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Jun 13

When I published Take China, the Last of the China Marines, I never expected to receive so many letters asking questions. Here’s one that came from Paul Young, a Chinese American, living in California.


Hello Mr. Stephens.

I just finished reading your book: China Marines. I read it for 6 hrs straight.

Just let me say, it is one of the BEST books I have ever read. I only wished you had included pictures in your book.

I also read: Charlie Two Shoes and the Marines of Love Company, 22nd Marines.

Did Little Lew in your book go to the same English school as Charlie Two Shoes? Charlie 2 Shoes and another adoptee/mascot” was able to survive when the Marines left Tsingtao by being taken to an orphanage I believe. It was such a tragedy Little Lew was stoned to death.


Left. Little Lew at the Marine quarters in Tsingao

Did you ever meet Charle 2 Shoes in…

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Jul 03

When Wolfenden Books published my book Take China, the Last of the China Marines, I was hoping some of the characters I wrote about would surface. I remember James Michener saying to me when I met with him in Bangkok that when a writer writes about people, he can never cast them aside. They are there forever. Omar Khayyam in the Rubaiyat said much the same, “The moving finger writes, and having writ moves on and nothing, no tear…can remove it.” I felt that about Take China. What happened to all the people I wrote about? Would I awaken the past?

There was Little Lew, a little Chinese boy of eight that my outfit adopted. Would I hear one day that he was alive and well, when I heard to the contrary, that he was stoned to death by other kids when the Marines withdrew from China. And there was my…

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