WWII Autobiography Defines a Day in the Life of an Airdale on the Flight Deck of a Fleet Aircraft Carrier; It Contains 355 Superb 8x10 National Archives Photographs

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Author Edward Atkins' book reads, "There they stand, row on row, column on column, that phalanx of behemoths daring you to advance." Come on board so that you too can viscerally experience along with the Airdales' their life on the flight deck of a WWII fleet aircraft carrier.

"One of the most dangerous places in the world". So said Lloyds of London, the prestigious insurance company. This was said about the modern carriers. In the writer's opinion the dangers on the flight deck of a fleet WWII aircraft carrier was an order of magnitude more dangerous. Packed on a two and one-half acre flight deck were about 100 large military aircraft (modern carriers carry about sixty larger aircraft on a four acre flight deck). Consider making your way to a wheelchock in among those aircraft packed cheek-by-jowl. Consider accompanying an aircraft as it lurks forward to its packed parking spot as an aircraft lands every 20 seconds. And consider that this book occurs on the U.S.S. Antietam which was a training ship (meaning that there were about 200 training flights a day almost every day (for about a year). And this flight deck was "manned" by recently inducted high school youths who were "still wet behind the ears". The first edition of this book can be seen at http://www.a-flight-deck-odyssey.com. This will picture, along with fulsome captions for each of the 355 photographs, the activities occurring on the flight deck of a fleet WWII aircraft carrier.

The website http://www.onwhichweserve.com displays the second edition which deals with the above but also includes a "second" book (do not be put off by the short video when accessing this website; it accurately portrays the nascent Airdale's feelings at that time in his life). This "second book" seamlessly segues into discussions of things purported to promote a more sanguine society. This "second book" could not properly exist without the "first book". Each page separately discusses a social topic as suggested by what preceded it in the first paragraph. This includes topics such as responsibility, accountability, respect for others and self, earned self-esteem (those who have it will "never" do anything antisocial), empathy, trustworthiness and similar values and virtues. Several chapters of this book ("On Which We Serve") can be read at the above website.

The author considers this book, On Which We Serve, to be fully appropriate for all those sixteen years of age and older. He feels that it would be most appropriate for high schools and colleges, both as apart of a history program or certainly a social studies/English program. (He says that this does not apply to PC discussion groups; that is, this is not in any way oriented to one political party or another). And he said that he would be remiss if this book isn't also recommended to church discussion groups (see http://www.on-which-we-serve.com which has two reviews of this book).

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Edward Atkins
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