The Life and Death of Lizzie Morris

Christian Books, Family & Relationships, General Fiction

By Robert Hays

Publisher : Vanilla Heart Publishing

ABOUT Robert Hays

Robert Hays
Robert Hays has been a newspaper reporter, public relations writer, magazine editor, and university professor and administrator. A native of Illinois, he taught in Texas and Missouri and retired in 2008 from a long journalism teaching career at the University of Illinois. He has spent a gr More...



Life is good for Bradley Morris, an aging but vital World War II veteran, except for the nightmares and horrible memories of long-past days in combat. With his beloved wife Lizzie at his side, he travels back to the battlefield in Sicily where he was mortally wounded and his best friend died, and finds that facing his demons head-on helps bring peace of mind. But now he suddenly faces a far more painful situation: the potential loss of Lizzie, who appears to be in good health one minute and suffers a massive heart attack the next. As Lizzie lies in a coma and death seems near, others in the family accept what has to come. But Bradley refuses to give up. He relives in memory his and Lizzie's years together--their time as high school sweethearts, the ordeal of his going off to war, the trials of raising children, his alcoholism, and their learning and growing together through the racial strife surrounding the assassination of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. in their home town of Memphis. Bradley gradually allows himself to acknowledge the inevitable and devotes himself to keeping promises made to Lizzie. And he must also find a way to overcome the guilt he feels for surviving the war when his best friend did not. In the end, it is renewal of the faith he lost in battle that sees Bradley through.

I collaborated on a book (G-2: Intelligence for Patton) with Oscar Koch, a retired general who served as Gen. George S. Patton's intelligence chief during World War II. Documents used in that work included the U.S. Seventh Army's detailed planning and after-battle reports on the invasion of Sicily. I wanted to write an authentic story of a veteran of that invasion, and at the same time deal with the very difficult issue of how we face death--and particularly the loss of a long-time mate. I did careful research on both topics to make the setting of this story accurate in detail as well as in broad scope.