USO Treats Troops and Their Families This Halloween With “Operation Thriller IV” Tour to the U.S., Kuwait, Germany and the UK

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Bestselling Thriller Authors Harlan Coben, Phillip Margolin, F. Paul Wilson, Kathleen Antrim and Heather Graham Uplift Spirits in D.C. and Spread Holiday Cheer to Troops During Nine-Day USO Tour Abroad

Thriller authors F. Paul Wilson, Heather Graham, Phillip Margolin, Kathleen Antrim and Harlan Coben, pose for a group photo with troops stationed in Kuwait as part of the "Operation Thriller IV" USO t

"As thriller writers, we write about larger-than-life heroes, but nothing that we write can compare to the real life heroes in our military," said Antrim. "It is such an honor to travel with the USO and spend time with our real heroes...."

Twitter Pitch: @HarlanCoben, @philmargolin, @fpaulwilson, @KathleenAntrim, @HeatherGraham celebrate Halloween with troops on @the_USO tour

The USO indulges troops thirst for suspense this Halloween with the “Operation Thriller IV” USO/Armed Forces Entertainment tour to the U.S., Kuwait, Germany and the UK October 24 – November 1. With help from five of today’s most celebrated thriller authors including, Harlan Coben, Phillip Margolin, F. Paul Wilson, Kathleen Antrim and Heather Graham, the USO kicked off its fourth installment of “Operation Thriller” with a three-day, morale boosting visit to Washington, DC before traveling abroad.


  •     More than halfway through their nine-day, four-country USO journey, the “Operation Thriller IV” tour has lifted spirits and shared special moments with countless troops and military families stationed in the U.S., Kuwait and Germany.
  •     Having just wrapped up their USO tour to Camp Arifjan and Camp Buehring (which also included a stop at USO Camp Buehring – a local USO center) in Kuwait and a visit to Landstuhl Regional Medical Center and the USO Warrior Center in Germany, the group is now in the UK. While onsite, the group is scheduled to visit more military personnel as well as continue leading insightful Q&A sessions that shed light into the writing process and upcoming projects.
  •     Jam-packed with spirit lifting activities, the “Operation Thriller IV” USO tour kicked off with an autograph signing at the newly constructed 25,000 square foot USO Warrior and Family Center at Fort Belvoir on October 24. The following day, the authors met with wounded warriors at Walter Reed Bethesda National Military Medical Center and later aided with the presentation of this year’s Service Member of the Year Awards at the 2013 USO Gala. The writer’s visit to the metropolis concluded with a USO trip to Quantico Marine Corps Base on October 26.
  •     To date, the “Operation Thriller” USO tour series has deployed fourteen award-winning authors to seven countries to include Kuwait, Oman, Qatar, Turkey, Kyrgyzstan, Afghanistan and Iraq. Among the writers to have lifted the spirits of more than 2,100 troops are, David Morrell, James Rollins, Douglas Preston, Steve Berry, Clive Cussler and Mark Bowden, among others.
  •     This trip marks the fourth installment of “Operation Thriller,” which has bought a touch of home to our nation’s military community for four consecutive years. This tour is the second USO experience for Antrim, who traveled on last year’s tour, and the first for Coben, Margolin, Wilson and Graham. All five authors are proud members of the International Thriller Writers (also known as ITW), is an honorary society of authors (both fiction and nonfiction) who write books broadly classified as “thrillers.”
  •     With over 50 million books in print worldwide, Coben’s last six consecutive novels, SIX YEARS, STAY CLOSE, LIVE WIRE, CAUGHT, LONG LOST and HOLD TIGHT all debuted at No. 1 on the New York Times bestseller list and lists around the world. His books are published in 41 languages around the globe.
  •     Margolin has written seventeen New York Times bestsellers, including SLEIGHT OF HAND (April 2013), CAPITOL MURDER (April 2012) and SUPREME JUSTICE (May 2010). Each novel displays a unique, compelling insider’s view of criminal behavior, which comes from his long background as a criminal defense attorney who has handled more than thirty murder cases.
  •     Wilson, the New York Times bestselling author of the REPAIRMAN JACK novels, lives in Wall, New Jersey. In 2008, he won the Bram Stoker Award for Lifetime Achievement. Wilson’s latest book, DARK CITY was released this October.
  •     Antrim is the award-winning author of the bestselling political thriller, CAPITAL OFFENSE. She is also a journalist and the co-president of the International Thriller Writers.
  •     Graham, a New York Times and USA Today bestselling author, has written more than a hundred novels, many of which have been featured by the Doubleday Book Club and the Literary Guild. Her most recent novel is THE NIGHT IS FOREVER.


Attributed to Harlan Coben:
“We make up heroes for a living. Now we get to meet real-live ones and express in some small way our gratitude. I can't imagine a greater honor.”

Attributed to Phillip Margolin:
"Every day thousands of men and women in our armed forces risk their lives so I have the freedom to write my novels or play with my grandchildren or just play golf without fear. This tour is my way of thanking them for the sacrifices they make for me and every other American."

Attributed to F. Paul Wilson:
“I am honored to be included on this tour. I've spent more years than I care to number spinning tales about fictional men and women who face down threats to their values and way of life. Now I get the chance to mix with the genuine article and thank them for putting themselves in harm's way.”

Attributed to Kathleen Antrim:
"As thriller writers, we write about larger-than-life heroes, but nothing that we write can compare to the real life heroes in our military. It is such an honor to travel with the USO and spend time with our real heroes. Those who sacrifice so much to stand between us and those that would do us harm. We owe so much to these men and women and to the USO, a fantastic organization that quietly serves our military."

Attributed to Heather Graham:
“Throughout my life, I have been in awe of and amazed and humbled by our troops, past and present. What they do for me, for all of us, is so great that it can't be quantified. I am humbled and privileged to be given a chance to cast a drop in the bucket that should be filled a thousand times over for the services our men and women in uniform perform for our country. There is no way to really thank them.”


Tour Photos:

USO Fact Sheet:


About the USO
The USO lifts the spirits of America’s troops and their families millions of times each year at hundreds of places worldwide. We provide a touch of home through centers at airports and military bases in the U.S. and abroad, top quality entertainment and innovative programs and services. We also provide critical support to those who need us most, including forward-deployed troops, military families, wounded warriors and families of the fallen. The USO is a private, non-profit organization, not a government agency. Our programs and services are made possible by the American people, support of our corporate partners and the dedication of our volunteers and staff.

In addition to individual donors and corporate sponsors, the USO is supported by President’s Circle Partners: American Airlines, AT&T, Clear Channel, The Coca-Cola Company, Grand Canyon University, jcpenney, Jeep, Kangaroo Express, Kroger, Lowe’s, Northrop Grumman Corporation, Procter & Gamble and TriWest Healthcare Alliance and Worldwide Strategic Partners: BAE Systems, The Boeing Company, Lockheed Martin, Microsoft Corporation and TKS Telepost Kabel-Service Kaiserslautern GmbH & Co. KG. We are also supported through the United Way and Combined Federal Campaign (CFC-11381). To join us in this patriotic mission, and to learn more about the USO, please visit

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