"The emergencies you train for almost never happen. It's the one you can't train for that kills you."

-- Ernest K. Gann

Ernie Gann
Ernie Gann became an American Airlines co-pilot in the late 1930s after losing his job in the movie industry. Flying the DC-2 and DC-3 ,he made Captain with the airline in 1941 flying routes in the Northeast U.S., including flights as Captain on the Flagship Detroit.In 1942 Gann transferred to the Air Transport Command flying the DC-3, DC-4 and C-87 for the Allied war effort. Gann was an accomplished, but tortured author who wrote 21 aviation-themed novels as well as many short stories. In 1941 he wrote an article for Popular Mechanics magazine describing the operation of the American Airlines DC-3 in airline service.http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ernest_K._Gannshapeimage_4_link_0

One of Gann’s first novels was about a C-47 lost during service for the Army in 1943.  Island In The Sky  was well-regarded by DC-3/C-47 pilots due the accuracy of the flying scenes and cockpit environment. Ernie took a leave from his job at Transocean Airlines to write the screenplay and advise on the John Wayne film. Another pilot who worked on the film wrote  this short story  on the making of the film.