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Cpl Cox (memoir)Press Kit<br />Eric J Cox<br />cox396@gmail.com<br />(704) 493-5981<br />www.EricCox.com<br />
Author Bio – Eric J Cox<br />Eric J Cox is a dynamic figure.  U.S. Marine Corps combat veteran Eric J Cox was not always t...
Author Bio – Eric J Cox<br />After returning home from Iraq a combat veteran, Cox’s life had been changed.  Cox no longer ...
Cpl Cox Articles<br />
Cpl Cox Articles<br />
Cpl Cox Articles<br />Published: January 14, 2010 08:40 pm         <br />Marine pulls no punches in memoir<br />Larry Penk...
Cpl Cox Articles<br />USMC Combat Veteran Author of Cpl Cox Collaborates with <br />Military Charities<br />Charlotte, NC ...
Cpl Cox Press Release<br />For Immediate Release<br />USMC Combat Veteran Hopes to Raise Awareness through Personal Memoir...
Cpl Cox Reviews<br />A Deserving Tribute to All Servicemen and Women - Inspiring!<br />Cpl Cox is not a hero. He does not ...
Cpl Cox Reviews<br />Symbology101 <br /> <br />Cpl Cox is an inspiring memoir about one Marine&apos;s journey through the ...
Cpl Cox Reviews<br />Bringing the War Home!<br /> <br />I was floored by your book.  I still can&apos;t believe it.  I hav...
Cpl Cox Reviews<br />Sheds light on a great struggle<br />Eric, I really enjoyed your book. It&apos;s obvious that you too...
Cpl Cox Publicity<br />
Cpl Cox Publicity<br />
Cpl Cox Publicity<br />
Cpl Cox Publicity<br />
Cpl Cox Publicity<br />
Quotes from Cpl Cox<br />“If I’m going to die tonight, <br />then I’d better hurry up and go to sleep.  People question th...
Chapter One<br /> <br /> <br />     “DON’T TELL THEM I’M A MARINE!  I MEAN IT, MOM!”  I remember shouting at her as we wai...
Cpl Cox Interviews<br />Speaking Points for an Interview:<br /><ul><li> Impact of war on my relationship
 Difficulty in the readjustment home
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Cpl Cox Press Kit

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Military Memoir, USMC, War on Terror, Iraqi Freedom, OIF, Marine Memoir, Soldier Memoir

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  1. 1. Cpl Cox (memoir)Press Kit<br />Eric J Cox<br />cox396@gmail.com<br />(704) 493-5981<br />www.EricCox.com<br />
  2. 2. Author Bio – Eric J Cox<br />Eric J Cox is a dynamic figure. U.S. Marine Corps combat veteran Eric J Cox was not always the military type. In fact he was quite the opposite. Aside from the adventure and honor in the service of one’s country, a major reason for Cox enlisting in the Marines consisted of the discipline to sleep at night as Cox rarely takes a break.<br /> <br />Always the go-getter and explorer, wheels have been a passion for Cox since his first set of wheels as he learned to walk. He learned to skate when he was 3 and ride a four-wheeler when he was 4. At age 5 he was off on his own, discovering new land on his motorcycle. Every year following, he would upgrade to a larger, faster motorcycle and was touring further and further from home.<br /> <br />As a conqueror, Cox and his soccer team emerged as champions at age 5. At age 7 he learned to play baseball and was named, “Most Improved,” on his championship team. The following year he was named as the team’s starting shortstop and had a .400 batting average. He soon learned to play all positions but decided to give it up in order to pursue tennis.<br /> <br />On his soft, loving side, Cox became an Uncle at age 10 and was ready to settle down and be a father. He began dating and was introduced to the word “Love,” and influenced to discover its meaning. She may have left him heartbroken, but his questions and quest for love continued.<br />Always the extremist and thrill-seeker, Cox dabbled in personal watercraft racing at age 12. Cox began competitive motocross racing at age 14. He ran on the varsity cross-country team for endurance training. Cox swam varsity merely for conditioning and has been swimming since he was 2. He practiced BMX freestyle in his off time. By his senior year of high school he was ready to move into the professional motocross rankings. But as graduation approached, he was faced with two life choices. He could go to college or he could race.<br /> <br />Ever decisive yet always impulsive Cox decided he would do neither. Motocross and no college would mean Cox would have to carry his own health insurance policy. The premium alone would have nearly bled him dry, not to mention the risk he took every time he tossed leg over his motorcycle. College would have meant no one telling him when to go to sleep, so no one waking him up in time for class resulting in an incomplete semester and a complete waste of time, money and patience.<br /> <br />Solution oriented Cox enlisted in the Marine Corps to honorably serve his country, to challenge his lack of sleep management discipline, to physically tests the limits of training, to prepare his credentials and work ethic for the workforce, and to gain government resources assisting his goal of higher education.<br /> <br />
