Book Review: “Relentless Courage” by Michael Sugrue and Dr. Shauna Springer


I recently had the opportunity to preview “RLENTLESS COURAGE: Winning the Battle Against Frontline Trauma,” by Michael Sugrue and Dr. Shauna Springer.

The name of the book really sums up what is inside. But maybe not in the way readers would initially think. The book is unique in both its raw authenticity and the added analysis of post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSI) expert Shauna ‘Doc’ Springer, Ph.D.

The book follows the career of retired Sergeant Michael Sugrue in public service. He started in the U.S. Air Force, where he served as the security force’s Raven officer. Ravens are a small group of pilots who receive specialized training to operate in remote, unsafe places around the world. Their task is to secure the aircraft and the crew in countries that do not have sufficient security.

After separation from the Air Force, Michael was hired as a police officer in California. Early in Michael’s career, he was selected to be an undercover detective in a regional drug task force. Michael and his team were very successful in arresting drug dealers and seizing large quantities of drugs, weapons and money. Michael was then promoted to the rank of sergeant. He was married and had a daughter.

Michael lived his dream and followed in his father’s footsteps as a second-generation law enforcer. However, Michael’s humanity was about to collide with unimaginable losses and traumas.

Shortly after being promoted to sergeant, Michael’s team was sent to a priority call. A man was armed with a knife and tried to break into a bedroom. Inside, a man and a woman thought he was going to kill them. Michael and his crew bravely entered the home to stop the armed assailant. Unfortunately, the armed man did not follow commands, turned to the officers and came against them. To defend their own lives and the lives of the innocent, Michael was forced to use deadly force.

“NECESSARY COURAGE” follows the aftermath of the shooting; the criminal justice investigation, courtroom decisions and internal investigation. The suspect’s twin brother was present during a series of courtrooms, prompting Michael to repeatedly relive one of the hardest days of his life. To make matters worse, Michael experienced significant losses in his personal life during this time.

In the midst of the tragedy and loss, Michael considered ending his life. Then Michael’s close friend, a police reserve officer, attempted suicide. It was in this moment that Michael showed the ultimate degree of courage. He found trusted people and admitted that he needed help.

“NECESSARY COURAGE” is a stomach-churning story that gives readers a taste of the worst parts of law enforcement. It is also a story of redemption and recovery, as Michael trusts competent professionals and friends to go with him in the healing process.

Doc Springer helps the reader understand the psychology behind what happened in Michael’s mind. Her expert perspectives, grounded in science and many years of clinical experience, normalize the strong emotional and mental responses that Michael endured and provide a perspective on how we can all heal from trauma.

Order “NECESSARY AGAINST” from Amazon and watch an interview with Michael Sugrue and Dr. Shauna Springer here:

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