I have been taking posters around town (Manassas, VA) for local businesses to put up to publicize a local event for the week-long Fall for the Book, hosted on the Fairfax and Prince William campuses of George Mason University campuses (Visit http://fallforthebook.org/ for more information) and stopped by the Hylton Center for the Performing Arts to pick up some more posters. While I was there, I came across the Hylton Center Executive Director, Rick Davis, in the midst of a tour with a distinguished-looking man and an elegant woman I took to be his wife. Rick’s guests were in fact Delegate Richard Anderson and his wife Ruth. Rick graciously introduced me as a local author, and when I told them about my books, Delegate Anderson and his wife exchanged a look that let me know they had a connection to the subject of my novels.
Anderson explained that he had worked to ensure that Merle Robinson, a World War II turret gunner on a B-17 (the aircraft flown by my protagonist, Otto Kerchner) would receive a Silver Star that he had earned during the war by shooting down three German fighters which were about 200 aircraft who attacked his formation during a mission to bomb an airfield. Robinson bailed out and spent a year in a stalag luft.
Delegate Anderson bought both my books as presents for Robinson’s birthday and explained that he would be honored at an upcoming banquet. He said he would put something about the novels in a press release about the event.
Some days things just work out well. I appreciate Delegate Anderson’s interest and the part he has taken in honoring one member of the Greatest Generation and by extension, all of them.