Before the United States enters World War I, some American youths volunteer for the French military. Subsequently, they become the first U.S. fighter pilots and form a squadron known as the Lafayette Escadrille, whose exploits and heroism become the stuff of legend. This fictional version follows a laconic Texas rancher, an eager Nebraska kid, a Black boxer already in France, and a New York swell, as they arrive green for training, get their baptism by fire when German planes ambush them on their first mission, and graduate to heroics. Rawlings, the Texan, falls in love with a young woman he meets at a brothel.Written by
The character of Skinner is based on the Escadrille-pilot Eugene Bullard, an American who had gone to France and worked as a boxer there. He was also a son of a slave, just like Skinner. Bullard was rejected from the Lafayette Escadrille by a prejudiced white man. He served in another escadrille in the Lafayette Flying Corps. See more »
The hammers the pilots are given to correct machinegun jams look like finishing hammers for small nails. When WW I pilots did take hammers aloft, they were mallets with large, heavy heads to exert the necessary force on a stuck charging handle. See more »
By the start of 1916, World War I had wreaked havoc across Europe. Over nine million people would eventually die.
Although the airplane had only recently been invented, it was quickly adapted into a war machine.
The young men who flew them became the first fighter pilots and a new kind of hero was born.
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Very Entertaining. I will recommend it. Attention to detail was very factual, such as filing the bullets so they wouldn't jam and the Spandaus having to be hand cocked. Drideckers, the three winged Fokkers; did not enter the war until the very end. There were also two lions; Whisky and Soda, who were later banned to the stables because they kept peeing all over the château. The characters were very well done and told a good story. I hope it makes people look up the fliers and read about them. There were quite a few men that made up the Esquidrille and all were very interesting. When fact becomes legend print the legend.
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