GALLIPOLIS — Both the Vinton and the Gallipolis chapters of the Books and Friends Book Club enjoyed an author visit and chat with Shannon Newberry at their Oct. 26 meeting at Wood Hall at the University of Rio Grande.
Newberry was invited by Fannie Metcalf, president of the Gallipolis chapter, and Dr. Denise Shockley, of the ESC, was gracious enough to provide the location.
There were approximately 40 members and guests present. Newberry is a social studies teacher in Chillicothe and the
author of “Unlikely Brothers Just Trying to Make it Home.” His inspiration for writing the book came after reading “The Faith of the American Soldiers” by Stephen Mansfield and from his father, Alan Newberry, a Vietnam veteran.
After reading Mansfield’s book, Shannon asked his father if he would let him write a book about his time in Vietnam during the Vietnam War. Shannon interviewed his father and several of Alan’s comrades at their military reunions and wrote their stories. To Shannon, his father is a hero in every sense of the word — not just for his time in the military, but also for the man of faith that he is and such a positive role model to his family and others.
Almost everyone in the room had been touched by war and it was an emotional evening for the many veterans in the audience and their families, several of whom had their own personal stories to share. But one thing that Alan Newberry credits for helping him to heal, other than God’s grace, is talking with his military “brothers” at their reunions.
Pastor John Jackson was a guest in the audience, but as a counselor to many soldiers after Vietnam he was able to add insightful contributions to the discussion.
— Submitted by Donna DeWitt