Bob has loved the military since he was a youngster. Growing up during the Korean War, he was always playing Army with his best friend. He stopped only long enough to stare at the military equipment passing through his eastern Oklahoma hometown of Heavener on freight trains. Occasionally, a troop train full of Soldiers would stop and he would watch them stretching their legs, wondering what adventures were ahead of them. This love of the military continued in college his favorite class was ROTC. Little did he know when he picked Infantry as his branch that a year after his graduation, he would be leading a platoon of men through the jungles of the central highlands of Vietnam. After successfully completing his tour in Vietnam, Bob put the Army behind him and started a 34-year career at IBM, with most of his time spent in sales and marketing management.
On the 20th anniversary of a major memory from Vietnam, Bob got re-engaged with his passion for the Army and started drafting his personal story of his experiences, What Now, Lieutenant? A few years later, he attended his first National 4th Infantry Division Association reunion and before long became the president and historian of the organization. He loved to listen to the stories of the WWII veterans and then became concerned as they started to die and took their stories with them. That prompted him to collect their stories and the writing of his second book, War Stories: Utah Beach to Pleiku that came out in 2000. Now their stories live on.
Upon retirement from IBM in 2002, Bob became a founding official partner of the Veterans History Project and continued collecting war stories from all branches of the service. He was the ghostwriter for Helen Denton’s World War II WAC book as a result of an interview he did with her. His business success story book, You Don’t Know Jack… or Jerry was a combination of his IBM career and his love of preserving stories of success for posterity. Fortunately, the timing was right — Jack died within a month after the book was finished, but his story lives on.
When the war in Iraq started in 2003, Bob became very involved with his beloved 4th Infantry Division and supported their Soldiers and Family members daily, producing daily email updates on what was going on in Iraq. That resulted in the division commander hiring Bob to write the division’s history during that first year in Iraq, and thus Operation Iraqi Freedom I: A Year in the Sunni Triangle became his next book, followed by Operation Iraqi Freedom 07-09: Dispatches from Baghdad.
Deeds Publishing now consumes Bob’s time so he has little time for writing, even though he still loves doing it. Today his job, along with his team at Deeds, is to help other authors realize their dreams of becoming published authors. His personal experience as an author helps him understand the author’s journey.