In May 2004, the sixtieth anniversary year of D-Day, the nation paid tribute to its World War II heroes with the dedication of a memorial on the National Mall in Washington, D.C. This beautifully illustrated keepsake offers a behind-the-scenes look at the creation of the memorial and its place in American history.Exclusive photographs show the memorial in all stages of development, accompanied by text exploring the symbolism of each part -- the Rainbow Pool, the Wall of Remembrance, the Field of Stars, the Freedom Wall, and the Pillars of the States and Territories. George H. W. Bush, former senator Bob Dole, Yogi Berra, and other veterans share their personal stories, and leading military historians contribute essays on the war efforts at home and abroad. Like the memorial it commemorates, this book pays tribute to the "greatest generation" -- the everyday Americans who rose up to defend our freedom.
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Douglas Brinkley is a professor of history at Rice University, the CNN Presidential Historian, and a contributing editor at Vanity Fair and Audubon. The Chicago Tribune has dubbed him “America’s new past master.” His recent Cronkite won the Sperber Prize for Best Book in Journalism and was a Washington Post Notable Book of the Year. The Great Deluge won the Robert F. Kennedy Book Award. He is a member of the Society of American Historians and the Council on Foreign Relations. He lives in Austin, Texas, with his wife and three children.From Publishers Weekly:
A fine companion to the PBS documentary on the memorial, this coffee-table volume begins and ends with useful histories and discussions of the memorial itself. In between are summaries from Brinkley (Tour of Duty: John Kerry and the Vietnam War, etc.) of land, sea and air campaigns, in Europe and the Pacific; of the home front, including war production and daily life; of women’s roles. Interspersed with the narratives are the personal tales of WWII veterans, including All-Star Pitcher Bob Feller, a battleship sailor; Audie Murphy, the most decorated American soldier; and a young Annapolis graduate who commanded a submarine at the end of the war, with a parallel tale by his wife. Well-chosen and well-reproduced period photographs are here in generous quantity, even if emphasizing the classics, as are photos of the memorial (by Richard Latoff). The war production of the Ford Motor Company (a sponsor of the volume and the TV special) gets significant space. The foreword by John S.D. Eisenhower states that for the U.S., the "impact of WWII lies chiefly on the effect it had on the Americans who lived through the period, especially those who participated, and the impact it had on American society." It does not mention the impact of the 405,399 U.S. deaths during the war, also commemorated by the memorial.
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