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Decorated World War II hero, upstanding community leader, devoted family man, Elmer Hitchcock was all these things, and more. This was the man author Steven N. Leek grew up knowing and calling Grandpa Cookie. It was only after Elmer s death in 2006 that Leek unexpectedly uncovered the dark secrets behind his grandfather s seemingly perfect life and honored military service. This debut book from Steven Leek is the true story of one man's cross-country journey to discover his grandfather's real background, reveal his massive cover-ups and uncover his dual life. Using historic archives, family histories, genealogical research and cryptic evidence that Elmer had hidden in plain sight, Leek follows the nascent clues to expose the real man behind the heroic facade. Elmer's War is a fascinating read.
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Author Steven Leek was born in San Francisco in 1965 and, at the age of 12, he and his family moved to Brookings, Oregon. He attended Brookings-Harbor High School where he excelled in baseball, drama and forensics before enrolling at the University of Oregon in Eugene. He graduated from the U of O with a B.A. degree in history plus a secondary teaching certificate. Leek then traveled to Asia, and for two years taught English in Yokohama, Japan. There, he met and fell in love with his wife, Shoko, a Japanese national. After returning to the states, Leek enlisted in the U.S. Navy as an aircraft mechanic, a decision that would prove pivotal in his next careers. Upon returning to civilian life in 1997, he worked building mighty 747s for the Boeing Company in Everett, Washington. He also served a stint with Horizon Air, a regional airline, as a team captain in the ground-operations department. With his eyes firmly affixed on the sky, Leek then earned his commercial pilot's license and flight instructor certificate. He is presently on a leave of absence from flight instructing to raise his two daughters, ages 7 and 9. He is an active father, world traveler and avid runner, competing in 10K and half-marathon races. He and his family live outside of Seattle, Washington.Review:
This is as good as any mystery, not knowing where the next surprise will lead. It is also a demonstration of the power of love in spite of a lifetime of lies and deceit. --Emmett Ramey, publisher, Hellgate Press (Ret.)
I read the book with fascination throughout. The details, the humor, the bit-by-bit revelations and ironies that Leek uncovers in his quest all make for a rich, family-saga detective tale. --Ron Arias, senior writer, People Magazine
Elmer s War has the double appeal a fine biography of a very human young seaman and the relentless, empathetic, and ultimately compassionate detective story that produced it. --Richard K. Moore, PhD, Professor of International Studies
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Book Description Classic Day Publishing, 2009. Condition: New. book. Seller Inventory # M159849077X