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The Greatest Generation Speaks

Letters and Reflections

This book is available for download with iBooks on your Mac or iOS device, and with iTunes on your computer. Books can be read with iBooks on your Mac or iOS device.

Description

"I first began to appreciate fully all we owed the World War II generation while I was covering the fortieth and fiftieth anniversaries of D-Day for NBC News. When I wrote in The Greatest Generation about the men and women who came out of the Depression, who won great victories and made lasting sacrifices in World War II and then returned home to begin building the world we have today—the people I called the Greatest Generation—it was my way of saying thank you. I felt that this tribute was long overdue, but I was not prepared for the avalanche of letters and responses touched off by that book.

Members of that generation were, characteristically, grateful for the attention and modest about their own lives as they shared more remarkable stories about their experiences in the Depression and during the war years.

"Their children and grandchildren were eager to share the lessons and insights they gained from the stories they heard about the lives of a generation now passing on too swiftly. They wanted to say thank you in their own way. I had wanted to write a book about America, and now America was writing back.

"The letters, many of them written in firm Palmer penmanship on flowered stationery, have given me a much richer understanding not only of those difficult years but also of my own life. They give us new, intensely personal perspectives of a momentous time in our history. They are the voices of a generation that has given so much and wants to share even more.

"Some of the letters were written from the front during the war, or from families to their loved ones in harm's way in distant places. There were firsthand accounts of battles and poignant reflections on loneliness, exuberant expressions of love and somber accounts of loss.

"It seems that everyone in that generation has something worthwhile to contribute, and so we have included some pages in The Greatest Generation Speaks for others to share memories at once inspirational and instructive.

"If we are to heed the past to prepare for the future, we should listen to these quiet voices of a generation that speaks to us of duty and honor, sacrifice and accomplishment. I hope more of their stories will be preserved and cherished as reminders of all that we owe them and all that we can learn from them." —Tom Brokaw

From Publishers Weekly

Nov 01, 1999 – Brokaw's TV anchorman voice is deep and reassuring, with a remarkable air of patriarchal authority. With so much puff-chested attitude, he launches into this tape's introduction, explaining that the letters and comments contained came to him in a responsive outpouring in reaction to his book The Greatest Generation, which chronicled the varied experiences of World War II veterans. For him, these missives expressed a shared sense of "values," since lost in American life. The material itself is far less posturing, mostly clear-eyed remembrances from former soldiers, medics, clergy and reporters who served in Europe and Asia. From the home front come stories from women munitions workers, war widows and war orphans. Finally, the author tells of making efforts to reunite parties long-ago separated by tragic events. Here, the matters described move vividly into the present, giving the program a sense of real drama and pathos. Based on the 1999 Random hardcover.
The Greatest Generation Speaks
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  • $11.99
  • Available on iPhone, iPad, iPod touch, and Mac.
  • Category: Military
  • Published: Nov 30, 1999
  • Publisher: Random House Publishing Group
  • Seller: Penguin Random House LLC
  • Print Length: 272 Pages
  • Language: English
  • Requirements: To view this book, you must have an iOS device with iBooks 1.3.1 or later and iOS 4.3.3 or later, or a Mac with iBooks 1.0 or later and OS X 10.9 or later.

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