Students helping prepare for WWII exhibit coming to Lake Charles

Students helping prepare for WWII exhibit coming to Lake Charles
(Source: KPLC-TV)

LAKE CHARLES, LA (KPLC) -Students in the Calcasieu Parish School Board’s television production class are getting more than just training on interviewing techniques. They’re learning history from the people who lived it. The students are taping interviews with military veterans and historians about World War II. Former KPLC anchor Britney Glaser is their instructor.

“You may think that was so long ago that it didn’t have any impact on them,” said Glaser. “These students are 16, 17,18. But when they’re listening to the interviews about these veterans who chose to go to war, and they were close to their age, It’s a light bulb moment for them. Where they can make that connection and that could have been me.”

Retired Major General Erbon Wise is one of those WWII veterans. He admits there aren't many of his fellow soldiers still here to tell their stories.

"There's no many people from WWII living anymore," said Wise. "You've got to be in your nineties or hundreds now to be in that group. Oh yeah, I've been taped many times."

American Press columnist Jim Beam is one of those being interviewed about the effect the war had on SWLA.

"So we can credit World War II of making this the community that it is today," said Beam."I guess the biggest advantage was that it brought so many people from other parts of the country here. It's a pretty cosmopolitan area."

"To actually be involved in talking to these veterans, people familiar with World War II, people who had personal first-hand experiences, and then put all that together to really chronicle world history of this time in our state's history," said Glaser.

The interviews will be part of a World War II Museum exhibit called “Pelican State Goes to War.” It will be on exhibit at Historic City Hall August 2 through September 28, 2019. For more information, call Matt Young at 337-491-9159.

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