Warning Spoilers through Maelstrom.
|Seen|| Into the Storm|
David Kaufman was a captain in the US Army Air Corps. Kaufman Field in Baalkpan is named for him and he is buried in the military grave yard there.
Circumstances led to him and another Army pilot (and others) being transported as passengers on USS Walker. In spite of the fact that he had no skills useful to a naval vessel in combat, he took exception to being told to move ammunition during a battle. After the two vessels entered a squall and emerged in an alternate Earth, Kaufman was transferred to USS Mahan, still as a passenger. When the two ships separated for tactical reasons, Kaufman committed mutiny and took over Mahan. He shot the vessel's captain, Jim Ellis, although that may have been accidental. He put Mahan on a course for Ceylon. Mahan came across a destroyed city, but no one aboard knew anything about the city's background. Mahan discovered an abandoned PBY aircraft. Kaufman told the other Army officer, Ben Mallory, to fly reconnaissance; Mallory instead flew back to the area where Walker had last been seen and reported what had happened to Lieutenant Commander Matthew Reddy.
Kaufman was a prisoner of the Grik Regent-Consort Tsalka in Ceylon. He was transferred in the custody of Japanese naval officers aboard HIMS Amagi. The Japanese occasionally used Kaufman as an interpreter. Sato Okado, the XO of Amagi, displayed some kindness toward Kaufman.
Sato Okado approached Kaufman about making radio contact with the other American on the alternate Earth. Kaufman was killed near the end of the book when attempting to take out Amagi's captain.