iUniverse boasts a proud tradition of authors who hail from the “warrior classes”. We are very honored that these men and women, who have made great sacrifices, have chosen iUniverse as their channel for sharing their experiences with the world.
David M. Burns, Spectre Gunner
David M. Burns joined the US Navy in 1951, at the age of fifteen. He retired in 1978 as a master sergeant after a distinguished career in both the navy and air force.
Master Sergeant Burns’s book discusses a distinguished military career that began in 1951 at the age of fifteen. He served one tour of duty in Phan Rang, South Vietnam, in 1967, and four tours of duty in the 16th Special Operations Squadron in Southeast Asia as an aerial gunner, lead gunner, and instructor gunner. He served in both the United States Navy and Air Force, earning three Distinguished Flying Crosses for heroism, twenty-seven Air Medals, as well as a Bronze Star, Purple Heart, Presidential Unit Citation, Armed Forces Expeditionary Medal, Vietnam Cross of Gallantry with Palm, Vietnam Service Medal with nine battle stars, and other decorations from the Korean War. He was wounded twice and is credited with saving the lives of fourteen crew members.
As a US Marine, Lucas A. Dyer engaged in combat with the Taliban in Helmland, the heroin capital of Afghanistan. He fought in the Battle of Khanjar while participating in Operation Enduring Freedom from May 2009 to December 2009. Dyer was one of the four thousand Marines who fought under Brig. Gen. Larry Nicholson as a member of the Second Marine Expeditionary Brigade, which also included 650 Afghan soldiers.
As a small unit leader and platoon commander leading Marines in battle, he fought terrorists and their allies on their home turf, witnessing unspeakable violence in the process. At a certain point, however, he and his fellow Marines realized that the policy of “an eye for an eye” would not accomplish their objectives. This realization marked a turning point for them, and a basis of true success began to unfold.
Relying on counterinsurgency operations, they began shaking hands one at a time—and that was how they ultimately drove the Taliban away. Day by day and week by week, they proved that a small fighting force could work together with Afghans to become brothers-in-arms.
Chantelle Taylor joined the British Army in 1998 as a combat medical technician. Ten years later she made history, becoming the first female soldier to kill a Taliban fighter in close-quarter combat while on patrol in Helmand Province, Afghanistan. In Battleworn, she tells the story of B Company, a beleaguered group of individuals who fought relentlessly to hold Nad-e Ali, a dusty, sweltering hellhole surrounded by the Taliban.
A routine patrol into an area saturated with enemy fighters escalates into a seven-week siege. Facing the possibility of death daily, Taylor writes of gun battles and perilous patrols, culminating in the extraction of more than sixty-six casualties with four killed in action.
A powerful story written with a humility that captures the sometimes impalpable humor of soldiers at war, Battleworn provides a testament to combat medics all over the world. It highlights the crucial role that they play in today’s 360-degree battlefield.
As a teenager, author Georg Rauch helped his mother protect the Jewish couples hidden in their Viennese attic. Officially classified as one-quarter Jewish, Rauch is drafted into Hitler’s army and sent to fight for causes he detests. Rauch finds himself near death many times, but his talents as a shortwave radio operator, chef, and even harmonica player all play a role in his survival. Captured by the Russians in the autumn of 1944, Rauch faces brutality and near-fatal illness as a POW. Recruitment for Russian espionage saves his life this time, but his story isn’t over yet.
Based on eighty letters sent home from the Russian trenches, The Jew with the Iron Cross is a riveting tale of paradox and survival during World War II. Rauch’s book was picked up by the publishing firm of Farrar, Strauss and Giroux Macmillan earlier this year, and is now sold under its new title, Unlikely Warrior: A Jewish Soldier in Hitler’s Army.
We at iUniverse proudly salute our military authors, and look forward to more fascinating accounts of life at war.