Fighter Pilot: The Memoirs of Legendary Ace Robin Olds
Robin Oldswas many things to many people. To his West Point football coach he was an All American destined for the National College Football Hall of Fame. To his P-38 and P-51 wartime squadrons in WWII he was the aggressive fighter pilot who made double ace and became their commander in nine short months. For the pioneers of the jet age, he was the wingman on the first j
The man with convictions was not a “yes” man and true to his character he spoke out against the rules of engagement in Vietnam. Brig. General Olds’s assessments were spot on and his grit in later years elevated my status of the man to a ...more
Robin Olds lived the life I would have liked to live when I was a kid, before I realized there would be no more aerial dogfights between rival fighter pilots. It's all missiles over-the-horizon, now. Oh, sure, it'd still be hella fun to fly a modern jet fighter, but the glory days of the business are in the history pages. Which is where we now find Robin Olds, having died a couple of years back.
His memoir has it all, a ...more
Also, amongst the many lessons I learnt reading this book, one will remain etched in my mind forever - if you believe you deserve better, go after it. Mr. Olds in this memoir recounts so many events where he has grabbed success from the yawning mouth of despair and defeat because he knew he was the b ...more
After reading the ...more
Before I go further though, I need to admit a certain bias – fo ...more
I first learned of General Olds through the Edward Sims book, "FIGHTER ACE", in the late 1970s, which mentioned only his Vietnam War service. But this autobiography gave me a fuller picture not only of the dedicated pilot/warrior and fighter ace (inclusive also of his Second World War service), but also of Robin Olds the man, warts and all.
Here was a man who was dedicated to his family, his country, and the men that ...more
For those reasons and my own life-long passion for all things that fly and the Air Force, I have been waiting to read his biography. While it is a good read and there are many details and stories that will be of i ...more
An excellent book about a unique man – one that many wanna-be fighter pilots look to emulate, but can’t hold a candle to the real deal. In my time in UPT and in the Air Force as a pilot, I saw many guys trying to be like Robin Olds, but they were all phonies. I have a feeling he would have rooted them out on the spot for faking it – I’m sure he could have sensed it.
Enjoyed the book – Olds was a true American patriot who led men in combat. Enjoyed reading about his dad (a WWI pursuit pilot ...more
Okay - so I finally got to read the book and really liked it. I love flying, history, and people who tell it like it is. Robin Olds has so many great stories from WWII through Vietnam and beyond that I just devoured the book. Being an AF pilot (though not a fighter pilot - just married to one), it was even more fun since I am familiar with many of t ...more
Then I verified it, and holy crap, it was all true. Not only did he shoot down those 12 planes in WWII, he got 4 MiGs in Vietnam, where he absolutely did lead from the front, and everyone who served with him really DID regard him as one of the finest leaders in the entire airforce. Hi ...more
After going through this book, I wonder how robin would feel if he saw the Air Force of today. I think I know, I bet he would wonder at the t ...more
Written by a daughter that Idolized her father, most of the work taken from his documents, military records and personal papers.
I would have not given it this much praise had I not gone to the Wright Patterson Air Force museum. There inside the museum, more space was devoted to him than another single person (along with several of the planes he flew).
I found the book to be an honest portrayal of a flawed man do a few things astonishing well.
For 1 year I joined a glider club. Just the kind of family, group, nerds I like to share my life with. Unfortunately I had to stop because it was too time consuming next to my kids and old house but ... one day I'll join them again.
I love reading about flying. Books. Magazines. Or whatever. When I was around ...more
Fighters are very hard to fly, and only a lucky SOB could have survived what Robin Olds survived. He bridged the gap from the World War II piston engine fighters through the j ...more
Olds was the son of an Army Air Corps pilot, so he got to grow up around airplanes and meet people like the World War I ace Eddie Rickenbacker. After graduating from West Point early in World War II, he went to flight training and was assigned to a fighter squadron in Britain. Flying first the 2 engine P-38 Lightning, and then the single engine P-51 Mustang, his squadron strafed ground targets and later defended bombers against German fighter planes. After the war and an unrewarding time as a v...more
The timeliness of reading this book is very appropriate. In the middle of drawing down from the nation's longest war, the downsizing of the milita ...more
I am struck by Robin Old's personality, in that he is very aware of those around him, remembering names and stories of support staff, including those that are native to the country he is operating in. He has a generosity of spi ...more
How a living, breathing human being becomes a legend: Olds parlays a WW 1 aviation heritage into a WW 2 Ace, and passes on all he knows to Vietnam Era lieutenants, who passed on that experience to Gulf War pilots. From the Sopwith Camels to the F-16 - Olds links the First Fighter planes to the best. There is an amazing amount of detail from dogfights to cat fights.