Book Review: Choosing Courage

It’s Memorial Day here in the US.

Basic Summary (Courtesy of Goodreads:)

What turns an ordinary person into a hero? What happens in the blink of an eye on a battlefield (or in any dangerous situation) to bring out true courage? The men and women who have been recognized by the Congressional Medal of Honor Foundation know the answers to these questions deep in their hearts. We learn of Jack Lucas, a 13-year-old who kept his real age a secret so he could fight in World War II—where he deliberately fell on a grenade to save his buddies during the Iwo Jima invasion—and Clint Romesha, who almost single-handedly prevented a remote U.S. Army outpost in Afghanistan from being taken over by the Taliban. Also included are civilians who have been honored by the Foundation for outstanding acts of bravery in crisis situations: for example, Jencie Fagan, a gym teacher who put herself in danger to disarm a troubled eighth grader before he could turn a gun on his classmates. Adding depth and context are illuminating sidebars throughout and essays on the combat experience and its aftermath: topics such as overcoming fear; a mother mourning her son; and “surviving hell” as a prisoner of war. Back matter includes a glossary and an index.

My thoughts:

On this day in which we celebrate those who died in service to our country, Choosing Courage is a fab book to remind you about the people who serve. Most of the stories are a few pages long, just enough to provide a little insight into the person who sacrificed for others and tell the story. It is not a quick read, despite the short story format. In fact, I found one story a day enough for me or I’d cry too much. Still, I like the reminder that good people exist.

 

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