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Living with Honor

Living with Honor

A Memoir

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Medal of Honor winner Staff Sergeant “Sal” Giunta’s empowering memoir describes a boy working at a Subway shop who was attracted to an Army recruiting center by a free T-shirt, but left inspired by the thought of making a difference to the world. After enlisting, he was posted to Afghanistan, where he learned from the seasoned soldiers of the 173rd Airborne Brigade about a totally new kind of war. In 2007, while he was on patrol in the Korengal Valley—the “Valley of Death”—his lessons on duty and honor in the face of danger were tested. His squad was ambushed by Taliban insurgents and pinned down under blistering fire. When their leader fell, Giunta shielded him with his own body. Amid the chaos, he continued to fight and protect his wounded comrades until Apache air cover finally brought a halt to the action.

Living with Honor is a remarkable account by a man who insists he was “just a soldier,” but who has made the difference he dreamed of. His candid, insightful tale is a moving testament to the power of the human spirit.
  • Threshold Editions | 
  • 304 pages | 
  • ISBN 9781451691504 | 
  • July 2013
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CHAPTER 1

I should probably warn you at the outset that there is nothing very inspirational or heroic about the early part of my life. There is no military tradition in my family, no long gray line of service that inspired my enlistment. To the best of my knowledge, I have only two relatives who served in the military: a grandfather who did two years in the Navy during World War II, and an uncle on my mother’s side who retired after twenty-one years of service, also in the Navy. Although I’m sure they were decent men who served their country honorably, neither one really inspired me, simply because I never really knew either... see more

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Reading Group Guide

This reading group guide for Living With Honor includes an introduction, discussion questions, and ideas for enhancing your book club. The suggested questions are intended to help your reading group find new and interesting angles and topics for your discussion. We hope that these ideas will enrich your conversation and increase your enjoyment of the book.


Introduction

Sal Giunta was an ordinary high school student: fair to middling grades, an after school food service job, and no particular direction. Everything changed when he volunteered for the United States Army. Soon he was doing hundreds of push-ups, waking, eating, and sleeping by command of his drill sergeant. In the Army, he met countless guys like him, from all over the country (and the world) looking for a way to serve their country and protect the band of brothers that is the 173rd Battalion. On his second tour of duty in Afghanistan, Giunta went behind enemy lines to save a friend and mentor who had been captured. As a result, he was awarded the Presidential Medal of Honor, the first person to receive the distinction in four decades. In this frank and open memoir of coming of age in the Army, Sal Giunta offers an inspirational model for anyone looking for a greater purpose in life and a moving testimonial to the men and women he served with in the 173rd Battalion.

Topics & Questions for Discussion

1. How did September 11, 2001 influence see more

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