All Press Releases for July 13, 2023

Frank McElvain Author of SFC: A Poor Man's Battle Reveals How He Discovered His Father's Military Secrets For New Book

SFC: A Poor Man's Battle Now Available at Amazon

    ST. LOUIS, MO, July 13, 2023 /24-7PressRelease/ -- Frank McElvain, author of SFC: A Poor Man's Battle, said he and his siblings were not only surprised but shocked by what they learned about their father, John McElvain, and his military history following John's death.

Clearing his parents' estate after their deaths McElvain discovered a trove of letters hidden in a magazine rack among his mother's German newspapers. His mother was a Bavarian woman who survived The Third Reich and met John, a soldier stationed in Germany, after the conclusion of World War II.
"My father embodied 20th-century history much deeper than we knew. Among his personal files were clues about his early adulthood and military career. We knew he had served during World War II and in Vietnam, but he rarely disclosed details. My siblings and I were anxious to learn more," McElvain said.

"I began by speaking to family and friends of my parents and researching my father's battalion period book. I also contacted the National Personnel Records Center. What we found was revealing if not shocking."

McElvain found records indicating his father was a war hero who helped the U.S. Army breach Nazi Germany's Siegfried Line. For his efforts John received a Bronze Star. Frank also learned his father was captured by the Nazis, force-marched 100 kilometers, and liberated by his own battalion at the end of the war.

"As hazardous as the war was, Dad's post-war civilian life was equally shocking. He married, but tragedy took his wife and their son in childbirth, and that began an extensive period of unemployment, driving my father to reenlist in the Army. A series of events had to occur such as the world going to war, Dad's first wife passing away, and for him to struggle through an unsuccessful six months of job hunting, otherwise my sister, brother and I wouldn't be here."

McElvain also pieced together photos and created a timeline of his parent's lives. This included contacting soldiers who had fought alongside his father in Vietnam.

"We learned that dad served as a medic in Vietnam. Not only did he help our soldiers but also many of the South Vietnamese families and probably helped save dozens of lives."

John McElvain would also receive a medal for his service in Vietnam and would be promoted to his highest rank of SFC, Sergeant First Class.
"As we highlight in the book, my father and mother had all kinds of personal secrets. They survived an improbable series of events that brought them together and had a nice 49-year marriage despite many tumultuous times before and during a relationship that spanned five decades. My siblings and I are grateful to the many who provided information about my father to make this awesome story possible."

"Overall I really didn't know my parents until I was 60 and they were gone, but I am proud of my father's service to the country, a sharecropper's son in Alabama who against improbable odds would become a war hero."

SFC: A Poor Man's Battle is much more than a family history. Readers will enjoy this common man's tale of war, romance, marriage, deceit, and secrets, all hidden no more.

For details visit Amazon.

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