The Missouri Veterans History Project is an all-volunteer organization that aims to record and document as many veteran’s stories as possible. Three copies are made of each interview. One is given to the veteran, one is sent to the Missouri Historical Society and the other is sent to the Library of Congress where it is added to a searchable online database. I spoke with two people involved with the project, Kirk Klingler and Jeff Corrigin to learn more about it.
WORD: Tv-Style Video
Total Run Time: 1:59
WHEN YOU THINK OF THE ISLE CAPRI CASINO AND HOTEL, YOU LIKELY THINK OF THE FISH OUT FRONT, OR THE GAMBLING MACHINES INSIDE. BUT THAT’S JUST THE SURFACE. (0:07.43)
EVERY OTHER FRIDAY, THE CASINO ALLOWS SYSTEM ANALYST KIRK KLINGLER TO USE SOME OF IT’S SPACE TO INTERVIEW VETERANS FOR THE MISSOURI VETERANS HISTORY PROJECT, AN ALL VOLUNTEER PROJECT THAT RECORDS AND DOCUMENTS VETERANS STORIES. (0:11.32)
“It’s an opportunity for veterans to tell their story of their service to our country in their own words.” (0:05.21)
A NAVY VETERAN, KLINGLER TOLD HIS STORY FOR THE PROJECT IN 2016. LIKE MANY, HE WAS NERVOUS TO TELL HIS STORY BUT HIS WIFE CONVINCED HIM TO.
“My wife confronted me and said the children and the grandchildren will want to know what you’ve done so when the opportunity came about, I took advantage of it because I would like my kids to know what service I performed for this country.” (0:15.26)
AS SITE COORDINATOR, KLINGLER IS RESPONSIBLE FOR SETTING UP AND BOOKING ALL VETERANS INTERVIEWS IN THE BOONVILLE AREA. HE SAYS THAT THE INTERVIEWS OFTEN GET EMOTIONAL. HE RECALLS ONE WITH A VIETNAM VET.
“He went in and refueled an aircraft that was over Vietnam. He was given explicit orders not to but he went ahead and did it because he knew the man might not make it back to the ship and this person whose life he saved by defying the orders he was given calls him every Christmas day to thank him for saving his life.”
AFTER THE INTERVIEWS ARE FILMED, THEY ARE SENT TO THE HISTORICAL ORATOR FOR THE MISSOURI HISTORICAL SOCIETY JEFF CORRIGIN. CORRIGIN PROCESSES THEM AND MAKES COPIES OF EACH INTERVIEW.
“We are documenting more Missouri veteran’s stories, keeping them for our states history, our nation’s history and it’s fascinating. I think that a small ground of volunteers since October 2010 when the group started has been able to interview 1285 veterans.” (0:15.28)
KLINGLER NOW HAS HIS SIGHT SET ON INTERVIEWINGING MISSOURI’S GOVERNOR ERIC GREITENS, WHO SERVED AS A NAVY SEAL IN THE 2000’S.
DANIEL PERREAULT, KOMU 8 NEWS, COLUMBIA.