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Arthur Guy Empey
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Military Personnel
    (December 11, 1883-February 22, 1963)
    Born in Ogden, Utah
    American soldier who resigned from the US Army to join the English Army prior to America entering WWI
    Wrote an electrifying autobiography of his WWI experiences, 'Over the Top'
    In addition to 'Over the Top' also wrote; 'Tales from a Dugout,' 'First Call: Guideposts to Berlin,' 'The Madonna of the Hills: The Story of a New York Cabaret Girl'
    After the war moved to California and began working in the movies
    Produced the movies; 'Troopers Three' and 'Millionaire for a Day'
    Wrote; 'Troopers Three,' 'Little Mickey Grogan,' 'Bigger than Barnum's,' 'Glenister of the Mounted,' 'The Midnight Flyer,' 'Millionaire for a Day,' 'The Undercurrent,' and 'Over the Top'
    Acted in; 'Millionaire for a Day,' The Undercurrent,' 'Liquid Gold,' and 'Over the Top'
    Directed; 'Into No Man's Land'
    Father of actress Diane Webber
    Wrote innumerable adventure and science fiction stories for pulp magazines
    Usually went by his middle name, Guy
    During WWI, he left the United States Army to join the English army to fight Germany when the United States was still neutral in the conflict.
    He smoked.
    He flopped as a recruiter for the English army, failing to get even one recruit to join during his month long assignment.
    In his autobiographical 'Over the Top,' which details his service in the English army, he spends three pages describing the gear that the British 'Tommies' carried/wore on the front.
    He took part in a firing squad of an English deserter (he claimed to have deliberately missed). He was so shaken by the experience that when he recounted it in 'Over the Top,' he inserted a surreal fictional (in the other wise nonfiction book) account of how the deserter was not executed but was accidentally given a second chance and died heroically.
    He initially encountered great success in Hollywood but faded quickly and his movie career was over within ten years of its start.
    None of his movies or writings won any type of awards and are almost completely forgotten today.
    'Over the Top' was one of the greatest, if not the greatest, non-fiction accounts of service on the ground during WWI.
    His was brave.
    He was badly wounded during his time in combat, almost losing an arm.
    When America did enter the war, he was inexplicably denied a chance to re-enlist in the American Army.
    By the time he wrote 'Over the Top,' less than a year after he served in combat, he was already showing signs of mental problems, almost certainly Post Traumatic Stress Disorder.
    He treated German prisoners under his charge well and spoke highly of the courage of the individual German soldiers he encountered.
    His movie projects were generally quality products.
    Nobody can read 'Over the Top' and think there is anything glorious about war. Even today, the descriptions of the horrors of war in 'Over the Top' are shocking, particularly his recounting watching a British soldier die in agony from a gas attack before his very eyes.
    He produced some of the very first war movies.
    Louis L'Amour stole a scene from 'Over the Top' for his western novel, 'Last Stand at Papago Wells.'

Credit: tom_jeffords

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