Author Matt Proietti is a former community newspaper editor and a longtime military public affairs professional. Like Dick Etchberger, he reached the Air Force's highest enlisted rank of chief master sergeant, though Proietti did so as a reservist. He is a 4-time recipient of the Thomas Jefferson Award, the highest honor in Defense Department journalism.
The book grew out of Proietti’s 2008 assignment running the Air Force news team in Washington, D.C. He painstakingly researched Chief Etchberger’s life and career, interviewing Air Force personnel involved with the Laos mission, talking with Dick's friends and family, and researching the historical and political context of the mission at the Lyndon B. Johnson Presidential Library in Austin, Texas.
The New England native lives in Northern California with his wife, Varina. This is his first book.
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