Norwich Writers Series to Host Iraq War Vet, Memoirist Kayla Williams

Norwich University Office of Communications

Updated April 13, 2015

NORTHFIELD, Vt. – The Norwich University Writers Series continues with Iraq War veteran and memoirist, Kayla Williams, author of “Plenty of Time When We Get Home: Love & Recovery in the Aftermath of War” (2014) and “Love My Rifle More than You: Young & Female in the U.S. Army” (2006). Williams will read on Tuesday, April 21, at 4 p.m. in the Chaplin Hall Gallery.

Williams has appeared in numerous media interviews including this radio piece on PRI’s The World from February 2014, and including an appearance on Jon Stewart’s The Daily Show during a segment dealing with claim backlog at the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs.

Williams enlisted in the U.S. Army as an interpreter in 2000. She served as a sergeant and Arabic linguist in a military intelligence company of the 101st Airborne Division (Air Assault) for five years. During that time, she spent a year deployed in Iraq and Kuwait during the buildup to and ultimate invasion of Iraq in 2003. Williams served at the forefront of troops’ interaction with Iraqis while navigating the challenges of being part of the 15 percent female minority enlisted in the Army.

“Love My Rifle More Than You: Young and Female in the U.S. Army” is a memoir about Williams’ experiences negotiating the changing demands on today’s military. “Plenty of Time When We Get Home: Love and Recovery in the Aftermath of War” details Williams’ marriage to Brian McGough, who was wounded by a roadside bomb in Iraq. The book explores the effects of traumatic brain injury and PTSD.

Williams is a 2013 White House Woman Veteran Champion of Change, Truman National Security Project Fellow, and member of the Army Education Advisory Committee, and a former member of the VA Advisory Committee on Women Veterans. She currently lives near Washington, D.C., with her husband.

The Norwich Writers Series event is presented by the university’s Center for Peace and War, the College of Liberal Arts, and the Department of English & Communications. All events in this series are free and open to the public. Williams’ memoir will be on sale at the event. A book signing will follow the reading.

Media Contact

Daphne Larkin
Assistant Director of Communications
802-485-2886 or 595-3613(m)

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