StoryCorps, the oral history project that has recorded and archived “over 50,000 interviews with over 90,000 participants” since 2003, has animated three incredibly powerful first-person narratives that highlight the military experience, in honor of Veteran’s Day.
In 2005…While serving in Baghdad, Justin formed an unlikely friendship with two Iraqi boys who lived nearby. At StoryCorps, Justin speaks with his wife, Deanne, about the lasting impression the boys left on his life.
In August 2005, Marine Lance Cpl. Travis Williams and his squad were sent on a rescue mission in Barwanah, Iraq. En route, their vehicle was hit by a roadside bomb. Of Travis’ entire 12-person team, he alone survived. Here, Travis reflects on the hours and days after the explosion, as well as his life now, and pays tribute to the men he left behind.
Allen Hoe served as a combat medic during the Vietnam War, and his two sons continued his legacy of service. His oldest son, Nainoa, eventually became a first lieutenant infantry officer with the Army’s 3rd Battalion. In January 2005, while leading his men through Mosul, Iraq, Nainoa was killed by sniper fire. He was 27. On Memorial Day that same year, Allen traveled to Washington to honor Nainoa’s memory, and it was there that he had a chance encounter a stranger that brought them both unforeseen comfort.