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Paperback A Code to Keep Book

ISBN: 1555716237

ISBN13: 9781555716233

A Code to Keep

Ernest C. Brace was a former Marine hero, banished in disgrace from the Corps. In 1965, while working as a civilian pilot in Laos, he was captured and spent the next two years in a bamboo cage with... This description may be from another edition of this product.


Format: Paperback

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Customer Reviews

5 ratings

Best Book

One of the best books I have ever read. I read this book a long, long time ago and will always remember it. Glade to see you can still buy it. I flew UH-1Hs in the 1st Cav 1968- 1969 and went "across the fence" a few times flying in "no where's land". All those guys had the right stuff. His ordeal was what everyone had on the back of his mind when you flew there. I don't think a lot of us could ever endure what he did. A true American....Read It.

Honest and chilling

A unique perspective from a civilian prisoner of war in Vietnam, giving new meaning to semper fidelis. Well written and hard to put down.

Thank God for Second Chances

Teriffic!! Couldn't put it down. I read this book over a year ago, loaned it out to several people and have still never got it back. It made a big impression on me and I still can't get it out of my head. I've read virtually every book by former POWs in Vietnam but this one is entirely unique because of the bizarre background that Mr. Brace had prior to becoming a POW. As an attorney in the Army JAG Corps, I've both defended and prosecuted soldiers for committing crimes and misconduct similar to that of Ernie Brace which resulted in his court-martial conviction and dismissal from the Marine Corps. This book, written in total humility with no pretensions, really shows that we can all redeem ourselves and regain our honor and character, regardless of whether we have used poor judgement in life. It also helps to put a lot of what we consider to be "problems" in their proper perspective. Realizing what he went through, most of our hangups today are nothing in comparision. This is a great book to teach people about character, without stuffing it down your throat and being pious. It also has a fantastic ending.

The portrayal of a real hero.......

Former marine pilot Ernest C. Brace was employed as a U.S. contract pilot for USAID, flying in Laos supporting Vietnam war efforts, when his airstrip was overrun by enemy forces in May of 1965 and he was taken captive.In his initial 3 years of captivity in Laos, Brace would be held alternately by Pathet Lao and North Vietnamese troops. Suffering inhuman conditions and being caged like an animal, he would end up attempting 3 daring escapes earning him brutal beatings and subsequent injuries that would affect him the rest of his life.Upon being transferred to North Vietnam, Ernest Brace would continue his last four and a half years of imprisonment in the Hanoi Hilton, Plantation, and Briar Patch prison compounds. While confined in these locations, though not obligated to do so, he honorably followed the U.S. serviceman's code of conduct earning him the respect and admiration of all the American prisoners he was with.Although never tortured like other POW's, Brace would risk this many times as he became a major junction for communications between prisoners which helped boost morale and also heightened resistance to captors. Offered early release due to his civilian status, he declined with the intention of only going home when the sum total of American servicemen were also released.Upon repatriation from Vietnam in 1973, after almost 8 years in captivity (four and a half of those years in solitary confinement), Brace would find his return triumphant and bittersweet at the same time. Learning that his wife had remarried during his imprisonment and spending a full year in hospital visits to repair his injured body, he would eventually find success, happiness, and prosperity in the years to follow.Ernest C. Brace, the longest held civilian POW of the Vietnam war, is a true American hero in every sense of the word and is an outstanding example of how patriotism, loyalty, courage, and inspiration are brought out in a person. So much so that he was awarded the highest civilian award given by the Department of Defense for his actions during confinement in Vietnam.A Code To Keep is a well written and remarkable narrative on POW captivity and comes highly recommended to everyone.

Not easily impressed by war books, this tale was riveting

I read this book quite a few years ago. I was in a Marine infantry platoon in Vietnam, and am not easily impressed by war stories. Too many of them are exaggerated, or just plain untrue. When this book first came out I found out Brace and I were both working at Sikorsky Aircraft in CT and I lived about a half mile away from him, so I read the book. It made an impression on me few war books have. Brace was drummed out of the Marine Corps in disgrace when he walked away from his crashed plane on a training flight in the States. Eventually he was flying missions for the CIA in Laos where he was captured by the Pathet Lao. He felt he had "a code to keep" as a POW, and his behavior was recognized by other prisoners as outstanding enough that he was the only civilian prisoner of the Vietnam War recommended for a medal. His tale is riveting, and it makes us realize that even if we mess up in life, we can come back and redeem ourselves.
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