Rona Simmons is an Atlanta-area based author and has written both historical fiction and works of nonfiction. Previously, she coauthored Images from World War II, celebrating the art of WWII veteran and artist Jack Smith. Her latest book, The Other Veterans of World War II: Stories from Behind the Front Lines, released in April 2020 by Kent State University Press again addresses the topic of the Second World War. The daughter of a WWII fighter pilot herself, she is proud to honor veterans and their stories through her work. Her writing, including, stories, articles, and interviews has appeared in regional and national literary journals and online magazines. Simmons lives in the Atlanta area and is active in the local community, both for authors (as a speaker and member of the Atlanta Writers Club and the Georgia Writers Association), and for veterans (as a member of the Atlanta World War II Roundtable and the North Georgia Veterans Group). Simmons is also a contributing author and book reviewer for DODReads.org, an organization dedicated to reading and lifelong learning.
A Gathering of Men
Candor, North Carolina. The town barber brandishes a copy of the May 1927 Charlotte Observer-on the front page, Charles Lindbergh's Spirit of St. Louis on its cross-country flight. At the outskirts of town, best friends Lake, Roger, and Jim take turns hurling their wingless crate down a hill. Eyes closed; they imagine their future alongside Lindy.
Pearl Harbor changes everything. The boys will have their chance to fly-not over North Carolina farm fields, but across Germany on bombing runs, facing a determined Luftwaffe. The odds of completing their tours of duty are slim.
A Gathering of Men is the account of the boys who board their aircraft for the first time and the men they become in the blink of an eye. The terrors they witness and the pressure to go up again and again and again brings them to the breaking point. It is a moving tale, based on a true story, about shattered dreams and enduring friendship, duty, and honor.