Monday, May 28, 2012

Living Memorial Day at Waterloo's Sullivan Brothers Iowa Veterans Museum

Memorial Day 2012 consisted of tributes to those who gave their lives for freedom. Parades, speeches and cemetery visits are typical ways to participate in the national annual remembrance. On this day the 42N team trekked to Waterloo, Iowa's Sullivan Brothers Iowa Veterans Museum. Among the visitors to the four year old museum of military artifacts and recorded stories was a Desert Storm/Shield vet.

She served in the US Army during Gulf War I helping to stage supplies along combat zones. The museum offers an opportunity for vets to be interviewed about their experiences on video or audio for others to learn about their contributions and observations of military service. When I asked if she had been interviewed, she answered no, but had added her name to the list of people waiting to be interviewed. Though not ready to fully discuss her experiences yet, she did however give us an outline about her time in active service.

While this former soldier looked young, she proudly admitted to being the grandmother of these two boys. Her other pride was this vintage 1990 t-shirt which she wore today. I think she described it as a R&R shirt that many soldiers received in theater. She hoped to donate it to the museum one day. 

Other veterans visited the museum today. I overheard an elderly women tell a wheel chaired women that she served in Korea during the conflict in the 1950s. Another older gentleman wore his militay cap and a chest full of ribbons while he talked to a small group of visitors. Today was for observing, listening and trying to understand the contribution from those who served. Know that. 

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