Well, it’s hard to believe the 10th anniversary of 9/11 has come and gone. Just can’t believe it’s been 10 years. It was a very busy weekend for me. Once I got to Indianapolis, it seemed like things just started snowballing, and I ended up with a lot more on my plate than originally planned. Felt a bit overwhelmed a time or two, but got through it all. The Project 9/11 Indianapolis dedication ceremony was just wonderful, and the memorial itself is very impressive. Such an honor to be a part of it. It rained until it was nearly time for the ceremony to start, but then cleared up resulting in perfect weather. Still posed a bit of a problem though as some of the sound equipment was damaged by the rain and had to be replaced. As a result, I didn’t get to do a sound check. I was a bit nervous about that, but it turned out okay. The Huey helicopter flyovers while I was singing were a bit of surprise. Lol. Thanks to everyone who came out to remember and pay tribute to all of those who were lost on that tragic day, and thanks to Greg Hess for the incredible amount of work he put into making the Project 9/11 Indianapolis memorial happen. In addition to taking part in the Project 9/11 Indianapolis dedication, I sang before the 9/11 Heroes Run in Westfield.
I uploaded most of the TV interviews and live performances to my YouTube channel if you have an interest in seeing – http://www.youtube.com/eagleflies911. The segments from Fox59, WTHR (13), WISH TV (8), and Fox28 are all there. There’s also a clip of my performance of the song from the dedication ceremony, complete with Huey helicopter flyover. 6News ran a story on the song and video too, but I don’t have that one yet. In addition, I filmed with Bryan Boyd for a documentary he is making in conjunction with the PBS affiliate (WFYI TV-20) in Indianapolis. The song and video are to be included in the documentary, and it will premiere at the Heartland Film Festival in October. Just met Bryan this weekend, but can tell you that he is a very nice guy and was a great help to me throughout the weekend.
Thought you might enjoy seeing a few pics from the Project 9/11 Indianapolis dedication ceremony, so I’m uploading a few of those as well. Will post more later… Again, it was such an honor to be a part of it, and I am so glad that Greg Hess allowed me to participate.
Thanks to the many folks who’ve supported the song and video project by taking an interest in it, sharing with others, etc. Thanks to all of those who participated or helped in some way with the video as well. It feels really good to be doing something that so many people cared about and want to be a part of. More soon…
All my best,
If you want to check out another 9/11 song (available via free download), check out http://songforamerica.com. This song was created very soon after the 9/11 attacks and they’ve updated the song for the 10-year anniversary of 9/11. The folks behind the song recently sent me a nice note saying they appreciated my 9/11 remembrance project, and I thought you might want to check theirs out as well. Enjoy…
It’s hard to believe we’re just a week away from the 10-year anniversary of 9/11. The years and, especially the last several months, have just flown by.
There’s a lot going on with the song and video project so I thought I’d post some updates. First off, several persons had inquired about purchasing CDs or DVDs so we’re having some pressed and you can purchase them via the “Store” tab on the left hand side of the facebook page, www.facebook.com/eagleflies911. I’ll have 100 of each in hand on 9/9, but they won’t ship until after 9/11. I’ll be happy to sign them if anyone wants me to.
There’s some more media coverage coming this week, which I’m very grateful for. I did a phone interview for the South Bend Tribune on Thursday evening, and one for The Elkhart Truth on Friday evening. On 9/9, I’ll be live in the studio on the Fox59 (Indianapolis) morning news show at 8:15 am. I think more coverage than what has already been scheduled is likely so, if you’d like to keep up to date with what’s going on, you can check here or the facebook page for updates.
On 9/11, I’ll be performing the song prior to the start of the 9/11 Heroes Run in Westfield, Indiana at 1:00 PM. Then, a bit later in the afteroon, I’ll be performing the song at the dedication of the Project 9/11 Indianapolis memorial which is scheduled to begin at 4 PM. The memorial is going to very impressive and the dedication service is going to be a very special and moving event I’m sure.
So, there’s a lot happening and I’d really appreciate your continued support and help in getting the word out about the song and video. It was a LOT of work to do it all and I just hope a lot of people get to see and appreciate the song and its message. Thanks for checking in! Hope to have more news to post soon.
I’m excited to report there’s been a fair amount of media coverage of the song and video project here regionally. ABC 57 TV in Mishawaka, Indiana recently did a story on it and you can view the video here. In addition, atCarmel magazine is running a very nice story about it in their September edition and it’s already available for viewing online here. Also, a freelance producer by the name of Bryan Boyd recently contacted me requesting permission to use the song and video in a documentary that WFYI TV-20 (Indianapolis) and the Project 9/11 Indianapolis memorial staff has commissioned about the making of the Project 9/11 Indianapolis memorial. They hope to debut it at the Heartland Film Festival in October. Check out Bryan Boyd’s website to learn about some of the other projects he has been involved in.
