Arkansas veteran Garland Gable was a member of the 69th Infantry Division during WWII. He lived through some of the toughest battles in the European Theater, seeing and experiencing the grim realities of war.
The Conway resident shared his memories with my office and they will be something future generations can hear and learn from as part of the Veterans History Project, a program of the Library of Congress /that preserves the oral histories of our nations veterans.
This project is a very healthy way for our veterans to share their memories and for families to hear about what their loved ones endured, sometimes for the very first time.
As the son of a WWII waist gunner on B-17s, I didnt hear my dad talk of his experiences during the war. I wish I had asked more about that time in his life. My office is working to make sure that other families dont have this same regret.
Sharing the importance of this program increases participation by veteran and the volunteers interested in recording their memories. Im proud of the work were doing to encourage more Arkansans to contribute to the Veterans History Project.
Were making sure that more Arkansas veterans are part of the collection by conducting interviews and hosting workshops around the state to teach others how to join this effort.
These events have inspired more Arkansans to capture these living histories.
Im pleased to see the enthusiasm for preserving the memories of our veterans, and Im excited by the support of organizations around the state that are helping amplify this message.
The Library of Congress has recognized the work we are doing to feature this program and facilitate participation. My staff has shared our practices with other congressional offices so they can create their own programs to capture the memories of our veterans.
Veterans History Project Director Karen Lloyd saw the support from Arkansans for this project during a weekend visit to the state earlier this fall. She met with veterans and volunteers who are champions of the project and contributing to the librarys collection.
Preserving the experiences of Mr. Gable and so many other veterans in our state is an honorable way to recognize their bravery and dedication to our country. As we celebrate Veterans Day, consider supporting this rewarding project and capturing the oral histories of the men and women who stand in defense of our nation.
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