From Chicken Soup for the Veteran's Soul


Everett Alvarez Jr., a distinguished Naval officer and government executive, is best known to the public as the first American aviator shot down over North Vietnam. He was taken prisoner of war on August 5, 1964, and held in North Vietnam for eight and a half years, until the general release of prisoners on February 12, 1973. In 1981, President Reagan nominated Alvarez as deputy director of the Peace Corps. President Reagan nominated him to be deputy administrator of the Veterans Administration and he assumed his post in 1982. A city park and two housing projects in California and Texas, a high school in his hometown of Salinas, California, and a Rockville, Maryland, post office have been named in his honor. Alvarez holds numerous military decorations, including the Silver Star, two Legions of Merit (with combat “V”), two Bronze Stars (with Combat “V”), Distinguished Flying Cross and two Purple Heart medals.

Robert R. Amon Jr. received the Bronze Star and numerous South Vietnamese decorations following his tour as a combat adviser in Vietnam. He is currently working on a book titled Rice Roots, based on a diary he kept during that year. Bob and his wife, Carolyn, live in New Jersey and have four children. Contact him at [email protected]

Edward Andrusko is a freelance writer who has written short stories and articles in a number of magazines, newspapers and books. Most of his narratives are about real people and events that touched their lives. After high school, he joined the U.S. Marines at the age of seventeen. Ed served four years—three years as a combat infantry rifleman. He and his wife, Gaynel, live and work in beautiful Boulder, Colorado. He can be reached at 303-939-8313.

Susan Arnett-Hutson lives in Roswell, New Mexico, with her husband of twenty-eight years. He is a Vietnam veteran and a recipient of the Purple Heart. They have four grown children and three grandchildren. Their youngest son is in the Marine Corps in Annapolis, Maryland. Susan keeps busy raising her granddaughter and remodeling her Victorian home.

Tre’ M. Barron grew up in Richmond, California. She now lives in Indiana with her husband, Tony, and their son, Chris. After serving in the U.S. Marines, she went to work for the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers; she works at a lock and dam on the Ohio River.

Bernard Belasco is a retired school principal, eighty-four years of age, who gave away his snow shovels in Philadelphia and moved to Venice in sunny, warm Florida thirteen years ago. He spends his time volunteering for several civic groups, bowling and enjoying his hobby of amateur radio. He met his wife in Doc Ferguson’s English literature class in 1939 when she borrowed a pencil from him. They have been married for fifty-seven years and still talk to each other.

Patricia Black’s passion, now that she has the time, is writing. A senior newspaper occasionally prints her stories and observations. Her first attempts at writing were from a perch in her tree house, none of which was ever shown to anyone. Born in Des Moines, Iowa, she became a licensed pilot in 1945. Happily married for fifty-two years, she has four children, six grandchildren and two dogs. A ballet dancer and teacher, she has also made two skydiving jumps.

Susan Grady Bristol is a registered nurse and freelance writer who recently moved back to Omaha, Nebraska, after living in the Chicago area. The mother of three boys, she is active in school events, professional nursing organizations and church activities. She was born in North Platte, Nebraska, years after the World War II canteen closed. She learned about the canteen from a dear friend who was photographed as the troop train he was on stopped in North Platte.

Jean P. Brody is a national magazine columnist and writes two columns weekly for Kentucky newspapers. Her columns are all on the Internet. She teaches creative writing and is an active motivational and inspirational public speaker. She lives with her husband, their cat, Miss Aggie, and Willie T. Goat on their thoroughbred horse farm, the Jean and Gene Farm, in Winchester, Kentucky. Recently, they lost their beloved friend and companion, Guinney, a Newfoundland who was much more than a dog. Jean has published many dozens of short stories and articles, and Braille Me, a compilation of her published work. Her main work today is her research on miracles and her lectures on attitudinal wellness. She can be reached at the farm at 859-745-4779 or in the winter at their beach home on Perdido Key at 850-492-8815.

Antonio Camisa served with the famed First Cavalry Division in the central highlands of South Vietnam. An infantry squad leader, he was wounded and decorated for valor. A graduate of South Georgia College, he is a research consultant and remains active in numerous veteran service organizations.