  3. 3. Author Bio – Eric J Cox<br />After returning home from Iraq a combat veteran, Cox’s life had been changed. Cox no longer needed anyone telling him when to sleep, but when not to sleep. Cox wanted to be left alone. He turned to alcohol and later to drugs for escape. He shut out family and his closest friends. He lost rank and eventually deserted the military.<br />On the run, Cox hid out in Charlotte and moved from place to place. He worked under the table in nightclubs and lived out of his truck. He tried to turn it all around but couldn’t escape the mental and emotional prison within himself. He lived through nightmares and wished many of his actions had taken place in his dreams. He survived the betrayal of loved ones. <br />Accepting and learning from his mistakes, Cox decided to turn himself in after 13 months but the Marine Corps Chasers found him just days before. Regardless, this proved to be just what Cox needed, as this was the first time Cox could see the light at the end of the tunnel. During his eighty-seven day confinement Cox became an inspiration for many. He read self-improvement books, motivational books and even a marketing textbook. He developed a five-year plan, a ten-year plan and a “Bucket List.”<br /> <br />Back on track, Cox returned to Charlotte in 2005 and began tending bar at the newest and busiest club in Uptown. He began investing in real estate with the extra money he was making, holding true to his five-year plan. He achieved his real estate license, turned it into a career and discovered the freedom self-employment offers.<br /> <br />Given his dedicated work ethic and will to succeed, Cox clocked over 4,000 hours his first year alone and was nominated Realtor® Rookie of the Year. The following year, the real estate market slowed considerably which allowed him to write his first book of memoirs, Cpl Cox, in his spare time. His newfound freedom also inspires him to think outside the box in creating solutions to issues not yet addressed. <br /> <br />As a leader, motivator and innovator, Cox has mapped out what he believes to be the evolution of the Multiple Listing Service (MLS) that couples data tracking with social networking, among other things. Cox has opened his own publishing company where he consults other writers on publishing, book marketability and viability. Cox has begun work on his second memoir in which he hopes to raise awareness as to the issues faced by our nation’s troops and their loved ones in the readjustment following combat deployment.<br /> <br />As a leader and motivator, Cox has opened his own real estate firm where he excels in commercial and residential investment real estate. He serves as a mentor to dozens of agents working both for him and with him. Cox has recently been nominated to the “30 Under 30 Class of 2010,” recognizing national real estate industry leaders under the age of 30.<br /> <br />In giving back, Cox is an avid supporter of National Public Radio (NPR), Goodwill, The Salvation Army and The Crisis Assistance Ministry. He is a volunteer in his community, church, and has participated in many fundraisers such as breast cancer awareness, crop walks and Relay for Life. Most recently, Cox is founding a non-profit to benefit veterans and raise further awareness.<br /> <br />Cox is a single father residing at his home in Charlotte with his beautiful daughter Savannah, his dog Diezel and his two cats Heidi and Chloe. Eric J Cox learned at an early age to dream, to achieve, and to be thankful and grateful for what he has.<br />
  4. 4. Cpl Cox Articles<br />
  5. 5. Cpl Cox Articles<br />
  6. 6. Cpl Cox Articles<br />Published: January 14, 2010 08:40 pm         <br />Marine pulls no punches in memoir<br />Larry PenkavaStaff WriterASHEBORO — Eric Cox returned home from war a different person from the man who left his family. It’s taken six years and the writing of his story to help him understand who he had become.“The book for me was to get over my own issues,” Cox said while in Asheboro for Christmas. “I thought I could work myself out of it – write a book for self help, self therapy.”Cox released his book, CPL COX, this fall. It’s a memoir of his four months in Iraq as a Marine during Operation: Iraqi Freedom. The story is taken from letters he sent and received and a journal he kept that recorded what he saw as well as his thoughts and feelings.Pulling no punches, CPL COX tells about the everyday life of Marines in a harsh environment during a time of combat, the overthrow of the Saddam regime and the long wait to be sent back home. But more than that, it’s a story of his relationship with his family and with his girlfriend.The book starts out with Cox shouting at his mother less than 24 hours after he returned to North Carolina: “‘Don’t tell them I’m a Marine! I mean it Mom!’ I remember shouting at her as we waited for a table at an oceanfront restaurant in Wrightsville Beach, N.C.”That was perhaps the first indication, for his family at least, that something had changed since he left Camp Lejeune in February 2003, headed for Iraq. Later, he broke up with his girlfriend, became heavily involved in drugs and alcohol and dealt in self-destructive activities that finally made him realize he needed help.PTSD is mentioned just once in CPL COX, when troops preparing to leave for home were required to go to a class on post-traumatic stress disorder. The Marines thought it was a big joke and made wisecracks during the session.“The irony is, we were probably all suffering from it,” Cox said. “You can’t tell someone with PTSD they have a problem. They have to find out themselves.”It was in December 2007 that Cox decided to go back to his journal. “Going through everything, I found a second folder,” he said. “It was one Mom had put in” containing information she’d researched on PTSD. “It got me interested in PTSD and it described me to a ‘T.’ I’d suffered for five years and I’m the only one who didn’t know.”Once he accepted his condition, Cox said, he “thought I could work myself out of it – write the book ... help me get over my issues. But the book wasn’t enough. I had to have professional help.”The youngest of three children in a loving family, Cox grew up in Asheboro, a bright boy with a problem – he hated schoolwork and was constantly having disciplinary problems. When it was time to graduate, he didn’t apply for college along with his friends, choosing instead to join the Marines. That was difficult for his parents, Jimmie and Cynthia Cox to accept, but they supported him when he let them know it was something he was going to do.After basic training and schooling in California, Cox was sent to Camp Lejeune, just three hours from Charlotte, where several of his school friends were attending college. He spent most of his weekends there, where he met Abby. They became passionately in love just four months before he was to leave for Iraq.The book uses correspondence from home, along with his journal, to tell the story of his time in Iraq. It was a tale of contrasts, from the death and destruction of war to letters from home dealing with spring break and the mundane affairs of ordinary life. “My issues came after the war,” Cox said. “They may not have been caused by the war but PTSD is part of it.”Once he began reading his journal, Cox said, he found that he “had pushed memories out. It was interesting to read the journal like it was someone else’s story, like I was a split personality.”The journal describes war scenes of vehicles blown apart and bodies without limbs. In one scene, Cox wrote of a dog dragging a body part.In a poignant account, he told about finding an anthill, stomping on it, then helping the ants rebuild their home. He said it was like the war, in which “we tear down homes then rebuild so they can be torn down again.”Cox’s journal told of encounters with a deadly snake and a spider. “In Iraq, everyone and everything is on the same level – survival,” he said.Those traumatic experiences came home with Cox and affected his relationships with everyone he loved.“I broke up with Abby months after I got back,” he said. “It should have been immediately. I came back a weaker person and needed stability, but it wasn’t there.”Cox said he finally decided to write the book after people would ask him, “What was it like?” CPL COX tells that part of it but a sequel will reveal what his life was like after he returned home.“The second book will go down my road since then ... the problems caused by not seeking help,” said Cox. “The next book will start in Charlotte with me in a ditch somewhere ...”Now a single father, Cox is donating a portion of book sales to a charity to help veterans suffering similar emotional and psychological challenges. “I’m targeting veterans and their families,” he said. “This book is the first piece of the puzzle – that the war changed lives.”CPL COX can be purchased online at www.EricCox.com or from Amazon.com.<br />
