Combat Historian's new book celebrates Rangers and Veterans - WLTZ 38 | Columbus Georgia Regional News & Community

Combat Historian's new book celebrates Rangers and Veterans

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By Sara Belsole

COLUMBUS, GA -   Patrick O'Donnell's new book Dog Company, tells the story of the 2nd Ranger Battalion's D-Company, who scaled Pointe du Hoc to take out the Germans on D-Day in 1944.

O'Donnell began researching for this book 16 years ago. He has interviewed more than 5,000 American, Japanese and German veterans. 

"My project has been to preserve and save these stories, and "Dog Company" is an extension of that project," O'Donnell says.

Dog Company certainly led the way in World War II, climbing 90 feet of sheer cliff face to reach the Germans and losing more than half of the 68-man company.

O'Donnell calls the company today's Rangers' heritage, "This is the next greatest generation of Rangers that we have here today at Fort Benning. Their lineage and linkage to the past is quite impressive."

O'Donnell has also researched today's War on Terror, calling it an untold story.

"The mistake is to focus on technology. It's all about human interaction, relationships with the other side, as well as developing our resources here at home," O'Donnell says.

No matter which war they served in, O'Donnell says all veterans and their stories should never be forgotten.

"We are surrounded by fake heroes, rock stars, etc., and the real heroes are your great uncle or your grandfather or the guy next door," O'Donnell says.

There are only three living members of dog company still living, all in their 90's.

"These men are national treasures and I just hope people will look at my work and look at what they've done and get their stories before they pass," O'Donnell says.

O'Donnell is the author of eight other combat books, including Beyond Valor and We Were One.

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