Here\s the story of how a handful of young Americans, fighting with improvised equipment, commanded the air against superior enemy forces and won! Written by a radio operator who served as a member of the AVG (American Volunteer Group) throughout their existence, this fascinating, intimate story of General Claire Lee Chennault\s "Flying Tigers" is loaded with original photographs and numerous first-hand accounts from the author\s personal diary. It\s all here - the whole story of how the AVG shot down over 650 Japanese plane using obsolete P-40s and a communications network that covered China with a protective "umbrella." This ground based radio network (in which the author operated) kept the pilots so well-informed of enemy air activity that they were seldom surprised by Japanese attacks. Enjoyable to read, this memoir will give you a taste of the "local flavor" of life in China while under Japanese attack. You\ll find a musing anecdotes and accurate descriptions of the author\s duty as a radio operator as well as the wartime activities of other AVG member. Now, the complete story of the AVG - the deadliest, most efficient group of fighter pilots and support personnel ever assembled - is brought to life again through original photographs and behind the scenes descriptions! Robert M. Smith was a sergeant-air mechanic first class for the U.S. Air Force when the recruiters arrived on base looking for volunteers for the Chinese Air Force. He was discharged from the Air Force and went to China to join the American Volunteer Group, "THe Flying Tigers." When the AVG disbanded in July, 1942 he re-enlisted as a technical sergeant and retured to China with the Army Airways Communications System. Presently he is the treasurer and on the executive committee of the American Volunteer Group Association.
Aviation historian and author of With Chennault in China.