The Rifle: Combat Stories from America’s Last WWII Veterans, Told Through an M1 Garand, Andrew Biggio. ISBN: 9781684510795, Regnery History.
It all started because of a rifle.
The Rifle is an inspirational story and hero’s journey of a 28-year-old U.S. Marine, Andrew Biggio, who returned home from combat in Afghanistan and Iraq, full of questions about the price of war. He found answers from those who survived the costliest war of all — WWII veterans.
It began when Biggio bought a 1945 M1 Garand Rifle, the most common rifle used in WWII, to honor his great uncle, a U.S. Army soldier who died on the hills of the Italian countryside. When Biggio showed the gun to his neighbor, WWII veteran Corporal Joseph Drago, it unlocked memories Drago had kept unspoken for 50 years. On the spur of the moment, Biggio asked Drago to sign the rifle. Thus began this Marine’s mission to find as many WWII veterans as he could, get their signatures on the rifle, and document their stories.
For two years, Biggio traveled across the country to interview America’s last-living WWII veterans. Each time he put the M1 Garand Rifle in their hands, their eyes lit up with memories triggered by holding the weapon that had been with them every step of the war. With each visit and every story told to Biggio, the veterans signed their names to the rifle. 96 signatures now cover that rifle, each a reminder of the price of war and the courage of our soldiers.
Washington D.C.—You wouldn’t believe how these ninety-year-old WWII heroes come alive when you put a rifle in their hands.
In Biggio’s riveting account of The Rifle you will learn:
- What it was like to fight for freedom in the various theaters of World War II.
- The obstacles these world conquerors faced upon returning home and how they overcame them.
- The importance of memory and respect to the veteran community, and one man’s commitment to transmitting those values to another generation of Americans.
About the author: Andrew Biggio formerly served as a United States Marine Corps infantry sergeant and currently serves on the police force in Boston, MA. He is a veteran of Iraq and Afghanistan and is president of New England’s Wounded Veterans, Inc., a nonprofit which supports wounded veterans. Biggio holds a master’s degree in homeland security from Northeastern University in Boston, MA.
A portion of the proceeds from The Rifle will be donated to New England’s Wounded Veterans, Inc.
Carol graduated from Riverside White Cross School of Nursing in Columbus, Ohio and received her diploma as a registered nurse. She attended Bowling Green State University where she received a Bachelor of Arts Degree in History and Literature. She attended the University of Toledo, College of Nursing, and received a Master’s of Nursing Science Degree as an Educator.
She has traveled extensively, is a photographer, and writes on medical issues. Carol has three children RJ, Katherine, and Stephen – one daughter-in-law; Katie – two granddaughters; Isabella Marianna and Zoe Olivia – and one grandson, Alexander Paul. She also shares her life with her husband Gordon Duff, many cats, and two rescues.