The Greatest Generation Speaks by Tom Brokaw
(Tom Brokaw)

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"I first began to appreciate fully all we owed the World War II generation while I was covering the fortieth and fiftieth anniversaries of D-Day for NBC News. When I wrote in The Greatest Generation about the men and women who came out of the Depression, who won great victories and made lasting sacrifices in World War II and then returned home to begin building the world we have today—the people I called the Greatest Generation—it was my way of saying thank you. I felt that this tribute was long overdue, but I was not prepared for the avalanche of letters and responses touched off by that book.

Members of that generation were, characteristically, grateful for the attention and modest about their own lives as they shared more remarkable stories about their experiences in the Depression and during the war years.

"Their children and grandchildren were eager to share the lessons and insights they gained from the stories they heard about the lives of a generation now passing on too swiftly. They wanted to say thank you in their own way. I had wanted to write a book about America, and now America was writing back.

"The letters, many of them written in firm Palmer penmanship on flowered stationery, have given me a much richer understanding not only of those difficult years but also of my own life. They give us new, intensely personal perspectives of a momentous time in our history. They are the voices of a generation that has given so much and wants to share even more.

"Some of the letters were written from the front during the war, or from families to their loved ones in harm's way in distant places. There were firsthand accounts of battles and poignant reflections on loneliness, exuberant expressions of love and somber accounts of loss.

"It seems that everyone in that generation has something worthwhile to contribute, and so we have included some pages in The Greatest Generation Speaks for others to share memories at once inspirational and instructive.

"If we are to heed the past to prepare for the future, we should listen to these quiet voices of a generation that speaks to us of duty and honor, sacrifice and accomplishment. I hope more of their stories will be preserved and cherished as reminders of all that we owe them and all that we can learn from them." —Tom Brokaw

About Tom Brokaw

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Tom Brokaw is the author of five bestsellers: The Greatest Generation, The Greatest Generation Speaks, An Album of Memories, A Long Way From Home, and Boom! A native of South Dakota, he graduated from the University of South Dakota with a degree in political science. He joined NBC News in 1966, serving as the White House correspondent during Watergate and anchoring Today on NBC from 1976 to 1981. He was the sole anchor and managing editor of NBC Nightly News with Tom Brokaw from 1983 to 2005. He continues to report for NBC News, producing award-winning long-form documentaries and providing expertise during breaking news events. Brokaw has won every major award in broadcast journalism, including two DuPonts, a Peabody, and several Emmys. He is a regular contributor to the op-ed pages of The New York Times, The Washington Post, and The Wall Street Journal, and to Time, Newsweek, and Men's Journal. He lives in New York and Montana.
Published March 8, 2000 by Random House. 272 pages
Genres: History, Self Help, War, Literature & Fiction, Biographies & Memoirs. Non-fiction

Unrated Critic Reviews for The Greatest Generation Speaks

Publishers Weekly

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Ever since he released his tribute to The Greatest Generation, Brokaw has been inundated, happily, by a generous and appreciative outpouring of responses from those who built modern-day America.

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Publishers Weekly

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Brokaw's TV anchorman voice is deep and reassuring, with a remarkable air of patriarchal authority. With so much puff-chested attitude, he launches into this tape's introduction, explaining that the l

Nov 01 1999 | Read Full Review of The Greatest Generation Speak...

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