1st-place tie in non-fiction biography

Cliff Buchan

News Editor

Another award — this time a national honor — has been won by a North Branch author who documented the story of the Minnesota Twins Platoon from the Vietnam War.

Christy W. Sauro, Jr. was a member of the Twins Platoon which was sworn in the Marine Corps at a Minnesota Twins game at Metropolitan Stadium in Bloomington on June 28, 1967. He was one of 150 young Marines from the Upper Midwest who had enlisted.

The book, which grew from Sauro’s military service during the war in Vietnam from late 1967 through early 1969, was published in 2006 following more than 17,000 hours of research and interviews by the author.

Now in its third publishing, the book was warmly received in the area and helped spawn a new awakening of recognition for Vietnam War-era veterans. Sauro has been an active participant in the annual Forest Lake Vietnam Veterans Day program as Forest Lake became the first city in the state to recognize Vietnam veterans under a new state law.

Late last year, “The Twins Platoon” was named a national winner in the prestigious Stars and Flags Book Awards competition. In the category non-fiction biography, “The Twins Platoon” tied for first place with “The Beasts of Buchenwald” by Flint Whitlock. The award program is based out of Branson, MO.

The book continues to generate awards and inspire others to serve in the military.

The television special “Spotlight-The Twins Platoon” originally aired in July 2007. It went on to win a regional Emmy for “Outstanding Documentary” and the Hatch Award for “Outstanding Marine Corps Documentary”. The military stories in the documentary are taken from the book by Sauro.

And just last Labor Day, a handful of the original Twins Platoon members, including Sauro, were at Target Field in Minneapolis as 24 new Marine recruits were sworn into the military service and became the modern-day version of the Minnesota Twins Platoon. They completed basic training in December.

Sauro lives in North Branch with his wife Joanne. He owns All Country Insurance Agency which is located in the Viking Professional Building, Wyoming.

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