Reviewer Conny Withay:Operating her own business in office management since 1991, Conny is an avid reader, volunteers reading the Bible to the elderly, and makes handmade jewelry. A cum laude graduate with a degree in art living in the Pacific Northwest, she is married with two sons, two daughter-in-laws, and one granddaughter.
Author: Jerry Parr with Carolyn Parr
Publisher: Tyndale House Publishing
“It’s a strange twist that having spent my so-called prime years protecting political figures from death, I now spend a lot of time helping people surrender to it. But the impulse to protect and the impulse to bear witness come from the same place. I know those impulses come from God and God is love,” Jerry Parr writes in his epilogue in his book, In the Secret Service – The True Story of the Man who Saved President Reagan’s Life.
At three hundred and twenty-six pages, this paperback book is targeted toward readers who are interested in the United States’ Secret Service and its undying vow to protect our president. Told from a Christian viewpoint, there is no profanity, sex or extreme violence so any mature teenager and older may enjoy it. Also included are eight pages of colored photographs, a copy of a letter the author wrote about the shooting, acknowledgements, a timeline, chapter notes, and index. This reader wishes all pronouns of God were capitalized for reverence.
Although Jerry Parr is no fictional James Bond, his life as a Secret Service Agent for America during the rocky nineteen sixties to nineteen nineties is a true testament of his devotion and love of protecting others. Ironically watching a Ronald Reagan movie about the Secret Service, the eight year old child of the Depression never knew what adventures were ahead of him serving our country.
Working his way up the ranks as an older agent, he witnessed and was a part of history. After protecting Lee Harvey Oswald’s mother and wife in Texas after John F. Kennedy was killed, he was assigned to several vice presidents including Johnson, Humphrey, Agnew, Ford, and Mondale. He also worked at the Foreign Dignitary Protective Division where he protected Jordan’s King Hussein and others. Towards the end of his career, he was on the presidential detail that covered Presidents Carter and Reagan.
The book does not overly focus on the attempted assassination of President Reagan but explains how Parr dealt with the guilt of the man being injured on his watch. Having been to six continents setting up “advances,” dined with dignitaries, and known presidents and their personalities intimately, he shows how he went from protecting others to helping with the sick deal with end-of-life issues during his retirement years.
As the writer confirms God was there, right by his side, during all the frightening, interesting, and sometimes comical experiences of an agent’s life, the reader is captivated with the inner circle details of the Secret Service and how one man viewed the world that surrounded him.
This book was furnished by Tyndale House Publishing in lieu of an unbiased review.