© 2021 KRCU Public Radio
Southeast Missouri's NPR Station
Play Live Radio
Next Up:
Available On Air Stations
Arts & Culture
There are one million new books published each year. With so many books and so little time, where do you begin to find your next must-read? There’s the New York Times Bestseller list, the Goodreads app, the Cape Library’s Staff picks shelf and now Martin’s Must-Reads.Every Wednesday at 6:42 and 8:42 a.m., and Sunday at 8:18 a.m., Betty Martin recommends a must read based on her own personal biases for historical fiction, quirky characters and overall well-turned phrases. Her list includes WWII novels, biographies of trailblazers, novels with truly unique individuals and lots more. Reading close to 100 titles a year, Betty has plenty of titles to share.Local support for "Martin's Must Reads" comes from the Cape Girardeau Public Library and the Poplar Bluff Municipal Library.

Martin's Must Reads: 'Sacred Duty'


“The Thursday before Memorial Day is known as Flags In at Arlington National Cemetery.  The soldiers who place the flags at every grave site in the cemetery belong to the 3rd United States Infantry Regiment, better known as The Old Guard. The Old Guard serves at Arlington as the Army’s official ceremonial unit and as escort to the President.”

I’m Mark Martin with Martin’s Must Reads with a quote from the book Sacred Duty: A Soldier’s Tour at Arlington National Cemetery by author, senator and Old Guard veteran Tom Cotton.

The book is a marvelous read on honor and what that looks like.  Little facts like every person in uniform regardless of rank will salute a Medal of Honor recipient be they living or dead, make the book an engaging read. He goes into great detail to explain that every mission, whether it’s  receiving remains at Dover Air Force base, or a funeral at Arlington National Cemetery, or the color guard to the President, or as sentinel marching at the Tomb of the Unknown, is to be done “no fail, zero defect.”  It is with the attention to these details that the Old Guard never forgets those who served and those who gave their lives in the course of their service.  Senator Cotton writes, “The Old Guard labors every day to honor the memory of our nation’s fallen heroes, so they indeed will never die in the hearts of their fellow citizens.”

As the author summarizes, “For us the living, The Old Guard embodies our respect, our gratitude, our love for those who have borne the battles of a great nation—and those who will bear the burden of tomorrow.”

For those who wish to know what honor truly looks like, Sacred Duty by Tom Cotton is a must read.

Related Content