Press Release - Detail
For immediate release Thursday, Nov. 10, 2016
CONTACT: Roy L. Williams                                
Director of Public Relations             
Birmingham Public Library                          
Phone: (205) 226-3746 cell (205) 568-0067                        
 Avondale Regional Library to host WWII book reading Monday, Nov. 14
BIRMINGHAM, Ala.- As the nation pauses to honor military heroes on Veterans Day, the Avondale Regional Library is planning to host a book reading sharing the life story of a World War II Prisoner of War camp that was based in Alabama.
Jack Shay, a former journalist and retired writer/public speaker for the federal government, will appear at the Avondale Library, 509 40th St. South, on Monday, Nov. 14 from 6-7 p.m. to read excerpts from his book,  “The Fort McClellan POW Camp - German Prisoners in Alabama, 1943–1946." 
Shay's book, which he wrote over 10 years, is based on memorabilia and artifacts of his parents. His father, a sergeant in the U.S, Army, came to Fort McClellan, Ala., in 1943 to open the Prisoner of War camp and stayed until 1946 when it closed.  Shay will do a 20-25 minute reading of the book followed by a Q & A with attendees. 
The POW Camp at Fort McClellan was one of hundreds of American containment centers built to hold the hundreds of thousands of German prisoners captured during World War II. The camp’s well-maintained and humane facilities gained it a reputation as a “model camp.”

Military officials praised its elimination of major operational problems. International inspectors commended it, calling it one of the best camps in the country. Prisoners accepted and even enjoyed their time there.

Drawing on official documents and recollections of prisoners, soldiers and civilians, this book provides a personal and detailed history of a widely praised and admired place of internment.

Accompanied by his wife who worked on base and at the camp, the Shays developed many friendships in the region as well with the POWs.  In fact, after the war, the Shays visited former prisoners when they returned home to Germany. Jack Shay has written four historical books and one historical novel.  He lives in Vestal, NY.
 Register for Shay’s Nov. 14 book talk Avondale Library book talk at link below:
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