I received a letter this week from Wilma Hawes Connely, telling me about a book that is coming out in February.
According to Mrs. Connely, the book was written by an attorney in Tulsa. But the subject of the book is Walter Hawes, who was born in Neosho on March 16, 1923.
The book is about Walter Hawes' life and his World War II service. It includes 14 of his wartime letters home, which were found in Indiana. Walter served in Italy from September of 1943 until December of 1945. The letters were almost destroyed, but by a chance of fate, were found by a family member. That made it possible for Tulsa attorney Doug Eaton to do a book of Walter Hawes' life, including the 14 letters.
Connely, who is the sister of Walter Hawes, is listed as a contributor to the book, as she worked with the author, providing the material about his life.
Eaton works as a fundraiser for the Honors Flight Program. This program provides World War II veterans with an opportunity to fly to Washington, D.C., to see the relatively new World War II monument. Several men from this area have made the flight, and they say it is an amazing trip. The veterans are flown to Washington, taken to the Memorial and then fly back home on the same day.
Eaton will donate the proceeds from the sale of this book to the Honors Flight Program. And the nice part is that he wants to have a book signing in Neosho, the hometown of Walter Hawes.
Neosho has always given its hand for good causes, and the money from the book is a good cause — helping World War II veterans. Not only that, the book is about a "Neosho boy," and we should show some civic pride that he is the subject of a book.
If my information is correct, Barbara Severs of Neosho is Walter's daughter, and there are at least two of his cousins living in the area. Lenore Landreth, of Newtonia, and the distinguished mayor of Newtonia, George Philliber, are Walter's cousins.
So, please stay turned and save your pennies to buy a book.
I understand they have found a place for the signing. I am sure they will announce the place and date. Mrs. Connely wrote that the cost of the book will be about $15.
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Don't forget the Eagle Days in Stella will be Jan. 26 from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. This event is sponsored by the Village of Stella, the Missouri Department of Conservation and the Missouri Master Naturalists. It's quite a sight to see a tree full of eagles. Be sure and take your kids or grand kids.
Kay Hively writes a weekly column for the Daily News.