Major Tommy Towery, USAF (Ret.) earned a B.S. degree in
Journalism in 1968 from Memphis State University where he also earned a
commission as a 2nd Lt. through the AFROTC program. Attended Navigator Training
and Electronic Warfare Officer Training at Mather AFB, CA. Following B-52 CCTS
training in B-52F models at Castle AFB, CA he was assigned to the 20th Bomb
Squadron at Carswell AFB, TX flying B-52C and B-52D models. He served as a 7th
Bomb Wing Combat Intelligence briefer and a Penetration Aids staff officer while
grounded from flying status for kidney stones. He was deployed for six months to
Guam as part of Operation Bullet Shot and was assigned to 8th Air Force Bomber
Operations as an Arc Light mission planner. Three month after returning from his
first deployment he was sent on a second six-month TDY to Guam where he worked
as an Arc Light planner in the 43rd Bomb Wing Bomber Operations. It was during
this assignment that he flew on B-52 combat missions as a staff officer and
helped plan Linebacker II missions.
During his career he logged over 1,600 hours in B-52s and
over 5,000 hours total flight time. His decorations include the Meritorious
Service Medal with oak leaf cluster, the Air Medal with eight oak leaf clusters,
the Armed Forces Expeditionary Service Medal, the Republic of Vietnam Campaign
Medal and the South Vietnam Cross of Gallantry with Palm. Major Tommy Towery is
the author of A Million Tomorrows: Memories of the Class of 64, While Our
Hearts Were Young; and, Goodbye to Bob. He is also the editor of the
We Were Crewdogs series of books.
According to the mission statement of the We Were
Crewdogs website, Many stories have been written about the B-52 combat
missions flown in Vietnam. There's also many books on the B-52 aircraft. On the
other hand, there have been very few things written about the day-to-day
training, peacetime missions, and everyday life of a B-52 Crewdog during the
Cold War era or recent wars.
When the Strategic Air Command ended its Nuclear Alert
readiness in 1991, many of us were already out of the B-52 and retired from the
service. Now it seems even longer in the past, and not only do aircrews on
Nuclear Alert no longer exist, neither does the Strategic Air Command, the
command in which many of us spent the majority of our military service.
Thats the educational goal of this collection of stories.
Some people sit down and write stories to educate others. Some people write
stories to entertain. Some record history. We hope that in our endeavors, this
group of stories will do all of these things. It is a collection of the serious
and the humorous sides of living the life of a SAC B-52 Crewdog, and it is
intended to share those experiences with others.
The common thread that binds them is the B-52 aircraft -
the BUFF (Big Ugly Fat Fellow).