Published Authors

Fighting Cavaliers: The F-105 History of the 421st Tactical Fighter Squadron 1963-1967

by W. Howard Plunkett and Jeff Kolln

This history of the 421 Tactical Fighter Squadron, the Fighting Cavaliers, tells much more than the story of a single F-105 squadron in the early to mid-1960s. The 421st was only one Thunderchief squadron during this period to become combat ready in the Air Force’s newest fighter-bomber. Its history is intertwined with the histories of sister squadrons in the 355 TFW at George AFB in California and McConnell AFB, Kansas, as well as in the 388 TFW at Korat Air Base, Thailand. You can read about Cold War alerts with nuclear weapons in Turkey, Korea, and Okinawa and understand how pilots in a new unit developed their combat skills in a new aircraft to prepare them for flying their planes in the hot war over North Vietnam. Read also about destroying SAM sites with the Wild Weasels, as well as squadron pilots’ successes and failures during Rolling Thunder bombing missions to such major targets as: * The Bac Giang Bridge * The Yen Bai bomb storage area * Hanoi oil storage facilities * Yen Vien and Thai Nguyen rail yards * Thai Nguyen iron and steel plant There are airborne battles with MiG-17s and MiG-21s as well as stories of pilots flying high-risk missions and earning high awards – Air Force Crosses and Medals of Honor. During the four years they flew the Thunderchief, the Fighting Cavaliers lost 33 of their supersonic jets to accidents and combat. This book details each loss in context with the mission and how the pilots were rescued, became POWs or died. This book covers all these topics and many more based on solid historical research together with combat stories from the F-105 pilots themselves.