All the fellows envy us our Pilot - he is grade A believe me . . .
. . . at a moment, [he] had my confidence. He is just a kid, but when he drives that "truck" he takes on a maturity that merits admiration and respect in my eyes.
~ Frank G. Thompson
In just 3 days, the world will be introduced to Staff Sgt. Frank G. Thompson and 1LT. Roger W. Sundin whose "perfect ditching" saved the lives of his crew, which included my father. That's when the book An Unexpected Coddiwomple: The story of a father's sudden death, a box of World War II letters, and a daughter's life transformed will officially launch.
Not since Anne Frank's diaries has the world been given a window into daily life during World War II - this time, the window belongs to a U.S. Army Air Corp radio operator. By sharing these unique documents with the world, my father's letters speak for the millions of other young men who shared many of those same experiences and had the same feelings and frustrations but were never able to express them. In that way, he is sort of a W.W. II Everyman. The book's day to day accounting of the lives of everyday enlisted men during the war takes the reader from basic training to discharge. Few books are so thorough or so engaging because so much of the personality and character of my father comes through. It is through his own voice that the reader gets to know and even to love him.
Destined to become a seminal work of World War II history - it won't be long now until you are able to join me, my father, and Big Sundin on An Unexpected Coddiwomple.
Photo: Author, Frank's daughter Loretto Thompson, and Publisher, JuLee Brand from W. Brand Publishing, present Big Sundin with the first pre-press copy of An Unexpected Coddiwomple, which includes a detailed account of his "perfect ditching."