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A World War II merchant seaman, John Bunker takes a thorough look at the American merchant marines' significant contributions to the war effort. There are plenty of fascinating facts about their extensive supply operations, but the focus of the book is on the men and their often-heroic actions. Bunker draws from his own experiences to describe the action at sea and also includes the personal stories of many other civilian participants. It is an engaging portrayal of the courage, bravery, and ingenuity demonstrated by these merchant seamen. All theaters of operation using U.S. merchant ships are covered; in addition, Bunker provides information on events before the country entered the war when efforts were being made to build more ships and to recruit the men necessary to crew the huge fleet.
John Bunker, a merchant seaman from 1942 to 1945, served in the Atlantic, Caribbean, Pacific, Middle East, and Mediterranean theaters and later enjoyed a distinguished career in maritime affairs before becoming a reporter for the Christian Science Monitor and San Diego Tribune. He died in 2003.
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