The other day, I was getting updates from one of our reporters who was tracking down and doing interviews of those who were at Pearl Harbor on Dec. 7, 1941. We knew there were about a dozen men in our area from last year’s tally. This year, some were gone and others are in no condition to talk, let alone do an interview. The latest tally was about five.
When I was a kid growing up in post-World War II San Diego about 25% of America’s population had either fought in that war, or were involved on the homefront in the factories or farms.
Sixteen million Americans went to war and another 16 million fought the war at home. Today, there are less than two million World War II veterans still alive. By 2020, it is estimated that the last one will fade away with history.
It is important to families and to the collective history of this country to capture the stories of these remaining veterans.
Whether its a journalist or a family member who decides to do the interview, time is of the essence.
I’ve put together list on preparing for an interview, equipment needed and suggested questions to ask for WWII, Korean and Vietnam Wars.
In a separate posting I will provide suggestions on what is the next step to make copies for family members or to donate to a university or museum who is collecting this information.
World War II Questionnaire
Korean War Questionnaire
Vietnam War Questionnaire