  7. 7. Cpl Cox Articles<br />USMC Combat Veteran Author of Cpl Cox Collaborates with <br />Military Charities<br />Charlotte, NC - When US Marine Corps combat veteran Eric J. Cox came<br />home from participation in the initial phase of Operation Iraqi Freedom in<br />the spring of 2003, about the last thing he felt like was a returning war hero.<br />He certainly did not want to be treated like one. Over the ensuing months<br />and years, he found himself struggling with the emotional scars and<br />aftermath that so many of those returning from this war are experiencing.<br />Then one day, after nearly five years had passed, Cox came across the green<br />log book he had used as a daily journal during his time in Iraq. Reading his<br />entries and reliving the experience, he soon decided to re-write his journal<br />so that he and others might better understand his story. Cpl Cox was the<br />final result.<br />Cpl Cox is not the type of war journal one might expect to be written by a<br />Marine combat veteran. In addition to providing graphic, striking detail<br />relating to his war-time experience, it is a story of love and compassion; it<br />is a study in relationships. By including many of the actual letters written<br />to and from his loved ones during his deployment, Eric presents the reader<br />with a rare and often poignant glimpse into his life, and into the<br />complicated relationships and emotional issues that can develop for all<br />when forced to deal with the pain of separation and the harsh realities of<br />war. It is a paralyzing spectrum of the unknown, and almost impossible for<br />anyone not having personal experience to understand.<br />But lest it become too serious, Cox ties it all together with touches of<br />humor. Stories of encounters with insects, animals, and deadly desert<br />creatures. It’s all there.<br />At the beginning of the war, Cpl Cox’s local hometown newspaper<br />published his forwarding address, enabling him to receive what he refers to<br />as “Fan Mail.” Cox received support letters from kindergarteners, middle<br />school kids, young adults, church groups, senior citizens and more. Copies<br />of those original letters are also included as part of his book, giving Cpl Cox<br />a uniquely patriotic spin.<br />Although CPL COX is not a political view of the war, Cox raises<br />interesting perspectives while remaining neutral. His compassion for the<br />Iraqi people is undeniable. He writes of Marines dealing with Enemy<br />Prisoners of War from two perspectives—anger or compassion. He relives<br />the “all-day parades” through the streets of Iraq, as he waved at the Iraqi<br />children knowing they were the leaders of tomorrow.<br />His heartfelt emotions throughout make this book a real page-turner as<br />Cox’s words do an excellent job of enabling the reader to feel exactly as he<br />felt—almost as if by his side. In fact, Cox was once asked if he thought the<br />average reader could truly feel the emotions he attempts to convey in his<br />book. “I’m proud of Cpl Cox and honestly I enjoy reading and losing<br />myself in the story…forgetting Cpl Cox is actually me, like someone else is<br />telling me the story,” answered Cox. “If I can feel the emotions as if it<br />were someone else then I genuinely believe I have accomplished my goal.”<br />Aside from Cox’s touching memoir is his heartening quest to give back to<br />his fellow servicemen and women<br />Cpl Cox is a captivating story about one Marine’s journey into adulthood.<br />The author has done a wonderful job of answering the age-old question,<br />“What was it like?” Eric returned home from Iraq safe and physically<br />unharmed, and even in the face of the difficulties he experienced, realizes<br />how truly fortunate he is. His continued devotion “To the Troops and their<br />Families,” as his dedication page reads, sets him further apart and makes his<br />story even more remarkable. Cox is in the process of working closely with<br />several military nonprofits in order to form limited joint venture<br />collaborations to raise funds for the respective organizations. He is<br />donating up to 80% of the proceeds from the sale of Cpl Cox. Furthermore,<br />Cox is initially keeping his book out of book retailers and making it semi-exclusive<br />through nonprofits. Ultimately, he hopes to found his own<br />military nonprofit that will serve as a donation hub to raise funds for many<br />actively involved veteran nonprofits.<br />Cpl Cox is recommended for anyone high school age or older. Because of<br />the insight it provides into the realities and commitment of military service,<br />it is especially recommended for anyone thinking of joining the Armed<br />Forces.<br />While his nonprofit collaborations are still in the works, autographed copies<br />of Cpl Cox can be found at www.EricCox.com.<br />Sean Gautam<br />United Veterans Report<br />
