Charles Willsher, who received the Distinguished
Service Cross for his service during WWII, never fully
recovered from his wounds. His wife and daughter
became the victims of his inner war. In the 1980’s, he began his own
healing journey by telling his story to others. At the same time, his
daughter embarked on her journey to healing and reconciliation
with her family. After his death, his daughter uncovered his
memoir and decided to include it along with their family story in
hopes that it would inform and inspire others who are also dealing with the trauma that war leaves behind.
About the Author
Janelle Kaye, M.A. grew up in a household where PTSD ruled after her father’s
experience in WWII. Deeply troubled by war and its effects on people, she escaped
to Oregon after college where she became committed to the idea of nonviolence in
all aspects of life. For several years she taught in Oregon’s university and community
college system, and later owned her own therapeutic business devoted to healing. As
a result of her own healing, she ultimately was able to reconcile with her family and
teach others about methods in healing and reconciling with their families.
Charles Sidney Willsher received the DSC for his service in the 9th Infantry Division
in WWII. For the rest of his life he was plagued with a variety of physical problems
and severe PTSD which primarily resulted from having killed others in hand-to-hand
combat. He could never reconcile having killed with his spiritual values gained from
growing up in a small town in Minnesota. He found some relief in his senior years by
telling his story.