The Measure of a Man: My Father, the Marine Corps, and Saipan

Naval Institute Press
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Maj. Roger G. B. Broome, USMCR, died from wounds received on Saipan before his daughter had a chance to know him. Now a well-known naval historian and author of award-winning books, that daughter, Kathleen Broome Williams, has turned the research skills she honed studying naval technology to find her lost father. For this biography, she makes full use of an extensive collection of her father’s colorful and articulate letters along with the testimony of surviving Leathernecks who served with Major Broome, backed up by official records.

The book reconstructs her father’s life as a University of Virginia Law School graduate who obtained a commission in the Marine Corps despite his colorblindness and eventually won the combat command he lobbied for. In April 1944 Broome took command of the Regimental Weapons Company, 24th Marines, 4th Marine Division. But his pursuit of glory came to an abrupt end just twenty-four days into the Saipan invasion when he sustained the wounds that condemned him to a lingering death. The author not only found a hero who was awarded the Navy Cross for his courageous actions, but also uncovered a profoundly human individual with strengths as well as obvious faults. In unfolding Broome’s story, she takes significant world events from seventy years ago and places them in an intimate context, to show how they affected Americans on and off the battlefield. Her efforts provide an inside look at the U.S. Marine Corps during the pivotal years of World War II, including recruit training, amphibious assaults, high casualties, and, not least, the personal feuds and rivalries that shaped it.
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About the author

Kathy Williams was born in Virginia and grew up in Italy and England. She also lived in Germany and Puerto Rico and has taught history in Tokyo, Japan, in the Republic of Panama, in New York, and now at Cogswell Polytechnical College in Sunnyvale, California. She lives in Oakland near her three grown children and three grandchildren
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Additional Information

Publisher
Naval Institute Press
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Published on
Jun 1, 2013
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Pages
224
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ISBN
9781612512679
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Language
English
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Genres
History / Military / World War II
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Content Protection
This content is DRM protected.
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When grace Hooper retired as a rear admiral from the U.S. Navy in 1986, she was the first woman restricted line officer to reach flag rank and, at the age of seventy-nine, the oldest serving officer in the Navy. A mathematician by training who became a computer scientist, the eccentric and outspoken Hoper helped propel the Navy into the computer age. She also was a superb publicist for the Navy, appearing frequently on radio and television and quoted regularly in newspapers and magazines. Yet in spite of all the attention she received, until now "Amazing Grace," as she was called, has never been the subject of a full biography. Kathleen Broome Williams looks at Hooper's entire naval career, from the time she joined the Waves and was sent in 1943 to work on the Mark 1 computer at Harvard, where she became one of the country's first computer programmers. Thanks to this early Navy introduction to computing, the author explains, Hooper had a distinguished civilian career in commercial computing after the war, gaining fame for her part in the creation of COBOL. The admiral's Navy days were far from over, however, and Williams tells how Hopper--already past retirement age--was recalled to active duty at the Pentagon in 1967 to standardize computer-programming languages for Navy computers. Her temporary appointment lasted for nineteen years while she standardized COBOL for the entire department of defense. Based on extensive interviews with colleague and family and on archival material never before examined, this biography not only illuminates Hopper's pioneering accomplishments in a field that came to be dominated by men, but provides a fascinating overview of computing from its beginnings inWorld War II to the late 1980s.
“Eugene Sledge became more than a legend with his memoir, With The Old Breed. He became a chronicler, a historian, a storyteller who turns the extremes of the war in the Pacific—the terror, the camaraderie, the banal and the extraordinary—into terms we mortals can grasp.”—Tom Hanks

NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER

In The Wall Street Journal, Victor Davis Hanson named With the Old Breed one of the top five books on epic twentieth-century battles. Studs Terkel interviewed the author for his definitive oral history, The Good War. Now E. B. Sledge’s acclaimed first-person account of fighting at Peleliu and Okinawa returns to thrill, edify, and inspire a new generation.

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From the Trade Paperback edition.
#1 NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER • NOW A MAJOR MOTION PICTURE • Look for special features inside. Join the Random House Reader’s Circle for author chats and more.

In boyhood, Louis Zamperini was an incorrigible delinquent. As a teenager, he channeled his defiance into running, discovering a prodigious talent that had carried him to the Berlin Olympics. But when World War II began, the athlete became an airman, embarking on a journey that led to a doomed flight on a May afternoon in 1943. When his Army Air Forces bomber crashed into the Pacific Ocean, against all odds, Zamperini survived, adrift on a foundering life raft. Ahead of Zamperini lay thousands of miles of open ocean, leaping sharks, thirst and starvation, enemy aircraft, and, beyond, a trial even greater. Driven to the limits of endurance, Zamperini would answer desperation with ingenuity; suffering with hope, resolve, and humor; brutality with rebellion. His fate, whether triumph or tragedy, would be suspended on the fraying wire of his will.
 
Unbroken is an unforgettable testament to the resilience of the human mind, body, and spirit, brought vividly to life by Seabiscuit author Laura Hillenbrand.

Hailed as the top nonfiction book of the year by Time magazine • Winner of the Los Angeles Times Book Prize for biography and the Indies Choice Adult Nonfiction Book of the Year award
 
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They parachuted into France early D-Day morning and knocked out a battery of four 105 mm cannon looking down Utah Beach; they parachuted into Holland during the Arnhem campaign; they were the Battered Bastards of the Bastion of Bastogne, brought in to hold the line, although surrounded, in the Battle of the Bulge; and then they spearheaded the counteroffensive. Finally, they captured Hitler's Bavarian outpost, his Eagle's Nest at Berchtesgaden.

They were rough-and-ready guys, battered by the Depression, mistrustful and suspicious. They drank too much French wine, looted too many German cameras and watches, and fought too often with other GIs. But in training and combat they learned selflessness and found the closest brotherhood they ever knew. They discovered that in war, men who loved life would give their lives for them.

This is the story of the men who fought, of the martinet they hated who trained them well, and of the captain they loved who led them. E Company was a company of men who went hungry, froze, and died for each other, a company that took 150 percent casualties, a company where the Purple Heart was not a medal—it was a badge of office.
When grace Hooper retired as a rear admiral from the U.S. Navy in 1986, she was the first woman restricted line officer to reach flag rank and, at the age of seventy-nine, the oldest serving officer in the Navy. A mathematician by training who became a computer scientist, the eccentric and outspoken Hoper helped propel the Navy into the computer age. She also was a superb publicist for the Navy, appearing frequently on radio and television and quoted regularly in newspapers and magazines. Yet in spite of all the attention she received, until now "Amazing Grace," as she was called, has never been the subject of a full biography. Kathleen Broome Williams looks at Hooper's entire naval career, from the time she joined the Waves and was sent in 1943 to work on the Mark 1 computer at Harvard, where she became one of the country's first computer programmers. Thanks to this early Navy introduction to computing, the author explains, Hooper had a distinguished civilian career in commercial computing after the war, gaining fame for her part in the creation of COBOL. The admiral's Navy days were far from over, however, and Williams tells how Hopper--already past retirement age--was recalled to active duty at the Pentagon in 1967 to standardize computer-programming languages for Navy computers. Her temporary appointment lasted for nineteen years while she standardized COBOL for the entire department of defense. Based on extensive interviews with colleague and family and on archival material never before examined, this biography not only illuminates Hopper's pioneering accomplishments in a field that came to be dominated by men, but provides a fascinating overview of computing from its beginnings inWorld War II to the late 1980s.
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