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Quiet Hero: Secrets from My Father's Past Paperback – May 17, 2011
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--Dr. Henry Kissinger, Former Secretary of State
"This is an incredible story of survival and sheer courage."
--General Tommy Franks, U.S. Army (Ret.), Former Commander, U.S. Central Command
"QUIET HERO is an intensely captivating and inspiring story of a daughter uncovering her father's past...a wonderful and riveting story of a daughter finally getting to know her father. Reading it reminds me of my first visit to Poland in 1964 with my parents. We were overwhelmed with the enthusiastic response of the Polish people. Rita's book captures the passion of her Polish heritage with verve and love."
--Kathleen Kennedy Townsend, Former Lieutenant Governor of Maryland, Daughter of Robert F, Kennedy
"One of Poland's great treasures has now been found. Richard Cosby and his Resistance comrades are true heroes in our historic fight for freedom. Without their courage, Solidarity would never have won its final battle."
--Lech Walesa, Former President of Poland
"Rita's story is one that will touch every family. . . . A loving, poignant tribute to her POW father and freedom."
--Senator John McCain
"Rita Cosby's compelling book captures an important part of history. In its intimately personal way, " Quiet Hero" honors those, like her father, who fought valiantly and often anonymously against true evil."
- David Harris, Executive Director, AJC (American Jewish Committee)
About the Author
Top Customer Reviews
It starts with Rita's discovery, after her mother's death, of a tattered suitcase filled with mysterious mementos from war including a Polish resistance armband, rusted dog tags, and a POW identity card with the name Ryszard Kossobudzki. It ends with an emotional journey the father and daughter take back to Poland. In between, the story is sometimes harrowing, but beautifully told.
This book has inspired me to ask questions of my own family's past. Highly recommended...and a great Father's Day gift.
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With her journalist's eye for a story, Rita Cosby has taken her reader along on her journey of reconciliation and revelation regarding her father's early life as a barely teenaged resistance fighter initially distributing anti-nazi materials within a couple of blocks of the Warsaw ghetto to full-blown member of the polish resistance movement during WWII. Eventually her father is captured by the nazis and installed in an internment camp where his body is broken, but his spirit survives. Cosby goes back to Poland with her father and relates his experiences and sees him reunited with long separated friends over sixty years later.
This beautifully written book is a touching tribute to the father Cosby never really knew but fortunately found. Fiction is great, but this is an amazing story that is poignant, terrifying, and true.
The young "Rys" (short for Ryszard, the Polish for Richard) went through the 1939 German-Soviet conquest of Poland. He described the carnage he saw. Then things only got worse. Ryszard comments: "While the general Polish population was not as actively persecuted as the Jews, times were still hard under the occupation. German soldiers treated the Poles like animals, and supplies were stringently rationed... [Non-Volksdeutsche]...were forced to trade on a newly emergent black market for their survival." (p. 48).
The Polish intelligentsia (notably the politicians, teachers, priests, artists, etc.) were systematically exterminated by the Germans. (p. 53). In time, 3 million Polish gentiles were murdered by the Germans along with the 3 million Polish Jews. (p. 289). [It is hardly surprising that some Amazon reviewers report never before having heard of the 3 million Polish victims.]
As a teenager, "Rys" joined the ORLETA (Young Eagles), a Scout-like organization that became part of the Polish guerrilla movement (A. K., or Armia Krajowa). He was involved in scattering leaflets, and, later, falsified his age as 16 in order to actively participate in A.K. combat. Also, "...the Resistance made bombs, assassinated Gestapo agents, derailed trains, blew up bridges, aided Jews in hiding, and printed more than eleven hundred anti-Nazi periodicals." (p. 61). "The Germans were ruthless, and would torture anyone they caught whom they suspected of involvement with the Resistance." (p. 65). To reduce the danger of betrayals under torture, everyone in the A.K.Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
I really enjoyed reading this book...couldn't put it down. The book is very informative both for its historical accuracy and also for its revelation of the psychological impact of... Read morePublished 8 months ago by rosie
I have personally met Rita Cosby and she signed it for me. This book will have special place in my book collection. Read morePublished 16 months ago by J. Kim