PULLMAN, Wash. — Washington State University Press has released “Through These Portals; A Pacific War Saga,” Wayne MacGregor’s memoir of the U.S. Army’s role in World War II’s Pacific campaigns.

“If the time comes that I’ve forgotten just how bad it was, when my memory of individual circumstances and events has faded, I’ll always remember to say to myself that it was the worst possible thing that could happen to a human being, and nothing, nothing, can ever be that bad again,” stated Wayne MacGregor in his book.

The remarkably immediate memoir tells of the U.S. Army’s essential role in the Pacific campaigns alongside the Navy and Marine Corps. America’s sons, born in the first quarter of the 20th century, were forged in the twin crucibles of the Great Depression and World War II. The values and attitudes of these mostly idealistic young males ultimately sustained them in horrific trials against incredibly courageous, and often suicidal Japanese soldiers blindly loyal to their superior officers and the emperor.

MacGregor graphically describes the dire Depression years of 1930s’ America, when he grew up in Spokane. He then takes readers through the war years and the savage, face-to-face small-unit actions in the Mariana Islands, the Philippines and Okinawa from 1944 to 1945.

“Through These Portals” also contains one of the most remarkable collections of combat photographs ever assembled, and the author’s discussions of small-unit actions are exceptional. The author’s memoir is truly an infantryman’s account of war at its worst and individual soldiers at their best.

MacGregor lives with his wife in Grangeville, Idaho, where he has practiced law for the past 50 years. He is a decorated 77th Division infantryman. He will be signing books at various locations throughout the Northwest.

“Through These Portals; A Pacific War Saga” is 256 pages, and includes photographs, maps, and notes. The list price is $35 for hardbound and $21.95 for paperback. It is available at bookstores or can be ordered directly plus shipping from WSU Press by calling (800) 354-7360 or through its Web site at wsupress.wsu.edu/.
WSU Press is associated with WSU on its Pullman campus. The press publishes scholarly books with a cultural or historical relationship to the Pacific Northwest.

(Editor’s Note: There are book signings for the book coming up on Dec. 7 in Grangeville, Dec. 9 in Spokane, Dec. 11 in Pullman, Jan. 18 in Boise, and Jan. 25 in Spokane. The signing in Boise is going to be a Military History day at their Barnes and Noble, which will also include a friend of the author who was a Flying Tiger. For more information about the book signings, call Caryn Lawton, WSU Press, (509) 335-7877.)