Barbara Sue Canale has written “Say Goodbye for Me,” a women’s fiction piece, based on the story “Too Young to Understand.” She has also authored a book, Our Labor of Love: A Romanian Adoption Chronicle. Barbara volunteers in her church, the schools and community. She currently works as a freelance writer in Jamesville, New York.

John Carlson is a columnist at the Des Moines Register. He is a native of Oakville, Iowa, a graduate of Western Illinois University and was a Nieman Fellow at Harvard University. He served four years in the U.S. Air Force and was honorably discharged in 1971 with the rank of staff sergeant.

Watts Caudill was born in Washington, D.C., and graduated from West Point in 1964. He was the company commander of B Company, 1/18th Infantry from July 1967 to January 1968. He now lives in Manhattan, Kansas, and is a high school math teacher at Topeka High School.

The Chapel of Four Chaplains, established in 1947, is a national, nonprofit organization whose mission is to “encourage cooperation and selfless service among all people.” For more information, contact: The Chapel of Four Chaplains, 1201 Constitution Ave., Philadelphia, PA, 19112. Phone: 215-218-1943; e-mail: [email protected]

Paul Charlillo is a retired construction worker. He has been married to Caroline for forty-five years. He is a father, grandfather, and great-grandfather. Serving with Company B, 151st Armored Infantry Battalion in Patton’s Third Army, he received four Bronze Stars, the Combat Infantryman’s Badge, numerous campaign ribbons, and the Presidential Unit Citation from President Harry S. Truman.

Akira B. Chikami, CMSgt (retired) is a former member of G Company, Second Battalion, Thirty-Eighth Infantry, Second Division. A prisoner of war in North Korea, he was captured on August 27, 1951, near Pia Ri, North Korea, and released on September 5, 1953. He wishes to recognize his fellow POWs and MIAs who did not return. He can be contacted at 713 Gilbert Rd., Winter Park, FL 32792-4632.

Susan M. Christiansen is the founder and author of the long-running VET FORUM advice column and the LOVVE support organization for veterans’ loved ones. Susan is the recipient of the coveted Jefferson Award, the “Vet Center” Appreciation Award and the Red Cross Service Award. She resides in California, with the youngest of her four children and is currently working on her first novel. Contact her at [email protected]

Gene DuVall, born in Maryland, is a longtime writer, having begun with small poems as a child. He grew up in Rising Sun, Indiana, and entered service from Pennsylvania. While in the service, he had works published in the Stars and Stripes. Later work encompassed memoirs of Army days and of his own young family life. Often the subject of his writing is the beloved “other woman” in his life—his loving cat, Tinker. His works have been published in Cat Fancy, Reminisce, American Legion and Grit. A true writer in every sense, he labors ceaselessly putting down the depths of his memories and feelings.

David Eberhart is a retired Marine Corps line officer, judge advocate and former criminal trial lawyer. He is the author of five novels currently available from as trade paperbacks. Presently, he is an editor for Stars and Stripes Omnimedia. The flagship newspaper, the Stars and Stripes, is the oldest veterans’ advocate publication in America, having roots that go back to 1877.

Larry Ebsch is sixty-nine years old and has been retired since January 2, 1996. He launched a career in newspapers (Herald-Leader) in his hometown, Menominee, Michigan, in May 1955 and served as sports editor and general news reporter. Transferred to neighboring Marinette, Wisconsin (Eagle-Star), in 1962, he rose through the ranks to become managing editor. He served as executive editor when Herald-Leader and Eagle-Star merged into EagleHerald in July 1995, with a combined circulation of twelve thousand. Larry served with the U.S. Army Medical Corps during the Korean War, in 1952 and 1953 for fourteen months, including the Christmases of 1952 and 1953. He could not rotate home after one Christmas as scheduled because his military orders were lost. You can reach him at 521 6th Ave., Menominee, MI 49858.

Joe Edwards is a retired jazz pianist who turned to writing. His stories have been widely published in many countries, and he is the author of a collection, The Red Mahogany Piano and Other Stories. He may be reached at 1521 E. Whiteside, Springfield, MO 65804, or by calling 417-889-4257.

