If you want to read a book that will inspire you, will lift your heart, will give you hope and faith in the goodness of mankind, read this book. It’s a true story of a small town in Nebraska which, from Christmas Day 1941 through the end of WWII and several months beyond, made it a mission to greet every single troop train (as many as 23 a day) and on the very brief stop the train made, fed the soldiers–many of whom were only teenagers–and nourished their souls with the knowledge that as they faced their very uncertain futures, they were not alone. It’s a remarkable story of the best in the human heart, of why flyover country should never be ignored but instead be cherished, of just how amazing small towns can be. (And in a post-script, North Platte did it again, just this summer of 2018, as told again by Bob Greene in a Wall Street Journal article July 22 called “A Soldier Never Forgets North Platte.” Look it up–you’ll be glad you did.) I finished the book last night, but I still get teary and have a lump in my throat today.
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