Freeport CATV program explores lives of WWII veterans

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FREEPORT — After nearly two years of research, interviews and editing, the stories of the lives and service of four local World War II veterans will be showcased on “Conversations with Ed Bonney” through October.

With the help of Rick Simard, director of Freeport Cable TV 3, Bonney spoke with the veterans, who shared their war experiences, details of their lives and how they came to live in Freeport.

Bonney said he and Simard worked to expand on the stories told by the veterans, and supplemented their interviews with voice-overs, pictures, movies, and news footage from the 1940s. Simard and Bonney met with members of the historical society and German language experts, conducted hours of online research, and spent months editing sound, graphics, video and production.

“Doing this project was a rewarding experience for Rick and me,” Bonney said. “It is a memorial to (the veteran’s) service and experience.”  

Bonney has been working with Simard since 1991. His series is well known in the community.

“Of all the programs we have done in the past 20 years, these World War II interviews are very special to me,” Bonney said. “To present the experiences of these four veterans and to shed light on the facts and historical events is incredibly special.”

The veterans – Arthur Cooper, Martin Bailey, Ken Brown and Edwin Fogg –  served in various branches of the military.

Cooper was in the Air Force and flew aboard a B-17 as a bombardier. Brown was in the Army and served in the 106th Infantry. Bailey was in the the Navy, where he served as a powder rammer on the battleship Texas. Fogg, also Navy, worked on a landing craft transport, carrying troops to the South Pacific.

For Bonney, WWII represents a time in his life when people made sacrifices in order to help the greater population. He said he would like his viewers to learn more about that generation and understand that if these men had not served, the current generation would live in a different world.

“Older people will be able to relate to this program, but the newer generations are going to see things that may not be familiar to them,” he said. “I think all viewers will enjoy the historical references, the first-hand stories of the veterans and the graphics we were able to provide.”

Each interview featuring Bailey, Fogg, Cooper and Brown is less than an hour and will be aired each week at 7 p.m. from Thursday through Sunday, starting Oct. 6.

Amy Anderson can be reached at 781-3661 ext. 110 or aanderson@theforecaster.net. Follow her on Twitter: @amy_k_anderson.

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The October edition of “Conversations with Ed Bonney” will highlight the lives and service of four Freeport residents who served in World War II. They are Ken Brown, left, Martin Bailey, Bonney, Art Cooper and Ed Fogg. The interviews with each veteran will air Thursday through Sunday nights at 7 p.m. through October.

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