Thursday, August 25, 2005

VJ Day Special Reporting - St. Pete Times

This coming Sunday's (8/28/05) St Petersburg Times paper will have a special section with the interviews they did with the WWII veterans in the area for a tribute to VJ Day. Last spring, the Times put out a call for veterans to share their story. From what I understand, about 100 people responded. One of them was Jim Helinger, Sr, the glider pilot who's story I have posted. I was able to sit with Jim when the summer intern reporter videoed the interview for the paper. I'm looking forward to reading the memories of those who answered the call and stood up for us so many years ago. I don't recall the reporter's name, but I do know he was sent on many of the interviews. He is on vacation now, and will be coming back to work full time for the St Pete Times. It struck me the day I sat with Jim and the reporter and as I heard the reporter discuss a few of the men's stories he had received for this section, I couldn't help but think what a wonderful gift of living history this young man received by sitting with these 80 some year old men and listening to how it was. I'm sure he will use those stories for many years, long after some of these veteran's have left us. Anyhow, I plan to get a hold of a few copies for my own files. If you're set on getting your own copy, I'd be happy to try to get them to anyone who want's them. The paper is $1 for the Sunday edition and then what ever the cost of an envelope that will keep the special section intact and postage. See my profile for the email address, or leave a comment here so I can get back to you. Update 8/26: I found out this special section will also include the interview with Ben Garrison, one of the crew members of the USS MASON (DE-529), the only large ship crewed by African Amreicans in WWII. Thanks to the Mudville Gazette for the Open Post!

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