Tuesday, May 20, 2014

Digging Down Deep

“All I want to tell young people is that
you're not going to be anything in life
unless you learn to commit to a goal.
You have to reach deep within yourself
to see if you are willing to make the sacrifices.”
-Louis Zamperini

I care as little about how others spend their time as anyone I know and, in all likelihood, anyone you know or are ever likely to meet.  Anger issue?  Perhaps.  Well-founded belief that you know better what you like than I could ever hope to know?  Far more likely.  

That being said, I submit to one and all that you do a disservice to yourself if you do not read Laura Hillenbrand's "Unbroken", which is the incredible story of a genuine American hero, Louis Zamperini.  Zamperini represented his nation with honor in the 1936 Olympic Games in Berlin as a member of the track and field team after having created a sensation as a high school distance runner. 

Thereafter, he served his nation honorably in World War II, which service included an almost unbelievable tale of survival at sea in shark-infested waters in the South Pacific after the B-24 bomber on which he was the bombardier went down and an even more harrowing tale of degradation and humiliation at the several Japanese POW camps at which he was interred for the final two-plus years of the war.  He not only lived to tell the tale but he is still alive.  And he is still telling it.  

Zamperini's story is one that deserved to be told.  I cannot imagine anyone telling it better than Hillenbrand has done.  I know not how many books she has written but I have read "Unbroken" and "Seabiscuit" and have been beyond impressed by both of them.  "Unbroken" has been made into a film, which is slated for release I believe sometime in 2014.  Read it before you see it.  For even if it sweeps the Academy Awards, it is inconceivable to me that it shall better tell Zamperini's story than Hillenbrand has done.  

Read it.  You shall never regret the time spent immersed in it.  I assure you. 


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