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Here If You Need Me: A True Story    by Kate Braestrup order for
Here If You Need Me
by Kate Braestrup
Order:  USA  Can
Little, Brown & Co., 2007 (2007)
Hardcover, CD

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* *   Reviewed by Lori Waddington

Maine State Trooper James Andrew 'Drew' Griffith, was on his way to work one morning when he was killed in a car accident, leaving behind his wife, Kate Braestrup, and their four children. Before his death, Drew had been planning a second career as a minister, so his wife decides to pursue his dream herself. Her book, Here If You Need Me, tells the story of her life mission.

Kate Braestrup attends seminary and becomes a chaplain who works with game wardens, defined here as 'law enforcement officers who work under the Maine Dept. of Inland Fisheries and Wildlife.' Her official job is to serve as a 'chaplain for search-and-rescue missions in the Maine woods,' where she works as a liason between the game wardens and the missing person's family members and friends.

The author works with an interesting cast of characters, including Lieutenant Fritz Trisdale, whose exclamations of 'CheezusMary'n'Chosef' keep her amused, along with the occasional off-color joke from Warden Hannah Robatiaille.In addition to her work, Kate Braestrup's four children keep her very busy, whether she is driving her oldest son to buy drums, or trying to explain to her youngest daughter why her job requires her to wear a bullet-proof vest.

More than anything else, Here If You Need Me is a tribute to game wardens, religion, and the beauty of the Maine woods. While I found all of this to be interesting, I would have liked to have heard more stories describing Kate Braestrup's involvement with search-and-rescue missions; the work she does is truly inspiring.

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