Author: Mike Guardia

Publisher: Casemate Publishers

ISBN: 978-1-61200-207-1

Mike Guardia, author of Hal Moore, A Soldier Once…And Always, has a Bachelors and Masters degree in History from the University of Houston. (2015, inside back cover) He is an Armor Officer for the United States Army stationed in Fort Bliss, Texas. Guardia has authored two other books. (American Guerilla, and Shadow Commander)

Hal Moore is the man this book is about. Moore was born in Kentucky and the oldest of four children. (2015, p.13) Early on his family instilled some critical values that would take Hal through the remainder of his life: hard work, religious fervor, and family loyalty. (p.14) Moore was an avid history and military buff. He loved reading about Generals and battles and honor and discipline. Hal was home sick with pneumonia when his father told him that the local Senator was seeking a patron. If Hal wanted it it was his. (p.17) Moore had no time to waste deciding and literally jumped at the offer from his sick bed. He made his way to Washington D.C via train and embarked on what would become a very incredible military career. Hal Moore is a graduate of West Point and veteran of the Korean War and the Vietnam War.

Guardia’s book is a chronology/biography of Hal Moore’s life from birth until retirement. Obviously, Hal saw a lot of the world during his military deployments and tours. The book is rich in descriptions about those places and the people who helped make them special. There is a lot of detail about military life and how one adjusts to that type of discipline, as well as, the bonds created between soldiers as they are about to embark on what could be their last duty. The pictures depict real life scenarios, PT onboard USNS Maurice Rose to jumps from daylight to water to covering the dead on battlefields and more, that tie the various places together Hal was stationed at into a cohesive story and allow those of us who are not military personnel to see what life behind the lines and times was like. They humanize the other side of wars that people oftentimes forget exist and remind us that we are all one human race.

I truly dislike war and as such may not be the best judge of the actual quality of this book. However, I lent it to two friends who are ex-military Vietnam era and they absolutely loved it! If you like history and you like to read about war and heroics this is the book for you!