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Author: Patricia Walkow

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The War Within, the Story of Josef

Author: Patricia Walkow

The War Within, the Story of Josef, is a creative nonfiction biography of Josef, a teenage Christian Polish slave laborer, forced to work in Nazi Germany during World War II. The setting is Nazi Germany, French Occupied Germany after the end of World War II, and New York City. The span of years for the story is 1943-1954. Josef was a real person, and experienced all of the events in the story.

At the outset of the story, Josef awakens after his left leg was amputated due to an accident in the factory where he worked in Southern Germany. A talented mechanic, even at his young age, Josef has a natural ability to understand, repair and fabricate machinery. Because of his usefulness, his life is spared, although slave laborers are normally considered expendable, and when injured, are summarily executed. German citizens are prohibited from helping slave laborers. Yet, Willie, a German ambulance driver only a few years older than Josef, saves Josef’s life by taking him to the hospital and allowing him to recuperate in his own home. Willie lives with his mother, Sonya, a loyal German.

Through the course of his recuperation, Josef fights his hatred of the Germans; Sonya roils with emotion as she comes to see the injured boy as a human being, rather than an enemy, and Willie questions his own motivations for helping the young Pole. Ella, a young German girl who is a cook and maid in a nearby house, befriends Josef. She struggles with her own mother’s decision to remove her from school, forcing her to work as a servant. Josef and Ella fall in love and keep their love a secret through the war. When the war ends, they remain in French-occupied Germany, marry, and start a family. As a mixed Polish-German couple they face the ire of the Germans, and, when their eldest son develops tuberculosis, they fear losing him. Through the years, Josef and Willie deepen their friendship, and Ella and Josef decide to emigrate to the US.

This story offers a window into the ways some Germans broke the rules to help their declared enemies. It offers the reader a view into the lives of ordinary people through the last two years of the World War II, Allied occupation, near-starvation, and the agonizing decision to leave Europe and settle in a new land.

Order at:  or …Or have your bookstore order the book.

ISBN numbers are:

ISBN-13: 978-1519181015

ISBN-10: 1519181019


Patricia Walkow is an author whose work has appeared in three award-winning anthologies: Corrales Writing Group 2013 Anthology, Corrales Writing Group 2014 Anthology, and Currents, Corrales Writing Group 2015 Anthology. A new set of her short stories is scheduled for publication in a 2017 anthology, titled Passages. She was a columnist for The Glendale [California] News Press, and Bethlehem [Pennsylvania] Globe Times. She has published articles in Albuquerque, the Magazine, the Corrales Comment and Corrales MainStreet News. She was editor-in-chief of Corrales [New Mexico] MainStreet News for three years.

Ms. Walkow also co-authored Where People and Projects Meet, a project-management book offering tools and techniques for managing the people side of projects, published in 2010. Her newest work, a 110,000 word biographical novel, The War Within, the Story of Josef, was published on June 27th, 2016. It is the story of a teenager who grows to manhood in World War II Germany, where he was a slave laborer.

She was awarded third place for her short story, The Far Moist End of the Earth, in the 2016 William Faulkner Literary Competition. Several of her other short stories have won awards from the New Mexico Press Women organization.



As I sat in the radiology waiting room at the local Veterans Administration Hospital a few days ago, listening to a fellow patient whom I got to know only as Bill, I found myself wishing that my Facebook friends could hear some of the stories we vets swap. While the grim front line stuff is rarely if ever mentioned, the yarns we share should circulate more widely. Our Americans know very little about our everyday routines while serving, which is too bad. So much of what we carry with us into our old age is woven into the American fabric. Without that knowledge among non-serving fellow Americans, our full identity as a nation is overlooked. After all, the country has undergone seemingly endless wars and campaigns spanning the twentieth century.

Read the rest of this entry »


For immediate release.

screen-shot-2016-10-15-at-8-45-19-amFor additional information: Dr. Circe Olson Woessner (505) 504-6830


The Museum of the American Military Family (MAMF) exhibit, “G.I. Jokes,” a (somewhat) lighthearted look at military life, opens with a public reception at 1:00 p.m. on Saturday, November 5 in the Bott Auditorium of the Albuquerque Special Collections Library, Edith at Central NE, and continues through December 2.

Humor has always been part of military life, and “G.I. Jokes” shows just how anyone who has been through military basic training or really tough duty or combat has always found a mate or two who recognized something funny in their midst. The exhibit, however, is more than jokes – it deals with the irony, the controversies, and unique challenges of military experiences through a collection of cartoons, anecdotes, and reflections of some of the artists who contributed to the show.

