from Staff Reports
"We are losing hundreds of World War II veterans each week. We are also losing their personal history of what it was like to serve, fight and sacrifice during this service in Europe and the Pacific," Roy Blunt (R-Mo.) said. "The Veterans History Project, created in 2000 by Congress, is aimed at preserving those individual memories to help future generations understand the personal sacrifice that preserving freedom demands."
"Veterans will be asked by trained interviewers to describe daily life during their time of service from the day they enlisted until the day they returned home. Already the interviews have yielded stories of valor and stories that spark great emotions about the horrors that veterans faced in combat. Veterans are encouraged to bring photos, letters and other documents to aid them in telling their story."
The Veterans History Project has come to the local four state's area through Missouri Southern State University.
Dylan Welker, senior history major, recorded a dozen veterans sharing their stories of honor and service last year.
Dr. Robert Markman has joined that effort this year and several dozen more veterans are being scheduled for interviews.
"In the Joplin area there are hundreds of veterans with stories to share," Welker said.
"We are now working to preserve their voices for future generations to hear."
Blunt interviewed Army veterans William Holden, from Webb City who served in the Pacific, and Max DeForest, from Springfield who fought in European campaigns.
"Their stories, experienced as young men, were chilling and spirited," Blunt said.
"I urge veterans to participate in the recording sessions. There is no cost, and you can register by calling 1-888-889-3535 , toll free," Blunt said.
The interviews will be placed into a collection at the Library of Congress, which is the repository of the national project.