Award winning narrator and Vietnam War veteran Mike Vendetti reads Stephen Crane's classic Civil War novel, The Red Badge of Courage. War is a crucible that has transformed boys into men from time immemorial. The weapons of war have changed throughout the years, but its effect on those who witness it close up has not.
Henry, or the youth as Crane refers to him leaves his home a naïve boy with visions of grandeur and glory; yet he runs from his first battle only to later join the walking wounded as an imposter. He wished that he, too, had a wound, a red badge of courage. He falls in with men who will shortly die from their wounds. One, a spectral soldier with a terrible wound, turns out to be his friend Jim Conklin.
Henry witnesses Jim's death which is not heroic or pretty. Seeing his friend die and his shame from running from the battle creates an anger and guilt within him to go back to his unit. Along the way he is awarded his Red Badge of Courage.
Public Domain (P)2017 Mike Vendetti