On November 12, 1965, Walter Cronkite announced that civilian aid worker Peter Hunting had been killed by Vietcong agents in the Mekong Delta. For America it was a loss that reverberated with portents of coming catastrophe. For Hunting's fifteen-year-old sister, Jill, it was the beginning of a lifetime of questions: What had Pete's years in Vietnam been like? What had he seen and experienced? What had he come to believe about his role there in the midst of sharply rising tensions? Why had two men reportedly posing as Pete's friends lured him to his death?
Finding Pete: Rediscovering the Brother I Lost in Vietnam (Wesleyan University Press) is a personalized account of a critical moment in U.S. history, as well as the moving story of an altruistic youth who personifies what America lost in Vietnam. It is also a portrait of a family's struggle with loss, a mother's damaging grief, and, most of all, a sister's quest to recover the connection with her brother.
Jill Hunting is a writer, editor, and radio essayist. She proposed the Book of Remembrance, a sculpture in memory of civilians killed in war. The Book, in which are symbolically inscribed the names of noncombatant victims of violent conflict, will be a permanent installation for the United States Institute of Peace, in Washington, D.C. Learn more here.
Equal parts mystery and memoir, Finding Pete is a journey that explores family ties and the toll
of war on
the human family.