Pacific Payback: The Carrier Aviators Who Avenged Pearl Harbor at the Battle of Midway

Pacific Payback: The Carrier Aviators Who Avenged Pearl Harbor at the Battle of Midway

by Stephen L. Moore


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Pacific Payback: The Carrier Aviators Who Avenged Pearl Harbor at the Battle of Midway by Stephen L. Moore

Sunday, December 7, 1941, dawned clear and bright over the Pacific....

But for the Dauntless dive-bomber crews of the USS Enterprise returning to their home base on Oahu, it was a morning from hell. Flying directly into the Japanese ambush at Pearl Harbor, they lost a third of their squadron and witnessed the heart of America’s Navy broken and smoldering on the oil-slicked waters below.

The next six months, from Pearl Harbor to the Battle of Midway—a dark time during which the Japanese scored victory after victory—this small band of aviators saw almost constant deployment, intense carrier combat, and fearsome casualties. Many were killed by enemy Zero fighters, antiaircraft fire, or deadly crash landings in the Pacific, while others were captured and spent years in POW camps. Yet the Enterprise’s Dauntless crews would be the first to strike an offensive blow against Japanese installations in the Marshall Islands, would be the first to sink a Japanese warship, and would shepherd the Doolittle Raiders’ bombing of Tokyo.

Not until Midway, though, would Dauntless crews get the chance to settle the score...and change the course of World War II.

Drawing on dozens of new interviews and oral histories, author Stephen L. Moore brings to life inspiring stories of individual sacrifice and bravery—and the sweeping saga of one of America’s greatest triumphs.


Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780451465535
Publisher: Penguin Publishing Group
Publication date: 06/02/2015
Edition description: Reprint
Pages: 448
Sales rank: 183,484
Product dimensions: 5.90(w) x 9.00(h) x 1.10(d)
Age Range: 18 Years

About the Author

Stephen L. Moore, a sixth-generation Texan, graduated from Stephen F. Austin State University in Nacogdoches, Texas, where he studied advertising, marketing, and journalism. He is the author of multiple books on World War II and Texas history, including Taming Texas, a biography of his great-great-great grandfather William T. Sadler, who was one of the first Texas Ranger captains in the 1830s. Steve lives north of Dallas in Lantana, Texas, with his wife, Cindy, and their three children.

Table of Contents

Preface 1

1 "We Would Have One Helluva Celebration" 5

2 "Our World was Shattered" 23

3 The Stuff 46

4 "I Was Really Upset" 56

5 "We Lost as Much as We Gained" 67

6 Island Raiders 106

7 Arrival of the "New Boys" 135

8 "Something Big Was in the Works" 156

9 "God, this is It!" 175

10 Five Minutes of Glory 214

11 The Deadly Flights Home 237

12 The Japanese Strike Back 264

13 The Flying Dragon Strike 276

14 "The Little Devil was Most Difficult to Hit" 302

15 "I Wish I Had Just One More Bomb" 324

Epilogue 349

Appendix: Decorations Awarded to USS Enterprise Dauntless Airmen for Action from December 7, 1941-June 6, 1942 361

Sources 377

Bibliography 381

Chapter Notes 395

Index 425

What People are Saying About This

From the Publisher

“Deeply researched and well written…by far the most detailed account of USS Enterprise’s dive-bombers, and their decisive role at the Battle of Midway.”—Jonathan Parshall, coauthor of Shattered Sword: The Untold Story of the Battle of Midway

“[A] heartfelt tribute to the SBD pilots and radiomen…a valuable contribution to the history of the Pacific War.”—John B. Lundstrom, author of The First Team

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Pacific Payback: The Carrier Aviators Who Avenged Pearl Harbor at the Battle of Midway 4.3 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 4 reviews.
DRBurg More than 1 year ago
I've read many books about Midway and this was an especially good one. It was easy to read without laborious detail but included all the important events from the American side and just enough to understand what was going on with the Japanese. The main focus was on the U. S. Naval aviators and their very dangerous missions from Pearl Harbor to the battle that they won at Midway. For those interested in a good reference for our first naval combat aviators, excellent tabulations of tactical organization for each mission are included throughout the book and a tabulated list of commendations is in the appendix.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
lots of excellent coverage of Midway from the pilot's seat. well done, informative.
Anonymous 3 months ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago