Citizen of the Year
Charles Robert Danielson, a successful businessman and a leading citizen of the town of Willow Creek, Indiana was being honored by his fellow townspeople for his many years of charitable contributions to those less fortunate. Several years earlier, when it was learned that he was hiding under a cloak of anonymity, they repeatedly tried to honor him, but he adamantly refused. It was not until a recent heart attack had softened his resolve that he reluctantly agreed. After his best friend finished his glowing introduction, the applause and jubilation that followed rendered him speechless. Finally, after several minutes, he composed himself and was about to begin his acceptance speech, when suddenly, a strange man entered the hall and made eye contact with him. Visibly shaken by this encounter, he slowly began to speak, but after uttering a few words, he was unable to continue and retreated to his seat. As his family and friends watched helplessly he began to sink into the quicksand of his past. His already weakened body began to shiver and quake as he tried unsuccessfully, to squash those memories. His wife cradled him in her arms and they both began to sob uncontrollably. Regrettably, the celebration was cut short and everyone was sent home to ponder the sad events of the past half hour. Later that evening, the specters of his past engulfed him and then ultimately consumed him. His family, who had rallied behind him, was taken aback by the tragedy that now befell them. His two sons tried to comfort their grief-stricken mother and were horrified, when she suddenly went into shock. His friends, many prominent citizens of the town, swore their allegiance and spontaneously entered the fray. Over the next several days, the Danielson family and their close friends were visited by many interested parties, both foreign and domestic. When the stranger was finally identified by an agent of the CIA, they found themselves embroiled in the shadowy nuances of foreign intrigue. It soon became evident that the war hero and philanthropist, was not the man everyone thought he was. The stranger, a former KGB agent had in his possession, a dossier identifying the honoree as a former Nazi soldier. But, it was the investigative journalist from New York, who dropped the initial bombshell that exploded and sent the honoree spiraling into a whirlwind of panic and guilt. The journalist, with the ferocity of a bulldog, was able to track down several eyewitnesses, obtain documentation, and fit together the pieces of his past. As his life is slowly unraveled, the reader is taken on a journey across two continents. A journey fraught with prejudice, betrayal, and the horrors of war! And the seemingly redemption of one man's soul!
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