I’m so proud to announce that my husband Robert McClellan has released his first book. It has been a real journey of discovery for him. I recall the day almost eight years ago, when he expressed the desire to share his story. The revelations he shares in Boom Baby Boom represent a lifetime of challenge, discovery and hard knocks.
We’ve been married for seven years and he has been an incredible asset to Heinerth Productions as a writer, producer and talented audio engineer. We’re both explorers in life, but his unique social perspective was formed on the working class streets of Philadelphia, where sometimes, the most effective way to enforce the social contract was to give a guy a punch in the nose.
As a young man, Robert immersed himself in the vibrant Philly music scene. This led to several great opportunities to work as a concert production manager with some of the most acclaimed musicians of the time. The list of artists includes such well-known acts as U2, Ray Charles, James Brown, Cindy Lauper, Jimmy Cliff, Culture Club, The Four Tops, and dozens more. But, the rock and roll lifestyle, and all its excesses, eventually caught up to him, and Robert fell off the tour bus.
Fortunately, the bus stop happened to be at a Navy Recruiter’s office.
Robert became a U.S. Navy Combat Photographer, including duty with the famed SeaBees. His award winning photography and journalism gained attention, and he was assigned as a instructor at the U.S. Navy Schools of Photography, at NAS, Pensacola, Florida. He collected numerous service awards include the Naval Commendation and Navy Achievement medals. Brief missions in Operation Desert Storm left lasting scars that forever changed his outlook on life. After leaving active duty, and completing nursing school, Robert continued his service to the country in the Army National Guard. He was a Medical Platoon Sergeant with the 1/156th Armor Battalion. An injury ended his service, and today Robert is among the many fortunate veterans who receive excellent care through the VA health system.
Before we met, he continued life’s explorations as a long haul truck driver, concert promoter, music artist manager, afternoon talk radio host, and travel nurse. Those careers were intermingled with several attempts at drug and alcohol rehab and fortunately, Robert found himself sober. And broke.
His only possession, and old motor home, ran out of gas at Navarre Beach, with an Irish Setter and $26 in his pocket. He couldn’t have been happier. He got active in the local recovery community and landed a job as a detox nurse at a prestigious treatment facility. Continuing to grow in sobriety and trying to remain of some service to others, he began working part-time in the medical departments at some of the most notorious prisons in Florida.
Again, growth and life changes came about, and he decided that the Black Hills of South Dakota would be a good place to explore. He became a nurse at the VA medical center in Hot Springs, and also produced music festivals and concerts in Rapid City. After a few Dakota winters, Robert admitted the error of his ways and transferred to a VA hospital in north Florida.
We met online while I was working on a documentary in the Florida Everglades. Months passed and the email romance blossomed until we finally had a first date at a beautiful North Florida Spring. While he continued nursing at the local VA, we met for bicycle dates and dinner in town, but there was no turning back for either of us.
As Creative Director of Heinerth Productions, Inc., Robert gets to explore his boundaries every day. Whether it is a new documentary film idea or a book project, he embraces the opportunity to create something worthwhile, something that he can be proud of and that will resonate with people around the world. He’s also the customer service and shipping department, and rides his bike 14 miles round trip to our local post office to get our shipments in the mail.
The rest of the story plays out every day as a heart warming romantic comedy, where the planets have aligned and the best is yet to come.
Boom Baby Boom – Volume One is a remarkably candid and brutally honest collection of essays and short stories, told in the authentic voice of an American Baby Boomer. From the rough and tumble streets of North Philadelphia, to the glamorous world of rock concerts and endless lines of cocaine, Robert will carry you along on a journey that winds through his extraordinary life. With first person experience as a prison nurse, a combat photographer and recovering alcoholic, this book is full of interesting anecdotes, with plot twists that will leave you smiling, sometimes through your tears. It still chokes me up to learn of the things he has endured and overcome, but today I am incredibly proud of my husband and best friend!