All his life Test Pilot Scott Crossfield has carried on a love affair with airplanes. As a child he learned secretly how to fly, and the unyielding ambition to become a superb aviator spurred him to overcome a serious childhood disease. Working for the NACA (National Advisory Committee for Aeronautics), Crossfield achieved national renown testing the rocket-powered planes, X-1 and Skyrocket, taking them to amazing heights where “man had a new view of his life and the world.” He has logged more rocket plane flights than most of the chief test pilots combined.
Written in the tradition of Saint-Exupéry and Lindbergh, Scott Crossfield’s inspiring autobiography is a testament to the adventure and achievement of the flight pioneers who dare to live beyond the clouds. Why is “death the handmaiden of the pilot” and how does it feel to face her fifteen miles above the ground? What can a pilot do when fear and panic overtake him? What is it like to be the first man to fly at twice the speed of sound? These are some of the questions Crossfield answers as he explains why he was prepared to devote so much of his time, his dreams, and his aspirations to an experimental plane called the X-15.
Always Another Dawn tells of the birth of this plane; the daring of the men who painstakingly designed and built her, counting every extra pound a danger and creating innovations unprecedented in flight history. Here is the courage of the men who flew her, their every take-off a hazardous journey into the unknown.
This book is the thrilling story of man’s first faltering steps into space, of the great experiment and the great pilot who “set man on his path toward the stars.”