Author of The Shadow Tiger: Billy McDonald, Wingman to Chennault
Join us as Billy McDonald III discusses the life of his father Billy McDonald, Birmingham pilot and adventurer from the Golden Age of Flight into World War II. He jumped from military cadet to wingman in Chennault’s famed aerobatic flying group Three Men on a Flying Trapeze. In China, he moved from instructor for the Chinese Air Force to combat pilot flying Chennault’s legendary Hawk 75 Special against the Japanese over Nanking in 1937. He began by ferrying world-famous passengers like Hemingway and high-value cargo like gold for the China National Aviation Corporation and then flew gasoline and gunpowder over The Hump (Himalayas) for Chennault’s Flying Tigers and the Chinese Army. Through it all, controversial and legendary aviator Claire Lee Chennault remained his mentor, often his boss and always his friend, indelibly shaping his life. McDonald will cover his dad’s remarkable career, as well as the twentieth century’s historic events he was a part of and the pivotal characters he met. A book signing will follow the program. Books will be available for purchase.
Founded in 1941, the award-winning Homewood Public Library offers books, movies, music and lots of great programming for all ages. We also have fantastic online resources, including databases, ebooks, and streaming media.