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Dearest Mama

The Lost Letters of a Fallen Soldier and the Stories of Those He Left Behind

William S. Walker

Published: Dec 10 2024




Published: Dec 10 2024

OA Ebook
Published: Dec 10 2024


The inclusion of this book in the Open Carolina collection is made possible by the generous funding of

A cache of letters leads to a journey of discovery that reveals the long and lasting consequences of war

William S. Walker never knew his uncle, Fletcher "Bud" Blanton. Blanton had been killed fighting in Europe during World War II before Walker was born. Walker had heard stories about Bud, but for most of his life his uncle had existed only as a faded memory. That path changed when Walker opened a dusty cabinet forgotten in his garage attic and found a paper sack and a note in his father's handwriting that read, "Go through before you throw away." The bag was filled with family photos, correspondence, and a collection of letters and postcards that his uncle Bud had written to his family during his time on the frontline as a US Army infantryman in Europe. The first letter he pulled from the bag opened with the line, "Dearest Mama." Walker's Dearest Mama is Bud Blanton's story. More than that it is a deeply personal family chronicle that resonates for all those left behind when servicemembers do not return home from combat.

William Walker is a South Carolina–born writer and former soldier who worked as a reporter and editor for more than four decades.

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