I’m pleased to announce that I’ll be travelling next month to the United States Military Academy, West Point, New York to receive the Military Order of St. Louis medal for the Khe Sanh trilogy (A Patch of Ground: Khe Sanh Remembered, The Long Goodbye: Khe Sanh Revisited and The Gunpowder Prince: How Marine Corps Captain Mirza Munir Baig Saved Khe Sanh) "in recognition of its important contribution to military literature" from the Knights Templar Hudson Valley Priory of Saint Patrick.
Past recipients include bestselling writers Thomas Fleming, James Bradley (Flags of Our Fathers) and Philip Caputo (A Rumor of War). This year’s candidates included several best-selling writers and historians and a Pulitzer prize-winning journalist. As such, I am deeply honored by the selection and looking forward to the award dinner at the West Point Club on October 17, 2019.
The event is not open to the walk-in public; however, if you wish to attend as my guest, preregistration is required. For information about cost of the dinner, attire, time and directions, etc., please contact LtCol (Ret) Robert Black at RBlack.RBC@Carroll.com. Those of you who have read A Patch of Ground and/or The Long Goodbye may recall then-Captain Black was Tom Mahoney’s company commander with the First Battalion, First Marines during those final harrowing days of Khe Sanh. Signed copies of The Gunpowder Prince will be available via preorder through LtCol Black.
I will also be speaking about the battle of Khe Sanh on October 16, 2019, 2-4 pm, at American Legion #25 hall, 4 JFK Drive, Milltown, NJ (near the Rutgers University campus). Signed copies of all my Khe Sanh books will be available. This event is open to the public.
Between this Military Order of St. Louis, and The Gunpowder Prince having been recipient, last April, of the Marine Corps Heritage Foundation’s 2019 Colonel Joseph Alexander Award for distinguished biography, it’s been a very good year for recognition of the gravity of what Americans and their adversaries on the Khe Sanh battlefield endured, accomplished, lost and now continue to live with, over fifty years after that longest and costliest pitched battle of the Vietnam War.