Museum exhibit reminds Army vet of World War II - KAIT Jonesboro, AR - Region 8 News, weather, sports

Museum exhibit reminds Army vet of World War II

BATESVILLE, AR (KAIT) -

This year will mark the 70th anniversary of the end of World War II. The Old Independence Regional Museum in Batesville hosted a discussion Sunday afternoon about the media's portrayal of World War II.

For some in attendance, like Robert Craig, it brought back vivid memories.

“We turned all the lights on and turned the radio up and didn't worry about submarines,” Craig said.

Craig served in the U.S. Army and said he remembers what he did right after learning that Japan had surrendered on September 2, 1945.

The presentation in Batesville also served as a reminder of how the country pulled together to support the war effort.

“In order to keep people interested, to keep them aware, to keep them focused on what needed to be done to win this war,” Museum Collection Curator Sharan Pittser said.

Pittser said war propaganda in the 1940's kept the public informed about the war and made sure they knew who the enemy was.

“There was plenty of propaganda from the Nazi side and the Japanese side, and to a certain degree that needed to be counteracted,” Pittser said.

While supporters here in America were encouraged to save scrap metal and "car share", the service members overseas didn't see those propaganda posters. They were experiencing the war up close and personal.

“I think about it a lot more than I used to when I was a young man,” Craig said. “I would go years and years without thinking about my service.”

Craig served from September of 1942 until September of 1945 in the U.S. Army.

He was involved in the liberation of Rome, which happened just days before D-Day.

He was still in Italy when he heard the news.

“Oh yes, it was on the radio…but it was good news to know that we had invaded Normandy and could see an end to the war some time.” Craig said.

Seeing the news reel reminded Craig of his days serving his country, and he said it seems they reported everything accurately, except 1 small detail.

“The invasion of Normandy, the airborne drop was at night,” Craig said. “That was just dubbed in because you can't make photographs at night, but that was probably a large practice jump that they had made somewhere during the day time.”

Pittser said they hope these discussions will expand people's knowledge about the war and the war effort here at home.

They also have a display up at the museum with items from World War II.

The museum is open Tuesday through Saturday from 9 a.m. until 4:30 p.m.

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