  8. 8. Cpl Cox Press Release<br />For Immediate Release<br />USMC Combat Veteran Hopes to Raise Awareness through Personal Memoir: Cpl Cox<br />Charlotte, NC October 19, 2009 – On June 3rd, 2003, Cpl Cox and most of his unit returned home to their loved ones following the initial invasion of<br />Iraq, also known as Operation: Iraqi Freedom. Years later, Eric J Cox has rewritten his once forgotten war journal into his new memoir, Cpl Cox.<br />Written in part to help Cox cope with his own issues, Cox hopes to provide others with a certain degree of insight and understanding into the<br />complicated and extreme physical emotional and psychological pressures that sometimes accompany life in the military.<br />Cpl Cox begins in present day 2007 with a flashback of an outburst against his Mother less than 24 hours after his return home to indicate his denial<br />of association with the Marine Corps. Searching for his own answers, he retells the actual events that took place between February 6th and June 3rd,<br />2003, as to why he suddenly questions his own thoughts, feelings and actions.<br />Through his honest and personal writing to his journal, Cox does and excellent job of delivering an informative, personal, thought-provoking, and<br />sometimes poignant look into his wartime experience. But even more remarkable is the insight it provides regarding the inner struggles Cpl Cox had to face as a member of the United States military -- faced similarly, yet in their own individual ways by American servicemen and servicewomen all over the world.<br />Personally dedicating the book to his parents, the troops and their families, Cox hopes to help others through his writing. “Cpl Cox raises many<br />unanswered questions -- intended to provoke thought to form predictions, or to help the reader relate to their own story or the story of someone they may know,” says author Eric J Cox. “Cpl Cox is my answer to the question ‘What was it like?’ although the main idea of my writing was to convey<br />the message: War Changes Lives.”<br />Cpl Cox is available for purchase through www.Amazon.com, www.EricCox.com and coming soon to the other national booksellers. A portion of<br />the proceeds generated from book sales through www.EricCox.com will be donated to charities benefiting veterans. Cpl Cox may also be available<br />in bulk for educational, business, or sales promotional use by contacting The Charlotte Press.<br />###<br />
  9. 9. Cpl Cox Reviews<br />A Deserving Tribute to All Servicemen and Women - Inspiring!<br />Cpl Cox is not a hero. He does not need to be a hero because he is a son, a brother, a boyfriend, and above all, a Marine. Cpl Cox is a stark episode of one Marine&apos;s experience of the Iraq war that will resonate with millions of others with similar experiences. This book reveals the touching bonds between the servicemen and women and their loved ones at home thousands of miles away. As someone having experienced the Iraq war through media coverage, I was curious to get a firsthand account of what transpired on the ground. Eric Cox has authored an astoundingly detailed account of his tour of duty that will inspire many in different ways. The most endearing part of this book is that it is not a tale of heroism but that of a young man ascending into manhood within a span of a few long months. The accounts are written with objective precision and unbiased viewpoints, balancing the gravity of war with small nuggets of humor. Eric&apos;s accounts confirm what I have believed for a long time that the nation&apos;s armed forces make the ultimate sacrifices in the line of duty, yet they do not get the true recognition for enduring what they do. This is not just about recognizing the heroes and appreciating what they do, but every serviceman and woman serving in the lowest ranks for the sacrifices they make. Instead of receiving the highest honors, many in the armed forces face ridicule, punishment and reprimand for behaving as humans. The futility of war is contrasted starkly in the two parallel worlds that exist in Cpl Cox. On one side of the world we encounter the Iraq war, on the other side we experience a blissful tranquility at home. While Cpl Cox is thrown into the midst of a war that many do not believe in, facing unimaginable dangers every minute, at home his family members and millions of Americans lead normal lives with the Iraq war merely a news item on the media. The personal letters that Eric has shared shed light on the bonds of human relationships that inspire and give us strength, at the same time exposing the frailty of relationships based on our own evolving perceptions. For me the animal encounters described by Eric involving the dogs, snake, spider and flies invoked a powerful reminder of the laws of survival. These encounters appear to place these animals on the same level as humans fighting for survival in an unforgiving land. However, Cpl Cox is also filled with touching and funny moments that one could easily visualize as scenes from a Hollywood movie. Eric Cox has done a wonderful job of utilizing his memoir for an honest and searing account of his tour of duty. His empathy for the Iraqi people and casualties is touching. I wish this book will become a must-read for newly-drafted servicemen and women who have not experienced war. Cpl Cox is a fitting tribute to the millions of servicemen and women who serve their country in anonymity. Congratulations, Cpl Cox and welcome home!<br />M.V. Belle<br />
