The Vought F4U Corsair was the greatest fighter plane in the WWII Pacific theater. For its pilots, survival was not guaranteed. Enemy planes and antiaircraft fire were dangerous, but aerial mishaps, poor flying, mechanical gremlins, weather, and bad luck took their toll too. American, British, and New Zealander Corsair pilots often found themselves with just seconds to escape. Some disappeared as POWs. A few, such as Major Gregory "Pappy" Boyington, emerged alive at the end of the war. Others had to rely on their training and the means at hand to escape do-or-die situations. Coast watchers, submarines, blimps, and air-sea rescues saved many. Even the French Foreign Legion smuggled a pilot to safety in the most daring Corsair pilot rescue of WWII. Others escaped death initially only to have to fight alongside their rescuers. Included are firsthand accounts from surviving pilots and tales of many of the great WWII Corsair aces.?
The son of an Army officer and a military librarian, Martin Irons was raised in an environment that fueled his interest in history and World War II. As a child on post, he romped with his brother in derelict B-29 Superfortress bombers. Playing soldier, he and the other kids used surplus Army gear. Toy soldiers led to building WWII model tanks, planes, and ships. The quest for the background information of important battles began the start of a collection of World War II literature early in life. Family trips and vacations included visits to Army forts and Navy ports.?The Great Escape,?The World at War, and?Baa Baa Black Sheep?further flamed his thirst for WWII knowledge and adventure.

Using his background as a scientist and former Army Reserve officer, Irons labors to bring unwritten World War II stories to light. Firsthand accounts by surviving World War II sailors, marines, and pilots bring his narratives to life. His first book,?Phalanx against the Divine Wind: Protecting the Fast Carrier Task Force, was published in 2017.

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