The Day I Lost President Ford: Memoir of a Born-and-Bred Carolina Tar Heel


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Native North Carolinian and UNC graduate Captain Wilbur Jones grew up in World War II Wilmington, incubating a lifelong devotion to country, the military, and history, launching rewarding careers in the Navy and federal service…assisting Presidents Nixon and Ford and 2 Congressmen…sports officiating…writing and speaking…and preserving WWII history. This lively, colorful, entertaining book about a multi-dimensional working-life’s journey informs through character vignettes, storytelling, and lesser-known facts (inside the 1972 and 1976 presidential campaigns, and advancing Ford’s trips). Attributing successfully reaching “mountaintops” to parental foundations in core values, commitment, and the credo: Never Give Up!, Jones recognizes his failures and foibles, often jesting. Achievements include: UNC varsity lacrosse and soccer player; 28 years of Navy duty, 41 with the Defense Department; author of 19 books; professional NCAA baseball umpire and basketball referee; leader of national WWII history preservation project; global WWII battlefield tour leader; director of Nixon’s New Hampshire re-election campaign; and Ford’s White House assistant and advance representative. Jones avoids esoteric world views, palace intrigue, overreaching judgments, and current national issues or politics. Let’s just make this an enjoyable read, he says.

  • Paperback: 278 pages
  • Publisher: Dram Tree Books (2021)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-13: 9780984490028
  • Product Dimensions: 6 x 9 x .58 inches

Additional information


Paperback, Hard Cover


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