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In March 1921, Major John G. Thornell and his crew were detailed to Italy to procure a new experimental airship for the United States Army Air Service. Stationed at Langley Field in Hampton, the ROMA never lived up to expectations despite being heralded as the future of military innovation. Tragically, it crashed and erupted in a ball of fire in 1922, claiming the lives of thirty-four of the brave men aboard. Author Nancy E. Sheppard reveals the forgotten, harrowing story of one of the last great airships and those who sacrificed for the promise of a new era in aviation.