July 31, 2018


MSgt (Ret.) Joseph P. Bowman

Thanks so much for visiting MSgtJosephPBowman.com.  (You can call me Joe.)  I’m a retired Air Force master sergeant with over 21 years of service and a veteran of Desert Storm.  I am a recipient of the Airman’s Medal, the Air Force’s highest decoration for valor in peacetime, and multiple other awards and decorations.  My Air Force career included eight duty assignments, response to the 1994 Cuban riots in Panama, plus two tours in the Middle East and one in Colombia.

I’ve always been a history enthusiast and am in the process of writing a book about the Air Force’s Medal of Honor recipients.  It will complement my book on the awards and decorations of General of the Army Douglas MacArthur.  Having read several biographies of the general, I was surprised to learn that his awards and decorations were not carefully catalogued at the MacArthur Memorial.  Possessing a great deal of knowledge on the subject, I set about correcting that foible, but I was not as well versed regarding foreign medals.  So I teamed with my longtime friend, Eric Caubarreaux, whose expertise ensured that we created a comprehensive, accurate and historically important book.

Meanwhile, while dabbling in family genealogy, I discovered a few unsavory characters who committed some heinous acts.  My first book, The Bad Man From Bodie, in 2005, arose from learning that my great-uncle, John Showers, brutally tortured and murdered two peaceful timbermen in the hills above Los Gatos, California, in 1883.  There were many versions of the story prior to the publication of my book, but none as detailed and accurate.

Most recently, I learned that some of my Staffelbach family were among the most notorious serial killers in American history.  I had no intention of writing about them until I began searching for my great-uncle’s son and stumbled across my cousin, Charlie Staffelbach, who was adopted by the Barger family after his father went to prison.  When I learned that Charlie earned the Medal of Honor during World War I, I knew I had another book worth writing!  I created a draft, which I sent to Chris Kraft, Charlie’s cousin on his mother’s side, and she took the liberty of editing it.  I liked her changes and comments, so I proposed collaborating with her on this book, my latest.  She agreed, and I couldn’t be more pleased with the outcome!  Chris even came up with the title: Quietly Exploding.

I am currently retired, with two precious grandchildren, and am back on track to complete that Air Force Medal of Honor book.