Created by historian and Army veteran Ron Panebouef and Marine wife Stacy Marinaro and curated by MAMF founder and director Dr. Circe Olson Woessner, the display includes works by more than a dozen prominent writers and artists. Panel art was designed by Dominic Ruiz.

Visitors, besides enjoying a smile or a chuckle or a nostalgic memory and perhaps shedding a tear, will also learn the origin of some of our most popular daily expressions and colorful military phrases.

“G.I. Jokes” is free to the public and fun for the whole family. The Albuquerque Special Collections Library is at 423 Central Avenue NE, Tel: (505) 848-1376. It is open every day except Sunday and Monday from 10 – 6, Thursdays from 11– 7. It is sponsored by Kaufman’s West, Comic Warehouse, Rio Grande Credit Union, and TLC Books.

The Museum of the American Military Family is compiling stories for a book reflecting on war…

Attention New Mexicans, who are serving in the military, are military veterans, are members of a military family, and would like to write about your experience in that capacity…

Paul Zolbrod, Writer-in-Residence for the Albuquerque-based Museum of the American Military Family is seeking stories for its anthology “From the Front Line to the Home Front: New Mexicans Reflect on War.”

This anthology will include first-hand stories from all perspectives—service members, family members and friends who share their perspectives and experiences. Submissions can be about the recent Middle East campaigns, Vietnam, the Korean War era or World War II—and everything in between. All branches and ranks of the military should be represented.

How you can contribute:

Your story can be as long or as short as you choose. Just make it heartfelt, honest and interesting. We are looking for stories of trial and triumph and loss, stories that demonstrate the warmth and humor of military family life along with its inevitable tensions, offbeat stories that illustrate the variety that accompanies military life in war times–in other words– anything you want to tell of.

You don’t have to consider yourself an accomplished writer to participate. We will provide editorial services to sharpen your contribution.

The book will be arranged by stories of:

Legacy & Aftermath
For more information or to submit a story, please e-mail Writer-in-Residence Paul Zolbrod at

The deadline for submissions is April 30, 2016. Tentative publication date is scheduled for the fall. All stories become part of the Museum of the American Military Family Special Collection Library.

Some Praise for “A Look Back in Time”

“Bernard is always one of the more interesting persons in the room and this memoir helped confirm for me “how” that is possible. His background and travels, friends and family, success and trials make his life and this book an adventure worth living and reading. Bernard says “If you knew your light was dimming, but had memories to share, would you take the time to write them down…” We are so fortunate that he took the time to write them down for all of us to enjoy.                                               -James Andrews    Founder of Social People (@keyinfluencer)

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“A fascinating, insightful, inspiring and sometimes hilarious chronicle of life while growing up in a military family. Bernard’s ability to encapsulate life-changing events provides us with examples of how to triumph over daily obstacles, while learning valuable lessons that will guide our futures. Although set in the 1950s, his journey supplies relevant, timely solutions and strategies for managing today’s issues and the unique challenges associated with a military lifestyle”               Colonel Arnold R. Goodson, United States Army (Retired)

 Product Details                                                                     

Paperback: 320 pages

ISBN-10: 0692313044


FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE – September 9, 2015


For Additional Information

Dr. Allen Dale Olson

(505) 400-3849



 Groups Call Move a “Good Fit”

Albuquerque, NM – An Albuquerque charter school has just joined forces with the only museum in the country dedicated to the collection and preservation of the stories, documents, and artifacts of America’s military families. Both the Bataan Military Academy Charter School (BMA) and the Museum of the American Military Family (MAMF) have moved into 5555 McLeod Boulevard NE, Albuquerque.

BMA serves grades nine through twelve, meets U.S. Navy standards in curriculum and in Naval sciences, including standards in physical fitness and in honoring traditional Naval standards. The school is in partnership with parents, teachers, military organizations, and with the military services. Principal, “Captain” Jan Zink, works closely with the Academy’s Board of Governors, chaired by Dr. Alan Holmquist.

BMA students are cadets grouped as in a military organization and follow the rank structure of the Navy Junior Reserve Officer Corps (NJROTC). In addition to traditional high school activities and sports, BMA cadets also form color guards, drill teams, and rifle teams. The school is named for the 70,000 soldiers and sailors forced to surrender on Luzon in 1942, some 70,000 of whom died during the infamous “Bataan Death March.” Many of those who died were from New Mexico. Annually BMA cadets simulate that march in a 26-mile hike at White Sands Proving Grounds.

