|Richard Lanni speaks with Linda Ketron outside the Strand|
At two screenings of The Americans on D-Day, one at the beautiful Strand Theater, Georgetown, South Carolina, on December 3rd, and the other at The History Place, in Moorehead City, North Carolina, on Decmber 6th, WWII veteran Earl W. Norwood described how he got the chance to dance with Marlene Dietrich and shake the hand of King George VI before going off to take part in an event, which Earl said shaped his life forever.
|Earl Norwood autographs a card for a young viewer|
Just 17 years old when he joined the Navy, Earl was one of the youngest pilots of an LCVP, landing craft off Bloody Omaha beach. There was not a dry eye in the place as he described driving his craft up on to the beach, dropping the ramp and seeing three soldiers cut in half by machine gun fire. “The other thirty guys just climbed over their dead buddies and rushed on to the beach. That memory will remain with me forever”.
Earl, who later joined the US army, fighting in both Korea and Vietnam said:
“Whenever I was in a tight spot I just remembered the courage I witnessed on D-Day and that spurred me on.”
Earl made 5 trips into the fateful beach on D-Day, and then spent several days trawling the choppy waters for dead soldiers. Finding this just too harrowing, he asked his commanding officer to give the job to someone else. “Just remember this, Son”, said the captain, “every time you recover a body, some mother back at home will know what happened to her son and where he is.”
“We just went right back to work” said Earl.
|screening at the History Place|
At the North Carolina screening, Earl was joined on stage by Morehead City's beloved local historian, Rodney Kemp, and series writer/director, Richard Lanni.
Community screenings of episodes from The American Road to Victory trilogy will continue throughout 2012.
|Earl Norwood & Richard Lanni at the Strand|
"This is a chance that we must not miss" said Livingbattlefield executive director, Heidi Mehltretter. "We are losing these great warriors at an alarming rate. Occasions such as these, when an audience has the chance to see the real life locations and hear from the men who were there, the experience is nothing less than magical."
Financing for the current tour has been provided in part by both the North Carolina Humanities Council and the Humanities Council SC.
If you would like to hold an event at your museum, library or historical society, please contact heidi (at) livingbattlefield.org or call 803-429-7500.