The Douglas AD Skyraider is considered the most effective naval aircraft of the Korean War, overshadowed in fame by the new jet fighters that captured the public imagination. Too late for combat in World War II, the AD had replaced Dauntless, Helldiver, and Avenger dive- and torpedo-bombers from that conflict on carrier decks during the late 1940s and was on hand to react to the surprise North Korean invasion of South Korea in June 1950.
This book tells the story of the carrier-based U.S. Navy squadrons and the three land-based U.S. Marine Corps AD units that flew combat missions against the North Koreans and Chinese. Drawing from personal interviews with AD pilots, the authors paint a harrowing picture of the deadly combat of this often forgotten air war. Included in this volume are the AD night attack and electronic countermeasures crews who harassed the enemy lines of communications after dark. Supporting the text are a number of previously unpublished private photographs that bring the stories of these pilots to life. Finally, the book contains extensive appendices that detail every unit deployment by carrier, air group, Skyraider model, and tail code, as well as detailed lists noting every Skyraider lost in the war.