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The Grunt Padre: Father Vincent Robert Capodanno, Vietnam, 1966-1967 Paperback – June 1, 2000

ISBN-13: 978-1891280085 ISBN-10: 1891280082 Edition: 3rd
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Editorial Reviews

About the Author

Father Daniel Lawrence Mode grew up in a Navy family. Fr. Mode himself is a commissioned navy chaplain. The author's education includes a bachelor of Arts in Philosophy, with advanced degrees in theology and church history. While studying history at Mount Saint Mary's Seminary, he stumbled upon the research threads that led him to uncovering the remarkable Fr. Capodanno story. Besides Fr. Mode's reserve duty as a Navy chaplain, he currently serves as chaplain and Vice Principal of Bishop Denis J. O'Connell High School in Arlington, VA.
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Product Details

  • Paperback: 202 pages
  • Publisher: CMJ Marian Publishers; 3rd edition (June 1, 2000)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1891280082
  • ISBN-13: 978-1891280085
  • Product Dimensions: 0.8 x 6 x 9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 11.2 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (74 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #95,992 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

96 of 97 people found the following review helpful By Raymund Lowry on October 16, 2000
My name is Ray Lowry and I was the last Catholic priest to see Vince alive and the first to see him dead. On 6 Dec. 1966 Vince and I changed jobs; I went out to 1/7 on the Batangan Peninsula and Vince replaced me at 1st Med. Within weeks of arriving in Vietnam I had heard stories about Vince and he indeed "became a legend in his own time". His CO at 1/7, Lt.Col. Buzz Lubka, told me that Fr. Capodanno "could walk on water." He was an inspiration to me and made me a better Chaplain for knowing him. I'll never forget the night he died but that is a story in itself. Fr. Mode has indeed captured the essence of the man. I still think of Vince daily. I am honored to have known him and to have shared my life with him as a Chaplain with the Marines in Vietnam. May God grant his noble soul eternal rest
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53 of 53 people found the following review helpful By Bill Weber on October 25, 2000
Fr Capodanno's life is proof that there were genuine heros in Vietnam. Too many movies and books portray Vietnam as a lousy tangle of military confusion, drugs and waisted war with no heroes. Fr Capodanno's heroic life and death shows a brighter side of the American men and women who served in Vietnam. His life redefines for me the meaning heroism and holiness. The love and service he displayed for his marines, even under fire, is inspiring. His whole life was inspiring, rising up from the difficulties of being in an immigrant family, to the rigors of seminary training, to the selflessness of Missionary work as a Catholic Maryknoll Priest and finally, as a Chaplain on a Vietnam battlefield, serving to his death the grunts he cherished. I couldn't put it down. This book is a most for those who wish to see love and faith and heroism in action and want to see another side of the Vietnam experience.
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43 of 43 people found the following review helpful By "braggz" on October 24, 2000
I had the ultimate priveledge to work on part of the book prior to publication. This initial introduction to Father Vincent Capodanno was life changing. Even in death, the Father continues to give a message of love. Father Mode did a fantastic job in telling of Father Vince Capodannos heroism and love for his fellow human being. He gave the ultimate sacrifice of love for his "grunts". Being the wife of a Marine, I understand secondhand the bond of the Marine Brotherhood but to see it portrayed in Father Capodannos life story, it takes on new meaning. When you read it, you too will have a cause to change for the better. Fr. Capodanno is truly an inspiration! Donna Bragg
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31 of 31 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on January 8, 2001
THE GRUNT PADRE is a story for our time: We who have a magnified sense of the fallibility of heroes need to become open to heroes who are not compromised by the difficulties they faced. Here, in this story, such heroism abounds.
THE GRUNT PADRE is the story of a hidden hero, a humble man who never stopped allowing his prayer journey to transform him in radical ways. The culmination of his historic journey found him in this seemingly impossible contradiction: confronting tumult on the home front at the same time he served the tumult in the hearts of brave young Marines and others who put their lives at risk in the service of patriotic ideals.
THE GRUNT PADRE showcases service and sacrifice of tens of thousands of heroes who fought in Vietnam and who sacrificed youth, well-being and, in too many cases, life in a cause uncelebrated and misunderstood. Having accepted how on-going transformation would not assure comfort or simple answers, the Grunt Padre lives on as an invitation to his Grunt Marines and all who love them long after the war is over. As a magnificent example of those men and women whom he served, the Grunt Padre continues his missionary work even now, paying tribute to his beloved Grunt Marines even after his death and holding up their ideals, courage and personal agonies for the sake of calling us to love and honor them.
Reading this book one is reminded of how an immigrant son in New York reflects the New Jerusalem of his parents' new homeland by going abroad again, calling others to find their peace in trust in God. The stuff of heroes.
A must read for anyone keen on understanding the Vietnam War, its warriors and its intentions on the ground - an excellent read for anyone curious about the league of military chaplains who have bravely gone to battle parishes, about Maryknoll missionaries in the Pacific Basin in the first half of the last century, about Catholicism in action, about healing the wounds of war and rejection.
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28 of 28 people found the following review helpful By Judy McCloskey on September 24, 2000
This is a "can't put it down" biographical story about a Catholic priest known as Father Vincent Robert Capodanno who served in the Viet Nam War. From a war that many would like to forget emerges an identifyable hero and quite probably a great saint. Fr. Daniel Mode does an excellent job in researching the life and career of this courageous officer who was described by one of the grunts who knew Capodanno as "a man who had the courage of a lion and the faith of a martyr." He died serving the "grunts" on the battlefield, minstering to them at the hour of their death. It is a well-documented account of Capodanno's childhood, manhood and priesthood and a tribute to the men who served with him. A great book for everyone, a missing piece of history that finally has come to light. Enjoy!
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25 of 25 people found the following review helpful By Dianne O. Shirley on September 23, 2000
The spiritually inspirational story of Father Vincent R. Capodanno has deeply touched myself, my family and my friends. Both of my parents served in the Navy during the Vietnam Era; my mother as a nurse and my father as an aviator. I passed the book on to them and it brought tears to my mother's eyes each time she picked it up. The autor, Fr. Daniel Mode simply portays a vivid picture of Father Capodanno's childhood, minissonary work, and especially his deep understanding of the spiritual and physical needs of his fellow "grunts". The troops leaned on him so that they could go forward in the daily struggles of war. It was obvious that Fr. Mode had a deep connection with his subject. The countless personal interviews with the men who served with Fr. Capodanno as a missionary and later as a chaplin, as well as the troops who were in country with him bring the book to life. It was obvious how the title of Father Mode's book came to be. He writes of Father Capodanno's committment to God through his selfless sacrafice in ministering to the people he encountered in his missionary work and in Vietnam. Thank you Father Mode for writing this beautiful story!
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The Grunt Padre: Father Vincent Robert Capodanno, Vietnam, 1966-1967
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