Mary Lou Darst, daughter of a U.S. Military Officer, reveals a new perspective on the United States Military.


Free admission, please register.

Jetzt reservieren

War Ready - In My Father's Shadow

Reading / Free admission, please register


Memories of A Military Brat


In her autobiography War Ready. In My Father‘s Shadow, Mary Lou Darst epicts her own upbringing as the daughter of a U.S. Military Officer. Numerous relocations in her childhood and youth took the family from their home in Texas to Alaska, Japan, and Munich. From 1957 to 1959 they called the American settlement in the “Perlacher Forst” their home: while her father Carl was stationed in the nearby McGraw barracks, her mother Sara became an active member of the Officers ‘Wives Club and Mary Lou attended the Munich American High School in Cincinnatistraße.


In her book, Darst beautifully conjoins the events encompassing World War II as well as the Cold War with the help of an authentic narrative surrounding the life of a typical American military family. She reveals a new perspective on the United States military, which was seen as an occupying and protecting force for a long time in Germany in particular, and redirects our attention to the “social costs” and strains put onto soldiers’ families, the so-called military dependents.


Mary Lou Darst was born in Houston, Texas in 1943. Following her international childhood and youth, she settled in Galveston, Texas. She majored in English History of Literature and Cultural Studies, worked as an English and Arts teacher, and up to this day, as an artist.


Introduction: Dr. Karin Pohl, freelance historian, co-curator of the exhibitions Amis in Giesing and Amis in Bogenhausen about the American presence in Munich from 1945 to 1992, as well as the co-editor of the corresponding books.


Organizer: Bavarian Center for Transatlantic Relations



(Photo: ©Mary Lou Darst)


Photography, audio, and video recording may occur at any Amerikahaus events. By entering the event premises, you consent to being photographed and/or recorded (both audio and video) and to having your image released, published, exhibited or reproduced for promotional purposes, news, our publications, press, and inclusion on our website and social media.