Duty, Honor, Victory: America's Athletes in World War II

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9781592285488: Duty, Honor, Victory: America's Athletes in World War II

A touching, memorable, and long-overdue account of America's athletes on the battlefield.

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From the Back Cover:

“It’s hard to imagine Derek Jeter or Tiger Woods heading to Iraq to join the U.S. armed forces.
But in World War II no American man between the ages of twenty and forty-five was too big to serve—except for the basketball players who exceeded the Army’s
6’6” limits for recruits, a situation illustrated in this excellent book.
Part log, part pictorial, and total history lesson, this book could be sent to school with your kids and used for social studies class. Riveting and moving.”
—Sports Illustrated

“Bloomfield’s extensively researched book . . . is a must-have for any sports-history fan.
It’s encyclopedic in scope and richly illustrated with fascinating photos.”
— Army Times

“This survey tells, with a refreshing lack of sentimentality, the tales of sportsmen who found themselves in a far deadlier kind of combat.
Bloomfield not only shows us a little-known side of World War II but also surveys a fascinating moment in American sports history.”
—Booklist

From the sandlots, asphalt, and cinder tracks of 1930s America, to its country battlefields and stadium gridirons, the spirit of America’s youthful athletes was abruptly transformed from doing their best in sports to showing the mettle in life-and-death warfare.
Painstakingly researched and profusely illustrated, Duty, Honor, Victory tells the stories of the well-known athletes whose on-field exploits brought another type of fame, but whose battlefield duty has been long overlooked. Here is football’s Chuck Bednarik flying bombing missions over Germany; baseball’s Bob Feller commanding an anti-aircraft gun crew aboard the USS Alabama; Warren Spahn wounded and nearly killed when the bridge at Remagen collapses; and Yogi Berra on a rocket boat in Normandy.
Duty, Honor, Victory addresses all sports, from tennis and golf, to baseball, football, and basketball. Included here are stories of well-known professionals, lesser known college players, as well as black athletes who fought for our country during World War II. From the origins of Nazi Germany and imperial Japan in the 1930s through their defeats in 1945—extending into 1946 and the integration of major league baseball—this book shows every aspect of America’s athletes in World War II.

About the Author:

GARY L. BLOOMFIELD, son of an army veteran, is himself a veteran who served two tours in Korea during the 1970s. An award-winning photojournalist, he is a former managing editor of VFW magazine. He lives in Kansas City, Missouri.

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