Nicholas Gage is truly inspirational. He came to the U.S from a small Greek island at nine years old after his mother had been executed during the Greek civil war. He never imagined he would grow up to be an American reporter and be the author of 7 books. As he explained in his speech, the only thing he knew about America was that it was far away. Of course, he didn’t speak English. He came with his sister to live with their stepfather in the U.S.
He quickly learned English and embarked on a career in Journalism. The fact of his mother’s murder by Communists because she would not reveal where her children were hiding, was a haunting experience for him. Many people deal with losses by writing about it, and that is exactly what Gage intended to do. He knew he needed to learn investigative journalist skills to achieve this. This was going to be the one story that moved him to pursue journalism in the first place. While Gage worked at the Wall Street Journal and the New York Times, he always had in the back of his mind that he would go back to Greece to find out what happened to his mother. He felt this was the way to repay his mother after what she had done – sacrifice her life for him. The Book Eleni became a literary success, and has been translated into 34 different languages. The book has also been transformed to a movie version, which Gage conceded was not as good as the book.
Gage took a traumatic experience in his life that haunted him, researched it to understand the full meaning and impact and came to terms with the tragedy. His experience and achievements are an inspiration and demonstrate the human spirits indomitable will.