The Salisbury Post
Friday, December 1, 2006

Col. John Gray will be at Literary Bookpost to autograph his new book

Col. John Edward Gray, a retired career veteran, will sign his book, "Called to Honor: Memoirs of a Three-War Veteran," at the Literary Bookpost at 119 S. Main St. from 5:30 to 7:30 this evening.

Gray volunteered as a Marine at the age of 17, in August 1943, during World War II.

But his military career was not over with that war.

He came out of the Marines at the end of World War II but stayed in the Marine Corps Reserve while he was a student at Davidson College, where he received a bachelor's degree in political science and economics in 1949 and a regular Army Infantry commission as a second lieutenant.

He has since earned graduate degrees at Syracuse in 1958 in business administration and a master of science degree in technology management at American University in 1966.

In addition to World War II, he served in the Army Infantry during the Korean War and as a combat engineer in the war in Vietnam.

Retiring after 30 years in the service, he had a second career in management in the trucking industry and subsequently wrote his book.

He has been active in top level positions in the Legion of Valour for Medal of Honor and Service Cross recipients and the Chosin Few, who were survivors of the Chosin Reservoir Campaign of the Korean War.

All of that and much more is contained in his nearly 400-page book, which Marine Col. Joseph H. Alexander praises, adding that "an abiding sense of duty caused him (Gray) to seek responsibility in all things, taking action where needed, taking charge when others held back.

"Everything John Gray undertook reflected this selfless sense of duty to others. He never hesitated to step forward, pick up a fallen banner, rally the troops and accomplish the mission."

His many decorations include the Army Distinguished Service Cross, the Silver Star, the Legion of Merit with three oak leaf clusters, the Bronze Star for Valor and the Purple Heart with three oak leaf clusters.

He and his wife, Sue, have six children and 12 grandchildren and now live near Mount Ulla.

His book is published by R. Brent and Co., P.O. Box 7055, Asheville, NC 28802, and people who can't get the book locally can order Gray's book through the publisher.