Tuesday, May 10, 2022


I am, by my admission, a reluctant writer. But some stories demand to be told. When we hear them, we must pick up our pen, lest we forget and the stories are lost.

Six years ago, in a quiet conversation with my friend Marvin, I learned the tragic story his father, a WW2 B-29 Airplane Commander, shot down over Nagoya, Japan just months before the end of the war.

The telling of the story that evening by this half orphan was so moving and full of emotion, it compelled me to ask if I could write the story. The result was They Called Him Marvin.

My life has been profoundly touched in so many ways by being part of documenting this sacred story. I pray that we never forget, as a people, the depth of sacrifice that was made by ordinary people like Marvin and his father and mother on our behalf.

My career as an addiction counselor (CDP) lead me to write “The Waterfall Concept; A Blueprint for Addiction Recovery,” and co-author “Reclaiming Your Addicted Brain.”

My next project is already underway, a memoir of growing in SW Washington called “Life on a Sorta Farm.” My wife of 49 years, Susan, and I still live in that area.

We raised seven children and have eleven grandchildren. We love to travel and see the sites and cultures of the world. I still get on my bicycle whenever I can.

You can visit Roger’s website at https://theycalledhimmarvin.com/ or connect with him on Facebook or Instagram.

Can you tell us what your new book is about? 

“They Called Him Marvin” is based on real life characters Lt Dean and Connie Sherman. In reality it is a creative non fiction story. Richly researched starting with 67 of their letters, military records, family histories, and interviews establishes the framework from which all else hangs. For instance military records name the crew members where they were from and their parents, but little else. Their back stories are all fictional creations. Wherever the records stopped the fiction writer took over.


Can you tell us a little about your main and supporting characters?

Dean and Connie were just kids, she was but 16 when they met. Dean had enlisted in the Army the year before Pearl Harbor and met Connie when he went to church with a new friend from his duty station in Salt Lake City. They fell into a crazy love immediately. The story follows Dean’s training and postings, we meet his crew, ten men, and a few others he crosses paths with. One other important family is included in the story, the Kiosks, Japanese citizens that experience the war from the other side. One of the main characters is the the B29 and all of it’s inadequacies and dazzling war time capabilities. 


Your book is set in Salt Lake City and various WW2 sites.  Can you tell us why you chose this location in particular?


History chose the settings of this story. From Salt Lake City to India to the Mariana Islands, the path was laid down by WW2.


How long did it take you to write your book?


Six years.

What has been the most pivotal point of your writing life?


I don’t think I have come to it yet…


What kind of advice would you give other authors of any genre?

Read a lot. Write a lot. I became involved in several writing groups that helped me develop as a writer and gave me the support a long project needs to succeed. I will probably never see many of them again but I consider them best friends.

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