Shortly after the bombing of Pearl Harbor, Lyndon Raff joins the Army Air Forces with the goal of becoming a pilot. When he gets his wings, he marries his longtime girlfriend, Nina Ostrom, and the two spend ten ecstatic weeks together at Ft. Bragg before he is deployed to India as a transport pilot.
In India, Lyndon is given the highly dangerous assignment of delivering supplies to China by flying straight over the Himalayas, a task known as “flying the Hump,” where he braves 200 mph winds and deadly downdrafts, heavy fogs, ice formation on the plane’s exterior that can easily send it into a nosedive, monsoonal rainstorms, and surprise attacks by Japanese fighter planes – all without the help of radio or navigational aids.
Yet his real concern was getting back to his beloved new wife as soon as possible. In one letter, he writes: I had a couple swell months [with my wife] so I’m not complaining, but I know now just why I want the “brass” in Washington & Delhi to get this war over with and let me go home…!
Unfortunately, this would never happen.