When We Walked Above the Clouds
A Memoir of Vietnam
By H. Lee Barnes
(University of Nebraska Press, Hardcover, 9780803234482, 300pp.)
Publication Date: September 2011
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More than anything, Barnes's story is one of loss--of morale lost to alcoholism, teammates lost to friendly fire, missions aborted, and missions endlessly and futilely repeated. As the story advances, so does the attrition--teammates transferred, innocence cast off, confidence in leadership whittled away. And yet, against this dark background, Barnes still manages to honor the quiet professionals whose service, overshadowed by the outsized story of Vietnam, nonetheless carried the day.