New Vietnam War Memoir Gives Voice to Those Who Served with Honor, Huey Aircraft Commander Creates Tribute for all Generations

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New book "Black Cat 2-1: The True Story of a Vietnam Helicopter Pilot and His Crew" (Brown Books Publishing Group) by former Huey aircraft commander Bob Ford invites readers inside the cockpit, and recreates the danger they survived to see firsthand what "Black Cat 2-1" really means. A gripping page-turner that reads like a thriller, captures the humor of the men at war, and resounds with respect for those who served with honor.

A tribute for all generations

The enemy was close, but we couldn't fire until we knew the location of the second pilot

New Vietnam War memoir gives voice to those who served with honor.

In the Vietnam War, 2,197 helicopter pilots and 2,717 crew members were killed. Bob Ford was a Huey aircraft commander who flew over one thousand missions from July 1967 to July 1968 and survived.

Now he pays tribute to the valiant men he served with and to those who risked their lives for the troops on the ground in his praiseworthy memoir "Black Cat 2-1: The True Story of a Vietnam Helicopter Pilot and His Crew" (Brown Books Publishing Group)––a gripping page-turner that reads like a thriller, captures the humor of the men at war, and resounds with respect for those who served with honor.

“No braver men have taken to the field of battle than the pilots who flew the iconic Huey helicopters,” says David Maurer, Special Forces Veteran and author of The Dying Place. “Ford’s account is a priceless contribution to the literary canon of that war.”

For readers who served in Vietnam, Ford recreates the danger they survived. For others who know little about the war, he invites them inside the cockpit of the Huey helicopters he flew when he and his men dared to protect and rescue troops on the ground to learn firsthand what "Black Cat 2-1" really means.

After six weeks in Vietnam, Ford became an aircraft commander and took over the command of a helicopter detachment at Hue, forty miles from the DMZ. His tour included the beginning of the siege of Khe Sahn and the Tet Offensive in February 1968 when he and his men manned the perimeter for a three-day and three-night ground attack.

Prior to each mission, Ford and his crew would holler “Let’s crank it up—Let’s kick the tire and light the fire” before starting the Huey’s turbine engine––even though they had skids and no tires—they figured that’s what the guys that flew high performance jets said.

Lt. Col. Chuck Ward, Retired, Commanding Officer 282 Assault recalls, "Bob exemplified the best qualities of an army aviator. He never let me down. I am proud of him." While Heidi (Bud) Atanian, Crew Chief, Hue Detachment 282 Assault adds, "The pilots and crew were fearless. The bonds grew so strong that today when we meet, we still feel the connection."

Chuck Yeager, Sergeant York, Audie Murphy, Eddie Rickenbacker, Ike, and Jimmy Doolittle— these are the men who first captured the imagination of Bob Ford and instilled in him the feeling that every man should be willing to serve his country in the military.

"Black Cat 2-1" offers a positive story about men who served. It gives voice to those who fought but were silenced, and to those whose stories have never been told.

"Many good things came out of the Vietnam War," says Ford. "This memoir of personal experiences is one of them."

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Books are available online and in bookstores.

About the Author

Bob Ford made his commitment to flying helicopters when he was still in college at the University of Oklahoma. He completed ROTC training and received a commission in the US Army in 1966. He volunteered for army helicopter flight school and within one year was flying combat in Vietnam. When he completed his tour in Vietnam, he became an instructor pilot at Fort Wolters, Texas. Following his discharge in 1968, he moved to Okeene, Oklahoma, to head the Okeene division of the family flour milling business, which he still actively manages.

About Brown Books Publishing Group

Founded by Milli Brown in 1994, Brown Books Publishing Group is a full-service, independent publisher of high-quality books across all genres, from non-fiction to fiction. Committed to producing award-winning books for authors who choose to retain the rights to their intellectual property, Brown Books publishes more than one hundred titles a year and has won numerous, prestigious awards including the Writers Digest Grand Prize, Mom’s Choice Award, Foreword Book of the Year, Gold Ink Award, Axiom Business Book Award and many more. Brown Books authors have appeared on programs such as Piers Morgan Live, Oprah, the Today Show, FOX News, Face the Nation, CNN, and BBC News. They have been featured in publications such as USA Today, Publishers Weekly, and the New York Times. In addition, they have been guests on NPR programming, including The Diane Rehm Show, Morning Edition, The Takeaway, and Tell Me More. To learn more, visit:

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Cindy Birne
Brown Books Publishing Group
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