The Perfect Gift for History Buffs & Romantics Alike

July 23, 2012    |    By +
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I love “feel good” stories, so I couldn’t resist writing about the book My Dearest Anna by Kara Martinelli. When Kara Martinelli’s beloved grandfather passed away, she didn’t want his heroic and inspiring accounts of flying during WWII to go with him. Then, she learned that she had also inherited a collection of letters between her grandfather & grandmother that chronicles their growing love that eventually resulted in marriage after the war. She knew that she couldn’t keep this amazing journey to herself so she began putting it together into a book for the whole world to enjoy. I think this is the perfect gift for any parent or grandparent who loves American history or has been a part of any war.

“World War II was raging. Everyone was stepping up to do their part, including my Grandpa, Richard B. Moore. In 1943, he joined the Army Air Corps, a small town boy heading off to fly with the 5th Air Force in the Pacific. But before he could leave, he had to go see about a girl…

My Grandparents fell in love through their letters, separated by a world at war. Their story is told through the mail they had exchanged, following the path of my Grandpa’s training to his bomber missions in the Pacific Theatre. When the war ended, it was finally time to come home to his awaiting Anna.

Grandpa used to sit with me and share his stories about his time in the Air Corps. I didn’t want his memories that were so important to him to never be told again. So I filled in the holes between their letters to complete their story. This is the story of how my family began.”


I took a few minutes to interview Kara about her book and her love of aviation in general. I hope you enjoy getting to know this special granddaughter as much as I did!


Q: What motivated you to write this book?

A: I wanted to write something for my family about our grandparents. We we’re all so incredibly close with them and I had been left their letters to each other during the war. I thought that it wasn’t fair to keep them to myself.


Q: What do you hope other people will get out of it?

A: I hope that others will take away a story about love during war time. I want them to see that hope still survives under dire circumstances. And, perhaps readers will be inspired to investigate and document their own family histories.


Q: Why do you think aviation is fascinating to so many people?

A: I think that aviation is fascinating to people because when you fly, there is something romantic about it. It’s a feeling you get. It’s like being alone, free, and in this vast sky with seemingly unlimited possibilities.

Q: How has aviation and your grandfather affected your life?

A: My Grandpa is my biggest inspiration. He was very sweet and reserved, and when I would sit and talk with him, he would light up at whatever I would talk about. I loved listening to him tell his stories. He introduced me to aviation and I latched onto it right away. His stories seemed so cool and exciting to me, so that was all I wanted him to talk about. And now I make aviation documentaries! I want to share people’s personal stories about their connection to aviation.

Q: Do you fly model planes or real planes? If yes, what is your favorite kind?

A: I don’t fly models, but I love getting a chance to fly in real planes. My favorite so far is the B-24 because that was the plane Grandpa flew in; so I had a connection to it. But I do enjoy launching model rockets.

Q: What is your ultimate aviation dream?

A: I have a few. But mostly I want to get a pilot’s license and learn how to fly a bi-plane. I’m also working on developing a documentary where I would fly along the path of my Grandpa’s journey during the war, making all the stops along the way, all the way to the Pacific.

Kara Martinelli works in the television and film industry, mainly producing aviation documentaries, telling stories of veterans and airplanes. She currently resides in Ohio. This is her first book, which was written for her family.

Her life-long passion for aviation stems from the stories that her grandpa would tell her. And, it’s she has been able to put that same passion into her most recent production of a film titled “The Restorers” that has won two regional Emmy’s. This film is about the Doolittle Tokyo Raiders in 2010. For more information on the show, and to purchase a DVD or blueray, you can check out

If you would like to learn more about Kara’s grandmother, grandfather & historic aviation, you can check out her website

Thanks Kara!


Bomber image is from War Birds Source Group and My Dearest Anna

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Meet the Gurus

Kathryn D.W.
Kathryn Drury Wagner is the senior manager of content at She was formerly the executive editor at Honolulu Magazine, and is the author of The Ultimate Guide to Shopping on Oahu. Her career has included staff positions at Country Living Gardener and Power & Motoryacht. Her latest book is "Hawaii's Strangest, Ickiest, Wildest Book Ever!"

Gwen P.
Gwen is the Editorial Curator at In addition to writing blogs, she creates gift guides, curates the site, and produces content for our social media channels. As a freelance writer, she created blogs on fashion, art, travel, health and lifestyle. A talented jewelry designer, she's also a yogi and a hospital volunteer with her therapy dog, Lilo, a Pomeranian.