Mike Peters
Pulitzer Prize Winner, Author of Mother Goose & Grimm,
Former 7th Group PsyOps Artist

Mike Peters was a member of the 7th PsyOp Group, 15th Detachment on Okinawa from 1967-1969. He was an artist with the 15th which was largely responsible for production of leaflets used in PsyWar operations.

Colonel Charlie Nahlik (Ret.) told me about Mike Peters in an e-mail (12/05). Charlie was a Captain at the time of Mike's tour and was a Special Operations Officer in the 15th Detachment. He worked with Major David Underhill who was in charge of The High Altitude Leaflet Program for the Pacific. In an e-mail, Charlie said: I had Bob Stone, Hans Krahn and Robert Zaragoza working for me in the Special Operations Section. Hans was the Senior NCO. Bob and Robert were the graphic guys. We also had Mike Peters who went on to win the Pulitzer award and develop the Mother Goose and Grimm Cartoon Strip.

After learning the above I sent an e-mail to Mike's Mother Goose and Grimm Home Page but received no response. Considering that he probably gets hundreds of e-mail messages a day, I figured mine was probably lost in the many.

To my great surprise, I received an e-mail from Mike on 5/21/07 asking me to call him at his home. I immediately did so and he was delighted to hear from me. He said he was thinking about the 7th Group, "Googled" and was very surprised not only to find my site but also to see short article about him. I think he was flabbergasted about both and said several times that he did not get or see a message from me. Since he was busy when I called he asked me to call him again the next day (5/22/07)

The next day we talked for a good half hour and although I preceded Mike in the unit (1961-63) we still reminisced about Okinawa and the unit. None the less, we had a great conversation about places and people. Mike said he went back to Okinawa several times in the recent past and everything had changed so much it was difficult to determine where the old unit buildings had been located.

Mike gracioulsy thanked me for putting together the PsyOps Page since it brought back lots of memories for him. He also told me a story about his wife Marian who insisted that she was going to come to Okinawa to live while he was with the 7th Group. He said he asked for and was very surprised to receive permission to live off base with his wife. I believe Mike said she taught at a US Civilian school while there. He told me another funny story about Robert Sternberg a civilian worker but will let him tell that one if he wants to. I asked Mike to send an account of his tour and hopefully he will do so.

Mike said he would like to know the whereabouts of Robert Sternberg so if anyone knows, please contact me and i will get message to Mike.

When I first posted the above cartoon, I thought Mike was the author but he indicated he is not. Its still appropriate for its inclusion on the 7th PsyOp page. I copied the following information about Mike from his homepage;

Mike has been interested in cartooning, and particularly political cartooning, since childhood.  Born October 9, 1943, Mike was educated in his birthplace of St. Louis, MO, where he graduated from Christian Brothers College High School in 1961.  In 1965 he was awarded the degree of Bachelor of Fine Arts from Washington University and immediately began his career on the art staff of the Chicago Daily News.  The following year he began two years of service with the U.S. Army as an artist for the Seventh Psychological Operations Group in Okinawa.  After Vietnam, his mentor, the renowned W.W. II artist Bill Mauldin, helped him find a cartooning position on the Dayton Daily News in 1969. That was the beginning.  In 1972, his editorial cartoons became syndicated nationally.  In 1981 Mike was awarded a Pulitzer Prize for Journalism and in 1984 the award-winning Mother Goose & Grimm comic strip was born -- all with the help of Marian, his wife, best friend and business partner of 35 years.

I certainly enjoyed my phone chats with Mike and hope that he comes through with some stories about his tour with the 7th. Maybe "Grimmy" and his gang will post a cartoon for us as well.

Its nice to know someone besides myself became famous from the 14th/7th PsyOp Group :) EDITOR



Tim Yoho