Military history

The Twilight Warriors: The Deadliest Naval Battle of World War II and the Men Who Fought It

The Twilight Warriors: The Deadliest Naval Battle of World War II and the Men Who Fought It

April 1945. The end of World War II finally appears to be nearing. The Third Reich is collapsing in Europe, and the Americans are overpowering the once-mighty Japanese Empire in the Pacific. For a group of young pilots trained in the twilight of the war, the greatest worry is that it will end before they have a chance to face the enemy. They call themselves Tail End Charlies. They fly at the tail end of formations, stand at the tail end of chow lines, and now they are catching the tail end of the war. What they don’t know is that they will be key players in the bloodiest and most difficult of naval battles—not only of World War II but in all of American history.

Prologue

Part One: THE WAY OF THE WARRIOR

Chapter 1: The Next Island

Chapter 2: Tail End Charlies

Chapter 3: You Are Already Gods

Chapter 4: Tiny Tim

Chapter 5: Your Favorite Enemy

Chapter 6: First Blooding

Chapter 7: The Mood in Boys’ Town

Chapter 8: Shoot the Son of a Bitch

Chapter 9: We Will Save the Ship

Chapter 10: Thunder Gods

Chapter 11: Three Seconds to Die

Chapter 12: And Where Is the Navy?

Chapter 13: Gimlet Eyes and the Alligator

Part Two: STORMING THE GREAT LOOCHOO

Chapter 14: Love Day

Chapter 15: Bourbon and Puddle Water

Chapter 16: Ten-Go

Chapter 17: Divine Wind

Chapter 18: Breakout

Chapter 19: Race for Glory

Chapter 20: First Wave

Chapter 21: Ducks in a Gallery

Chapter 22: There She Blows

Chapter 23: Dumbo and Mighty Mouse

Part Three: FLOATING CHRYSANTHEMUMS

Chapter 24: A Ridge Called Kakazu

Chapter 25: Ohka

Chapter 26: Gunslingers

Chapter 27: Black Friday

Chapter 28: Keep Moving and Keep Shooting

Chapter 29: As Long as a Gun Will Fire

Chapter 30: Glory Day

Chapter 31: Target Intrepid

Chapter 32: Call Me Ernie

Chapter 33: Counteroffensive

Chapter 34: Bottom of the Barrel

Chapter 35: Gone with the Spring

Chapter 36: Change of Command

Chapter 37: Ritual of Death

Chapter 38: Setting Sun

The Honored Dead of Carrier Air Group 10

Notes

References