Bonnie-Sue: A Marine Corps Helicopter Squadron in Vietnam


Bonnie-Sue begins as a timeless classic, a story of men in combat. Yet, the book soars far above the mud of war. The author blends detail, emotion, and grim realism. Day by day, without profanity, he breathes life into a desperate struggle for survival. Against the backdrop of the turbulent 1960s, Bonnie-Sue evolves into a saga of commitment and sacrifice, love and brotherhood.
Read More Show Less
... See more details below
Available through our Marketplace sellers and in stores.

Pick Up In Store Near You

Reserve and pick up in 60 minutes at your local store

Other sellers (Paperback)
  • All (3) from $15.00   
  • New (1) from $0.00   
  • Used (2) from $15.00   
Sort by
Page 1 of 1
Showing All
Note: Marketplace items are not eligible for any coupons and promotions
Seller since 2005

Feedback rating:



New — never opened or used in original packaging.

Like New — packaging may have been opened. A "Like New" item is suitable to give as a gift.

Very Good — may have minor signs of wear on packaging but item works perfectly and has no damage.

Good — item is in good condition but packaging may have signs of shelf wear/aging or torn packaging. All specific defects should be noted in the Comments section associated with each item.

Acceptable — item is in working order but may show signs of wear such as scratches or torn packaging. All specific defects should be noted in the Comments section associated with each item.

Used — An item that has been opened and may show signs of wear. All specific defects should be noted in the Comments section associated with each item.

Refurbished — A used item that has been renewed or updated and verified to be in proper working condition. Not necessarily completed by the original manufacturer.

Very Good
1999 Soft Cover Fine- 8vo-over 7?"-9?" tall. First published in 1996, this is the third printing from 1999 510 pages, illustrated. "Step through this unique looking-glass into ... the volatile crucible of combat in Vietnam. Day by day, the author breathes life into this eloquent saga of Marines at war." FINE-SOFTCOVER. Read more Show Less


Usually ships in 1-2 business days

  • Canadian
  • International
  • Standard, 48 States
  • Standard (AK, HI)
  • Express, 48 States
  • Express (AK, HI)
Seller since 2014

Feedback rating:


Condition: Good
Buy with Confidence. Excellent Customer Support. We ship from multiple US locations. No CD, DVD or Access Code Included.

Ships from: Fort Mill, SC

Usually ships in 1-2 business days

  • Standard, 48 States
Page 1 of 1
Showing All
Sort by
Sending request ...


Bonnie-Sue begins as a timeless classic, a story of men in combat. Yet, the book soars far above the mud of war. The author blends detail, emotion, and grim realism. Day by day, without profanity, he breathes life into a desperate struggle for survival. Against the backdrop of the turbulent 1960s, Bonnie-Sue evolves into a saga of commitment and sacrifice, love and brotherhood.
Read More Show Less

Editorial Reviews

Leatherneck Magazine
To date, there is no better book about the Marine helicopter war in Vietnam. It rises above the mud of war and takes the reader on a ride that is not only terrifying, but an inspiring mission with professional and courageous men.
Marine Corps Aviation Association
This is our story, told some twenty to thirty years later, but as chilling and touching to us who were there as if it took place yesterday. Who are we? We are every Marine Corps helicopter crewman who flew in Vietnam.
Vietnam Helicopter Pilots Association
There is no crying or remorse, only a factual, hard hitting, and truthful approach to reality. The detailed history of the Marine helicopter pilots has never been written in such a hard, cold-steel, factual way as this great book reveals.
Read More Show Less

Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780965081429
  • Publisher: Heritage Press International
  • Publication date: 3/28/1997
  • Pages: 510
  • Product dimensions: 5.88 (w) x 9.13 (h) x 1.09 (d)

Read an Excerpt

1. Most Grunts look upon transportation by helicopter as an evil omen, an occupational hazard, a mode of travel to be avoided if humanly possible. For these Grunts, a helicopter assault into a hot landing zone can be terrifying. While in the helicopter in the air, they have no control over their destiny. Strapped into the web troop seats, they are buffeted by the wild vibration of a twisting high-speed autorotative descent. The shrill metallic whine of the aft transmission drowns out the wail of the turbines. Battered by the tooth-jarring shudders from flying through the invisible rotor-wash of a preceding helicopter, hearing the crackle of small arms fire below, the Grunts are powerless to respond. Swept along by unseen aerodynamic and mechanical forces beyond their control and understanding, they pray for the relative safety of a firefight on solid ground.

2. We verbally rehearsed our plan on the ICS. Strange, but I remember that our voices were calm and steady. None of us had any reservations despite the perils of our task. We had to succeed. Our only fear was the fear of possible failure, the fear of making some dumb mistake, the fear that we might somehow let our fellow Marines down. The Grunts depended on us. They relied on us in a way that no men can understand unless they have endured the volatile crucible of warfare together. We could not - must not - fail them.


Another shower of grenades landed in and around the perimeter. The chilling rattle of AK-47 fire swept over the ridge. The Marines fired back through the thick vegetation and threw grenades down the incline. Most of the Marines were hit now, mainly by grenade fragments. Neither the North Vietnamese nor the Marines could see each other because of the tall and thick elephant grass.

