Sunday, May 28, 2006


Never forget!

Tomorrow is Memorial Day.
Semper Fidelis,

[Please visit W. Thomas Smith Jr. at]

Friday, May 26, 2006


"None but the brave deserve the fair"

I cannot look at the girlfriends of my two nephews and not be reminded of poet John Dryden, who in Alexander's Feast (yes, Alexander the Great), said, "None but the brave deserve the fair."
Which brings me to today's picture.
Anyway, yesterday it was "all about Max."
Today, I want to tell you all about one of the finest young men I've ever known (And, over the years, I've worked with - or led - truly the best men in the world).
He's 17-year-old Michael Paul Fowler, my oldest nephew, godson, and eternal confidante.
As I mentioned yesterday, he's an honors student, master fisherman, woodlore-savvy outdoorsman, and former high school track athlete who has broken - and continues to hold - several "family" records for distance running (and I never thought Michael or Max could beat me).
Here's a pic of him and his beautiful and - as I'm told - incredibly intelligent and creative thinking girlfriend, Sarah Price (doesn't she remind you of some bewitching Irish lass you'd see in a movie like Braveheart? Wow!).
Semper Fi,

[Please visit W. Thomas Smith Jr. at]

Thursday, May 25, 2006


Happy Max Fowler Day!


OK, so let's just say today is Max Fowler Day here in South Carolina.
As you all know, my nephew and godson Max Fowler is a TWICE-titled state wrestling champion (see previous entries for more info), but today at Lugoff-Elgin Middle School he took several brand-new honors including:

* Wrestling - MVP
* Football - Defensive lineman of the year
* Academics - highest math average for the year in the 8th grade

Now, I'm not even going to get into how proud my family and I are of this incredible, amazing, beyond-precious-to-us-all 14-year-old young man.
Instead, I'll just share these pics - Max is the boy wearing the reddish orange striped shirt. Others include his beautiful and equally bright-and-talented girlfriend, Rachel Haselden; his dad, Mike Fowler, my brother-in-law and the guy with the bar-none world's greatest laugh; and his mom (my sister), the lovely, talented, and sweet (if I'm unconscious) Annette Smith Fowler.
Like I always say, Max reminds us all so much of the boyhood performances of his Uncle Tom (say what?).
Not pictured is Max's equally fantastic older brother (also my godson), Michael, an honors student, master fisherman, woodlore-savvy outdoorsman, and former high school track athlete who has broken - and continues to hold - several "family" records for distance running (and I never thought either of these kids could beat me).
Semper Fi,

[Please visit W. Thomas Smith Jr. at]


Murtha should give up title

Congressman Jack Murtha, a retired Marine colonel, should give up his title, Marine.
It actually pains me to say this, because there is a side of me who sees Murtha as someting of a "fatherly" or "grandfatherly" figure: It would be much easier for me, at 47, if he were in his 30's, 40's, even 50's.
But no matter his age or service, I could not deny the truth or not say what is right.
Anyway, see why I say so here at
Also, check out the story of America's little-known Special Boat sailors at
Semper Fi,

[Please visit W. Thomas Smith Jr. at]

Saturday, May 20, 2006


Max Fowler, TWICE a state champion for South Carolina

William Maxwell "Max" Fowler, my 14-year-old nephew (and godson, I might add), is now a TWO-TIME state wrestling champion.
We talked about how he won the state championship - wrestling on his middle school team - in late January.
This morning in another statewide match, Max - at 164-lbs. wrestling (freestyle) in the 171-lbs. division - pinned his opponent in less than 15 seconds.
Words cannot describe how proud I am of him.
Here he is with his beautiful girlfriend, Rachel (who incidentally just made the high school cheerleading squad).
Oh, and they are both straight "A" honor-roll students... just like his Uncle Tom was at that age (yeah right, in my dreams).
Semper Fi,

[Please visit W. Thomas Smith Jr. at]


CBS's George Crile dies (and a snippet from my George magazine interview with Gen. Westmoreland)

CBS producer George Crile, died earlier this week.
See here.

As many of you may remember, he was the guy who produced a documentary about Vietnam that said General Westmoreland "under-reported" enemy troop strength around the time of the TET Offensive.

I drove down to Charleston to interview Westmoreland for George magazine in 1997. And John Kennedy, Jr. went to Vietnam to interview Westmoreland's counterpart Gen. Vo Nguyen Giap.
Kennedy's and my pieces were published together as a single point-counter-point project on the anniversary of TET (George, Nov. 1998).

Anyway, as I sat in Westmoreland's living room sipping iced tea, I asked him the following question (from the actual unedited transcript), which led to his comments about George Crile:

SMITH: General, as I understand it, you filed a $120 million suit against CBS after they aired a television documentary (The Uncounted Enemy: A Vietnam Deception) which made the allegation that you deliberately underestimated enemy strength in Vietnam in order to bolster your own claims of military success. Then the case was settled out of court?

WESTMORELAND: Well, I went against the entire network. The man that brought about that event was George Crile. He caused me to sue them. They put him on ice. He disappeared. But I think he’s still on the payroll. He was an SOB. He fabricated a story to make headlines and they got hurt. It was not a happy time. But I couldn’t have slept if I hadn’t taken them on. And they got what they deserved. They got their just desserts. They were the outstanding network at the time, but they haven’t been since.

Thursday, May 11, 2006


"Stanton Smith pitches shutout"

Last month, I shared the fantastic news that Stanton Smith - my friend Danny's oldest boy - was starting The Citadel in the fall.

Then, in this morning's edition of The Charlotte Observer, I see where not only did Stanton's high school, Hopewell, play in the MECA Conference Championship, last night, but according to one of the largest metropolitan dailies in the nation...

"Hopewell cruises to crown"

"Smith pitches shutout"

"Hopewell right-hander Stanton Smith (5-0) didn't need much support. He threw a three-hit shutout, struck out seven and walked one."

Read it all here!


Kay Day's "Creative Writer US"

Poet Kay Day interviews me for Creative Writer US.
A fun Q&A on writers and writing, plus a great little sidebar story by Kay. See here.
Also, in last week's column we discussed Israel on the 58th anniversary of that state's independence.

This page is powered by Blogger. Isn't yours?