Bravo! The Project - A Documentary Film

Documentary Film,Film Screenings,Khe Sanh,Marines,Vietnam War

May 22, 2013

On Armed Forces Day, 2013

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The pines jutted up all around the campus. The weather was warm, shorts and short sleeves in order. The jays called out from the tops of digger pines and the breeze sang little tunes.

On the campus of Columbia College, Columbia, California, BRAVO! COMMON MEN, UNCOMMON VALOR was screened to about one-hundred-fifty enthusiastic viewers. The venue was wonderful, the evening sublime.

Thanks much to Khe Sanh brother, Mike Preston, and thanks, too to Vietnam Veterans of America (VVA) Chapter 391, based in Sonora, California, for making the screenings possible. Thanks to Columbia College and their Campus Security Services represented by the very helpful Brett Hendricks. Betty and I are deeply appreciative, too, of VVA Region Nine Director Dick Southern. Many kudos also to Rick Tam, a US Army veteran of Operation Lam Son 719 at Khe Sanh in 1970-1971. Further thanks are in order to VVA photographer Bill Chamberlain for capturing screening moments for posterity.

Mr. Gary Linehan of the Union-Democrat wrote an excellent article about the film and Khe Sanh, providing a springboard for the showing of BRAVO!

The two screenings were initiated by a posting of the colors by the color guard of VVA members Barry Schloffel, Ron Coit and Laura McHenry. After a posting of the colors, local music artist Kevin Maurer sang the National Anthem. After the first screening, Kevin also played “Taps” on his trumpet. Kevin’s rendition of “Taps” was haunting and rang out into the crowd in the auditorium.

One of the things we like best about our travels to screen BRAVO! is the people we meet, and our Sonora area screenings did not disappoint. Lots of Vietnam veterans and their spouses as well as younger veterans from our more current fights. A number of veterans from the siege came to see the film and as always, I am amazed at their tales of tribulations. Those tribulations so similar—yet so different—to what the Marines and Corpsmen of Bravo Company endured.

All hail Mike Preston and the Vietnam Veterans of America, Chapter 391, and all the other Sonora area folks for their extremely warm welcome and efforts in making these screenings of BRAVO! possible. Because of their belief in the importance of this film, and the enthusiasm of our other supporters, BRAVO! will eventually be seen and heard around the world.

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