MAMF, founded four years ago by Dr. Circe Olson Woessner, a DoD “Brat,” an Army wife and an Army mother, has been active throughout Albuquerque– even without a facility– by presenting documentary film programs, stage performances, military ceremonies and major exhibits in various venues, including the National Nuclear Museum, the South Broadway Cultural Center, the International Balloon Museum, and the Wheels Museum.

MAMF’s volunteer Board of Directors includes an Artist-in-Residence, a Writer-in Residence, and liaison chairs to military spouses, military organizations, “Brats” and Veterans’ organizations. Its programs reach throughout the country through its Operation Footlocker, mobile exhibits which go to public schools, nursing homes, USO events, and to reunions of former students of Defense Department schools. MAMF is a 501 c 3 not for profit.

MAMF has a partnership with the American Overseas Schools Historical Society which represents thousands of former teachers and administrators in the Defense Department world-wide school system and with “Overseas Brats,” representing thousands of adult military “Brats.”

Till this semester, BMA had been on Mountain Road in Albuquerque, and MAMF existed as an on-line presence. In the McLeod facility, MAMF occupies the second floor; BMA the ground floor. Both Captain Zink and Executive Director Woessner believe the shared home makes a “good fit” for the school and the museum. They agree that the MAMF library, archives, exhibits, and historical folios of military family life are valuable resources for the cadets, who in turn, provide ceremonial support for MAMF programs.


The Museum is open by appointment only.

Tel: 505-504-3860


For additional information, visit: and/or

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Press Release: Home Bases: American Military Bases in and Around London


Home Bases: MEMORIES AND STORIES of US Military Bases Around London


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A new book written by Sean C. Kelly has, for the first time, put the spotlight on many of the US Military’s lesser-known command and support bases that were located in and around London, England.

The 444-page book, Home Bases: American Military Bases In and Around London, published through Bayberry Books ( sets out the history and fate of the various bases, installations and offices used by the US Military in and around the British capital primarily from WWI to the present day.

Life and times on those bases (often known as ‘Little Americas’) is furthermore brought alive through a series of ‘snapshot’ memories by around 40 people whom either served, worked or were involved with everything from owning them, establishing them and occupying them to demolishing them.

Among those who have contributed their memories was actor Larry “JR Ewing” Hagman who spent four years stationed at the former USAF Third Air Force South Ruislip headquarters base in Middlesex. As Hagman, who passed away in late 2012, recollected: “I had my own little kingdom and nobody knew what I did or what was going on. I really liked that.”

Others included WWII veterans to one of the key US Navy commanders who had the job of shutting a number of them down in 2006/7. One contributor became of a select handful of winners of the Britain’s George Medal for heroism, another became a Walt Disney legend and another flew on D-Day and then came back to London years later to serve again.

Kelly’s book is also a ‘swords to ploughshares’ look at a number of bases as they proliferated through WWII and the Cold War and then were closed and handed back in recent years to Britain’s Ministry of Defence which, subsequently, has sold a number of sites on for redevelopment as housing and mixed-use destinations.

Among the many bases and installations featured are: Bushey Hall near Watford; Bushy Park, in Kingston-Upon-Thames; Camp Lynn/RAF Daws Hill/High Wycombe Air Station USAF in High Wycombe, and RAF Hendon in North London. Also featured are a number of bases in Middlesex including DOE Eastcote, USAF South Ruislip, RAF Uxbridge and RAF West Ruislip as well as the former US Navy Headquarters on Grosvenor Square in London. Other major installations also covered include the Red Cross Club in Piccadilly, the Columbia Club and Douglas House in Bayswater and, perhaps surprisingly, Selfridges department store on London’s famous Oxford Street.

Kelly, visited many of the bases over the years (and some as they were in very act of being demolished) for this book.

He comments:

“This is the first book to look in detail at many of these smaller command and support bases and combine that with the memories of those who were there in decades past. These were places that, for the most part, didn’t have runways and aircraft or dockyards and ships, but they played significant command and support roles – in some cases from even as far back as WWI. They may have been smaller installations – some just office buildings – but they also helped make history. This book is really a love-letter to those places and times.”

The book also includes around 200 pictures, images and maps. It is currently available only as a physical book via Bayberry Books in New York: or in the UK through (use the contact form to request information). It will be on Amazon by from the start of 2015.

 For further information or to interview Sean Kelly please contact:

Gabriel Stuart

Founder, Bayberry Books