when a hijacked jet slammed into the Pentagon on September11, 2001, Brian Birdwell was only 20 yards away. Now, aftermore than thirty opertions and countless physical therapy sessions, he's making a remarkable recovery, and is spiritually strong than ever before. A riveting testimony of courage, healing and God's grace.
2005 Gold Medallion Award finalist!
When hijacked American Flight 77 slammed into the Pentagon on September 11, 2001, LTC (RET) Brian Birdwell was only 15 to 20 yards away. He stepped out into the corridor and was instantly engulfed in flamesburns consumed 60 percent of his body, with almost 40 percent of them third-degree. Thirty-plus operations and countless physical therapy sessions later, his recovery has truly been remarkable, and spiritually he and his family are stronger than ever before. Brian and his wife, Mel, tell their captivating story of God's grace and sovereignty.
Using vivid first-person narration, the Birdwells describe how Brian suffered
second- and third-degree burns over 60% of his body when terrorists crashed a
jet into the Pentagon on September 11, 2001, and how the family's Christian
faith brought it through Brian's recovery. Birdwell spent three months in the
hospital, enduring more than 30 surgeries, daily debridement (removal of
unhealthy tissue) and physical therapy. The account alternates between the
perspectives of husband and wife, and also incorporates the experiences of
their son, Matt. The technique works well throughout; it is most gripping when
Brian faces death alone in a flaming hallway and when Mel scrambles through
gridlocked traffic to get to the hospital. Details set this book apart. The
Birdwells relate Brian's horrific injuries and treatments in a way that might
turn some stomachs (skin coming off with his wedding ring, a staph infection
that covered his body with green pus). They also expose their own
shortcomings: Mel feels guilty about leaving her son and berates some hospital
staffers, while Brian expresses anger toward the terrorists. Such confessions
lend credence to the Birdwells' belief that only a sovereign God could bring
them through their ordeal. This memoir's striking descriptions of the
Birdwells' pain, failures and faith against the backdrop of 9-11 will
fascinate many readers. (July 4) Copyright 2004 Reed Business Information.