For Immediate Release
March 16, 2007
Tracy Fleischman, Brave New Foundation, (310) 904-3820
Jesse Derris, Ken Sunshine Consultants, (212) 691-2800
First-Ever Online Living Memorial to Iraq Veterans Unveiled Today; Comprised of Video Testimonials in Honor of Fallen Heroes
Brave New Foundation Opens Iraq Veterans Memorial on
Fourth Anniversary of Iraq War at http://iraqmemorial.org/
LOS ANGELES—On the eve of the fourth anniversary of the Iraq War, the Brave New Foundation today unveiled the first-ever online living memorial to fallen servicemen and women. The Iraq Veterans Memorial can be seen online at http://iraqmemorial.org/ and at any one of the hundreds of websites hosting the video memorial via YouTube. The memorial bears witness to our heroes with 60-second video testimonies sent in from around the country by family, friends, co-workers, and the military colleagues of those killed.
Events around the nation will showcase the Memorial, some are listed below. There are also select quotes from the memorial printed below.
“Inspired by the AIDS Quilt, the Vietnam memorial, and The New York Times biographies of the 9/11 victims, we decided to create a living online memorial to U.S. soldiers killed during the Iraq War,” said filmmaker Robert Greenwald, who conceived the project, “No matter what you think about the war, the memorial is a place to honor the brave men and women who have been killed in Iraq serving our nation.”
Unlike traditional memorials, the Iraq Veterans Memorial will be shared across the world via the internet and added to over time, with those wanting to contribute having the ability to upload testimonials to YouTube. For the past two months, Brave New Foundation has been working with numerous Iraq veterans groups to create the memorial.
Those who participated in the memorial did so to celebrate the lives of those who have been killed.
“I got involved in the Iraq Veterans Memorial because of the community that will build from it and the access people will have to see the humanity behind the numbers of those who were killed in Iraq,” said Marc Porterfield, a West Point graduate who participated in the memorial. “My father was killed in Vietnam. His name is on the Wall in DC. With this type of memorial I can access it from anywhere in the world.”
Over 500 websites and blogs have signed up to host the Iraq Veterans Memorial, cable stations and community groups will also screen the memorial to mark the fourth anniversary of the war.
Quotes from the Iraq Veterans Memorial:
“My angel was given to me on October 7th, 1980 and he remains my angel to this day. Jamaal was killed March 23rd, 2003 in the Iraq War. He was with the 7th Maintenance Company. He was with Jessica Lynch and the POW’s, that was his convoy. He died the fourth day of the war. I just want to tell those that never got the opportunity to know him and know what kind of person that he was, he was definitely an angel and he was a hero. But he was a hero long before he ever got killed in this war.”
--Patricia M. Roberts in a testimonial her son, Army Spc. Jamaal Addison, age 22, who was killed in ambush near Nasiriyah, Iraq.
“He was a guy who loved what he did, loved serving our country. It's what he always wanted to do. His goal was to come home and be a Border Patrol Agent.”
--Frances Renee Mercado talking about her brother Army Spc. Genaro Acosta of Fair Oaks, CA, who died November 11, 2003 in Taji, Iraq at age 26.
“My son is Sergeant Alex Carbonaro. He is a reconnaissance Marine. He was killed in his second deployment to Iraq in Al-Anbar province. My son, he was my only child. He was very special to us. He was loved by so many … he was an ambassador. He was able to make people get along. He could be the prefect diplomat. He brought a whole variety of friends together. He was the glue that held them all together.”
--Gilda Carbonaro in her memorial to her son, Marine Sgt. Alessandro Carbonaro of Bethesda, MD, who died at age 28.
“When he came to me, he said I'm gonna miss you most of all, Scarecrow. Because both of us love the Wizard of Oz. And I didn't really understand that it was the last time I would ever see him or hold him. And finally, he gave me a hug and I turned away and I started to cry. And he spoke to the rest of the family and then he walked back into his barracks and raised his hand as if in a salute to us.
And that night an incredible full moon rose in the sky, the biggest full moon I've ever seen. And I thought it was a sign but I didn't know what kind of sign it was, now whenever I see full moons I always think of Sherwood.”
--Celeste Zappala in her video memorial for her son Army Sgt. Sherwood R. Baker of Plymouth, PA, killed in Baghdad, Iraq at age 30.
“This was a child that every parent would be very, very proud of. Every parent should have the relationship that I have with my son. He was my right hand. He was my friend, my son, my confidant. And to lose somebody such as Seth is a tremendous lost to me as a mother. I've lost what I felt was going to be a young man with a phenomenal future that would have everything that he needed or wanted …”
--Sue Niederer talking about her son Army 2nd Lt. Seth J. Dvorin of East Brunswick, NJ, killed in Iskandariyah, Iraq at age 24.
“I'm amazed constantly that he was my child. I thought he was such a gift. And I believe that what most of the people that he served with will always remember about him is his cheerful attitude; his willingness to always jump in and help; and his sense of humor; his love for music and all the arts; and just the way he loved his fellow man.”
--Alfred Zappala speaking about his son Army Sgt. Sherwood R. Baker, killed in Baghdad, Iraq at age 30.
“When Paul died I was given his laptop computer. It was a bitter sweet gift. On it was hundreds of photos documenting his time in Iraq. He had documented how him and his buddies, making the best of a difficult situation. I could see his life loving nature come through those pictures. The day I heard the news, his helicopter was shot down, I knew he was on it before the call came. There was an instant void. He died doing what he loved. There is some comfort knowing that. The thing that most people remember about Paul is how much he loved life and his infectious smile. Without Paul in this world, the sun just doesn't shine as bright. He is desperately missed by his family, his friends and most of all his son.”
--Dawn Brastad in her video memorial to her brother Army Staff Sgt. Paul M. Neff II of Fort Mill, SC, shot down and killed in Tikrit, Iraq at age 30.
Los Angeles Events
Sunset Beach Screening of Iraq Veterans Memorial (7:15pm), Candle Light Vigil and Veterans Choir (6pm)
Saturday March 17th 6pm
By Arlington West, just North of Santa Monica Pier
Laptop Vigil together with Silverlake Neighbors for Peace & Justice
Monday March 19th:
Corner of Sunset & Echo Park Blvds
Monday March 19th 6pm
Laptop Vigil together with Stand Up for Peace
Monday March 19th 6pm
12051 Ventura Blvd (Ventura at Laurel Canyon)
Studio City, CA 91604
Vidiots Video Store Screenings of Iraq Veterans Memorial
Saturday and Sunday March 17th and 18th - ongoing
302 Pico Blvd.
Santa Monica, CA 90405
Sherry Frumkin Gallery Screenings of Iraq Veterans Memorial
Saturday March 17th throughout the day
3026 Airport Ave., Suite 21
Santa Monica 90405
New York Events
LaFayette Avenue Presbyterian Church Sunday Morning Screening
Sunday March 18th
85 S. Oxford Street
Brooklyn, NY 11217
Vox Pop Café Weekend Screening
Throughout the weekend
1022 Cortelyou Road
Brooklyn, NY 11218
Washington D.C. Event
SEUI Screening to Mark Fourth Anniversary of the War and Honor those Lost
Monday March 19th, 12pm
1800 Massachiustes Ave, NW Conference Room 1004
Washington, D.C. 20036