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News Release: Tribute to WWII Veterans at Johnson County Library

The Johnson County Library will host a special program in tribute to World War II veterans on Friday, March 5, 2010 at 10:30 a.m. at the Cedar Roe Library, 5120 Cedar, Roeland Park, KS. Gary Swanson, Leawood, will talk about his efforts conducting hundreds of interviews for the Library of Congress Veterans History Project and organizing Honor Flights, a national program to fly WWII veterans to Washington D.C. to visit our national monuments. Veterans and others who have been a part of both programs will also share their experiences, and a short film featuring the Honor Flights will be shown.

Swanson has interviewed 1,000 WW II vets with each receiving a copy of the tape for the family.  In 2005 he was honored by the Library of Congress as the leading interviewer for the Veterans History Project. He is an Associate Member of the Pearl Harbor Survivors Association and the Simpson-Hoggatt Detachment of the Marine Corps League and an Honorary Member of the Jewish War Veterans Post 605.

Roy D. Shenkel, Shawnee, who has been on an Honor Flight, will tell about his experience and what it meant to him to go to Washington, DC to visit the monuments.  Roy was a B17 Gunner flying out of Italy with the 15th Air Force in WW II when his plane was shot down and he was captured by the Germans.  He spent 13 months in German prison camps.

This Library program is free and open to the public. Please register online at  or call (913) 384-8590. Interpretive services and other accommodations for those with special needs are available by contacting Library staff at least 48 hours in advance of the program.

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