Newspaper article Pittsburgh Post-Gazette (Pittsburgh, PA)

Stories That Honor the Fallen: Memorial Day Reads

Newspaper article Pittsburgh Post-Gazette (Pittsburgh, PA)

Stories That Honor the Fallen: Memorial Day Reads

Article excerpt

Monday is Memorial Day. Many will participate in the annual custom of decorating the graves of war dead with flowers, a tradition that began in 1868. Others will attend special commemoration events, or spend time with family remembering loved ones who were lost.

Another way to recognize their sacrifice might be to read about the wars and conflicts that took their lives. I asked several folks for book recommendations and was amazed at the diversity and depth of their selections.

Wilford Kale, Williamsburg, Va., author of a number of nonfiction books of local interest, was in the U.S. Army from July 1968 to June 1970. He served with the 1st Signal Brigade in Vietnam from May 1969 to June 1970 as a 1st Lieutenant and received a Bronze Star medal. He recommends the following reading:

Pulitzer Prize-winning author James M. McPherson wrote "Hallowed Ground: A Walk at Gettysburg" in 2003, published by Crown. Still in print and also available through a variety of used-book sources, it is a compact look at the Battle of Gettysburg when thousands of Blue and Gray soldiers died in the three-day conflict. The Union causalities were 23,049 (3,155 dead, 14,528 wounded and 5,365 missing); the Confederate casualties totaled 28,063 (3,903 dead, 18,735 injured and 5,425 missing). An illustrated edition of the book was published May 6 by Zenith Press and is packed with significant photographs and illustrations along with Mr. McPherson's original text.

"Beyond the Call" by Lee Trimble with Jeremy Dronfield was published three months ago by Berkley Caliber of New York. It is a wonderful story of a World War II pilot's secret spying and recovery mission behind the Eastern Front to rescue Allied prisoners of war from right under the noses of the Russians. Captain Robert Trimble's son researched and co-authored the inspiring narrative. …

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