Podcast # 494: The Inspiring Story of One of WWII’s Greatest Tank Gunners



Spread the love

in: Podcast, Travel & Leisure, WWII

March 27, 2019

Just recently, I participated in the AoM podcast’s first live audience interview. It happened at Magic City Books here in Tulsa, Oklahoma, and joining me for the interview was two-time previous visitor Adam Makos Makos, the author of A Higher Call and Devotion, was here in T-Town to discuss his latest book, Spearhead: An American Tank Gunner, His Enemy, and a Collision of Lives in World War II

Spearhead follows the story of Clarence Smoyer– a quiet kid from Pennsylvania coal country who ended up being one of the biggest tank gunners in The second world war history– and how his life crossed paths with an opponent tanker, Gustav Schaefer, during the Battle of Perfume. Adam shares how he became interested in WWII history as a kid and how he found Clarence’s story. He then offers us an engaging rundown of tank warfare in WWII, and strolls us through Clarence’s hero’s journey and the epic fights he faced with calm dedication and a love for his team of tankers. We end our discussion discussing what happened when Clarence and Gustav just recently fulfilled up as old men, and the lessons Adam believes members of the social networks age can draw from the veterans of the Big One.

Show Highlights

  • How Adam began composing WWII history books as a young man
  • The unifying theme of Adam’s work
  • How Adam found the story of Clarence Smoyer
  • The diminished on tank warfare in WWII
  • Why America’s tank innovation dragged
  • The 5 different functions on a tank team
  • How Clarence sealed his function as a gunner (regardless of not wanting it)
  • Gustav, the German tanker, and why he’s simple to root for
  • How Clarence and Gustav crossed courses
  • The legendary Fight of Cologne
  • Clarence’s feelings– 75 years later even– on his heroics because fight
  • Clarence’s final WWII objective
  • His life after the war
  • How Clarence and Gustav fulfilled as old males
  • The homecoming that Clarence lastly got as a 95- year-old
  • The takeaways Adam got from writing this story

Resources/People/Articles Mentioned in Podcast

Connect With Adam

Adam’s site

Adam on Twitter

Adam on Instagram

Listen to the Podcast! (And do not forget to leave us a review!)





Listen to the episode on a different page.

Download this episode.

Sign up for the podcast in the media player of your option.

Tape-recorded on

Podcast Sponsors

Collection by Michael Strahan. Makes it easy to look great and feel your finest no matter the event; includes sport coats, dress shirts, accessories, and more. Go to for more details.

Shapr. Take networking from awkward to awesome with Shapr: the top expert networking platform that uses your experience, interests, and goals to assist you make the right connections.

Capterra. The leading totally free online resource for finding little business software application. With over 700 specific classifications of software application, you’re ensured to find what’s right for your company. Go to to attempt it out totally free.

Click here to see a complete list of our podcast sponsors.

Read the Records

Coming soon!

Check Out More

About Ronnie

Ronald Antonio O'Sullivan OBE (born 5 December 1975) is an English professional snooker player who is widely regarded as one of the greatest players in the history of the sport. He has won five World Championships, a record seven Masters titles, and a record seven UK Championships, setting a record total of 19 titles in Triple Crown tournaments. He shares the record for the most ranking titles (36) with Stephen Hendry. His career earnings of over £10 million put him in first place on snooker's all-time prize-money list. Winning the Tour Championship on 24 March 2019 made him the sport's current world number one, the fourth time in his career that he has held the top position and the first time he has been number one since May 2010. This is the longest gap between number one spells by any player in history.