A coalition of Columbus cultural institutions have joined forces to host a free virtual screening in the “National Veterans Film Festival Presents Series,” on Sept. 17-26. The 10-day event connects Americans through veterans’ voices and stories by celebrating the contributions and resiliency of our nation’s veterans.
The film, “Modern Warrior LIVE” (MWL), is a performance narrated by co-creator Staff Sergeant Jaymes Poling, who spent three years in Afghanistan as an infantryman with the 82nd Airborne Division. This autobiographical production details Poling’s time in the military and his subsequent transition back home through spoken word and music. The film was shot during the pandemic in 2020 and is powered with dynamic performances by Cleveland-born and internationally acclaimed musician Dominick Farinacci, along with a renowned cast of artists. It features an appearance by Vietnam veteran and celebrated news anchor Leon Bibb.
The filmed performance seeks to build dialogue between veteran and civilian communities by educating, entertaining and empowering. The focus on post-traumatic growth aims to destigmatize veterans through a deeper understanding of their experiences. The show explores the psychological weights of war, the challenges of reintegration as a civilian and the potential for positive personal and communal growth.
A taped panel discussion will follow the screening of “Modern Warrior Live,” and VA resources will be provided.
“There is so much more that unites Americans than divides us,” said Lt. General Michael Ferriter, U.S. Army (retired), president and CEO of the National Veterans Memorial and Museum. “By screening great films made by veterans or that tell stories about veterans, this festival can address their human experience and inspire a dialogue about what it means to serve our nation and commit to something larger than yourself.”
Registration for the free film screening and additional information about the National Veterans Film Festival can be found at www.VeteransFilm.org.
Submitted by Stacia Ruby, public affairs officer, Chillicothe VA Medical Center.