  10. 10. Cpl Cox Reviews<br />Symbology101 <br /> <br />Cpl Cox is an inspiring memoir about one Marine&apos;s journey through the initial OIF combat deployment in the Spring of 2003. The accounts of war are unbiased, non-political, and balanced with humor. Cpl Cox includes his girlfriend, Mom, and Dad, family, and friends as main characters in the book which help give an interesting perspective as to the ways we are all affected by war.<br /> <br />What I liked about Cpl Cox was the author&apos;s use of symbolism throughout. Often, animals and insects were used to show that man and beast were on the same level in terms of survival. I liked the use of humor which really had me laughing like I was right there with him. I also liked the fact that I didn&apos;t feel like I had to pick a side in the question of war. Cpl Cox&apos;s compassion for the Iraqi people is moving and heart-warming.<br /> <br />What I didn&apos;t like about Cpl Cox was that the book ended leaving me with unanswered questions. I want to know more!<br />My favorite part about Cpl Cox was &quot;Farmer Habibe&apos;s Farm.&quot; His reference of Old MacDonald&apos;s Farm was hilarious but at the same time he used this instance to show that even the animals&apos; lives had been changed by the war as well as his own by the rage that was beginning to stir inside of him. After this he destroys an ant farm but then helps the ants &quot;dig out their loved ones,&quot; and rebuild their home better. A truly remarkable use of symbolism.<br /> <br />You should read Cpl Cox because Cox does an excellent job of describing what it was really like to be there. So many people want to know what it was like and this is their answer. I believe the main point of Cpl Cox was to show that war changes lives and that no one is alone.<br />John Dimier<br />Elevated my Wife’s Understanding<br /> <br />Your book really hit home with my wife. It has helped us to become closer and given her an appreciation for what we went through. She realizes what a sacrifice we made and how isolated from the violence and trauma most people in this country are.<br />Jason Ream<br />
  11. 11. Cpl Cox Reviews<br />Bringing the War Home!<br /> <br />I was floored by your book. I still can&apos;t believe it. I have read a lot of books, but never have I read something that brought the war home. Having gone to Iraq with a marine platoon, I have to question some of the military information you gave out as sensitive, other than that, you have my vote and I might even have our local paper try to write an article about what a profound book this is.<br /> <br />I am sending it to the other admin, based upon the content of the book, we estimate many family members will get the book, or veterans, but not active marines.<br />Andrew Turner-Au<br />I read it Twice<br /> <br />Unlike most book, I am happy the overall perspective was added. I actually read the book twice. Not being a military brat (nothing wrong that) It was hard for me to understand all the military lingo, but the letters were great. It brought out the emotions books lack nowadays. At times I could almost sense I was in a war, capturing the energy of the book. I do not think the truth will be taken lightly.<br />Frank Lizo<br />Marine Mom<br />Got my signed book in the mail, Thanks! I loved it. Was hooked by the 2nd page, crying by page 20 and didn&apos;t put it down till I was finished. Looking for your next one! Give your Mom a big hug from me--one Marine Mom to another. My son is stationed in Lejeune.(0311) Thanks for your service Eric & many good wishes to you & your family.<br />RhondaveSitzes<br />
  12. 12. Cpl Cox Reviews<br />Sheds light on a great struggle<br />Eric, I really enjoyed your book. It&apos;s obvious that you took good notes and paid attention even as you &quot;skated&quot;. It reads to me like you earned it, brother. Thanks not only for your service; but for your diligent post-service effort to shed some light on a great struggle. Good work.SemperFi,<br />Dean VrableLtCol, USMC<br />Honor those who have given all!This weeks picture, we show the cover of a GREAT BOOK! This book inspires emotions that can be felt by the heart. The book brings you into a real life account of what war is like, through personal account. Not only that, but also from the family members. You will be thrust into a journey that Hollywood could never do with a movie, with gasping accounts of never before read details to the road to Baghdad. Unlike most media outlets, Cpl Cox book provides you with the insight to not only what he felt, but also of that of his friends and even enemies. This will be a book you will not put down and recommend it to kids and adults alike wanting a first hand account of what WAR is really about.<br />Group Administrator<br />Let’s Find 1,000,000 Supporters for the Marines<br />
