VOICES FROM BEIRUT: The Peacekeepers Speak
BVA Next of Kin members Mary Ellen Jackowski and Peggy Stelpflug plan to collaborate on a collection of letters from the Peacekeepers. They would like family members and Beirut Vets to participate by submitting either one of their letters -- or excerpts from various letters -- written by the Beirut Peacekeepers. Since memories fade, this will be a permanent record of the thoughts and feelings at that time. Though this process may open up painful memories, the desire to record the thoughts of the US Peacekeepers, 1982-1984, overcomes this very real concern. Those who died in Beirut can no longer speak for themselves, but we can be their voices and ensure that their words are heard. Through this project, by sharing personal thoughts, Beirut Vets can continue their healing process. If no letter from Beirut is available, a present-day written account regarding a particular serviceman can be submitted. This account may include any specific memory or experience such as why he joined the military, thoughts about the peacekeeping mission, future plans, or any memory or experience shared during his time in Beirut.
The format of the collection will include an alphabetical listing of one page per serviceman:
John S. Doe H&S 1/8 MOS:
Cook An introductory paragraph about the serviceman; The letter or excerpts from several letters; Your name and relationship to the serviceman which indicates your permission to publish the information.
Before the Beirut Connection became part of the BVA, many families and Vets shared letters from Beirut. Permission to reprint any of those letters would be greatly appreciated. (Please follow the format above.) This project was in the planning stages before the 25th Remembrance and it is our hope that it will be realized before the 30th Remembrance in 2013.
Please submit your information to: Mary Ellen (firstname.lastname@example.org). or Peggy (email@example.com). Hard copies (photostats -- not originals) can be mailed to: Mary Ellen Jackowski 20 Stagecoach Road, Chestertown NY 12817(518) 494-4609
Peggy Stelpflug Auburn AL 36832 (334) 821-8671