RICHARD BONG: WORLD WAR II FLYING ACE BY PETE BARNES
The Wisconsin Historical Society announces the release of "Richard Bong: World War II Flying Ace" (ISBN: 978-0-87020-434-0; $12.95) by Pete Barnes. This book is part of the Badger Biography series for young readers, a unique collection of stories about real Wisconsinites.
Who would have imagined a farm boy from Wisconsin would be the greatest air hero of World War II? Richard Bong was an athletic and hard-working boy from northern Wisconsin who dreamed of flying from the first time a plane buzzed low over his family farm. When war broke out, he left behind his comfortable life of sports, deer hunting, and farm chores to fly the new P-38 Lightning for the Army Air Force. Stationed in New Guinea, Bong shot down a total of 40 Japanese flyers in under 3 years—beating the record of 26 set by Eddie Rickenbacker in World War I. His accomplishments won this modest pilot the title "Ace of Aces" and a Congressional Medal of Honor awarded by General MacArthur himself.
Follow Bong as he navigates his way through basic training, flight school, and life on an overseas army base. Watch as he takes to the skies in his beloved P-38, outflying Japanese aircraft with barrel rolls, dives, and turns. Celebrate as he meets and marries the love of his life back home in Wisconsin, and mourn as his life comes to a swift and unexpected end during an ill-fated training flight in California.
"Richard Bong: World War II Flying Ace" is the newest addition to the Badger Biographies series for young readers. The engaging narrative is complemented by an accessible format that includes historic photographs, a glossary of terms, sidebars on life in the military and suggestions for activities and discussion.
Media: For review copies of the book, author or book photos, or book event information, please contact Melanie Roth, Wisconsin Historical Society Press, 816 State St., Madison, Wis. 53706; (608) 264-6465; e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org.
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