Diane Carlson Evans, R.N., served as a captain in the Army Nurse Corps during the Vietnam War. She led the ten-year effort to honor her sister veterans, culminating in the dedication of a bronze monument portraying three women and a wounded soldier at the Vietnam Veterans Memorial in Washington, D.C., in 1993. Diane is a mother, nurse, educator and advocate for veterans. To learn about the Vietnam Women’s Memorial and the women who served during the Vietnam War or to order a replica of the memorial, please visit

Jerold S. Ewen lives in the western shadow of Wyoming’s Big Horn Mountains. A husband of Kathy, father of three, grandfather of three and self-employed, he flew medevac helicopters in Vietnam. He likes to write, speak and tell stories. He loves God, family, his children, and Wyoming’s hills and mountains. You can contact him at [email protected]

Arnold Geier was born and raised in Germany, served in the counterintelligence branch of the U.S. Army in Europe, and is a retired insurance executive and prolific writer, with five published books and numerous articles to his credit. His latest book, Heroes of the Holocaust (Berkley, N.Y., 1998), features twenty-eight spellbinding, true accounts of human kindness, valor and altruism, and of miraculous forces that helped people survive in a society bent on genocide. The book is endorsed by Nobel Laureate Elie Wiesel, ADL National Director Abraham Foxman and religious leaders of all persuasions. Heroes of the Holocaust can be obtained from any bookstore or through major online booksellers (ISBN 0-425-16029-7).Mr. Geier can be reached at [email protected]

Sarah H. Giachino is a busy stay-at-home mother raising her two daughters, Olivia, age fourteen, and Victoria, age ten. Her husband, Nick, is an executive with Pepsi-Cola. She would like to honor her parents, Mary and Charles Hardman, by dedicating this true story to them: “They taught me to always believe in myself and respect our country. I would like to see my dad reconnect with any veterans who may have known him or served with him, by writing: Charles O. Hardman, 69 Clay Rd., Spencer, WV 25276.”

John Gorka has truly hit his stride at the forefront of touring artists. Rolling Stone has called him “the preeminent male singer/songwriter of . . . the New Folk Movement . . .” His eighth recording “The Company You Keep” has been recently released on Red House Records and features John’s version of “Let Them In.”

John D. Governale was operations sergeant for Bravo Company, 299th Engineer Battalion. During Desert Storm, the company destroyed six thousand tons of Iraqi munitions at the Al Jazair Ammunition Supply Point. He has finally figured out he wants to be a writer when he grows up. He can be reached at 145 Ashton Rd., Norway, ME 04268; phone: 207-743-2057.

Robert A. Hall is a U.S. Marine Corps Vietnam veteran. Following his service, he earned a degree in government at the University of Massachusetts, graduating in June 1972. That fall, he was elected to the Massachusetts State Senate, defeating an incumbent by a nine-votemargin. He served for five terms before retiring undefeated. While in the senate, he reenlisted in the Marine Reserves, serving an additional six years and rising to the rank of staff sergeant. Since leaving politics, he has managed professional associations. Currently, he lives in Oaklyn, New Jersey, with his wife, Bonnie.

Nick Hill joined the Marine Corps and went to boot camp after graduating from high school in 1977. Initially assigned to the infantry, he changed career fields as a sergeant to become an intelligence analyst. He served as an intelligence chief during the Persian Gulf War. Nick retired a master sergeant in 1997 and resides with his wife and two children in Colorado.

D. W. Jovanovic graduated from the High School of Music and Art in New York City, and received B.S. and M.S. degrees from the City College of New York. A musician and former psychiatric social worker, Jovanovic frequently volunteers for service activities for veterans of the Second World War.

David R. Kiernan, Colonel (U.S. Army, retired), graduated from Virginia Military Institute with a B.A. in English. He served on active duty for twenty-six years as an infantry officer and a public affairs officer. He is a paratrooper and a combat veteran who served in Germany, Vietnam, Saudi Arabia, Hawaii and Alaska, receiving three awards of the Legion of Merit and two Bronze Stars for his service. Kiernan received a master’s degree from the University of South Carolina and after his Army career, served as a director of press operations and public information for the 1996 Atlanta Olympics. For the last five years, Kiernan has worked as director of strategic communications for MPRI, where he continues his interest in international and domestic mass communications.

