The riveting memoir of a Vietnam War helicopter pilot.
“When you step into a Huey with Tom Johnson, you’re in for the real thing. No one has previously captured the Vietnam helicopter experience with such gripping authority.”—Robert F. Dorr, author of Chopper
From June 1967 to June 1968, Tom Johnson accumulated an astonishing 1,600 flying hours piloting the UH-1 “Iroquois”—better known as the “Huey”—as part of the famous First Air Cavalry Division. His battalion was one of the most decorated units of the Vietnam War, and helped redefine modern warfare.
Johnson’s riveting memoir takes us into key battles and rescue missions, including those for Hue and Khe Sanh. In harrowing detail, he tells of being shot down in the battle of A Shau Valley, of surviving enemy attacks during the Tet Offensive, and of a death-defying nighttime river rescue, in which only the bare feet of soldiers hanging off the Huey’s skids kept the helicopter from plunging under water. From dangerous missions to narrow escapes, Johnson’s memoir vividly captures the adrenaline rush and the horror of war, and takes you on a ride you’ll never forget.
About Tom A. Johnson
Tom A. Johnson was awarded the Distinguished Flying Cross, the Air Medal (with five Silver Leaf Clusters), and the Bronze Star for his Vietnam War service.
“To the Limit is a first-person journey into the grit, grimness, and chaos of war, told by a helicopter hero in a way that nails the feel, the mood, and the talk of air cavalrymen in battle.”—Robert F. Dorr, author of Chopper: A History of American Military Helicopter Operations from WWII to the War on Terror “This is the real thing: helicopter combat at its birth. No wonder Army helo drivers were among the most decorated aviators of the Vietnam War. Tom Johnson truly shows us what the rank-and-file Huey crews experienced.”—Peter B. Mersky, author of From the Flight Deck: An Anthology of the Best Writing on Carrier Warfare and U.S. Marine Corps Aviation: 1912 to the Present “Always leery of superlatives in book reviews, I feel compelled to use them in describing Tom Johnson’s To the Limit. It is an intense, compelling, gut-wrenching narrative—by far the best account of helicopter warfare I have read.”—William Smallwood, author of Strike Eagle: Flying the F-15E in the Gulf War and Warthog: Flying the A-10 in the Gulf War