This page was last updated on 20 January 2016.
Am I still a child at heart or what? I believe in Peter Pan and don't
really want to grow up yet. So for your listening pleasure this time I've chosen
the "Mickey Mouse Club March."
some reviews this new book has already received.
Military Writers Society of America--review
by Bill McDonald, Elk Grove, CA:
Well Written Bios of Women Who Have Served
Most of us old veterans already know of Noonie Fortin, or at
least have heard of her, from her website writings and her best selling book
about Martha Raye. I know that is how I discovered her many years ago. Well,
there is about to be a whole new generation of veterans and civilians who will
discover her writings anew when they read her book, Women At Risk: We
This book captures the historic lives of many wonderful women
who served this country in various roles including some in combat zones. Her
bios of women, who’s service spans a time from WWII through the present time,
highlights stories and events that have not been told in this public way before.
Her book breaks new ground as it shares personal memories that normally are only
communicated between immediate family members. Although the majority of the
stories focus on those women in military uniform, it also deals with volunteers
who served their country in other ways. Every story is a gem in a treasure chest
of pure history.
There is so much love in this book for the women profiled.
You can see and feel the care that the author gives to each woman’s story. The
author does not try to paint all these women as heroes, although many really are
in the truest sense of that word, but as real people who made personal
sacrifices for their country. Some of these women have also paid a physical and
psychological price for their service. This book attempts to recognize their
efforts and their many achievements.
This book is well written and lays to rest that old rumor
that the author was actually born in a military footlocker! Noonie has a way
with her words; making every story feel like you are sitting down with each
women in her home to listen to their personal tales in person. The book breaks
into many short little chapters that make it a delight to read for people who
have small blocks of time – like lunch time or between other life events.
This is a must read book. It is given the MWSA
highest rating and recommendation. It is a book that will become a classic on
Reviewed by freelance book reviewer Donna Eggett:
Interested in military history? Here’s a book to round out
your information. With heroes on every page, Women At Risk by Noonie
Fortin, rolls out an engrossing panorama of brave women who have served their
country faithfully, shedding their blood, giving their lives, using their
talents, fighting beside and saving their fellows. Covering American history
from before WW II to present day, chapter by chapter you meet these brave,
resourceful women, including: Jean Hayes, following family tradition as she
joined the Coast Guard in WW II; Laura Dunlop, cryptologist during the Korean
War; Bernice Whiteside, volunteer Army nurse in Vietnam; Pam Waterston, an Army
Heavy Equipment Operator serving in the Persian Gulf, watched, wished, hoped and
prayed as she served with her fellow soldiers on ammunition guard duty at the
Port of Al Jubayl.
Having given twenty-two years of service, Vietnam Era veteran, First Sergeant
Noonie Fortin knows her subject intimately. Fortin interviewed each women
personally before including them in this book. Written in simple, potent
language, with appealing detail and many photographs, Women At Risk,
provides interesting reading for a wide age spread, middle school through adult.
Libraries, schools and individuals will find it a useful reference book. Several
practical appendices add to the convenience of this book: bibliography; listing
of service organizations; roll call of women looking for military buddies;
glossary; an exhaustive index; suggested activities for students.
Reviewed by Aileen Kilgore Henderson, author of Stateside
Soldier: Life in the Women’s Army Corps 1944-1945, published by the University
of South Carolina Press 2001:
Women At Risk is astonishing. I’ve
not found any book that gives such a detailed yet wide ranging picture of women
in all branches of the United States military as this one does. I came to it
with the mind-set of a WW II veteran, a woman who served in the Women’s Army
Corps attached to the Air Force. I was convinced our way was best—women living
in a separate area with female officers, serving in limited jobs such as file
clerks, stenographers, dental technicians, librarians, and postal clerks. We
could say yes or no to overseas duty, and many of us stayed on the
same military post the entire enlistment period. A common complaint was lack of
promotions, and few of us had the opportunity to attend a training school. When
six of us WACs qualified as airplane engine mechanics, many obstacles had to be
overcome before we were allowed to work on the flight line, the first WACs in
our service command to do so. We never handled weapons and did not teach males
nor command them.
That is not true of the women who came after us, and how tame
our lives seem in contrast. As this book shows, these later women were stationed
around this country and all over the world as well as aboard ship. They were
trained for a variety of jobs vital to our national security, attended many
different schools, and attained high ranks. Among other subjects, they taught
weaponry to male soldiers. Some of them served in more than one branch of the
military. They’ve won many medals, ribbons, and awards. They’ve coped with
problems we never dreamed of, at least at my airfield: discharges because of
suspected lesbianism, rapes, sexual harassment, actual hatred for being a
service woman, Post Traumatic Stress Disorder, Agent Orange.
Though Women At Risk gives a summary of women who
served prior to 1945, the emphasis is on women who have served during peace and
war after WWII. Those of us who preceded 1945 are credited with being pioneers,
of paving the way for the women who served during Korea, Vietnam, Desert Storm.
But I refuse the accolade. These young women sketched in Women At Risk
are a different breed and I applaud them. They took control of their lives,
their careers. They earned college degrees by correspondence courses, they
studied for advancement in the service by correspondence courses. They served in
Reserve units. Though some of them made mistakes, instead of meekly accepting
the discharge decreed for them, they took action to correct their mistakes and
insisted on being given a second chance. When the military reneged on promises
made to them, did these women accept it? No! They either wrote their Commander
in Chief, the President of the United States, or lodged a Congressional
complaint. In either case, they got the justice due them.
Women At Risk provides a fascinating look at these
take-charge women who speak with unusual frankness of their lives in the armed
forces. It is a long book, but it is set up so that it can be kept within handy
reach for reading when only a short span of time is available. Besides, these
stories are so strong they are best-appreciated in small segments. I recommend Women
At Risk to anyone who doubts the contributions of women in the military, and
to everyone who is interested in women’s history.
The book is indexed, and has a helpful glossary. The author,
a veteran herself, works tirelessly for the welfare of veterans, but especially
"the silent veterans" (women), and Gold Star Mothers.
Midwest Book Review: 5-stars: Highly inspirational and patriotic testimonies:
Women At Risk: We Also Served by Vietnam Era military veteran
Noonie Fortin is an informative and inspiring presentation of women who served
and helped protect America from before World War II down to the present day.
Women in all branches of the military are remembered with tributes, as well as
the women who volunteered as civilians. Including clerks, drivers, nurses, USO
and ARC volunteers and others, more than sixty women tell their personal
stories. A compendium of highly inspirational and patriotic testimonies, Women
At Risk is strongly recommended for Women's Studies and Military History
supplemental reading lists.
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