On May 26, 2018, The Veterans’ Writing Group of San Diego County (VWG) celebrated the publishing of its second book, Listen Up! Things I Learned from the Military, at the Veterans Association of North County (VANC).
Vista Mayor Judy Ritter was one of our honored supporters. Her Father was a World War II pilot, and she assisted the group with its first book Away for the Holidays, in getting a grant from the San Diego County Board of Supervisors. Over 1700 books were given to active duty men and women in the naval hospitals, and veterans through the VA Healthcare System, The USO and area service organizations.
Garry Garretson introduced special guests to the 60 attendees.
Matthew Trujillo, representing the office of State Senator Joel Anderson, presented a certificate to each writer, recognizing his or her community service. Christine Smith from the Veterans Hospital in San Diego joined us for the book launch. Oft-published authors Frank Ritter and John Stryker-Myers were there, too. VANC founder Chuck Atkinson also popped in, even as he continued his daily duties of running the organization that generously provides the facility for VWG’s book launches, but also where our monthly meetings are held.
Gail Chatfield, one of the co-founders of VWG, was thanked for her many years of leading the group. Our primary editors, Randy Davis and Glenn Foss were recognized for their contribution to the publication. Michael Wood, one of VWG original organizers of VWG and Bruce Rowe, who assists with web design and editing, also joined us. Other writers who attended included Dante’ Puccetti, Kevin Byrne, Ron Pickett, Joe Snyder, Joe Ashby, Garry G. Garretson.
Ron Pickett, our MC, read one of the poems written by former VWG member Terry Severhill, who passed away in December of 2017. Ron also recognized two other comrades and authors who recently died, Bud Parson and Dolph Brostrom. Several other authors read brief excerpts from their works, including Kris Thorsten, Harold Sprogis, Sydney Zelaya, Glenn Foss, Robert Caudill, Vernita Black, and Charlie Wyatt in Listen Up!
A special thanks to Balloons and More for the donation of the beautiful balloon displays. Over 100 books were sold at the event. Additional copies of the book can be ordered from Amazon.com.
VWG’s members would welcome reading and discussing excerpts from Listen Up! Things I learned from the Military at one of your group meetings.