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Hellcat Tales: A U.S. Navy Fighter Pilot in World War II

by Robert "Gabby" Gadbois

Merriam Press World War II Memoir

eBook - ISBN 978-1-105-27843-3 - $4.99

Paperback - ISBN 978-1468114317 - $9.95

Hardcover not available

From enlistment in 1942, through cadet aviation training, joining VBF-12/Air Group 12 as a SB2C Helldiver pilot, later switching to the F6F Hellcat, embarking on the USS Randolph (CV-15), and conducting air operations including fighter sweeps over Tokyo, combat missions over Iwo Jima and Okinawa, and fighting off kamikaze attacks.


Chapter 1: Decision Time
Chapter 2: Pre-Flight School
Chapter 3: The Yellow Peril
Chapter 4: Wings of Gold
Chapter 5: Dive Bombing
Chapter 6: A Side-Wheeler Carrier
Chapter 7: Air Group Twelve
Chapter 8: The USS Randolph (CV-15)
Chapter 9: First Tokyo Fighter Sweep
Chapter 10: Iwo Jima
Chapter 11: Kamikaze Hit
Chapter 12: Okinawa
Chapter 13: Combat Missions
Chapter 14: Kamikazes by the Dozen
Chapter 15: Farewell to Combat
Chapter 16: R&R Friendly Fire
Chapter 17: Back in the U.S. of A.
Chapter 18: Winding Down

170 6x9-inch pages, 24 photos

The author passed away 23 September 2009.

Review by Melanie Lauwers, Cape Cod Times, 2 October 2006:

Robert Gadbois, a Falmouth resident, enlisted in the U.S. Navy in 1942, the year he was a freshman at Rhode Island State College. He chose aviation training, became a Hellcat fighter pilot and saw action across the Pacific, including Iwo Jima and Okinawa and finally over Tokyo. His memoir takes readers through his decision to become a pilot, through pre-flight school and into the depth of wartime action onboard the USS Randolph making its way to victory.

Review by Richard Gauthier:

I bought and read Robert's book Hellcat Tales when I saw it in his obituary. I appreciate the insight it gave me into his life and the lives of others who have sacrificed so much.

Review by Jerry Pacheco:

I shall always treasure his visits to my restaurant, with daughter Millie, and the signed copy of his book Hellcat Tales. He exemplified "The Greatest Generation," it was an honor to serve them.

Hellcat Tales: A U.S. Navy Fighter Pilot in World War II

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