The Garden City Telegram is hosting a book signing event Saturday afternoon for its recently published book “Called to Serve” that will include some special guests who are featured in the book, which honors southwest Kansas military veterans both past and present.

The public is invited to the event, scheduled for 2 to 4 p.m. at Coldwell Banker The Real Estate Shoppe, 312 N. Eighth St. in Garden City. Coldwell Banker is the title sponsor for the book.

A trio of southwest Kansas veterans — World War II veterans Burl Loving and Perry Garten of Garden City, and Vietnam veteran Steve Morris of Hugoton — whose stories are among those chronicled in the 128-page, hardbound book, will be on hand to sign copies of the book.

Anyone who already owns a copy of “Called to Serve” is welcome to bring it to the event to be signed by these southwest Kansas heroes. Additional copies of the book will be available for purchase, by cash or check, for $39.95, plus tax.

Refreshments will be served.

Other special guests who plan to attend include: husband and wife Ray and Donna Hernandez of Garden City, both retired Army Sergeants First Class; and Leonard Hitz of Garden City, a former Marine Sergeant. The three local veterans were members of a panel who advised The Telegram on the book. Army veteran Jim Arwine of Garden City, Marine veteran William Royer of Syracuse and Morris also served on the panel.

The book chronicles the sacrifices and experiences of more than 340 southwest Kansas veterans spanning World War II to the present.

The Telegram collected photos, stories, letters from the front, memorabilia and biographical information submitted by veterans, their families and historians from throughout the newspaper’s 12-county circulation area for use in the book.

Among the stories featured in the book is that of former U.S. Navy officer Loving, who shares his memories of sweeping mines in the Pacific during and after WWII.

The book also includes a story previously published in The Telegram on May 1, 2016, featuring the now 101-year-old Garten, who was an Army Air Corps glider co-pilot in the China-Burma-India Theater during WWII.

Morris served two tours of duty in Vietnam from 1969 to 1974, flying both reconnaissance and refueling missions, and his service continued in the Air Force Reserve as a liaison for the U.S. Air Force Academy. He went on to serve in the Kansas State Senate for 20 years, including eight as Senate president.

“Called to Serve,” remains on sale at The Telegram, but supplies are limited. To purchase a copy of the book, call (620) 275-8500 or (800) 475-8600, or stop by The Telegram office, 310 N. Seventh St. in Garden City.

Contact Brett Riggs at