrift at sea, Will made his way to land and escaped into the jungles of the Philippines, where he eluded capture by the Japanese with the help of Filipino guerrillas, whose ranks he joined to fight against their common enemy.
Intrepid Aviators is the thrilling true story of these brave bomber pilots, their daring duel with the Musashi, and Will Fletcher’s struggle to survive as a guerrilla soldier. The sinking of Musashi inflicted a crucial blow in the Battle of Leyte Gulf and marked the first time in history that aviators sank a Japanese battleship on the high seas.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781101586969
Publisher: Penguin Publishing Group
Publication date: 07/03/2012
Sold by: Penguin Group
Format: NOOK Book
Pages: 432
Sales rank: 33,604
File size: 6 MB
Age Range: 18 Years

About the Author

Gregory G. Fletcher served as a naval aviator from 1969 to 1974, and is now a practicing attorney. He is the son of USS Intrepid pilot Will Fletcher, who was awarded a Navy Cross of heroism for his actions in World War II.

Table of Contents

Chapter 1 In the Philippine Sea 1

Chapter 2 In California 53

Chapter 3 In Hawaii 80

Chapter 4 In Lingga Roads 123

Chapter 5 In the Middle Latitudes 145

Chapter 6 In the Visayas 171

Chapter 7 Over Luzon 185

Chapter 8 Over Formosa 207

Chapter 9 In the Sibuyan Sea 227

Chapter 10 On Strike 2 Able 238

Chapter 11 On Strike 2 Baker 259

Chapter 12 On Strike 2 Charlie 265

Chapter 13 Off Banton and Cape Engano 279

Chapter 14 Off Banton and Luzon 303

Chapter 15 On Panay 326

Epilogue 366

Acknowledgments 370

Appendix of Awards 372

Bibliography 377

Source Notes 385

Index 410

What People are Saying About This

From the Publisher

"An incredibly well-researched story. Its scope is awesome and the writing superb."—The Washington Times

"A thrilling, deeply moving literary memorial to the American flyboys whose immense sacrifice and courage really did change the world."—Alex Kershaw, New York Times Bestselling Author of The Longest Winter

"A rare look at a successful but little appreciated unit in the Pacific War...Fletcher portrays the men of Torpedo 18 as recognizable individuals whom the reader comes to know, to admire—and, too often, to mourn."—Barrett Tillman, Author of Whirlwind and Enterprise



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