By Raymond C. Kerns
An remarkable memoir of an aviator's carrier within the Pacific Theater — "If you are looking for macho, fighting-man speak, you will have picked up the incorrect booklet. . . . this can be simply a good narration of a few of my studies . . . in the course of my provider within the U.S. military among 1940 and 1945." —Raymond C. Kerns — The son of a Kentucky tobacco farmer, Raymond Kerns dropped out of highschool after the 8th grade to assist at the farm. He enlisted within the military in 1940 and, after education as a radio operator within the artillery, was once assigned to Schofield Barracks (Oahu) the place he witnessed the japanese assault on Pearl Harbor and took part within the resulting conflict. within the months ahead of Pearl Harbor, Kerns had handed the Army's flight education admission examination with flying colours. yet simply because he lacked a highschool degree, the military refused to provide him flying classes. Undaunted, deepest Kerns took classes with a civilian flying tuition and was once truly scheduled for his first solo...
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Additional resources for Above the Thunder. Reminiscences of a Field Artillery Pilot in World War II
Factories building ships and airplanes during the war; Lieutenant Kerns’s fiancée, Dorie Lane, was one of them). Major Carpenter was Gen. John Wood’s personal pilot, and this fact, plus his having a little more rank than most Army pilots, meant that he was not often burdened with artillery-spotting duties and thus had more time to devote to his own private war. It was rumored that the death of his brother in combat gave him extra motivation to strike at the enemy. Newspaper correspondents dubbed Carpenter “Bazooka Charlie” in their dispatches home, and the bolder ones begged rides with him on his aerial hunts, though he preferred to fly solo because the extra weight of a passenger cramped his style.
Here an L-4 has landed by hooking the nylon loop hanging from a trolley on the cable, has been braked to a stop, and is hanging suspended from the cable. Next it will be lowered to the deck of the ship, an LST (Photograph courtesy of the Aviation Historical Society). 10 For all its Rube Goldberg appearance, the Brodie device proved its worth in the assault on Okinawa, where Brodie-equipped LSTs brought their Cubs in close to shore and launched them to direct deadly accurate naval fire on Japanese shore defenses, and retrieved them to refuel and relaunch.
However, unlike with the Brodie system, the airplanes could not return to land on the flight decks, because they were too short for landings. On at least one occasion, during the invasion of France, a Cub could not find anywhere to land ashore and had to come back and ditch in the water beside its LST (the ship then tried to winch the airplane back aboard, but wrecked it in the attempt). 11 It was his first-ever takeoff from an LST, but his L-4 hopped into the air just fine, and with that worry out of the way he headed toward the beach, weaving among the landing craft and nervously remembering how other Cubs had been shot down by their own side in the earlier invasion of North Africa.
Above the Thunder. Reminiscences of a Field Artillery Pilot in World War II by Raymond C. Kerns