- Paperback: 392 pages
- Publisher: BookSurge Publishing; 2nd edition (July 8, 2004)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 1594572992
- ISBN-13: 978-1594572999
- Product Dimensions: 6 x 0.9 x 9 inches
- Shipping Weight: 1.4 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
- Average Customer Review: 45 customer reviews
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #969,855 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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Seawolf28: Branded a Maverick as a Junior Officer this is a true account of naval aviation as seen through the eyes of one of the most decorated Navy pilots of the Vietnam era 2nd Edition
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About the Author
Biography; A. J. Billings The author holds a master's degree in computer systems from the Naval Postgraduate School and an undergraduate degree in engineering. He completed a successful 22 year career in naval aviation and has qualified in more than 20 different aircraft. He rose from the enlisted ranks to become the Commanding Officer of the Navy's oldest combat search and rescue squadron (HC-1). He served as Air Boss aboard the USS Belleau Wood (LHA-3) and was a member of the Navy's most decorated squadron of the Vietnam era. He flew over 600 missions and was awarded more the 40 medals and citations for his service to his country, including the Silver Star, Distinguished Flying Cross and 24 Air Medals. As a civilian Program Manager he invented, designed, and built ground support hardware and software (AV-8B Mission Planning and Ground Maintenance Stations, and F/A-18 Moving Map display) for combat aircraft which were used in Desert Storm. The Aviation Ground Maintenance Station was later adopted by the AH- 1 Cobra and the Naval Aviation Command Management Information System (NALCOMIS). He personally designed and built the ruggedized support hardware and software systems including the portable battery pack that was used in desert storm. He was the lead design engineer for the NAVAIR MH-53E Aerial Minesweeping ground station utilizing the first GPS integrated map display. He also co-authored, The Society of Automotive Engineers (SAE), E-32 Committee's publication on "Utilization of EMS Data for Condition Monitoring and Diagnostics. As Director of Information Technology for the Department of Public Safety in South Carolina he authored and implemented the largest successful systems integration project (Project Phoenix) ever completed in the state, completely modernizing the States Division of Motor Vehicles. He is currently working on his second novel and resides with his wife Patricia Calvo Billings in Chapin, South Carolina.
Top customer reviews
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I purchased this book because I am a student of military history, and the title caught my attention. In reading books and watching documentaries about swift boats, PBRs, LSTs, SEALS, amd other naval units operating in the Rung Sat special zone, I would often hear/read about a rotary wing naval aviation unit known as the Seawolves. When I saw the title while browsing Amazon, I quickly added it to my list. I must say, I was a little disappointed to find that the author's time flying helos with the wolves only occupies a relatively small part of the book. Most of it covers his entire naval career. I did, however, learn a lot about politics in the US Navy, and also some information about ships and units that I didn't know before I read this book. While those things were interesting, and the author, whom I believe to be truthful, is a modern day aviator version of Jack Aubrey and Horatio Hornblower, I would have liked to have read more about the Seawolves. The good books I have read by Army helicopter pilots in Vietnam contain a lot of detail in addition to their exploits in combat. Things like: where they were based, the conditions they lived under, the relationships they formed with their comrades, the crap they pulled on each other, and the various ways they chose to release all of the tension and fear they built up each day flying low and slow over enemy territory in machines that were dangerous enough on their own even without enemy small arms, and .51 machine guns doing their best to shoot them down. Seawolf 28, leaves a lot to be desired in this regard. If I had known the book was going to mostly be about the author's attempts to battle navy bureacracy, ineffective commanders, careerist fellow officers, and comrades who can only charitably be described as cowards, I might not have purchased it. I would have also appreciated more descriptions of life aboard ship, ports of call, the author's family life, and the antics of officers and sailors on Liberty.
Still, its not a boring book by any means, and it is a fairly quick read. I mostly enjoyed it. Just know what you are getting when you click on PURCHASE.
Still, the book is a great read and the author pulls no punches. As good a pilot as he was, as good a leader as he was, the military still found a way to screw him and save the Navy money by denying a service related disability.
This will come as no great surprise to many veterans.
Most recent customer reviews
I liked the authors choice of using truth,justice ,and fairness
In his choices for his life and the...Read more