Once an Eagle is the story of a soldier named Sam Damon, and his adversary over a lifetime, fellow officer Courtney Massengale. Damon is a professional who puts duty, honor, and the men he commands above self-interest. Massengale, on the other hand, advances by making connections behind the lines and in Washington's corridors of power. Beginning in the French countryside during the Great War, the conflict between these adversaries solidifies during peacetime, intensifies in the deadly Pacific jungles of World War II, and reaches its treacherous conclusion in the last major battleground of the Cold War – Vietnam.
This book is required reading for West Point and Marine Corps cadets. Though not an Air Force story, the saga of these two officers clearly resonated with our Airmen as representative of the many ways our Core Values permeate our lives as service members.