Brian Willson is doing his book tour the hard way. He is cycling on a hand-powered, three-wheeled recumbent, 800 miles in 22 days, from Portland to San Francisco. He will arrive in Bandon on Friday, July 1st, and that evening at 6 pm, he will discuss his new book Blood on the Tracks: The Life and Times of S. Brian Willson
at the Bandon Public Library,.
Willson left from Portland State University Saturday morning, June 25th, and he will arrive in San Francisco on July 16th. He will celebrate his seventieth birthday on July 4 in his former hometown of Arcata. In 1987, while engaging in a nonviolent blockade in protest of weapons shipments to El Salvador at the Concord Naval Weapons Station in California, Willson was run over by an accelerating US Navy ammunition train and lost both of his legs below the knee.
The book describes the wartime experiences that transformed him into a nonviolent activist working for the end of war, and his search for a radically different paradigm. Blood on the Tracks describes Willson’s meetings with FMLN guerrillas in El Salvador, with Portland’s Ben Linder in Nicaragua three weeks before his murder by Reagan’s Contra terrorists, with doctors at bombed-out hospitals in Iraq, and with Haitian President Jean Bertrand Aristide before he was deposed with complicity of the CIA.
Blood on the Tracks has already captured the attention of Noam Chomsky, Cynthia McKinney, Ed Asner and Kris Kristofferson. Media critic Norman Solomon says, “Brian Willson’s memoir boils with alchemy that has turned pain and caring into moral insistence and political resistance.”
In his introduction to the book, Daniel Ellsberg, of Pentagon Papers fame, writes: “No reader, I believe, will finish this book without a sense of awe at the human spirit that is revealed in it and of gratitude for the map that Brian Willson has provided, in his life and this account of it, of the way out.”
Willson’s visit is sponsored by Chapter 141 Bandon Veterans For Peace.For more information about Brian Willson’s book and cycling tour, visit his book tour blog at bloodonthetracks.info or call Ed Pool (541) 347-8290
Note: Wilson will also be speaking at the North Bend Public Library, June 30 at 7PM.