Hopkins and his assistant patrol leader, Staff Sergeant David A. Woodward, each grabbed a handful of grenades. They ran about 20 feet out through the elephant grass, and from there they hurled their high explosive grenades in the direction of the North Vietnamese. Hopkins got hit in the face and in the hand, but both he and Woodward were able to scamper back into the Marine perimeter.

Now the incoming fire intensified, and the Marines fired back. The only sensation was chaos, bedlam, and unceasing crescendos of deafening noise.


The Grunts straggled up behind their assigned helicopters. Here they dropped their gear, their rifles, and sat down on the grass to wait. The Grunts knew full well what lay in store for them that hot Indochinese morning. Dong Ha was near the coast in the flatlands. The coming battle, however, would be fought on terrain that is maddening, worse than any the Marine Corps had ever encountered, worse than Guadalcanal.

The mountains west of Dong Ha are cloaked in 100 foot high jungle canopy. Beneath that dense foliage lies a tangled and nearly impenetrable mass of vines and undergrowth so thick that machetes are needed to hack through it. The jungle vegetation is so dense that at midday it appears almost as dark as at midnight. There would be no breeze to ease the stifling and suffocating heat, no relief from the constant swarms of stinging insects that make days miserable and nights unbearable. The jagged and jungled Cordillera is a wild and uninhabited wilderness. It is spooky beyond mortal belief, a foreign land where demons, trolls, and evil spirits might live and roam the earth.

5. The camaraderie, trust, and loyalty can never be explained to one who has not experienced the unique bond that is shared by Marine Corps helicopter crews in combat. Our bond transcended material possessions, military rank, and social status. We shared a brotherly love, a love that no earthly circumstance can ever shatter. War is a cruel game, a brutal game, a deadly game. I knew that this would be the most intense and utopian experience that I would ever have. Although it now sounds insane, right at that moment I would not have traded places with anyone else on earth.

Read More Show Less

Customer Reviews

Be the first to write a review
( 0 )
Rating Distribution

5 Star


4 Star


3 Star


2 Star


1 Star


Your Rating:

Your Name: Create a Pen Name or

Barnes & Review Rules

Our reader reviews allow you to share your comments on titles you liked, or didn't, with others. By submitting an online review, you are representing to Barnes & that all information contained in your review is original and accurate in all respects, and that the submission of such content by you and the posting of such content by Barnes & does not and will not violate the rights of any third party. Please follow the rules below to help ensure that your review can be posted.

Reviews by Our Customers Under the Age of 13

We highly value and respect everyone's opinion concerning the titles we offer. However, we cannot allow persons under the age of 13 to have accounts at or to post customer reviews. Please see our Terms of Use for more details.

What to exclude from your review:

Please do not write about reviews, commentary, or information posted on the product page. If you see any errors in the information on the product page, please send us an email.

Reviews should not contain any of the following:

  • - HTML tags, profanity, obscenities, vulgarities, or comments that defame anyone
  • - Time-sensitive information such as tour dates, signings, lectures, etc.
  • - Single-word reviews. Other people will read your review to discover why you liked or didn't like the title. Be descriptive.
  • - Comments focusing on the author or that may ruin the ending for others
  • - Phone numbers, addresses, URLs
  • - Pricing and availability information or alternative ordering information
  • - Advertisements or commercial solicitation


  • - By submitting a review, you grant to Barnes & and its sublicensees the royalty-free, perpetual, irrevocable right and license to use the review in accordance with the Barnes & Terms of Use.
  • - Barnes & reserves the right not to post any review -- particularly those that do not follow the terms and conditions of these Rules. Barnes & also reserves the right to remove any review at any time without notice.
  • - See Terms of Use for other conditions and disclaimers.
Search for Products You'd Like to Recommend

Recommend other products that relate to your review. Just search for them below and share!

Create a Pen Name

Your Pen Name is your unique identity on It will appear on the reviews you write and other website activities. Your Pen Name cannot be edited, changed or deleted once submitted.

Your Pen Name can be any combination of alphanumeric characters (plus - and _), and must be at least two characters long.

Continue Anonymously
Sort by: Showing 1 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted July 19, 2005

    Courage, Committment and Honor

    Marion Sturkey has captured the essence of combat from a USMC helicopter pilot's perspective. Very few actions in Vietnam did not involve helicopters, and Sturkey writes about the mundane, the terrorfying, and bizarre missions with dispassion and with clarity, managing to illustrate the courage and fear always present in combat situations. He does this without hyperbole and without self-acclaim. His description of history of the Vietnam conflict is brief but on the money. He focuses mainly on the events that he experienced. Sturkey's writing reflects the esteem in which he holds all combat veterans, especially United States Marines. I highly recommend this book to anyone who has an interest in what makes a Marine tick or what it takes to be a combat helicopter pilot, or just to read about the experiences of a Marine helicpter squadron in Vietnam. Pardon the cliche, but this book is spellbinding.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
Sort by: Showing 1 Customer Reviews

If you find inappropriate content, please report it to Barnes & Noble
Why is this product inappropriate?
Comments (optional)