Charleston's Post and Courier reviews FLY NAVY
July 11, 2011

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FLY NAVY: Discovering the Extraordinary People and Enduring Spirit of Naval Aviation. By Alvin Townley.

Within seven years of the Wright Brothers' historic first flight, Glenn Curtis and Eugene Ely had taken off and landed a plane on a ship's deck, proving that naval aviation was possible.

Today, a U.S. Navy aircraft carrier is the most visible and readily available instrument of the United States' foreign policy. Anytime, anywhere in the world there is a crisis, war or small conflict, the first thing to be asked by the powers that be is, "Where are the carriers?"

No other country in the world can project their power as far forward as the United States, and that is because of the carriers: 4.5 acres each of sovereign U.S. territory that can be anywhere in the world in a matter of days, sending planes and bombs into the sky to enforce any directive given them by the president.

Buttressed by Alvin Townley's thorough research (he also went to sea on a carrier), "Fly Navy" does an excellent job of conveying some of that experience to the reader. He covers not only the aviators who get the glory for missions well-done, but the enlisted air crew who make all of the missions possible within one of the most demanding and unforgiving environments, seven days a week, 24 hours a day.

"Fly Navy" is a thoroughly enjoyable read and a must for any naval enthusiast.


Reviewer: Michael A. Green, an engineering technician at The Post and Courier.

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