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The Quiet Hero: The Untold Medal of Honor Story of George E. Wahlen at the Battle for Iwo Jima
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The Quiet Hero: The Untold Medal of Honor Story of George E. Wahlen at the Battle for Iwo Jima

4.22  ·  Rating details ·  78 ratings  ·  21 reviews
This powerful story documents the Battle of Iwo Jima from the perspective of extraordinary navy corpsman George Wahlen. After decades of silence, this survivor of one of World War II's most horrific battles divulges the gritty details of his incredible experiences. Upon landing with a company of 250 marines, Wahlen fought alongside them. Under repeated grenade and mortar f ...more
Hardcover, 240 pages
Published May 20th 2006 by American Legacy Media (first published January 1st 2006)
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Average rating 4.22  · 
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Jul 05, 2014 rated it really liked it
I first became interested in Mr. Wahlen’s story after reading about him in the local newspaper and his efforts for local veterans. I found this slim volume an engaging look at what he did to be awarded the United States’ highest award for valor in combat.

As with most biographies of this type, Me. Toyn begins with a short chapter on his life before entering the navy in WW II. He looks at his service and the stereotypical military actions of putting a round peg in a square hole. Mr. Wahlen was a c
Jan 10, 2015 rated it really liked it
An extraordinary account of the heroism of a young Navy Corpsman who, despite his own serious wounds, displayed continuous courage, as he aided fallen Marines during the daily hell of the battle for Iwo Jima in early 1945.
Beyond his WWII service, Wahlen later enlisted in the Army and also served in Korea and Vietnam. Truly, an inspirational person.
Dec 03, 2018 rated it it was amazing
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
May 19, 2020 added it
Shelves: written-review
I decided to read this book because my Great-Grandpa is George E. Wahlen and I wanted and thought it would be good to learn more about him and I'm glad I read it. This book is about George E. Wahlen and his experiences in the Battle of Iwo Jima. It also talks a little bit about before he joined the army, his life after, and him receiving the Medal of Honor. Through this book, you are able to follow his actions and also know some of his thoughts. The battle of Iwo Jima was not an easy battle as w ...more
Kimberly White
Great book

Good read, didn't know this story. Love to learn about our nation's heroes. Too often these stories are lost forever
Dallon Becraft
Jan 09, 2015 rated it it was amazing
The book that I have choose to read is absolutely one on my favorite books that I have ever read. This book is about a man named George Edward Whalen, and about how he grew up and decided to go into the US marines. George first started out as a nurse in California then was deployed to Iwo Jima to be a medic.George grew up in northern Utah and was raised in a small house.
The reason I choose to read this book was because my father had grown up down the street from George's son Broc whahlen. they
May 09, 2011 rated it liked it
Much of the writing of this book is gripping and graphic. I felt as if I were on Iwo Jima, alongside the main character, George Wahlen. In the end, however, I found this book disappointing. Yes, Wahlen is a courageous hero, but unlike Louis Zamperini, the hero of Unbroken, Mr. Whalen, as portrayed by the author Gary W. Toyn, is one-dimensional.

But I suspect in real life Wahlen wasn’t. Most of us have fears, doubts and character defects - defects that certainly would be magnified by trauma, such
Debbie Williams
Mar 27, 2015 rated it really liked it
Shelves: biographies
The reason why I decided to read this book was because Gearge Wahlen is my son-in-law's grandpa and he recently died. I wanted to learn more about him and what he went through at Iwo Jima. This was a true biography of what really happened and his experiences. He was a brave and couragous man who cared for others more than himself. What an example to the younger generation how rich their heritage is. There is a park in the Layton area named after him as well as a Veteran's hospital.
Rick Wong
Oct 01, 2007 rated it it was amazing
OK, I am definitely biased about this book. A good friend of mine wrote it and gave me a copy. I did enjoy reading about George Wahlen though, especially life after WW2. He didn't even tell his wife that he won the Congressional Medal Of Honor, after like 20 years or something like that. That's crazy.

Gary, Thanks for the book. Whenever you're in New England look me up in Maine, not too many Wong's in the Phone book, and my treat for dinner.
Pat Doyle
Feb 17, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Heroes come in all shapes and sizes. George Wahlen, a Navy Corpsman fighting with Marines on Iwo Jima, selflessly saved the lives of dozens of men and earned our nations highest military honor. Great quick read about a great man.
Jul 30, 2008 rated it liked it
Shelves: history-ww2
Wahlen was a Navy corpsman inside a Marine unit on Iwo Jima. I enjoyed this book but wished that there had been more details about the battle itself and what Wahlen did as a corpsman. We owe these selfless men so much. It's good to remember what they did.
Bonnie Riley
Dec 06, 2010 rated it it was amazing
This is the story of Brock's grandfather and the events during WWII on Iwo Jima that deemed him worthy to receive the medal of honor. I had heard some of the stories from George but reading it gave me the full reality of what he did. He was a very good man.
Mar 12, 2009 rated it really liked it
This one really reaches your heart. It's gruesome...very gruesome, so be prepared. I mean, it's war. But the guy literally risks everything to save others and his friend. It really makes you appreciate soldiers at war.
Oct 15, 2010 rated it it was amazing
Quite graphic, as many pictures show violent death, so be warned. All in all, a great story, well documented, and worth every penny.
Nov 16, 2013 rated it it was amazing
The story of George Wahlen (from my hometown of Ogden, Utah) who won the Medal of Honor for his part at the Battle of Iwo Jima in WWII.
Ray Pierson
May 14, 2009 rated it really liked it
This is the story of a US Navy corpsman who saved countless lives at great risk to his own.
Charley Duschen
Jun 30, 2015 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Well written. George was/is a modest hero. Did his job and more. The type of person I would like to meet.
Mar 07, 2008 rated it it was amazing
He is our own quiet hero.
Aug 03, 2011 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Amazing story about an American hero - what this man went through is just unthinkable to us now - but he did it in service to his country. Really humbles you!
Aug 24, 2011 rated it it was amazing
it just might be the best book i've ever read!!!!
L Tucker
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Jun 09, 2018
John O'Brien
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Jul 18, 2014
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Dave Leblanc
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Apr 30, 2017
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David Gappmayer
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Nov 24, 2013
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