Richard H. Kiley is a senior citizen living in a golf community in Vero Beach, Florida. He graduated from Georgetown University fifty years ago following three years of active Army duty in this country and in Europe. He is currently preparing a memoir of World War II experiences—From Normandy to Dachau.

Julie Beth Kink writes for a weekly newspaper in Stillwater, Minnesota, covering government meetings and features. She also is a public relations coordinator for a small adoption agency. She was born in Wisconsin (where her family lived during the Vietnam War), moved to Minnesota in 1972 and graduated from college in 1983.

Joe Kirkup is the author of over sixty nonfiction essays published in various periodicals and paperbacks, including Reader’s Digest, Chicken Soup for the Pet Lover’s Soul and Chicken Soup for the Cat and Dog Lover’s Soul. A collection of Kirkup’s essays, Life Sentences, can be purchased through on the Internet or by calling 860-572-4423.

Stephen C. Klink is an ordained minister in the Christian Church, having served the last twelve years at Eaton Rapids Community Christian Church. He is also a frequent speaker at veterans’ functions. Raised on a farm and not able to get it out of his blood, he lives on forty acres raising registered Belgian draft horses, longhorn cattle, a cat, a dog and a host of roller pigeons. Several years ago, his son chided him for his “nose to the grindstone” work ethic by saying, “Dad, you never do anything fun.” After pondering his son’s diagnosis of his lifestyle, he began to write for “fun.” Steve has never written anything for publication before but presently has one book nearing completion, and some other writing will be included in an upcoming book by another author. He doesn’t think he will let his son know how much work this “fun” has turned out to be. Steve can be reached at [email protected]

Rabbi Paysach J. Krohn, Mohel, author and lecturer, has written Bris Milah, about the ritual of circumcision, and five delightful books of inspirational Jewish short stories, known as “The Maggid Series”—all published by Mesorah/Artscroll Publications, Brooklyn, New York. Contact him for his tapes and books at [email protected]

Patricia S. Laye, author of seven novels and numerous short stories, and a frequent contributor to Chicken Soup books, teaches at writers’ conferences and colleges throughout the south. She resides in Cuthbert, Georgia, where she is currently working on a novel. She travels worldwide exploring new settings for her novels.

Robin Lim was the absolute “Army brat.” Her German–Irish–Native American father was blessed to meet her Filipino-Chinese mother while he was stationed at Camp John Hay Military Base in Baguio, Philippine Islands. Because her father, CW3 Robert A. Jehle, devoted his life to military service, she and her siblings saw a great deal of the world. Robin has seven astounding children and one granddaughter. She and her husband currently live in Asia, where she is a midwife. She is also the author of After the Baby’s Birth: A Women’s Way to Wellness. Anyone interested in supporting her Healthy Mother–Healthy Baby foundation may contact her at [email protected]

Sharon Linnéa is the producer of the Inspiration Channel at (where you’ll find a lot more inspirational stories!). She and her husband, Robert Owens Scott, have two great, though slightly nutty, kids, Johnathan and Linnéa. Sharon has enjoyed being a freelance editor for several of the Chicken Soup for the Soul books, as well as being a staff writer for Guideposts and four other national magazines. Her most recent books are Princess Kaiulani: Hope of a Nation, Heart of a People, and Raoul Wallenberg: The Man Who Stopped Death, as well as the upcoming Great American Tree Book with Jeffrey G. Meyer. Sharon speaks often at writers’ conferences as well as to schools on kids’ needs for heroes. She can be reached at [email protected]

Bill Livingstone, grandfather of four, is a native Los Angelino and retired urban planner who loves wood working and thinking about the “meaning of life.” He walks the beach below Santa Barbara’s Shoreline Park every sunset while recalling stories for his memoirs. You can visit him at [email protected]

Michael Manley, USN, 1965–1970, Assault Craft Unit One, Coronado/Danang, is a building maintenance mechanic. He is currently trying to peddle his first novel, Blood Atonement. He can be reached at [email protected]

Ivan W. Marion spent three years and three months with the U.S. Army, of which two years and nine months were combat service in Africa, Sicily and Italy, from 1942 to 1945. He was a member of the 91st Cavalry Reconnaissance Squadron as a crew member of an M-5 Stuart light tank. His troops suffered heavy casualties, but he prefers to record the unusual and sometimes humorous situations that occurred during World War II. After the war, he spent most of his working years as an electrician in central upstate New York. His marriage to Eleanor for fifty-nine years (and still counting) has produced a son and daughter and three grandchildren. He can be reached at 904 Nancy Gamble Ln., Ellenton, FL 34222.

Margaret Brown Marks was a captain in the U.S. Army. Before that, she was a teacher in a one-room school. Later, she was a wife, a mother and, once again, a teacher. She has a master’s degree in special education, four sons, five granddaughters and a million stories to tell. She can be reached at [email protected]

Christine Ann Maxwell-Osborn, originally from London, England, feels lucky to live in Calgary, Alberta, where inspiration for writing comes readily. Her first novel, Rosie, will be published in the summer of 2001. Now widowed, she lives with two dear old cats and is blessed to have the best son and daughter-in-law any mother could wish for.

Stacy Havlik McAnulty, aspiring author and dog trainer, lives in North Carolina with her husband, Brett. Currently, she works as a mechanical engineer in the aerospace industry. Stacy dedicates her story to her grandfathers, Joseph Jablanski and Frank Havlik, World War II veterans, and her father, John Havlik, a Vietnam veteran. Stacy can be contacted at [email protected]

George C. Miller is a retired warrant officer who served two years in Vietnam as an Army helicopter pilot. His daughter, Rani, who wrote the letter in the story, was three years old when he went to Vietnam. Though decorated for valor, he considers his wife, Kaye, as the true hero in the family. They live in Enterprise, Alabama. You can contact him at [email protected]

Emerson D. Moran’s lifelong calling to write was postponed because of the Great Depression, World War II Navy service and a meatpacking career. His poignant essays and pointed op-eds began appearing in major newspapers in the 1970s. A native of Seneca Falls, New York, Moran, in his nineties, still offers commentary on the fullness of life over two centuries.

James R. Morgan was a helicopter pilot with A Company, Assault Helicopter Battalion, 101st Airborne Division. He served a tour of duty in Vietnam from December 1967 to December 1968. Jim was an air traffic controller for twenty-five years, and he now works for the Federal Aviation Administration testing air traffic systems. When he and his wife are not working, they can usually be found bicycling through Europe. He presently lives near Atlantic City with his wife of thirty-two years, Joan, and their golden retriever, Toby.

Jack Moskowitz was born and raised in Brooklyn, New York. Enlisting as an aviation cadet in 1942, he was sent to navigator school in Texas. Serving with the Eighth Air Force in England, his B-17 bomber, “Sleepy Time Gal,” was shot down over Berlin on March 8, 1944. He was liberated by the Russians on May 1, 1945. Jack spent thirty-five years in the bakery business and eleven years with the Internal Revenue Service, and he retired in 1988. He has two sons and four grandchildren.

James F. Murphy Jr. is a professor who teaches writing and literature at Boston College and Massachusetts Maritime Academy. He is the father of six children and the author of four published novels. He holds an undergraduate degree from Boston College and two master’s degrees. Professor Murphy is currently completing a novel—a journey—of the Korean War, in which he was a member of the Seventh Division, Seventeenth Infantry and the Honor Guard, Headquarters Company. He and his wife reside in Falmouth, Massachusetts, on Cape Cod.

Bill Newton Jr. began writing short stories as a student at the University of Houston, Victoria campus, in 1977. He is a six-year veteran of the U.S. Navy and a nine-year veteran of the U.S. Army. For seven years, Bill worked for the Gulf Bend Mental Health Mental Retardation center in Victoria, Texas. While manager of the Gulf Bend center in Cuero, Texas, he was very active in the Special Olympics and the local Boy Scouting program. He has one son, Clint, who is a poet, artist and musician. Bill currently lives with and takes care of his father in Marietta, Georgia, where he continues to write.

Captain Richard Oakley ended his military duty at Camp Dix, New Jersey, in February 1946. He once went “over the fence, AWOL” and hitchhiked to Montclair to be with his wife and nine-month-old daughter, meeting his beautiful child for the first time. His buddies sang out “Here” to cover his absence from the base. When he was sixty, his United Airlines flying career ended with a farewell party, and now, at age seventy-eight, his tennis game is improving.

Reverend Peter Baldwin Panagore graduated from Yale Divinity School, Yale University, M.Div., in 1986 and is presently serving the Congregational Church of Boothbay Harbor, Maine. He is a staff writer for HOMILETICS Magazine, Communications Resources, and leads international cultural immersion work trips for youth and adults. He relishes rowing an ancient Whitehall fourteen-foot or sailing a relic of a Beetle cat with his children, Alexa and Andy, on rural Linekin Bay amid the neighborly harbor seals and singing common loons. Peter is contently married to Michelle, who grows big orange pumpkins and delights in needlepoint.

Frank Perkins, sixty-six, is a retired journalist and Army officer who saw active and reserve service during the Cold War period. He has more than forty years’ experience in broadcast and print journalism and currently writes a weekly military column for the Fort Worth (Texas) Star-Telegram, his hometown newspaper.

Walter F. Peters came home and married his high school sweetheart, took advantage of the GI Bill, got his master’s degree and became an educator. Together, he and his wife raised four fine young men, and today they smile as they dance to “our” music, the music of the forties. It’s been an incredible fifty-four years.

Thomas D. Phillips retired as an Air Force colonel after thirty-six years of enlisted and commissioned service. He led a detachment through a Red Brigades terrorist episode, served as director of the Air Force Personnel Readiness Center during Operation Desert Storm and commanded troops in Bosnia. He resides in Lincoln, Nebraska.

Thomas Lafayette Pool lives in Albuquerque, New Mexico, with his wife Donda. He is retired after over twenty years as a chiropractor and is now pursuing his next career as a writer. He and his wife look forward to traveling the world together, especially to Norway to visit their son and daughter-in-law.

Diana Dwan Poole joined the Army Nurse Corps in 1966. She spent two years at Letterman Hospital at the Presidio caring for Vietnam returnees. At age twenty-three, she went to Vietnam and served two voluntary tours at the Sixty-seventh Evac Hospital in Qui Nhon. She was head nurse of orthopedics, casualty receiving and triage. Diana is no longer in nursing but is active in Vietnam veteran activities. She is married to a Marine Vietnam vet, and she has two children. She resides in North Carolina.

Robert D. Reeves and his wife have five grown children and live in Washington, Illinois. Bob retired in 1982 from Caterpillar Tractor Company’s tool design division after forty years of service to the company, which included the time spent in the U.S. Army. Before his induction into the armed forces, he had been with Caterpillar for only five months as a distributor in the tooling crib. He attended the University of Illinois at Champaign briefly, from 1940 to 1941, after having graduated from high school in Gridley, Illinois. He was raised with five brothers and sisters on a farm just outside Gridley. Robert can be reached at 425 Brookcrest Dr., Washington, IL 61571.

Paul F. Reid is a feature writer and restaurant critic for the Palm Beach Post, West Palm Beach, Florida. The Post is a member of the Cox Newspaper Chain. Reid’s lifetime interest in history found expression at the Post, in stories he wrote about historian and Marine vet William Manchester, the Marines on Okinawa, downed fliers in Nazi-occupied Yugoslavia, forgotten vets of the Korean War, submarine warfare and many others. South Florida is home to the fastest growing vet population in the nation. These readers want their stories preserved for younger readers. Reid and two of his history-loving colleagues at the Post, Dan Moffit and Doug Kalajian, enjoy writing about vets, and only regret they will never be able to write all the stories of all the men and women who have served the country. Reid won the Cox Writer of the Year award in 1997 and the Cox Feature Writer of the Year award in 1998. He lives with his wife, Barbara and her son, Alex, in West Palm Beach.

Dr. Lester F. Rentmeester retired after thirty-one years in the U.S. Air Force, where he served mainly in developing and operating reconnaissance and intelligence systems. In 1954, he initiated the reconnaissance satellite (Eye in the Sky) system. After military retirement, he was the chairman of a graduate program at the Florida Institute of Technology in Melbourne, Florida. In collaboration with his wife, Jeanne Marie, he has written eight books and a dozen magazine articles.

George W. Saumweber grew up in St. Paul, Minnesota, and joined the U.S. Marine Corps when he was seventeen, two weeks after graduating from high school. In 1969, he was seriously wounded while serving in Vietnam as a grunt with the Fifth Marines. He married his high school sweetheart, Sharon, in 1971, and they have two children, Cheryl, twenty-one, and John, twenty. He has a business degree from the University of Minnesota and has worked for the Small Business Administration for twenty-four years.

Kenneth A. Schechter grew up in Los Angeles. Los Angeles H.S., UCLA (A.A.), U.S. Navy (Naval Aviator), Stanford (A.B.), Harvard (M.B.A.), Corporate Business (Administrative & Executive), Insurance since 1968. Ken and Sue were married in 1955 and have three children, Jon, Anne and Rob, and five grandchildren. The Schechters live in Pasadena, California.

Robert L. Schneider lives in Oglethorpe, Georgia, with his wife, Ginger, and daughter, Rhiana. He’s an apparatus engineer with the county fire department. He works with Vietnam veterans who are incarcerated.

Walter W. Scott, a retired twenty-year management consultant, also served as an administrator with the City of Philadelphia for eleven years and seven as executive director of a U.S. missionary society. “Wiggle Your Toes!” is a chapter from his book, The Fighter Pilot and the Unseen Hand. He has a Wharton School master’s degree in government administration.

Jan Craig Scruggs is a wounded and decorated veteran of the Vietnam War, having served with the U.S. Army 199th Light Infantry Brigade. While researching Vietnam veterans for his master’s degree, he had the idea to create a national memorial inscribed with the names of all American military who gave their lives in the Vietnam War. In 1979, Scruggs began the project using $2,800 of his own money. Despite controversy and numerous setbacks, the memorial was built and dedicated in November 1982.

Heather L. Shepherd resides in Ohio with her loving husband and four beautiful children, and is a poet and writer. Her current projects include a children’s book, Moon, Why Are You So Sad?, and a poetry chapbook, alongside another Poet. “A Time to Heal” embraces the powerful magic of poetry to heal the victim within.

Barbara K. Sherer is an ordained Presbyterian minister who became a chaplain with the U.S. Army Reserves while serving a church in Stillwater, Oklahoma, in 1984. She entered active duty in 1992 and is currently stationed at Ft. Hood, Texas.

Storm Stafford is currently attending the University of Hawaii to get her M.F.A. in theater set design. She has written for Seventeen magazine and Girls Life, and recently sold her first novel, Buttons and Beaus to Precious Gems Romances. You can reach her at 1573 Kinoole St., Hilo, HI 96720.

Elgin Staples was discharged from the Navy in October 1945. He studied accounting and business administration under the GI Bill. At age seventy-seven, he still owns and operates his business, Staples Enterprises. His hobbies include gardening and sixteenth-century England. He can be reached at 1340 Marion Ave., Devore, CA 92407 or by calling 909-887-3550.

Doug Sterner is a decorated, two-tour Vietnam veteran who has dedicated his life to preserving and sharing American history. A recipient of the Congressional Medal of Honor Society’s prestigious Distinguished Citizens Award, he is a popular author and speaker. He is considered one of the foremost historians on our nation’s highest award for military heroism, the Medal of Honor, and operates one of the largest patriotic Internet sites, at

Marta J. Sweek lives in New Market, Indiana, with her husband, Mick. She is a buyer at Nucor Steel and has two children, Chris and Erika Craig. She can be reached at [email protected]

Barry Vonder Mehden, a fourth-generation Californian, was born in San Francisco in 1929. Entering the U.S. Army in 1950, he served in Korea and later in Berlin, Germany. He received numerous awards and decorations while in “Charlie” Company, Sixty-fifth Combat Engineers, attached to the Twenty-Fifth Division. Barry holds degrees from Oakland College, Boston University and Cornell University. Now retired, he is still active in the American Legion, Post #83, Merced, California, and VFW Post #9946 in At water, California.

