600 Letters Home by Cindy Horrell Ramsey
Immediately following the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor, eighteen-year-old Georgia farm boy Roy Harrison joins the Navy, leaving behind his family and seventeen-year-old girlfriend, Evelyn. For almost four years—except for one brief trip home in the summer of 1944—letters are their only means of communication.
For the first seven months, the correspondence is exciting and informative. Roy tells Evelyn about boot camp, being assigned to a ship, traveling up and down the east coast, and seeing sights they both had only dreamed of seeing—like the Statue of Liberty and New York City. But in July, 1942, Roy’s battleship, the USS NORTH CAROLINA, enters the war in the Pacific—first stop being a ravaged Pearl Harbor. After seeing sunken battleships, oil and debris still floating in the water, and a glimpse of what he believes to be body parts, Roy is thrust into the realities of war.
An uncertain future and government censorship take their toll on Roy’s letters. He cannot tell Evelyn where his ship is or anything about the battles, death, and destruction he witnesses and experiences. He begins writing a forbidden diary trying to purge the truths of war from his mind before he writes home.
When Evelyn graduates from high school and takes a government job that moves her from Georgia to Washington, DC, to New York City, and finally to a secret place in Tennessee, she cannot tell Roy anything about her job and little about where she lives. Their epic love story unfolds in the midst of war and secrets.
Cindy Horrell Ramsey is the author of the nonfiction narrative, Boys of the Battleship NORTH CAROLINA. She lives with her husband in southeastern North Carolina where they grew up, married, and raised a family. After all their children were grown, Cindy attended the University of North Carolina at Wilmington where she earned a BA in English and a Master of Fine Arts in Creative Writing. She is published in fiction, nonfiction, and poetry, and is a regular contributor to Wrightsville Beach Magazine. In addition to being a published author, Cindy has worked in newspaper and magazine publishing and education administration. She now spends her time writing, enjoying retirement, and being Mimi to four beautiful granddaughters.