Greetings from Mike Botula!
It appears that the destinies of two great empires
seem to be tied up in some God-damned things called LSTs!
Winston Churchill to Dwight Eisenhower, June 1944
I came across that memorable quote while working on my new book, LST 920: Charlie Botula’s Long Slow Target! Winston Churchill certainly had a way with words, and an incomparable sense of history as well. The book is about my father and the ship he sailed on during World War 2. Several of my stories about the LST 920 appear on this website, as well as my blog and several special interest publications. Expanding these stories into a book is, to me, a logical next step.
My book project started with a few of the “war stories” that my dad used to tell my younger brother Packy and I when we were little kids. When I grew up I became a radio and television journalist and a student of history. As I reported on the major stories of the late 20th century, I realized more and more that I had a great personal story tucked away in our family memories and my dad’s photographs and personal documents. One day in 2002, I posted a message on a website devoted to World War 2 and US Navy history: My father Lieutenant (jg) Charles Botula Jr., served as Executive Officer aboard LST 920. I would like to contact any former officers or crew members who served with him. To my surprise, I received a reply a few days later. Mike, I was with your father on the commissioning crew of LST 920, served with him during all his time on the ship in Europe and the Pacific, and took his place as Exec when he left. Let me know how to get in touch! Don Reed.
Don’s message got the ball rolling! And it wasn’t too long before we became personal friends. He had been the LST 920’s Communications Officer. He succeeded my dad as second-in-command, and did a turn as the ship’s last Captain before she was decommissioned in 1946. Don not only helped me connect with other shipmates from the LST 920 and its ill-fated sister ship, LST 921, but really mentored me in capturing the important place in history that was earned by the men who served on both ships.
LST 920: Charlie Botula’s Long, Slow Target! is now available on Amazon.com in paperback as well as a Kindle edition. Just sign in to the books department at Amazon.com and enter either Mike Botula or the title of the book and the order form will quickly appear.
You will also notice a handy new feature here at mikebotula.com. On most of the pages, you will notice the Microsoft Translator icon at the top of the page. That's for the benefit of our international readers, who would like to follow our adventures in their own languages. Such is the nature of the app, that we have to insert the language translator on each individual page.
I’m glad you found us and I wish you Happy Reading as you navigate the website. Enjoy!
PS: If you would like to leave a comment or have a question, please do! Just click on "CONTACT INFO/COMMENTS."
© By Mike Botula 2016
NEW! From MikeBotula.com
LST 920: Charlie Botula's Long, Slow Target!
My new book is now available from Amazon Books! Just go to the Book Department at Amazon.com and enter the title or my name in the SEARCH field.