Some readers, and friends, have no doubt wondered why my novel Assault on Saint Agnes was dedicated to CTI1 Peter Craig. Why not my wife? Or my mom? Or my high school wrestling coach. (I didn’t wrestle. Just thought I’d throw that in for some reason.)
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The simple fact of the matter is that Peter holds a special place in my heart. It’s hard for civilians to understand what it means to be taken under the wing of a senior in the service, to have them mentor you, protect you, train you and trust you. More importantly, if you face danger together, and come out stronger for the experience, nothing will ever break that bond. I’m not trying to glorify my role in the United States Navy, but the fact is that we did some very unusual things in my little group of bandits. Peter Craig gets the credit for my making it out of the far end alive, and the crews that went with me. He did a good job in training a very green Third Class Petty Officer in the arcane art of compartmentalized projects. He also taught me that Nutella on toast and Spanish cigarettes can be a suitable breakfast. Perhaps, most importantly, he taught me that you don’t have to be Japanese to be a ninja.
I was able this year, for the first time, to think about this sad anniversary without coming apart. I still shed a tear, but it wasn’t the end of the world. Instead I felt good that I honored the man with my book. He’d laugh really hard at Bobby Kurtz, and what a close resemblance he bears to me. He’d abuse me for lofty opinions of what we did and what dangers there were in our lives. But at the end of the day, he’d still be my friend Pete. The man who took me below the ocean’s surface the first time. The man I spent almost every hour with for a month. The man who gave me a run for my money on steak & lobster night after our mission was over. The man who trained me right, and taught me to honor my nation and myself.
I can never ask God to provide a better Sea Daddy. He gave me the perfect one to begin with in 1986.
Please take a moment to click the link and read about my friend Peter. I’m proud of what I wrote back in 2006 and hope it brought a smile to his soul.
Monday we resume the shilling of the book. Be ready for some serious give-away events. Today, take care of your friends and family with depression. It is the nastiest disease around.
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Assault on Saint Agnes is now available. Just click this link to find all the options! (I recommend the autographed copy. It’s cheaper than from the big stores, I scribble in it, and you get it mailed within 5 days. We all win.
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