  13. 13. Cpl Cox Publicity<br />
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  18. 18. Quotes from Cpl Cox<br />“If I’m going to die tonight, <br />then I’d better hurry up and go to sleep. People question the way they want to die. I want to die at peace in my sleep. I’m a heavy sleeper, so I won’t wake up for my death.”<br />“Tomorrow is the day I have dreaded for well over a year now. Abby and I knew it would eventually come, but had tried our best to put it out of our minds so we could enjoy the time we had together. Now, it was different. It was for real. We made love, but the unknown made sex and conversation seem distant. We only wanted to hold each other close—closer than ever before. We didn’t want to fall asleep;we knew the next thing we heard was going to be the alarm signaling our physical separation and my departure. At this point, it was only a matter of hours.”<br />“I had to stop thinking of home. The more I thought about it, the crazier it made me. This meant I had to stop writing in my journal. It meant I had to stop writing letters home. This was a time for me to read [Lord of the Rings] and play the character of someone else in someone else’s book.”<br />“I didn’t know where I was going and I didn’t know if I was coming home. I didn’t know if I was going to be able to write home or receive mail because it might jeopardize our security by giving away our position. I didn’t know if Mom was going to be able to make it in health or if she was going to lose it mentally. I didn’t know if Abby was going to be able to handle having a boyfriend that she couldn’t talk to or even know if I was alive. I asked myself if I would wait if the roles were reversed, but I couldn’t fully convince myself I believed my answer.”<br />
  19. 19. Chapter One<br /> <br /> <br /> “DON’T TELL THEM I’M A MARINE! I MEAN IT, MOM!” I remember shouting at her as we waited for a table at an oceanfront restaurant in Wrightsville Beach, NC. It was June 4th, 2003—less than 24 hours after my return home.<br /> Nearly five years later in silence and solitude, I stood in front of the mirror at the position of attention in my Marine Corps Dress Blues. I had just finished mounting my medals and ribbons on my chest. I thought back to that day in 2003.<br /> “What was I thinking? Mom couldn’t have been more proud of her son, a U. S. Marine, who had just returned home from war. Yet I yelled at her in front of our family? What was I feeling to make me act so out of character?”<br /> <br /> A few weeks ago, I was trying to decide what to wear to our 2007 company Christmas party. I work for myself in a very professional yet fun real estate office with great people, and I wanted to dress up for the occasion.<br /> “I know, I’ll wear my Dress Blues,” I thought to myself. It had been over five years since I had worn them. Excited, I called my girlfriend to tell her my idea.<br /> “Don’t do that, Eric! People will laugh at you,” she replied.<br /> “Are you kidding me?” I asked. “The Marine Corps Dress Blues are one of the sharpest and most respected uniforms in the world!”<br /> “I know that, but everyone knows how you feel about the Marines. They’ll think you’re mocking the company!” she answered.<br /> “Ouch.”<br /> <br /> I guess I hadn’t had the fondest memories of the Marine Corps, but honestly I couldn’t tell you why. I actually have quite a story and should be proud to tell it. But who would want to listen?<br /> I didn’t have an answer to this question at the time, but my thoughts were leading me in a new direction—a direction that felt a little odd but was filling me with a strange new sense of urgency. Whether I wore them to the Christmas party or not, I had to get my Dress Blues out and decorate them.<br /> As soon as I got home that day, I went to my closet to find them. They were still hanging on the same hanger and in the same plastic<br />…from Cpl Cox<br />
  20. 20. Cpl Cox Interviews<br />Speaking Points for an Interview:<br /><ul><li> Impact of war on my relationship
  21. 21. Difficulty in the readjustment home
  22. 22. PTSD
  23. 23. Impact on poor leadership
  24. 24. Lack of news communication
  25. 25. What caused the book to be written?
  26. 26. Who is the book intended for?
  27. 27. Collaborating with veteran charities
  28. 28. Lack of technology for communication with family at home
  29. 29. Impact on family members
  30. 30. Impact on relationships
  31. 31. Founding its own nonprofit
  32. 32. Writing a sequel memoir to help others not make the same mistakes I have made</li></li></ul><li>Eric J Cox<br />cox396@gmail.com<br />(704) 493-5981<br />www.EricCox.com<br />The Charlotte Press<br />2933 Palm Ave<br />Charlotte, NC 28205<br />www.TheCharlottePress.com<br />Thanks!<br />
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