A writer and editor, David Venditta worked for Pennsylvania newspapers for forty years, thirty-two of them at The Morning Call in Allentown. He retired in July 2016. He has a long history of experience in writing about the military and veterans’ affairs. His book Tragedy at Chu Lai chronicles his quest for information about a cousin’s death in Vietnam twenty-five years after the fact, http://tragedyatchulai.com/ It was published in June 2016 by McFarland & Co. To buy the book, go to the publisher’s site at http://www.mcfarlandbooks.com/book-2.php?id=978-1-4766-6431-6 or Amazon at http://amzn.to/2aoYEOG
Venditta’s in-depth interview with reclusive Medal of Honor recipient Alton W. Knappenberger is posted on the Arlington National Cemetery website, http://arlingtoncemetery.net/awkappenberger.htm. He received a statewide award for enterprise reporting for a 10-part narrative about a prisoner-of-war’s struggle to survive. His interest in Pennsylvania history led him to be the co-project editor and one of the writers of a 90,000-word narrative history of Bethlehem Steel Corp., Forging America: The Story of Bethlehem Steel, winner of the Pennsylvania Newspaper Association’s top Keystone Press Award for Special Projects.
Since 1999, he has written more than 100 “in their own words” war stories from eastern Pennsylvania veterans. The stories are available online at http://www.mcall.com/news/local/warstories/. In 2011, The Morning Call published 34 of them in a book, War Stories: In Their Own Words. It earned him the Allentown Arts Commission’s 2012 Arts Ovation Award for Literary Excellence. To order the book, go to http://store.mcall.com/war-stories.html. A native of Chester County, Venditta graduated from Downingtown High School and received his B.A. in English from Indiana University of Pennsylvania. He lives in Allentown with his wife, Mary.