UTA to Preserve Voices of Veterans and Their Families

Oral history will share military experiences

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    NEWSLETTERS

    The University of Texas at Arlington launched a project that will allow vets with ties to UTA and their loved ones tell their stories of military life.

    The University of Texas at Arlington is telling the stories of America's heroes.

    Maverick Veterans' Voices aims to preserve the voices of UTA students, faculty, alumni and anyone connected to campus who served in any branch of the military during any era.

    "They'll talk about anything from their experiences on deployment, from what they actually did, what the food was like, how much they missed their families," said Kimberly van Noort, UTA College of Liberal Arts associate dean.

    Veterans from privates to generals and their families will be interviewed on camera.

    There are potentially thousands of stories, and UTA hopes to get all of them. It has big plans for the oral and video history.

    "We'll eventually put these on a website and be streaming the interviews," van Noort said. "We'll also transcribe the interviews and put them in a searchable database that will enable research in military experiences."

    Robert Irish, a veteran who served in the Korean War and is currently in the UTA Military Hall of Honor said there is more realism in seeing stories on video than reading about them in textbooks.

    "Today, so few young people have any connection to the military at all, and they don't realize what has been done to ensure they can do whatever it is they're doing today," he said.

    And the collected oral histories will not just be for researchers, veterans or those with military connections, van Noort said.

    "I think it's an important teaching tool for people to understand about the history of our country," she said.

    "We have lost several voices of people in the community this year who have died and passed on, so it's important to capture as much as we can," she said.