Monday, May 28, 2007

Riverside National Cemetery Memorial Day

Memorial Day.

I spent the day at the Riverside National Cemetery to attend the Memorial Day’s event and shoot it with a new video camera I bought. This was the first trip I took alone for the documentary. It gave me some time to reflect on the last eight months.

Because of meeting all the men and their families for this documentary, I experienced a very touching day while paying respect to the men who have fought and died for our country. I thought of all their friends mentioned during our interviews who were killed in the war.

A beautiful ceremony was held for those who have made the “Ultimate Sacrifice."

Several of the men we have met are former POWs. Take a look at some photos of the National POW/MIA Memorial.

Thursday, May 24, 2007

Ted Skowronek Is Still Flying High

We met and interviewed Ted Skowronek in Arizona last weekend. He is a very fun and adventurous man. A few weeks ago, his friend Paul Cornell had contacted me through the angelfromhellthemovie website and told me about Ted. We made plans for our team to meet Ted and Paul.

Ted told us of his time in the 354th. One of his adventures was how he evaded the Germans when he crashed-landed. It was a truly amazing story.

Paul did a lot of legwork for this shoot. He had arranged with Rich Cutshall, the owner of the Anzio Landing Restaurant (located in Mesa, at the Northeast corner of Falcon Field Airport), to let us shoot inside the restaurant. The restaurant is decorated with a lot of WW2 memorabilia. It was a great place to interview Ted.



Rich Cutshall is involved with the Explorer Scouts. The young men (aged 13 and up) meet and learn how to maintain and fly airplanes.

Ted spoke to the Scouts. It is very interesting to realize that some of the Scouts were only a few years younger than Ted was when he was in the War. Rich treated us to an incredible lunch.

We met at 7 AM because Ted was planning on taking a ride on a WWII era B-25 bomber on Saturday at 9 AM. For more information about arranging a flight to ride in this B-25 , check out www.b25barbieiii.com.

Rich Cutshall had arranged with the man who runs “The B-25 Flight Experience” for one of our team to videotape Ted’s trip on the airplane. Zev went up and shot the videotape. Zev shot some very exciting footage of Ted and the views from the B-25.




It was a great day for our documentary team. We are very grateful to everyone who made this weekend so amazing.

Although it was a fantastic weekend, it was challenging to get through it. We drove from Los Angeles to Scottsdale at 8 PM Friday night after work. We had to drive straight through because we had to meet Ted and Paul at 7 AM. We did not get to the hotel until 3 AM, so we only had a few hours sleep. Thanks to Ted, Paul, Rich, the Scouts and everyone for their help making this such a memorable trip and for putting up with our lack of sleep.

The trip was worth it!

Sunday, May 6, 2007

Future Trips Postponed

We have decided that after our trip to Arizona on the 18th to 20th, we are going to take a break from shooting these interviews. I have been very fortunate that Zev and Francesca have been donating a lot of their spare time to travel with me to conduct the interviews.

Although each trip has been a blast, it is time to take a break. I will be able to spend some time editing. I have not edited anything for this project since I completed the 10 minute preview of “The Heroes of the 354th Fighter Group.” I am hoping to do some editing in the next few weeks and figure out when I will be able to travel again for more interviews. We still have many men that want to meet with us, so hopefully I will be able to afford to take some trips in July and August.