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‘Down to Earth' Strafing Aces of the Eighth Air Force Paperback – Apr 20 2003

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Product Details

  • Paperback: 128 pages
  • Publisher: Osprey Publishing (April 20 2003)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 184176437X
  • ISBN-13: 978-1841764375
  • Product Dimensions: 18.4 x 0.8 x 25.1 cm
  • Shipping Weight: 358 g
  • Average Customer Review: Be the first to review this item
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #1,447,573 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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Product Description

About the Author

William N Hess is the official historian for the American Fighter Aces Association, and is one of the most highly respected aviation writers of his generation. A B-17 crewman during World War 2, Hess has written over 40 books during his long and distinguished career.

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on (beta) HASH(0xa6384dbc) out of 5 stars 8 reviews
5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0xa625045c) out of 5 stars Daring Deeds of 8th AF Strafer Aces! Dec 1 2005
By Mike O'Connor - Published on
Format: Paperback
During World War II the 8th Air Force was the sole USAAF organization to designate ground kills as being equivalent to air victories, therein creating a unique group of "strafer ace" pilots. Though purists would argue the ace designation was awarded only on the basis of air kills, no one would deny how dangerous strafing missions were over Europe in 1944 and 1945. Such attacks were so costly that in 1944 the command put together "Down to Earth," a how-to manual composed of comments from leading strafer aces, group COs, etc.

As they did with their treatment of the 5th Air Force "Twelve to One" volume, Osprey Publishing and noted author William Hess have resurrected the 8th AF study, added mini-biographies of strafer aces such as John Landers, Jim Goodson and Elwyn Righetti along with dozens of photos and nine pages of color profiles to produce a comprehensive tribute to those pilots.

Years ago the reviewer met Archie Tower, a 339th FG strafer ace with 18 ground kills to his credit. Despite endless cajoling, "Flak" Tower steadfastly declined to talk about his wartime missions. Now, in Osprey's book, the reader can revisit, if only briefly, those daring and deadly missions flown by 8th AF strafer aces against Luftwaffe airfields in the closing years of the war. Recommended!
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0xa63939c0) out of 5 stars Pretty Good - especially if you enjoy aircraft color and paint schemes. Sept. 27 2014
By Dr. Tom's Reviews - Published on
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Good review of tactics and aircraft used - my only complaint was that the book really lacked what I'd hoped would be a plethora of gun camera shots of actual attacks and the results, and maybe even some plotted tactical maps. If you like side profiles of P-51s and P-47s and their paint schemes, you'll love this book. I did, though, like the personal pilot accounts of the tactics they used.
HASH(0xa62509f0) out of 5 stars My Dad's in a book! Dec 28 2012
By Paul D. Cox - Published on
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I purchased this book at the recommendation of a friend. He told me I would be surprised at the detail. I was interested in the Eighth Force as my father flew a P-51 in WWII. My sneaky friend knew I would find the book a good read because on pgs. 51 and 52, is the account of my fathers strafing of several aircraft on the ground and 2 air kills! This made my purchase doubling wonderful!!
HASH(0xa706c300) out of 5 stars George Preddy, Top Mustang Ace Feb. 5 2015
By Joe Noah - Published on
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
I bought the Kindle edition and scanned it to see who from the 352nd FG was included. Most pleased to note Ed Heller, Carl Luksic, George Preddy and John Meyer. However, I was most surprised to see that William Hess got Preddy's most famous mission of August 6, 1944, wrong. He used a photo from the mission of July 18, 1944 on which Preddy claimed three Ju 88s and one Me 109, all in aerial combat. But he gave the date as August 6, 1944, the mission on which Preddy set the ETO record with six Me 109s destroyed.
HASH(0xa64f18e8) out of 5 stars good official information March 17 2013
By Ron Rissler - Published on
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Down to Earth provided sound official documentation regarding strafing aces during WWII. It was information I was hoping for and information that will be helpful in a future publication.