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Publisher's Summary

The extraordinary first and only memoir by a survivor of the USS Arizona, published in conjunction with the 75th anniversary of Pearl Harbor.

An unforgettable and moving story of tragedy, heroism, resilience, and redemption that is sure to become an enduring document of American history, All the Brave Men is a sailor's moment-by-moment eyewitness account of the Japanese surprise attack that decimated the US Pacific Fleet in Hawaii on December 7, 1941, and his inspiring return to active duty to carry on the Allied fight in the Pacific.

On December 7, 1941, the Arizona was moored in Pearl Harbor, Hawaii, alongside seven other American battleships. At 7:55 a.m., the leisurely Sunday morning's serenity was broken by the drone of bomb-laden Japanese Zeros swooping from the sky. The Arizona was the first battleship targeted in a massive surprise attack by the Empire of Japan; 353 imperial warplanes swarmed Battleship Row and neighboring Hickam Airfield in a meticulously planned assault launched to cripple America's Pacific Fleet.

Amid the terrifying chaos of explosions and incessant machine gun fire, 19-year-old Seaman First Class Donald Stratton raced to his battle station on the Arizona. Barely 15 minutes into the attack, a 1,760-pound armor-piercing bomb hit the ship, setting off a million pounds of munitions and 180,000 gallons of aviation fuel aboard. The explosion lifted the massive battleship out of the water, causing the forward deck to buckle, and engulfed it in an enormous 50-foot fireball that tore through the antiaircraft platform where Don and his team were stationed.

Burned over more than 65 percent of his body, Don, with his gunnery team, miraculously escaped the inferno; using their charred hands, they climbed across a 70-foot-long rope stretched 45 feet above flaming, oil-slicked water to reach the Vestal, moored nearby. While Don made it out alive, 1,177 of his crewmates perished - more than half the American casualty total of the attack.

But this remarkable story does not end here. After more than a year of grueling treatment, including learning to walk again, Don recovered and doggedly battled navy bureaucracy to reenlist. Determined to take the fight to the enemy, he participated in some of the bloodiest battles of the Pacific, including the invasions of New Guinea, Iwo Jima, and Okinawa.

Told in remarkable, never-before-revealed first-person detail, this powerful and uplifting memoir of war and survival resonates with the spirit, heart, and undaunted courage of such beloved best sellers as Unbroken and The Boys in the Boat.

©2016 Donald Stratton and Ken Gire (P)2016 HarperCollins Publishers

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  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars

Absolutely wonderful book!

I am just a normal middle aged mom with a interest in war history due to my grandfather being a WW2 vet. this book is about much more than the war, or Pearl Harbor. It is full of life lessons and inspiration that made a permanent mark in my mind and on my heart.

3 of 3 people found this review helpful

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  • Scott
  • Chestertown, MD, United States
  • 11-27-16

Great First Person Account

Would you recommend this audiobook to a friend? If so, why?

Yes

What did you like best about this story?

The first person account was one of the best I have read about WW2.

Was this a book you wanted to listen to all in one sitting?

Yes

4 of 5 people found this review helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars

To be a classic !

I believe this story should be made into a movie. To go with the movie
"Saving Private Ryan". Outstanding read.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars

Great book

What a great message. I am am army brat from a father who served 30 years in army / navy and brother served 25 years navy.

What a great story and thank goodness for brave men and women who serve so gallantly.

Our parents generation are truly the greatest ever.

I will be sharing this book with many

Thank you
Mike golden

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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  • Wayne
  • Matthews, NC
  • 12-09-16

Fiirst person account of Pearl Harbor attack

94 year old Don Stratton was a 19 year old Navy man aboard the USS Arizona when the Japanese attacked Pearl Harbor on December 7 1941. He writes about his youth in Nebraska , joining the Navy fresh out of high school, the Japanese attack, his injuries (burns over 60% of his body), rejoining the Navy 2 years later despite having been honorably discharged, and his life since. I've toured the USS Arizona Memorial at Pearl Harbor three times and Mr. Stratton mentions details of which I was unaware. Three of my mothers brothers, two Marines and one Navy sailor, were there on the "day that will live in infamy". All three lived with relatively minor injuries, but none would discuss the attack in detail other than to say they were on duty when the attack occurred and it was horrible.

All the Gallant Men is a must listen treasure which I VERY, VERY HIGHLY RECOMMEND. Thank you, Mr. Stratton!

5 of 7 people found this review helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars

Remember Pearl Harbor

Dear Lord,

Lest I continue
My complacent way,
Help me to remember that somewhere,
Somehow out there
A man died for me today.
As long as there be war,
I then must
Ask and answer
Am I worth dying for?

For the survivors of the USS Arizona those are words that lived with them since December 7, 1941. It is the question they spent a lifetime trying to answer. This is the story of one of those men who survived.

This is a gripping story of a terrible event that changed the course of history for America and the world. Donald Stratton tells us about himself, his shipmates and his country in this book. If you've got an ounce of patriotic blood in you, you may shed a tear as he describes what so many went through on that day.

He asks that we Remember Pearl Harbor. We need to. We need to remember what happened that day in order to ensure that it doesn't happen again. He draws a parallel to the attacks of September 11, 2001 and mentions how so many others thought the same thing. I believe we need to Remember 9-11 too in order ensure that that sort of thing does not happen again. But I'm afraid that 9-11 has dwindled to just an annual memorial service.

This book also tells of the struggle of the flesh. Donald Stratton wants to forgive the men who murdered his shipmates, but he cannot. Although as a Christian he knows what the Bible says about loving your enemies, he gas been unable to do that. And that is true for so many of that generation. I will not pass judgement on him for that for he Remembers Pearl Harbor.

Is Donald Stratton worth dying for. Yes he is. And so are we all. But Donald knows that. The man who died for him on that Sunday morning in December of 1941 was not the first to die for him. It would appear that Donald Stratton also knew of a Savior who gave his life for him on the cross almost 2000 years earlier. He is the one who died for all men and women and boys and girls. Stratton mentions Him in the book. His name is Jesus Christ.

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Truly amazing story.

This is a truly amazing story from a unique perspective. It's so very important to hear the trials and tribulations from the source itself. Listening to this book made me go out and look things up on my own. Such as the pictures and film of Pearl Harbor. I highly recommend this book to anyone who has an interest in U.S. history, history of war and everyone else. I also think this book would be beneficial to any high school student in any U.S. History class.

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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

Amazing!!

This is an amazing account, fantastic book, extremely well researched and presented. A true hero.

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    5 out of 5 stars

A very personal account of that fateful day.

If you could sum up All the Gallant Men in three words, what would they be?

Simply The Best

Who was your favorite character and why?

Other than Mr. Stratton, I would have to say the USS Arizona Band. Donald Stratton did a terrific job of bringing the human experience of that day to the forefront. Rather than a dry historical chronology of events, Mr. Stratton made the Arizona and her crew come to life.

What about Mike Ortego’s performance did you like?

He was very effective in conveying the emotional impact of this story.

Was this a book you wanted to listen to all in one sitting?

Absolutely! I was like sitting down with Mr. Stratton and listening to him tell his story.

Any additional comments?

My heartfelt thanks to Donald Stratton for telling his story. It was his generation, my father's generation that made me want to join the Navy and carry on their legacy.

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    4 out of 5 stars

one book we all should read

I am not a fan of war stories, because they hurt too much. it took determination to read this one all the way through. but I had to finish; I owe it to the ones who had to live through it.

if we forget our past, the old cliche is operable!e,: ,we are destined to repeat it. I hope you will consider reading as a way to honor those who served. we owe them that !uch.