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Phantom in the Sky: A Marine's Back Seat View of the Vietnam War Hardcover – 26 Mar 2019


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"I found his description of Naval Flight Officer training fascinating and appreciate his frank descriptions of debilitating airsickness. It is the mark of a true professional to be sick in an aircraft while pulling upwards of 7 Gs and still accomplish the mission."--Peter Fey, author of Bloody Sixteen: The USS Oriskany and Air Wing 16 during the Vietnam War

"This memoir is unique in that it addresses the Marine Corps 'guy in back' perspective of a weapon systems operator. It is insightful, informative, and entertaining."--Earl H. Tilford, author of Crosswinds: The Air Force in Vietnam

"The pilot-RIO relationship was a unique combination of teamwork and trust, critical to the accomplishment of any and every mission. RIO Thorsen helped us live it to the fullest during every flight."-- Col. Gene Brown, USMC, Ret., the author's F-4 Phantom principal combat pilot

"This solid reconstruction of a Marine aviator's training and Vietnam War experiences adds an F-4 back-seater's perspective to the expanding Vietnam War aviation memoir canon."--Publishers Weekly

"[U]sually uneventful flying tasks often suddenly turned into moments of sheer terror. . . . Unhampered by concentrating on flying the airplane (the back seat had no control stick), an RIO sees beyond conventional behavior and recommends actions that save airplanes and lives. . . . Phantom in the Sky rings with authenticity."--VVA Veteran

"[H]ere are true tales of life-or-death combat, secret missions, and perilous close calls with anti-aircraft weapons. Phantom in the Sky is riveting from cover to cover, highly recommended."--Midwest Book Review

About the Author

TERRY L. THORSEN flew 123 combat sorties, garnering ten Air Medals, a Bronze Star award, and two Navy Unit Commendations. After retiring as a major, he was a professional photographer, a crime scene investigator, and finally a police department crime lab supervisor. He lives in Mansfield, Texas.

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