Section 60: Arlington National Cemetery: Where War Comes Home
While On Hallowed Ground chronicled the history of the cemetery, Section 60: Arlington National Cemetery is the powerful contemporary biography of a five-acre plot where many of those killed in Iraq and Afghanistan have been laid to rest alongside service members from earlier wars.
Gifted writer and reporter Robert Poole opens the story with preparations for Memorial Day, Arlington’s biggest event, when thousands of families come to visit those buried in the 624-acre cemetery, legions of Rolling Thunder motorcyclists patrol the streets with fluttering POW flags, and service members place miniature flags before each of Arlington’s graves. What emerges is a portrait of our national cemetery as a living, breathing community, and a narrative about how improvised explosive devices, suicide bombs, and enemies who blend in with local populations have changed the nature and aftermath of conflict. Several of the newest recruits for Section 60 have been brought there by suicide or post-traumatic stress disorder, a war injury newly described but dating to ancient times.
Using Section 60 as a window into the latest wars, Poole recounts stories of courage and sacrifice by fallen heroes, and explores the ways in which soldiers’ comrades, friends, and families honor and remember those lost to war—carrying on with life in the aftermath of wartime tragedy. Section 60 is a moving tribute to those who have fought and died for our country, and to those who love them.
North American publisher: Walker & Co.
Audiobook publisher: Audible
"A momentous and moving follow-up to On Hallowed Ground." —Kirkus Reviews, Starred Review
"Throughout, Poole's insightful writing is touching and demands pauses for reflection. Until a dedicated memorial exists to honor those who gave their lives in Iraq and Afghanistan, Section 60 is the de facto memorial ... It is a book that will linger in the reader's mind." Library Journal, Starred Review
"Poole's approach is poignant and personal ... The book possesses multiple identities—it's as much about the people as their final resting place; honoring their sacrifices and condemning the necessity, inevitability, or injustice of their deaths ... An oddly intimate read, this a valuable look at what it costs to serve one's country." Publishers Weekly