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Inspirational and humorous autobiographical essays on coming of age in a small

western Pennsylvania river town during WW II, the Korean and Viet-Nam Wars.

Young William fought World War II from a fox-hole that he and his childhood

friends dug and in which he was wounded. He believed that since he graduated

from a smoky, mill-town high school, he might not easily get admitted to college,

so he applied to fourteen of them. After graduating from college with honors, he

describes getting a PhD, a less-than-heroic stint in the military and becoming a

professor and business consultant. A continuing theme is his relationship with “the

girl of his dreams,” a beautiful redhead who he met at 14 and to whom he has been

married for more than a half century. He describes his older Brother, who fought in

Korea and came home to live the life of a playboy until he met the love of his life,

his nurturing Mother and a Father who set an example to which he still aspires. The

reader will learn about things as diverse as the Whiskey rebellion, teenage behavior

before the sexualization of culture, a useful decision paradigm created on Omaha

Beach and how to impress a girl by tasting her hair. The book ends with musings on

how two very different people can come together and create a happy and enduring

marriage. Anyone interested in what life and relationships were like in the middle of

the 20th Century, when three wars consumed the daily attention of the nation, will

find this book to be interesting, thought-provoking and entertaining.

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