It was too early to waste my battery before the rescue force was in place, so I turned the radio off. During the next thirty minutes, I listened as Nail's ...
Author: Kenny Fields
Publisher: Naval Institute Press
On 31 May 1968, Navy Lt. Kenny Fields catapulted off USS America, in his A-7 Corsair II on his first combat mission. His target was in Laos, which at the time was officially off-limits for U.S. attacks. Fields call sign Streetcar 304 was the first to roll in and destroyed the target with a direct hit. Three AAA guns began to fire, but, following his wingman, he rolled in again. This time many more AAA guns opened up and Fields was shot down hitting the ground with enemy troop in hot pursuit. The Rescue of Streetcar 304 is Fields exhilarating narrative of the 40-hour ordeal that followed, in what turned out to be one of the largest and harrowing air rescues of the war. Before it was over, the U.S. Air Force had flown 189 sorties to rescue Fields, and in the process four pilots had ejected, seven planes were lost or heavily damaged, and one pilot became a POW for five years. This tale of a Navy fighter pilot s escape and rescue is a gripping story of courage and brotherhood during the Vietnam War.