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The Rescue of Alfa Foxtrot 586
  • ISBN/SKU: 9781591144106
  • Binding: Paperback & Ebook
  • Era: 20th Century
  • Number of Pages: 240
  • Subject: Aviation
  • Date Available: October 2011
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ADAK is also Available in an Audio Edition From Audible via Amazon


"Andrew Jampoler...has spun a memorable tale...overall Adak is an adventure story to rival the best you've ever read." -Daniel Ford, The Wall Street Journal

In the tradition of great tales of men against the sea, Adak offers a compelling look at courage and commitment in the face of certain tragedy. Alfa Foxtrot 586 was a P-3 Orion on station on a sensitive Cold War mission off the Kamchatka Peninsula on 26 October 1978. When a propeller malfunction turned into an engine fire, the pilot was forced to ditch his turboprop into the empty, mountainous seas west of the Aleutian Islands. The aircraft went down in just ninety seconds, taking one of the three rafts with it.  Thirteen men launched the other rafts, the smallest of which—terribly overcrowded—soon began to leak, threatening the nine men aboard. This account of the flight crew's desperate battle against the sea, and the heroic efforts to rescue them provide an engrossing true story of survival.

Andrew C. A. Jampoler is the author of Horrible Shipwreck!, The Last Lincoln Conspirator, and Sailors in the Holy Land. A resident of Leesburg, VA, he spent more than twenty years in the U.S. Navy and flew a P-3 Orion on the same mission from the same base. More about Andy at

Praise for Adak

“Andrew Jampoler...has spun a memorable tale...overall Adak is an adventure story to rival the best you've ever read.”— Daniel Ford, The Wall Street Journal

Adak has all the attributes of high drama—courage, endurance, tragic error, self-sacrifice—the frailties and glories of mortal men. It manages to be both heartbreaking and inspiring. It is also the story of how the common bonds of seamen and airmen and of humanity thawed the Cold War for a few life-giving hours. For anyone who has sensed even briefly the deadly peril of freezing water, this story will be unforgettable.”— Jody Powell

Andrew Jampoler is the award-winning author of The Last Lincoln Conspirator: John Surratt's Flight from the Gallows and Adak: The Rescue of Alfa Foxtrot 586. A resident of Loudoun County, VA, he spent more than twenty years in the U.S. Navy and later was a marketing executive in the international aerospace industry.

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Events and Conferences

Speaking Engagement & Signing
9:30am, Center for Naval Analyses, 4825 Mark Center Dr., Alexandria, VA Read More
Speaking Engagement & Signing
Noon, "Authors on Deck," U.S. Navy Memorial, 701 Penn Ave., N.W., Washington, D.C. Read More
Speaking Engagement & Signing
1:00pm, Mariner's Museum, 100 Museum Dr., Newport News, VA Read More
Speaking Engagement & Signing
Noon, Library of Congress, Pickford Theater, James Madison Bldg., Washington, D.C. Read More
Customer Reviews
3 Reviews
Average Customer Reviews
5.00 Stars
The author does a masterful job...
Thursday, September 27, 2012
By: RADM Peter B. Booth, USN (Ret.)
A great book and one that is not easily put aside. It is a true tale of a P3 crew far to the west in the Aleutian Island chain that suffers catastrophic damage to one engine and prop and is forced to ditch in monster seas. The author does a masterful job of weaving in the facts from the investigation as well as the personal sagas of the surviving crew.
"A great read."
Monday, December 26, 2011
By: Rick Tetrev

Having been a "Golden Eagle" during the 1970s and transferring from the Squadron in December 1977 I knew many of the crew well. I also knew many of the rescue crews as well as the CO, XO and ASWOC personnel. Consequently it made the book very personal for me. Regardless of the intimate knowledge of the "folks" anybody who flew P-3s during that time in the history of the Cold War would be truly riveted with how Capt. Jampoler, using the accident investigation, wove a breathtaking tale. A great read.

Wednesday, June 27, 2012
By: Andrea S. Abernethy
I really enjoyed the book. I had been stationed at Adak from Dec 1959 to Dec 1960 and was the Radar operator for the SAR detachment flight crew. Our main purpose was to escort aircraft flying the DEW line out of Midway and Japan to ADAK when inflight problems developed. The Connie's EC-121's were our best customer but our main support was to the P2V squadron's on detachment from Moffett Field in California. The book ADAK brought back many a night of difficult flying and trying to locate the aircraft in distress. I used the RADAR to get on station and than with the help of the IFF I could locate the specific aircraft and track. In could not put down ADAK and have since passed it along to others stationed at ADAK . We have all felt deep regard for the families that suffered the loss of loved ones. The pilot of the doomed aircraft will long be remembered by those of us that patrolled the sky's over the North Pacific and know first hand the chill of such unforgiving waters. The story ends with the tragic tail of a doomed propeller reduction drive and the snails pace of the responsible naval and manufacturing enties to bring about the necessary changes to the P-3. My hat is off to the author, crew members, and family's of the lost crew members. ADAK is no longer a Naval Base. For the most part the Island of Adak has been forgotten. Its now a Fish Processing location and is slowly returning to its natural state. Buildings are deteriorating and the old military established infrastructure is being destroyed by the elements of the environment.


Conferences and Events

2016 Naval History Conference

Thu, 2016-09-08 - Fri, 2016-09-09

Join us for the 2016 Naval History Conference on 8 and 9 September at Alumni Hall at the U.S. Naval Academy. The Athena...

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Sun, 2016-08-28

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Fri, 2016-09-09

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