Ralph George, Fountain Hills, Arizona, wrote to Dear Abby about Veterans in the Classroom which started after a history teacher called for help teaching her students what war was really like. She wanted stories that cannot be found in history books. Now Veterans in the Classroom provides history storytelling.
A program panel includes one veteran from each branch of service and both European and Pacific theaters. Before the presentation, students submit five questions that interest them most. Each veteran covers the following topics:
- A brief personal history from enlistment to overseas departure
- Arrival overseas – where, when, major battles, etc.
- A close-call story
- A funny-experience story
There is always time for questions and answers. There is also a display of memorabilia students can view and discuss with vets, one-on-one. Programs are videotaped, so true stories, told firsthand by vets who experienced them, can be shown to future generations of students. Local press and TV are invited.
Dear Abby said, “by sharing stories, you walk into the classroom as strangers and walk out as heroes.”
Contact Ralph George, Veterans in the Classroom, 14425 San Carlos Dr, Fountain Hills AZ 85268.