Alone at dawn Medal of Honor Recipient John Chapman and the untold story of the world's deadliest special operations force

Dan Schilling

Book - 2019

"The astonishing true account of John Chapman, Medal of Honor recipient and Special Ops Combat Controller, and his heroic one-man stand during the Afghan War, as he sacrificed his life to save the lives of 23 comrades-in-arms. In the predawn hours of March 4, 2002, just below the 10,469-foot peak of a mountain in eastern Afghanistan, a fierce battle raged. Outnumbered by Al Qaeda fighters, Air Force Combat Controller John Chapman and a handful of Navy SEALs struggled to take the summit in a desperate bid to find a lost teammate. Chapman, leading the charge, was gravely wounded in the initial assault. Believing he was dead, his SEAL leader ordered a retreat. Chapman regained consciousness alone, with the enemy closing in on three sides.... John Chapman's subsequent display of incredible valor -- first saving the lives of his SEAL teammates and then, knowing he was mortally wounded, single-handedly engaging two dozen hardened fighters to save the lives of an incoming rescue squad -- posthumously earned him the Medal of Honor. Chapman is the first airman in nearly fifty years to be given the distinction reserved for America's greatest heroes. Alone at Dawn is also a behind-the-scenes look at the Air Force Combat Controllers: the world's deadliest and most versatile special operations force, whose members must not only exceed the qualifications of Navy SEAL and Army Delta Force teams but also act with sharp decisiveness and deft precision -- even in the face of life-threatening danger. Drawing from firsthand accounts, classified documents, dramatic video footage, and extensive interviews with leaders and survivors of the operation, Alone at Dawn is the story of an extraordinary man's brave last stand and the brotherhood that forged him."--Provided by publisher.

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Subjects
Genres
Biographies
Published
New York : Grand Central Publishing 2019.
Language
English
Main Author
Dan Schilling (author)
Other Authors
Lori Chapman Longfritz (author)
Edition
First edition
Physical Description
xviii, 333 pages, 16 unnumbered pages of plates : illustrations (some color), maps ; 24 cm
Bibliography
Includes bibliographical references (pages 331-332).
ISBN
9781538729656
Contents unavailable.
Review by Booklist Review

The United States military is second to none in airpower, and much of the credit goes to the exceptional Combat Controllers who direct that airpower from the ground. Schilling, a retired Combat Controller, and Longfritz, Combat Controller John Chapman's sister, provide an illuminating examination of these brave service members who are capable of everything that America's other elite troops do while also carrying a heavy load of radios, batteries, sensors, and other equipment for their indispensable job. Starting from the genesis of combat control in WWII and Korea, this engaging and informative book presents everything readers might want to know about the Air Force's contribution to America's Special Operators. Chapman's biography is initially interspersed within the narrative to positive effect until it takes center stage as the authors chronicle Operation Anaconda at the beginning of the anti-terror campaign in Afghanistan, when Chapman displays courage and skill, saving 23 lives while sacrificing his own, thus earning a posthumous Medal of Honor. This is an excellent book about a modern-day hero in a military field that rarely makes the front page.--James Pekoll Copyright 2019 Booklist

From Booklist, Copyright (c) American Library Association. Used with permission.
Review by Publisher's Weekly Review

In this informative and sometimes moving account, author and military veteran Schilling and Longritz pay tribute to Longritz's brother, Medal of Honor winner John Chapman. The story of his life includes a history of the Special Forces organization he worked for and loved, the Air Force Combat Control Teams, as well as an account of the brutal 2002 battle on Takur Ghar mountain in Afghanistan where he died saving 23 other American soldiers. Chapman was a member of the Air Force's Combat Control program, which specializes in facilitating air power in conjunction with ground forces. He deployed to Afghanistan and choppered into the mountains as part of Operation Anaconda. Upon landing with his team and coming under intense fire, he charged and single-handedly destroyed an enemy bunker. After he was seriously wounded, his team, thinking he was dead, abandoned their position. Chapman regained consciousness and continued to fight, alone, until he was killed. The authors contend that Operation Anaconda was badly flawed, and the loss of seven men on the mountain resulted from botched planning and execution by the team's superior officers. The pacing heightens the tale's immediacy, and reconstruction of Chapman's inner experience packs an emotional punch. This paean to heroism will strike a chord with fans of combat narratives. Agent: Larry Weissman, Larry Weissman Literary. (June) © Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved.

(c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved