Books to Commemorate Memorial Day

Because of the freedom we enjoy, we oftentimes forget about the profound sacrifices made by our veterans. On the final Monday of every May, cities and towns gather and embrace honorary traditions to celebrate Memorial Day. Some of this day is somber, but it is also a triumphant appreciation of heroism. There are plenty ways to pay tribute to our courageous veterans – one of my personal favorites is with a book that commemorates their service. Check out some of the titles that do just that.  

The Poppa and the Punkin: A WWII Romance Told in Letters by Tim Dunn

(Biography & Autobiography)

This is compelling a memoir of a young married couple who fell in love under the shadow of World War II. It uses over 600 letters between them from 1939-1946, to tell the story of their separation in the U. S., their attempts to create a home life in dusty army air corps bases in Oklahoma, Kansas, and Texas, and a final year of isolation and loneliness.

Sandspit Assault: The Battle of Eniwetok Atoll by Ryan Lowry

(History / World War II)

Sandspit Assault: The Battle of Eniwetok delves into the last battle for an atoll in military history. The furious battle on Eniwetok Atoll concluded the chapter on the Central Pacific Campaign and occurred halfway through the Pacific War in World War II. Follow the men who fought, lived, and died during the battle on the tropical islands of Eniwetok.

Let the Kicking Mule kick: Personal Stories from a WWII B-26 Bomber Pilot to his Family by Keith A. Horn and Ladd L. Horn

(History / WWII)

Let The Kicking Mule Kick is a unique, two-perspective, historical memoir. The words of First Lieutenant Ladd L. Horn will draw you into his world and his experiences as a WWII, B-26 bomber pilot. Through his fascinating oral stories, his letters and more than three hundred of his personal pictures taken during the war, your mind will be transported to the people, animals, places, and machines of war in North Africa, Sardinia, Corsica, and France.

Air Corps Days: The Journey of a World War II Flyboy by Heath White

(History / WWII)

From what began as the author’s research quest to bring closure to a mysterious family tragedy from World War II, comes the now-uncovered account of bomber pilot 2nd Lt. Arthur “Bud” Pierson in Air Corps Days: The Journey of a WWII Flyboy. Using Lt. Pierson’s own letters and journal entries as a framework, Air Corps Days reconstructs his journey and discovers just how much was being asked of the young and inexperienced airmen. Much more than simply a cog in the wheel of war, Pierson’s story exemplifies how World War II became profoundly personal for the families who sent sons and daughters to serve, and recognizes that trauma and heartbreak can permeate multiple generations.

Lessons from Iraq: Memoirs of a Marine by Mike Kubista

(Biography & Autobiography / Military)

In this captivating memoir, a nineteen-year-old Marine tells stories from the first wave of the invasion and from Ramadi and Fallujah when those was the heart of insurgent activity in Iraq.  

We Stick Together by Tony Parisi

(Biography & Autobiography / Military)

We Stick Together: Lessons Learned from Commanding USS THE SULLIVANS (DDG-68) is a leadership memoir that takes readers along on a journey of discovery with the crew across the seas and into the soul. This book explores and explains what it means to be a surface warfare officer aboard an historic ship in the post-Cold War, post-9/11 world.

Fire Creeping in Short Grass by Grady Weaver

(Biography & Autobiography / Military)

Frank Trimual Wall would be a volunteer that joined the Marine Corps several days before smoke blackened the skies above Pearl Harbor on the morning of 7 December 1941. As a young seventeen-year-old who had worked diligently the year before trying to set the stage for entering the Corps, he was already of the state-of-mind to risk what military service may offer. After passing through the rigors of Parris Island and New River, Wall’s notable backwoods charisma would see him pass through the horrors of combat while serving overseas for some twenty-nine continuous months. Upon returning to the states after his time in the Pacific, Frank Wall would commence on a path with the Corps that saw numerous assignments at various bases with a major emphasis being placed on his ability to play baseball for those locations he was assigned. Fire Creeping in Short Grass is an inspiring story of an unassuming man who lived and died as a shining example of what is best found among the United States Marine Corps.

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