I have been busy and—regrettably—away from this blog for several months; but we have not been idle!
Last month we shared the story of the making of All Came Home with members of The World War II Book Club at The Villages, FL. What a focused and engaged group of historians! They understand that we save history one story at a time. We had a fun time.
In January we visited for a second time with the patrons of the R. H. Johnson Library in Sun City West, AZ. I told the short story of the amphibious assault against Saipan in June of 1944. It was my Dad’s first operation in the Pacific, and the first also for most of his fellow crewmen aboard Leon APA 48. They would all eventually serve in four more assaults before the war ended. One reviewer of All Came Home remarked, “I am amazed at how any one individual could have survived so many horrific battles…Saipan alone should have been more than any man could take.”
Throughout the past two months I have also been studying and organizing a new treasure trove of research discovered and shared by the Toon family. If you have been following this blog, you’ll recall the previous eleven stories here were based on a first batch of letters written by Lt. j.g. Red Toon, my Dad’s Assistant Boat Group Commander aboard Leon. The Toons have discovered another collection of letters and pictures. These are a researcher’s dream. They answer many of the questions that I sought unsuccessfully to resolve prior to writing All Came Home.
So, coming up next:
Pt. 12: Advanced Amphibious Training: Ft. Pierce FL