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War Is Not Just for Heroes

World War II Dispatches and Letters of U.S. Marine Corps Combat Correspondent Claude R. "Red" Canup

Linda M. Canup Keaton-Lima

Published: Mar 7 2024




Published: Mar 7 2024

OA Ebook
Published: Mar 7 2024


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

Firsthand accounts of war in the Pacific theater from a premier chronicler of the real world of World War II combat.

War Is Not Just for Heroes rescues the incredible true stories of US Marine Corps. Written by one marine, Claude R. "Red" Canup, a combat correspondent in the Pacific during World War II, these dispatches and private letters provide insight into the grind of war and ordinary men and women who carried out their duty. Thoughtfully edited and contextualized by a preface and prologue by his daughter, War Is Not Just for Heroes combines documentary and biography to provide the human dimensions of those in combat and those who reported out.

Linda M. Canup Keaton-Lima is a native of Anderson, South Carolina, and holds a PhD from Clemson University. She worked for more than thirty years in public schools and community colleges of South Carolina and North Carolina.

"This account brings out at the nuts and bolts level, a significant but now largely forgotten component of the whole American attitude toward the war and those who fought it."—Richard B. Frank, author of Downfall: The End of the Imperial Japanese Empire

"Red Canup was the real deal—a real marine, a real reporter. That combination made him the premier chronicler of the real world of World War II combat for the marine aviators who went into the skies over the Pacific. His daughter has collected and curated Red's individual marine stories to tell the bigger story of what it was like for those brave men who attacked, defended, and died. This is a terrific book."—Jim Lehrer, executive editor and anchor, PBS, and past recipient of the USMC Combat Correspondents Association Brig. Gen. Robert L. Denig Distinguished Service Award

"What a delightful story and addition to both marine and marine aviation history. War Is Not Just for Heroes has real human appeal."—Laura Homan Lacey, author of Stay off the Skyline: The Sixth Marine Division on Okinawa

"The Marine Corps historical program owes a debt of gratitude to Linda Keaton-Lima for bringing to light an invaluable treasure trove of wartime material and commentary from her late father, Marine combat correspondent Claude 'Red' Canup. As an eyewitness to the war in the Pacific, Canup, a successful former small-town newspaperman, made sure that his dispatches kept the homefolks informed as to what was going on with 'their' Marines 'somewhere in the Pacific.' If legendary World War II combat correspondent Ernie Pyle is known today as the G.I Joe reporter, then Red Canup deserves similar recognition for his coverage of Marines. I highly recommend this remarkable collection of observations and dispatches to all serious students of World War II history."—Charles P. Neimeyer, director and chief, USMC History Division

"Readers and moviegoers long have thrilled to the epic glories and tragedies of World War II. In War Is Not Just For Heroes, Red Canup tells his own stories of the war, written as the events of the Pacific theater still were unfolding. Red's war correspondent reports and letters paint a human-sized picture of the conflict that only rarely appears among the sweeping accounts that fill our shelves, but that perspective is as moving and inspiring as the most spectacular Technicolor portrayals. Red's words, collected lovingly and artfully by his daughter, present the war in ways the reader can virtually touch, taste and feel — his descriptions range from food to fighting, family to fleas."—Jason Robbins, Publisher, Daily News Publishing Co.

"Red Canup's 398 dispatches from the Pacific make him one of the most prolific combat correspondents in U.S. Marine Corps history. He personified the Marine Corps combat reporting ethos of keeping the families at home aware of their sons' exploits. War Is Not Just for Heroes is a not only a great read but a historical find!"—Capt. Jack T. Paxton, USMC (Ret.), executive director, USMC Combat Correspondents Association

"War Is Not Just for Heroes is fascinating, true-life storytelling. Using his famously sharp wit and homespun style, Red Canup showed the people back home the war as it was experienced by ordinary men and women, not by celebrated heroes. This book itself is a heroic work by Canup's daughter who devoted years to compiling her father's original war dispatches and masterfully arranging them into a narrative that reads like a novel."—J. Lowe Davis,, Pulitzer Prize-winning executive editor of The Virgin Islands Daily News

United States Marine Corps Combat Correspondent
Association's 2012 Denig Award

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