Mettle and Honor: Vietnam to Air on Milwaukee PBS
Many timers will be set, and even personal time rescheduled, to accommodate Ken Burns’ latest epic. His 10-part, 18-hour “The Vietnam War” will debut across the U.S. and on Milwaukee PBS on Sept. 17.
Our local PBS affiliate will also be airing a Milwaukee perspective on the war that traumatized America. Focused on interviews with area Vietnam War veterans, “Mettle and Honor: Vietnam” is directed and narrated by Mark Concannon, whose Concannon Communications produced two previous “Mettle and Honor” episodes for Milwaukee public television—one on veterans in general and the other on World War II vets.
“It grew out of the War Memorial Center’s Veterans Story Project,” Concannon explains. The Project is a long-running initiative to record the memories of service people from World War II through recent wars in Afghanistan and Iraq. “The challenges they faced in Vietnam were tremendous. They did their duty and many of them received a hostile reception when they came home,” Concannon says. He was commissioned to record their reflections on camera and culled material from the interviews for “Mettle and Honor.”
“One Vietnam veteran tells the story of how he shot at and nearly hit some Vietnamese kids who were sneaking under the barbed wire,” Concannon says. “Usually Americans fired warning shots over their heads but in this case the shots were very close. The vet said that one of the reasons he never had kids was because he questioned what kind of father he would be after that incident.”
“Mettle and Honor: Vietnam” airs 8:30 p.m., Sept. 18 on Channel 10.