This summer I was fortunate to receive an advanced copy of the book Unflinching, The making of a Canadian Sniper by Jody Mitic. It was an entrancing story. I couldn’t put it down.
Jody Mitic is a twenty-year Canadian Armed Forces veteran and sniper team leader. He is a respected advocate for wounded veterans, people with disabilities and amputees. He founded the Never Quit Foundation and currently sits on the board of directors of “Won with One,” an organization devoted to helping physically challenged athletes realize their dreams. He is a city councillor for Ottawa, where he lives with his wife, Alannah, and two daughters, Aylah and Kierah.
The book starts off with Jody talking about his childhood ambition of becoming a soldier. The candid, honest way he describes his trials and tribulations is refreshing. I’m not sure many people could be that open about the decisions, experiences and emotions from their youth.
Jody then writes about his time in the Canadian Armed Forces including the elite sniper training. He pulls no punches when he describes his feelings about the military –everything from the exciting, action-packed events to the boring and mundane ones. He also talks about his relationships with former girlfriends who had difficulty relating to someone who is already “married to the military.”
We’ve seen news stories about the battles in Afghanistan but they are superficial in their explanations. Jody’s raw descriptions of what soldiers experience in the field are something everyone should read. We hear names in the news but Jody very accurately helps his readers know the people behind the names.
The part that touched me most was in the final part of the story – how the medical system and Canadian government treat wounded veterans. Reading about the details from an insider’s point of view really helps put things into perspective.
I recommend that all Canadians read this book. It will change the way you view the profession of soldiering.