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Stealth Boat: Fighting the Cold War in a Fast-Attack Submarine
     

Stealth Boat: Fighting the Cold War in a Fast-Attack Submarine

by Gannon McHale
 

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Stealth Boat is a memoir of Gannon McHale's years in the U.S. Navy and of the men he served with in the Submarine Service between 1967 and 1970, and some of what they accomplished and experienced during that time. It is my also his remembrance of what it was like to grow up aboard a nuclear powered Fast Attack Submarine. McHale reported aboard USS

Overview


Stealth Boat is a memoir of Gannon McHale's years in the U.S. Navy and of the men he served with in the Submarine Service between 1967 and 1970, and some of what they accomplished and experienced during that time. It is my also his remembrance of what it was like to grow up aboard a nuclear powered Fast Attack Submarine. McHale reported aboard USS Sturgeon (SSN 637) still a boy, and left a young man. This was the most important period in his personal development, and it profoundly affected the way he has lived the rest of his life. For many years any public discussion of the mission of Fast Attack submarines during the Cold War has been strictly guarded. The Freedom of Information Act now allows us to look back at a period in our nation’s history that is worth remembering, and the part played by the U.S Submarine Service in winning that war is undeniable. America in the late 1960’s was tortured by internal and external conflict. The war in Vietnam was unpopular and the Draft was still in operation.At the age of nineteen millions of young American men faced the probability of being drafted and sent to fight a war that many of them did not believe in. Some fled the country, others were drafted, and many more like the author chose to be proactive about their military service and enlisted. His book focuses on several men who did just that, and in the process became lifelong friends.

Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher

"Gannon McHale delivers with this highly enjoyable memoir of an enlisted man on a fast-attack submarine during the Cold War. The author's first-person narrative mixes laugh-out-loud humor in ports of call with high suspense chasing Soviet missile submarines at breathtakingly close quarters in the North Atlantic during the late 1960s. The incredible fetes of the Navy's stealth boat USS Sturgeon (SSN637) come to life in this insightful chronicle of the three years McHale spent in the Silent Service." —Carl LaVO, author of The Galloping Ghost: The Extraordinary life of Submarine Legend Eugene Fluckey

"Stealth Boat is an elegant and unflinching memoir of life inside one of America's most accomplished Cold War fast attack subs. Energized with delicious details and smile-provoking humor, Stealth Boat explains the crucial symbiosis between sailors and their complex machine. Gannon McHale's book also reveals that the oft-overlooked human factor is as essential in the unforgiving world of submarine operations as high technology. Anyone fascinated with the story behind the story will find McHale's book irresistible." —Stephen Johnson, author of Silent Steel: The Mysterious Death of the Nuclear Attack Sub USS Scorpion

"Stealth Boat indeed! This boat and indeed the entire Sturgeon-class of 29 boats from the Sturgeon to the Silversides were the hot rods of the ocean and were the test beds for the later Los Angeles boats. The stories in this book are the stuff that is bantered about at SubVet meetings and conventions. They are what I remember of the 60's when I rode a boomer for 5 years. I even recognized two names in the book which surprised me. A handbook for Sturgeon sailors and an education for those that didn't ride these boats. It was a pleasure to see an important book written from the enlisted side of the spectrum. Thanks Gannon!" —Ron Martini, author of The Submariner's Dictionary

"Set against a backdrop of cultural anecdotes, music of the day, and world events delivered in a staccato style, the reality of life beneath the waves unfolds. Although others have done a more meticulous job of documenting the broader role of submarines in fighting the Cold War, as well as the role of Admiral Hyman G. Rickover's naval nuclear power program in revolutionizing the technology of submarines, Stealth Boat is unsurpassed in showing the impact on the thoughts and actions of the submariners involved." — Timothy J. Galpin, Journal of Cold War Studies

"To naval personnel the term 'shipmate' is sacred. McHale's spirited descriptions put the reader on board the nuclear submarine Sturgeon with him and his shipmates. They worked hard when on duty and squeezed every drop of pleasure out of their time off duty. He skillfully evokes the flavor of the late-1960s era when the United States was fighting a hot war in Vietnam and a Cold War at sea against the Soviets. His account is timely in that regard and timeless in showing us how submariners live and work." — Paul Stillwell, editor of Submarine Stories: Recollections from the Diesel Boats

"Stealth Boat is a unique book in that the author, Gannon McHale, offers the reader an enlisted man's perspective of life aboard a U.S. Navy nuclear-powered fast-attack submarine, the USS Sturgeon (SSN637) during the Cold War. He writes an absorbing story using a most appealing conversational style. One is captured almost immediately by his detailed account of life aboard the attack boat, his association and lasting friendships with shipmates, underway operations, and 'Goin North' patrols into hostile waters to conduct underwater espionage against the Soviet Union." —Capt. James E. Wise Jr., USN (Ret.), author of U-505: The Final Journey

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9781591145028
Publisher:
Naval Institute Press
Publication date:
10/15/2008
Pages:
187
Product dimensions:
6.10(w) x 9.10(h) x 1.00(d)

Meet the Author


Gannon McHale is a New York-based character actor who has appeared on Broadway and in regional theatres across North America, Europe, and Asia during a thirty-year career. Most recently he appeared in the movie, Lincoln.

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