The Paths of Darkness is an explosive, shocking memoir indicting child abuse, poverty and violence. This is the true story of a scared eight-year-old black child’s struggles to survive amid hunger, poverty, and squalor of the Appalachian coalfields and mining camps of West Virginia. He lived with his beautiful mother, already a hopeless alcoholic, who was dying from whiskey poisoning. The young boy, with his two younger sisters and a baby brother, trailed along with Mama and the men in her life from one camp shanty to another, from one whisky bottle to another. Abuse, neglect, violence, death, and starvation were all he knew. It was this struggle which he finally conquered — that eventually earned him the nickname of “Scrap Iron.” The horrifying existence compelled him to write this inspiring memoir about “just another nigger,” lost in the toughness of those dirty camps until he escaped his own paths of darkness to become a decorated military hero, earn a doctorate degree, and attained membership in Mensa.