Karen L. Waldman, Ph.D., finds working as a psychologist in a large veterans hospital extremely rewarding. She also enjoys music, nature, acting, writing, photography, traveling with her husband (Ken), and “playing” with their good friends, special relatives, and wonderful children and grandchildren (Alyson, Brian, Dave, Eric, Greta, Lana, Lisa, Tom). Her e-mail is [email protected]

Bill Walker logged over nine hundred combat hours in Vietnam as a helicopter pilot. He, his wife, Denise, and their children, Sara, Marisa, and Michael, live at 341 Shirley Ann Dr., Centerville, OH 45458. Bill is a sales representative and can be reached through the Lancer Web page at

Bruce Watson is a frequent contributor to Smithsonian and has also written for the Los Angeles Times, the Boston Globe and other publications. He is working on a book about A. C. Gilbert and his Erector Sets.

Tim Watts was born in Northern California, was raised in the Midwest and “fled to South Florida as soon as feasible.” He was educated in community colleges, on the streets of Chicago and in the jungles of Vietnam. His stories and articles have been published in numerous magazines, newspapers and textbooks.

Ernest L. Webb enlisted in the U.S. Army in 1956 and served with both the Eighty-second Airborne and Eleventh Airborne Divisions. He subsequently attended West Point, graduated and served in the infantry. His assignments included two tours of duty in Vietnam.

Philip Weiner trained as a bombardier/navigator in World War II. He flew sixty-one combat missions over the North Italian Alps and Bremmer Pass. His awards include the Distinguished Flying Cross and the Air Medal with five oak leaf clusters. The author of “L’Inzecca: A Tale of Corsica”, he now lives in Los Angeles, California with his wife, Edith. They have two sons, Rex and Kenneth, and three grandchildren, Carlos, Celia and Alice.

Arthur B. Wiknik Jr. served as an infantry squad leader with the 101st Airborne Division from April 1969 to March 1970 and fought in the battle for Hamburger Hill. He frequently shares his wartime experiences in presentations at local Connecticut schools and civic organizations. Arthur is seeking a publisher for his memoirs of the humor, survivor mentality and the bizarre events of his Vietnam tour of duty. Contact him at [email protected].

Ronald C. Williams served in helicopter duty during Vietnam from 1967 to 1968. He received his bachelor of arts from Brook Institute of Photography, Santa Barbara, California, and then began a twenty-year photography career in advertising based out of Nashville, Tennessee. Ron now resides in Missoula, Montana, living lighter and fishing more. He can be reached at 406-829-8039 or

Jim Willoughby lives on the side of a pine-studded hill in Prescott, Arizona, with his wife Sue, a cat and two rowdy dogs. He writes and illustrates humor books for Arizona Highways and articles for numerous magazines, in addition to creating editorial cartoons for The Daily Courier, Prescott’s prize-winning hometown newspaper.

Charles Wolf joined the United States Marine Corps in 1986 as an anti-tank assault man. A graphic illustrator in the Marines, his current duty station is Marine Corps Base, Kaneohe Bay, Hawaii. He enjoys cartooning and combat art. He credits his success to family, friends, fellow Marines, and loving wife Amy. He can be reached at

Benedict Yedlin was born in Brooklyn, New York, and attended Brooklyn College. When the United States entered World War II, he left college to join the Army Corps of Engineers and served as a photographic mapping technician before transferring to the Army Air Corps. Trained as a gunner and stationed in southern Italy, he flew most of his fifty combat missions in a B-24 named The Buzzer. After the war, he completed his college degree, married and joined his father’s business building single-family houses. His son, Charlie, joined him, and the business expanded into a building, general contracting and property management company, the Yedlin Company, located in Princeton, New Jersey. In the 1990s, Mr. Yedlin turned over the operation of the business to Charlie and devoted his time to memoir writing, video production, traveling, and bicycling. He is a member of the 449th Bomb Group Association, the Fifteenth Air Force Association, the International B-24 Liberator Club and community service organizations. He produced B-24 Bomber Crew, a video of his crew’s reminiscences of their experiences in World War II, broadcast on the History Channel and NJN. Ben also has two daughters, Jane and Nancy. He has six grandchildren. His second wife of twenty-one years, Nancy M. Yedlin, died in 1989.

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