I don’t think it’s coincidence that Veteran’s Day and Thanksgiving take place in the same month.

I recently read “Hell’s Guest” by Col. Glenn D. Frazier. Frazier had been a conflicted mid-teen kid in the Deep South when he lied about his age and enlisted in the United States Army shortly before WWII. He was stationed in the Philippines when the “balloon went up.” Abandoned, he and his buddies fought fiercely – Frazier having had to kill in hand to hand combat with a knife – before the American forces were overwhelmed.

Young Frazier was one of the survivors of the infamous “Bataan Death March,” and endured nightmarish captivity as a POW for the entire war. Afterward, he suffered Post Traumatic Stress Disorder before psychologists were using the term.  He fought through it with the same courage and character that had seen him through so many near-death ordeals, to become a role-model member of The Greatest Generation who even today helps others to cope with life crises.

You can read about it in “Hell’s Guest,” and can find ordering information for this inspirational book at www.hellsguest.com.

I got my copy when my old friend Steve Sager had the privilege of meeting Col. Frazier at a book signing, and was kind enough to snag me one.  Steve, recently returned from Iraq and Afghanistan, found Col. Frazier’s insights most memorable – and most timely — in talking with him. After reading the book, I envy Steve the opportunity to meet this exemplar of American character.

Remember Col. Frazier and the many like him of all generations, who made it possible for us in this coming week to sit down at the annual feast where we Give Thanks.  And don’t neglect the current generation, who won’t be in comfortable American dining rooms to share the holiday because they’re in the desert and the mountains, in deadly danger, representing their country.

An inspiring book.


Col. Frazier, right, with Steve Sager.



  1. Mas,

    Thanks for posting this. I am overwhelmed by the ‘regular’ Americans who have given so much for the rest of us.


  2. The WWII generation continues to impress us all. As a boomer, I didn’t pay as much attention to my dad, uncles and their friends stories of the war as I should have. As I have grown older I recognize their fierce love of this country and the sacrifices they made.

    Sadly this week we also lost a Medal of Honor winner from that era. His story simply makes you sit back in awe. He lead a bayonet charge against the enemy. Probably the last we will see of that. See the link below for the full obit. It’s worth the read.

    God Bless them all. And yes don’t forget those serving our country now.


    (sorry to make you all go to the above rag)

  3. Very appropriate. England buried their last known WWI vet this year and there aren’t too many left in the US. WWII vets are leaving for Valhalla at an ever increasing rate. That young men and women continue to serve to make our country safer is always humbling and we should constantly give thanks for their sacrifice.

  4. I’m always darkly amused that most of us Americans don’t seem to know why Veterans Day is November 11th. The rest of the world celebrates it as “the troops got to come home”, whereas America puts less focus on home, and more on asskicking.

  5. “They Called Us Devil Dogs” (Paperback)
    ~ Byron Scarbrough (Author) The final first-person battlefield account of World War I and Belleau Wood, as told by Pvt. Jim Scarbrough, 83rd Company, 3rd Battalion, Sixth Regiment United States Marine Corps, Allied Expeditionary Force. Jim’s story puts you there; crossing the wheatfield at Belleau Wood, creeping across No-man’s-land at Verdun, charging up Blanc Mont ridge behind the artillery. Many original historic and contemporary photos. WWI(The GREAT War) Veteran’s Day was originally :ARMISTICE DAY!!! Mas, this 210 page book is about my Great Uncle in WW1. It is A wonderful read about a backwoods country boy from Tennessee, although not as Famous as Alvin York, It seems to me that there were many Hero’s that went nameless during this War and many others, but it is unique, that They only lived one county from each other!!! Take the time to read it, it is told in Jim’s First Person Tennessee drawl.

  6. That was indeed “The Greatest Generation”. Sadly our schools today either ignore, or downplay, everything about that war. And far too many youngsters today see nothing wrong with our fearless leader in the White House apologizing for America; in the same countries where thousands upon thousands of brave young Americans gave their lives defending freedom for the entire world.
    God Bless our young men and women now serving and dying for us here safe at home; and God Bless America!

  7. My cousins son posted this on face book today:
    “The soldier, above all other people, prays for peace, for he must suffer and bear the deepest wounds and scars of war.” -Gen. Douglas MacArthur
    He took the second bullet at Ft. Hood, the first would have hit him in the head had he not started moving. As it was his buddy took that bullet in the arm & chest. Our family is most thankful this Thanksgiving for the men & women that have sacrificed for our freedom and God’s grace in allowing our family to remain whole.

  8. Two thumbs up for the book. My daughter and wife talked with the Col. when they were touring the USS Alabama in Mobile Bay. I treasure my signed copy of Hell’s Guest.
    One cannot read this book without a sense of overwhelming debt owed to men like Col. Frazier and a call to duty to continue the good work of the heroes who have gone before us.

  9. Regarding “Long Island Mike’s” reference to Colonel Lewis Millett; I met him in 1968 or 1969 when I was in Thailand. He was certainly impressive but I didn’t realize at first why.

    On one of the few occasions when “the Army” decided to make us do organized PT during that period, it was Colonel Millett who delivered it. You guessed it, we did bayonet drill for… must have been 20 or 30 minutes but it felt like HOURS (until it felt like our arms were filled with molten lead).

    A week or so later I saw him wearing his Tropical Weight Khakis and it took me a couple of days to realize what was “unusual” about him. He wore one ribbon on his chest it was a little sky blue ribbon. I never got close enough to recognize the little white stars that were on the ribbon but it finally dawned on me that what was unusual was that other officer and most NCOs wore a “chest full” of medals and this old Colonel only wore one ribbon.

    Someone explained to me later that he had others but only chose to wear that one. I’m sorry to hear that he’s “passed on” because he truly was a Hero in every sense of the word.