Non-Fiction

We Came to Fight a War

Title: We Came to Fight a War
Authors: Jack Flynn & Alvin E. Kotler
Genre: Non-Fiction, Memoir
Reviewer: Bob Flournoy

ISBN (links go to the MWSA Amazon store): 0557049253

On 15 April 1945, 1st Lt Bill Flynn completed his 25th bombing mission flying a B-17 with the 346th Bomb Sqdn, 99th Bomb Group. On 25 May 1945, he was awarded the Distinguished Flying Cross for "extraordinary achievement" in combat. In July of that same year, at a General Court Martial, he was accused of "buzzing," convicted of manslaughter and the destruction of government property. People were intimidated and encouraged to lie and 20-year-old Lt Flynn was stripped of his rank and benefits, dishonorably discharged, and sentenced to hard labor at a Federal Prison in New York. This book was written by Lt Flynn's radio gunner, Al Kotler, and Bill's brother, Jack Flynn. You will meet Bill, Al, and the rest of their crew, and fly with them on missions out of Foggia, Italy. Bill is no longer here to defend himself, so Al and Jack combined forces to present the full story of what really happened and to right a terrible wrong. 33 photos.

Author(s) Mentioned: 
Flynn, Jack
Kotler, Alvin E.

Life Interrupted by War

Title: Life Interrupted by War
Author: Thomas Van Hees
Genre: Non-Fiction, Memoir
Reviewer: Hodge Wood

ISBN (links go to the MWSA Amazon store): 1607491478

Beginning as a seventeen-year old Marine, Thomas van Hees presents a sobering account of a common man's journey through Vietnam, mainly serving as an M60 machine gunner. The author interestingly portrays the uneventful, but then in a split-second, bullets zip through him and his platoon. Life altering chaos adds to the story and to the complexity of young van Hees. He and his Marines carry on, but there are fewer as time passes. The author details many experiences - guard duty at the wire, walking patrol, and flying onboard a medevac chopper enroute to a hospital ship for a long stay. I hoped the author's duty was over by then ... but he returned, exactly where a sniper shot him months before. I wonder how and why he and other men gave and lost so much in Vietnam. Thomas van Hees relates that many didn't care about the returning soldier's suffering, sacrifice, or acts of heroism. I recommend his book to those who would care to learn.

Author(s) Mentioned: 
Van Hees, Thomas

DAI Uy HOCH "A Legend In Remote Seas"

Title: DAI Uy HOCH "A Legend In Remote Seas"
Author: Wesley A. Hoch
Genre: Non-Fiction, Memoir
Reviewer: Charlene Rubush

ISBN (links go to the MWSA Amazon store): 1615793941

"With a strong faith, you can fight a war in more ways than one," the authors brother, David R. Hoch, says. " I hope that this book will point out the tremendous effort and dedication that all Vietnamese veterans displayed when they showed how your faith can give you tremendous strength.

Author(s) Mentioned: 
Hoch, Wesley A.

Lullabies for Lieutenants: Memoir of a Marine Forward Observer in Vietnam, 1965-1966

Title: Lullabies for Lieutenants: Memoir of a Marine Forward Observer in Vietnam, 1965-1966
Author: Franklin Cox
Genre: Non-Fiction, Memoir
Reviewer: Hodge Wood

ISBN (links go to the MWSA Amazon store): 0786447192

Capturing the chaotic nature of the U.S. Marine experience at war in Vietnam, this memoir recounts the experiences of a young officer in a series of unrelated short pieces. In a narrative as fragmented as the war itself, the only resolution is the same one reached by the Marines who fought--the conclusion of a tour of duty with no happy ending. Each chapter describes a specific event, a story of emotion, or a remarkable person (some are heroes, some are cowards). The reader lives the experience alongside the author, gaining a true sense of the pulse-pounding contact, surrealism, pathos, humor, and beauty that defined one of the low points of the American experience.

Author(s) Mentioned: 
Cox, Frank

Wing Wife: How To Be Married to a Marine Fighter Pilot

Title: Wing Wife: How To Be Married to a Marine Fighter Pilot
Author: Marcia J. Sargent
Genre: Non-Fiction, Memoir
Reviewer: Hodge Wood

ISBN (links go to the MWSA Amazon store): 1453809260

Marcia never flew high performance aircraft, yet she learned to appreciate and maneuver through the irreverent, technical, and dangerous world of the Marine aviator--at and under her husband's wing. In WING WIFE: How to Be Married to a Fighter Pilot, a memoir of the first few years of her marriage to a Marine jet jockey, Marcia navigates the unfamiliar skies of officer's wives, military expectations, and the loss of loved ones. Over time she realizes what she risks by loving a man who flies. WING WIFE brings the reader intimately into the bawdy, comedic, and tragic world of the Marine Corps aviator and the aviator's wife.

Author(s) Mentioned: 
Sargent, Marcia

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