In 1966, Joan Hunter of Scituate, Mass., sat down with her husband and three children to watch a special news report about the Vietnam War.
As the rest of the family went to bed, Ms. Hunter remained in front of the television, transfixed as a reporter interviewed members of the First Cavalry Division.
One piece of footage stuck with her — mail call. The disappointed faces of soldiers who had not received letters from home so moved Ms. Hunter, then 30, that she decided she would write letters to them on her IBM typewriter.
It was the start of what she called Operation Morale Booster, a one-woman campaign that eventually enlisted dozens of students from her children’s elementary school and the high school where her husband taught. They exchanged thousands of letters with soldiers overseas.
a book, “77 Letters,” published in October. The letters will be read by two actors on the podcast “Behind the Lines” on March 30, one day after National Vietnam War Veterans Day.