Remembering The Dragon Lady

The U-2 Spy Plane: Memoirs of the Men who made the Legend

Brig Gen (Ret.) Gerald E. McIlmoyle, Linda Rios Bromley

With heightened tensions mounting in the Cold War, President Dwight Eisenhower's request for more accurate intelligence information on the Soviet Union was the spark that ignited the spy plane project.
Publication date:
December 2011
Publisher :
Helion and Company
Language:
English
Illustration :
100 photos, 1 map
Format Available     Quantity Price
Paperback
ISBN : 9781908916938

Dimensions : 234 X 156 cm
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£24.95
eBook (ePub)
ISBN : 9781907677854

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£3.99
eBook (PDF)
ISBN : 9781907677854

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Overview
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• Complete illustrated history of the U-2 spy plane project Includes accounts and photography of British U-2 pilots

With heightened tensions mounting in the Cold War, President Dwight Eisenhower's request for more accurate intelligence information on the Soviet Union was the spark that ignited the spy plane project. Modified USAF bombers began overflights of the Soviet Union in 1951, but existing lower flying aircraft in the US inventory were vulnerable to anti-aircraft fire and a number of cross-border flights were shot down.

To meet the challenge and improve the survivability, the Lockheed Corporation received approval for their revolutionary design of a new recon aircraft on December 9, 1954. A test pilot flew the first flight on August 1, 1955, after only eight months of production, a record-breaking result for rollout of a new project, especially one this complex and innovative.

Nicknamed the Dragon Lady, the U-2 has flown over Cuba, Alaska, the North and South poles, Vietnam, Australia, Sweden, New Zealand, and Afghanistan, and is as relevant today as it was 50 years ago.

First-person memoirs of pilots, maintenance specialists, a flight surgeon, photographic specialists and some family members are included in this book. The US also trained U-2 pilots from Taiwan and the UK and some of their photos and memoirs are in this collection.

About the Author
Gerald E. McIlmoyle enlisted in the US Air Force and began his pilot training in November 1951. Graduating in December 1952, he flew F-86s in Korea, became a flight commander and then assistant operations officer and was recruited into the U-2 program in 1957.

REVIEWS

....at last, this book fills in many of the missing gaps from Cold War U-2 operations, and reports on those elusive RAF pilots that flew this remarkable spy plane.”
Airfix Model World

First-person memoirs feature prominently in this book. These include pilots, engineers, photographic specialists and family members. Photos and memoirs from US-trained British U-2 pilots are also included in this absorbing examination of the legendary military aircraft.
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