Lost Airmen of Buchenwald film world premiere

I’ve had many delightful, meaningful experiences in my 29 years in professional communications, but nothing compares to the experience Saturday, July 16. This isn’t about a crisis–at least not a current one–so I’m diverging from crisisblogger fare for a moment.

As some of you know, I wrote a book on a WWII fighter pilot who, along with 81 other Americans and 167 other Allied flyers were designated “terrorists” by Hitler and sent to Buchenwald, the infamously brutal concentration camp for execution. The book was called “A Fighter Pilot in Buchenwald: the Joe Moser Story.” The book has sold very well and I’ve had the privilege of speaking with Joe Moser at countless events–he is turning 90 soon and still doing very well.

A couple of years ago I was contacted by a filmmaker in California who was starting a documentary on his grandfather. Col. E.C. Freeman, who happened to be one of those American flyers in Buchenwald. Mike Dorsey, the filmmaker, agreed to expand the scope of the film and I would help find investors for the film–hence my title Executive Producer. The world premiere of “Lost Airmen of Buchenwald” was held at Bellingham’s historic Mount Baker Theatre, to a sold-out crowd of 1500.

Joe Moser, the 89 year old P-38 pilot, and Mike Dorsey were joined on stage by Ed Carter-Edwards from Ontario, Canada, a fellow airman/survivor of Buchenwald. I cannot begin to tell you what it meant to me to have the packed audience of 1500 give these men a standing ovation. Nor to have Ed tell us the next day at brunch that this was the best day of his life–a man who holds many prestigious medals including the French Legion Medal of Honor–the highest honor given by the French government. I do not think there were many dry eyes in the house and mine are not dry now as I write this.

The pictures below can help you get a sense of the joy and meaning of this occasion. We have received a number of wonderful comments on the film’s Facebook page from those who were at the premiere. By what means the most to me is to know that the incredible story of what these brave men endured in the name of our freedom is becoming known. That these humble, old gentlemen are finally receiving the honor, recognition and appreciation for all they did for us–even while knowing that they are accepting this recognition on behalf of so many who never had this opportunity to share their story.

We hope to have DVD’s available for sale soon and perhaps some theatrical screenings. If you get a chance to see the film, don’t miss it.

Lost Airmen of Buchenwald survivors Ed Carter-Edwards and Joe Moser at film premiere
The premiere crowd of 1500 just before the house lights go down
Fighter pilot Joe Moser and crisisblogger on stage at the premiere
Joe Moser and film producer-director Mike Dorsey at premiere

6 thoughts on “Lost Airmen of Buchenwald film world premiere”

  1. Warmest congratulations to you Gerald on a fantastic mission carried out with heart, pride and passion. Honouring such heroes as guys like Joe is an honour in itself and you are a worthy honouree.

    God bless Joe and God bless you for helping tell his story to the world.

  2. I found your blog via google search and am very excited to share this story via social media. Can’t wait to see the film and thanks for your efforts to honor these men and their story.

  3. Hi,

    My name is Colin Handley and I live in London.

    I would really like to know if ‘Lost Airmen of Buchenwald’ is coming out on dvd and how I might get a copy.

    This is the reason why:-

    I am helping a friend, Jo Riley, research the Royal Air Force flying history of her grandfather, John Marpole, who was Phil Lamason’s flight engineer when they were shot down just after D-Day.

    Miss Riley remembers Mr Lamason visiting her family in Gloucester many years ago and would dearly love to see the documentary.

    Perhaps you would be so good as to pass this request on to Mike Dorsey and anybody
    else who might be able to help.

    Many thanks

    Colin Handley

  4. Quote:”I ordered the DVD from the film’s website here. My order was shipped immediately and I received it in a couple of days. I tried to put aside my “preconceived notions” and keep an “open mind” while I watched the DVD”.
    Just go to Srapbookpages Blog dated 26 November 2011 and you may find what you are looking for.

  5. My father, Basil A. Coats was in Buchenwald. He passed away 4 years ago, April 2.
    I recently finished transcribing a short journal that he had written years ago.
    I recognized two names, Ed Carter – of Ontario and Lameson. I unfortunately transcribed his name as “Laweson”. I will correct it. I am most interest, as is all of my family to view your documentary “Lost Airmen of Buchenwald”. Thank you for telling my father’s story through yours. God Bless, and may they never forget nor deny the reality and tragedy of Buchenwald.

    1. I’ve talked to Joe Moser, the survivor who’s book I wrote and he remembers your father. There is a photo which appears a couple of times in the film of the airmen from Buchenwald taken just after they arrived in Stalag Luft III. Your father is right near Joe in that picture. I hope you enjoy the documentary. By the way, the senior officer’s name is Lamason, Phil Lamason, and he is still living in New Zealand. He has received much honor and recognition recently as the film was aired on a national TV channel.

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