Accidental Soldier of Fortune: A Riveting Tale of Unintended Consequences by Paul Hooper

Paul C. Hooper

Accidental Soldier of Fortune

I wrote my books to document the Century of American Exceptionalism and hope they will stimulate readers to join me in honoring the great America I grew up in and believe it can be again.”

— Captain Paul C. Hooper

FORT WALTON BEACH, FLORIDA, UNITED STATES, February 12, 2024 / — Paul Hooper is the son of two WWII veterans who grew up on USAF bases during the early days of the Cold War and lived his childhood dream of being a USAF pilot. The five books of Accidental Soldier of Fortune were written as homage to the thousands of Americans who made the 20th Century the Century of American Exceptionalism.

Child of the Fifties Watches an American Walk on the Moon chronicles the life of a child of the Greatest Generation who grew up on USAF bases and saw the cost of the cold war personally when he and his brother watched from their backyard as a B-52 crashed just a couple of miles away. He watched Americans walk on the moon and graduated from college in June 1972.

Reminiscences of an Airlifter – The View from the Cheap Seats is the story of Paul’s journey from Officer Training School, USAF Undergraduate Pilot Training, worldwide flight operations, and retirement from the USAF 1993 as a Major and Command Pilot with 5,200 flight hours, having flown the C-130E, T-41C, MC-130E and the CASA 212.

SOUTHCOM Reconnaissance System/Recipe for Disaster tells the story of his journey into US government contract flying in Peru and Colombia. He was the lead pilot for the SOUTHCOM Reconnaissance System (SRS) where he warned of the increasing possibility of a catastrophic event and was chased off the program for his efforts. His forecasts came true with the crashes of both SRS aircraft on 13 February 2003 and 25 March 2003 with the death of five personnel and the captivity of three personnel for five and a half years.

Things Never Improve, They Only Get Worse continues the autobiographical story of his contract flying as the Blackwater Aviation Site Manager at Bagram AB, Afghanistan, flying the L-100 aircraft from Amman, Jordan and Kabul, Afghanistan in support of operations in Iraq, Afghanistan, Pakistan, and the Middle East, and eventually flying the King Air 200 aircraft on the follow-on program to the SRS program in Colombia.

Years Later – The Unknown Betrayals – Life Is Good takes him through his four years flying for Southern Airways Express and his final flying job as part of the Flight Test crew testing a Terrain Following System installed on the ROKAF C-130H aircraft operating from Sacheon AB, Korea. In his twenty-six years of commercial flying after his retirement from the USAF Captain Hooper logged over 11,000 hours in the C-123K, C-131H, Cessna 208 Caravan, CASA 212, King Air 200, L-100, C-130A and C-130H.

Captain Hooper made his last flight as the pilot in command of a ROKAF C-130H with his last landing on 23 August 2019, the 65th anniversary of the first C-130 flight.

Paul Hooper
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