-15 years old and the younger son of a farmer in Iowa, Pale and slender, he looks like his mother.He lost his mother at the age of 7.
-dislikes hunting and killing animals but his father and brother think he should hunt.
-Doesn't want to get into sports, would rather be farming.
-Very considerate. Richard helps his sister with the household chores.
-Writes poem to express his pain but keeps them in a secret place.
-Very sensitive, sees poetry in ordinary experiences. Understands Kilmer's poems as a kindred soul.
-Brave, stands up for Hannah against classmates, support her family when vandals attack her father's tavern.
-He suggests the students should write to the soldiers to spur tthem on.
-Loyal, he gives up being Doughboy out of loyalty towards Hannah who is forced to decline the position of Lady Liberty.
-Feels terrible about Kilmer's death and finds peace by writing a poem for him.
-wants his father's approval and is very happy when he gets it finally.
-the older brother of Richard, he loves hunting and playing games; popular in school as he always tries ti fit in, unlike Ruchard.
-He is proud that he killed his first deer and earned the respect of his father early. Wishes to join the army but cannot until he finishes high school.
-He is always warning Richard to be a part of the crowd and not stand alone. He thinks Richard is a sissy to dislike hunting and killing.
-He is quite aware of what is happening to Richard in his school and keeps a brotherly eye on him.
-Joins the army after finishing high school but it does not please his father.
-the daughter of the Schermers, who moved to Iowa a few years ago.
-she is upset at being called a Hun, a derogatory term for Germans.
-she is smart and does well in school but even though her essay won her the Lady Liberty award, she declines the positions because of her classmates' prejudice and harassments.
-warm and good-natured - she invites Richard to her house for dinner and the two become friends.
-she feels strongly that people must learn to care about one another despite differences in race, religion and nationality. She believes that people must learn to wage peace, not war.
-Hannah breaks the news about Kilmer's death to Richard.
- Hannah and Richard are good friends. They care very much for each other.
-he is Gus and Richard's father, firm and reserved, doesn't say much.
-dropped out of school in grade 5 but wants education for his boys.
-takes the boys hunting and wants Richard to kill his first deer which he doesn't.
-firm and stern - forbids Gus from dropping out of school to join the army. He wants him to complete high school.
- grieves for his brother Ronald who was killed in a war.
-tries to forbid Richard from writing poems but fails.
-understands Richard's poem well when he reads about the pain of losing someone you love greatly. He had loved his brother a great deal.
-he is a good, responsible father.
-good English teacher, introduces the poetry of Kilmer to the class.
-encourages Richard to write poems and reads his poems in class.
-organised the project of writing essays to be chosen as Lady Liberty and Doughboy.
-puts Abner and Harry in their places.
-a source of inspiration to her students, wishes all the students were like Richard and Hannah.
Abner and Harry
-very disruptive boys in the class, very opinionated and prejudiced.
-they dislike poetry as they think it is sissy stuff.
-dislike Hannah because of her German origin and make life difficult for her.
-dislike Richard for standing up for Hannah.
-shallow and prejudiced, she is against foreigners.
-she doesn't like Hannah who is a German.