Held in captivity in North Vietnam for more than six years, John Borling kept body and soul together and inspired his fellow prisoners by rapping out poems with his knuckles, in code, on prison walls. Those poems were collected in his book Taps on the Walls: Poems from the Hanoi Hilton, published in 2013.
Borling will share work from his book and talk about his experiences at 7 p.m. Tuesday, April 29, at the Asheboro Public Library. His visit, sponsored by the Friends of the Library, is free and the public is invited.
A Chicago native and Air Force Academy graduate, Borling served 37 years in the U.S. Air Force and retired as a major general. He earned a Silver Star, two Bronze Stars with V for Valor, and two Purple Hearts.
He was an F-15 Eagle fighter pilot, and commander of the famed “Hat in the Ring” squadron. He also served in various command and planning roles.
He currently leads SOS America, an organization he founded advocating military service for young men, and serves on several corporate boards.
The library is located at 201 Worth Street in Asheboro.