A Life Well-Built by Lee Kelley

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Click on cover image to purchase a copy

MWSA Review

A Life Well-Built is a loving tribute to Richard E. Fisher, one of America's great men of the 19th century.  Told by Lee Kelley in collaboration with Joyce Fisher, this is the story of a hero.  It is a look at the life of a man who had the talents his country needed and the passion and patriotism to serve both as a military leader and civilian corporate giant in the field of aviation.

Brigadier General Fisher, according to testimonies he gave prior to his passing in 2004, the memories of his wife of 4 years, Joyce, and the records he kept in the form of journals and photographs, was a man with a bigger mission than most.  And, he had the spirit and strength to meet his challenges.  From humble beginnings on a farm to world-wide service engineering the construction of airfields and developing relationships with foreign leaders all over the world, "Dick" Fisher was the kind of man the United States needed during the tumultuous years of wars and uneasy peace.

At the end of the book, I wanted more.  I wanted to speak to the Brigadier General about impressions and feelings he had during the many historical events he helped to shape.  I also wanted to visit with Joyce, the General's second wife, and learn more about what made her fall in love with this extraordinary military man.  The events, both historical and personal, are true and will delight any reader who was a part of the era in our history that may be remembered as the bloodiest and most glorious time of our lives.

Reviewed by: Carmen Stenholm (2010)

Author's Synopsis

From the tapestry of human history and experience, some individuals rise above the fabric's common braid and seem destined for great achievements. Richard Fisher was one of these souls. In A Life Well Built, author Lee Kelley tells the story of this natural-born leader who was an extraordinary soldier, father, husband, pilot, engineer, and friend.
Raised in Ohio, Richard "Dick" Fisher showed natural signs of leadership at a young age. This biography spans his lifetime--through ninety years and twenty-six countries--and touches on his widespread successes. It follows him from the Ohio State University School of Engineering, to the Pennsylvania Railroad, to his work as an engineer in Ohio, and to building airports for the Army during World War II. A lifelong pilot, he flew airplanes and managed operations for Air America. He co-piloted the last aircraft to escape Saigon when the Vietnam War began and retired from the Army as a brigadier general.
A Life Well Built shows the depth of this man who accomplished feats that most people could only dream of. This biography demonstrates that Fisher's life was a solid, inspired piece of engineering; he created a personal masterpiece in the art of living.