On Oct. 30, the USO announced that “Operation Thriller IV” was in full swing. Operation Thriller IV indulges troop thirst for suspense this Halloween with a USO/Armed Forces Entertainment tour to the U.S., Kuwait, Germany and the UK. The tour began on Oct. 24 and runs until Nov. 1. With help from five of today’s most celebrated thriller authors including, Harlan Coben, Phillip Margolin, F. Paul Wilson, Kathleen Antrim and Heather Graham, the USO kicked off its fourth installment of Operation Thriller with a three-day, morale boosting visit to Washington, DC before traveling abroad.
Harlan Coben, who has over 50 million books in print worldwide, said, “We make up heroes for a living. Now we get to meet real-live ones and express in some small way our gratitude. I can’t imagine a greater honor.”
The five participating authors are mid-way through their nine-day, four-country USO tour and are lifting the spirits of troops and military families stationed in the U.S and Kuwait. Having just wrapped up their USO tour to Camp Arifjan and Camp Buehring (which also included a visit to USO Camp Buehring – a local USO center on post), the group is now in Germany, where they are scheduled to visit more military personnel and continue leading insightful Q&A sessions that shed light into the writing process and upcoming projects.
Phillip Margolin has written seventeen New York Times bestsellers. He, too, recognized the value of the job being done by the troops. He said, “Every day thousands of men and women in our armed forces risk their lives so I have the freedom to write my novels or play with my grandchildren or just play golf without fear. This tour is my way of thanking them for the sacrifices they make for me and every other American.”
To date, the Operation Thriller USO tour series has deployed fourteen award-winning authors to seven countries to include Kuwait, Oman, Qatar, Turkey, Kyrgyzstan, Afghanistan and Iraq. Among the writers to have lifted the spirits of more than 2,100 troops are David Morrell, James Rollins, Douglas Preston, Steve Berry, Clive Cussler and Mark Bowden. This trip marks the fourth installment of Operation Thriller, which is intended to bring a touch of home to our nation’s military community.
This is the second Operation Thriller tour for Kathleen Antrim, the award-winning author of the bestselling political thriller, “Capital Offense.” Antrim, who is also a journalist and the co-president of the International Thriller Writers, said, “As thriller writers, we write about larger-than-life heroes, but nothing that we write can compare to the real life heroes in our military. It is such an honor to travel with the USO and spend time with our real heroes. Those who sacrifice so much to stand between us and those that would do us harm. We owe so much to these men and women and to the USO, a fantastic organization that quietly serves our military.”
You can see photos of the tour on the USO website for Operation Thriller at uso.app.box.com. For more information about the USO, visit this link to uso.app.box.com.
Terry Ambrose (terryambrose.com) writes mysteries and thrillers. His latest funny Hawaiian mystery, “Kauai Temptations,” was called “More delicious than a Coconut Mocha Frap” by New York Times Bestselling author Jenn McKinlay (www.jennmckinlay.com).