The Letter by Marie Tillman
My Journey Through Love, Loss, and Life

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Synopsis

In 2003, Pat Tillman, serving in the US Army, hastily wrote a "just in case" letter to his wife, Marie. When he returned on leave before his departure to Afghanistan, he placed the letter on top of their bedroom dresser. For months it sat there, sealed and ever-present, like a black hole through which Marie knew her stable life would be pulled if she ever had reason to open it. Then, in April 2004, Marie's worst nightmare came true. In the days following his death, it was Pat's letter that kept her going and, more than that, it was his words that would help her learn to navigate a world she could no longer share with her husband.

In THE LETTER, Marie's talks for the first time about her journey to remake her life after Pat's death. In it, she recalls meeting and falling in love with Pat when they were kids, his harrowing decision to join the army after 9/11, and the devastating day when she learned he'd been killed. She describes how she withdrew from the public spotlight to grieve, learning along the way the value of solitude, self-awareness and integrity in the healing process. And, finally, Marie recounts her work to rebuild her life, including founding The Pat Tillman Foundation, an organization established to carry forth Pat's legacy of leadership, and her decision to step back into the public eye in order to inspire people to live with meaning and purpose.

Filled with the lessons Marie learned and the wisdom she gained since Pat's death, THE LETTER is both a heartrending love story and an inspiring tale for anyone, young or old, whose life has taken an unexpected hard turn -- and who struggles to get back on the right path.
 

About Marie Tillman

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Marie Tillman is the founder of the Pat Tillman Foundation which inspires others to create positive social change through its leadership programs and scholarships for veterans, active servicemembers, their families, and college students across the country. She lives in California.
 
Published June 26, 2012 by Grand Central Publishing. 269 pages
Genres: Biographies & Memoirs, Health, Fitness & Dieting, Sports & Outdoors, War, Self Help, History. Non-fiction

Unrated Critic Reviews for The Letter

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The death of Pat Tillman, who put his NFL career on hold to serve his country, was a double blow to his wife.

May 07 2012 | Read Full Review of The Letter: My Journey Throug...

Publishers Weekly

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Later, after a series of difficult investigations—including a frustrating hearing with Donald Rumsfeld—the cause of death was deemed “friendly fire.” In a “just in case” letter that Marie kept on her dresser during his deployments, Pat asked her one last favor: to continue living.

Apr 30 2012 | Read Full Review of The Letter: My Journey Throug...

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Just knowing that I was relatively young and still with a lot of life ahead, and thinking about, as I said in the book, the words that Pat had left for me, I just didn’t feel as if I could live a full, meaningful life if I was stuck in this place where I was so consumed by what happened.

Jul 03 2012 | Read Full Review of The Letter: My Journey Throug...

Digital Journal.

(What must it feel like, Tillman asks, not to care quite so much about what people thought?) Although some of the information is familiar from newspapers and books such as Jon Krakauer's best seller Where Men Win Glory: The Odyssey of Pat Tillman and Boots on the Ground by Dusk: My Tribute to...

Oct 02 2012 | Read Full Review of The Letter: My Journey Throug...

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