As far as performances, I’ll be singing the song live on the Fox59 TV morning news show in Indianapolis 0n 9/9. I’m also scheduled to perform the song at both the dedication of the Project 9/11 Indianapolis memorial on 9/11 and before the 9/11 Heroes Run, to be held in Westfield on the same day.
I’d encourage you to check out the Project 9/11 Indianapolis memorial website at http://project911indianapolis.org. Construction of the memorial is well underway and it is looking very nice, per the photo on the site. Also, to learn about the history of the project and why Greg Hess, the champion of the memorial project, felt it was so important, watch the trailer for the Official DVD here. Definitely worth watching!
There’s a lot going on with the project and I’d really appreciate your continued support by sharing the website and facebook page with friends, family, etc. To keep up with the latest news, you can like our facebook page, http://www.facebook.com/eagleflies911, as it’s the most frequently updated source of information – not just on the project but also on general news pertaining to the 10-year anniversary of 9/11. Thanks for visiting the site! :-)
Here’s a version of the video I had done to call attention to and, in a very small way, support my township fire dept.’s 9/11 memorial project. You can view it here. It was a major event when the WTC beam for the Osolo Township Fire Project 9/11 memorial arrived at the department on July 2nd, with over 10,000 motorcycles escorting it. My wife’s nephew, Michael Smith, Battalion Chief at Osolo Fire, rode with the beam all the way from “Hangar 17″ at JFK airport, with his father Jim driving the rig. The memorial will be dedicated on 9/11. If you’d like to contribute toward it, you can write a check to “Osolo Twp Fire Dept. Project 9-11″ c/o Osolo Twp Fire Dept., 24936 Buddy St, Elkhart, IN, 46514.
Special thanks to Chief Johnston, the Project Coordinator for Osolo Fire Project 9/11, Sara at AP Image in South Bend for permission to use the “America’s Heartland Remembers” graphic, Michael Newton at Graphix Unlimited, ABC 57, and Jim Gifford, morning news anchor at WSJM in St. Joseph / Benton Harbor, MI for doing the voice over for me on barely a moment’s notice! I think the intro really sets the song up nicely. Hope you like it! If you’re located in the Michiana area, I’d encourage you to attend the dedication service on 9/11, to be held at the Osolo Township Fire Dept. The exact time hasn’t been decided but I’m sure you’ll have no trouble finding that out as the date draws nearer.
After all the hard work, the video has finally been released and is available for viewing. Check it out on YouTube! We’d appreciate you sharing the YouTube link via facebook, twitter, email, etc. as well as sharing the link to the facebook page – www.facebook.com/eagleflies911. Thanks everyone!
The music video for the song is complete and we’ll be releasing it tomorrow! We’re targeting noon as the time for going public with it and it will be viewable on both YouTube and the Facebook page – www.facebook.com/eagleflies911. If you like it, we’d appreciate you sharing the facebook page and / or YouTube link with others who might also enjoy it!
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Hey everyone… The plan had been to do some final edits yesterday but, at the very last minute, we decided to film in one more location. We got that done yesterday and the video will be the better for it. It shouldn’t delay things much. Still expect to have a release announcement very soon. Thanks for waiting patiently! In the meantime, here are a few photos from the filming with the Indiana National Guard soldiers from several weeks ago. And, just as a reminder, if you want to keep updated with the very latest news, you can like the facebook page – www.facebook.com/eagleflies911. More soon…
The night we met Officer Wells and his police dog, Carlos, was actually a “three-dog night.” Danette, my sister and co-author of “The Eagle Still Flies,” was on her way to the filming of the sequence in downtown Muncie, Indiana when she happened upon two hungry and homeless dogs. In her standard mode of operation, she picked them up–and even took them to the filming. Later, with the help of Lt. Cheryl Mench, also of the Muncie Police Dept., Danette was able to secure placement for them at ARF, a local animal shelter. The dogs may be a mother/daughter duo and have been named Martha and Wilma. While we couldn’t talk Lt. Mench into appearing in the video, we do want to give her and ARF Director Phil Peckinpaugh a big thanks for assisting with this rescue. If you are from the Muncie area and are interested in adopting, donating, or volunteering, you can contact ARF at www.munciearf.com. But, despite all this, we are NOT changing the name of the song to “The Beagle Still Flies!” :-) Since the story wouldn’t be complete without a few photos, here’s one of Danette and Wilma, as well as a couple of Officer Wells and his canine partner Carlos. I suspect that a photo of Martha will be posted on the ARF website shortly.
I have a cool story to share about my sister, Danette, co-writer of the song. These photos are of Col. Lawrence Guarino. He is one of the heroes who has helped ensure that “the eagle still flies.” He served in three wars (World War II, Korean, and Vietnam) and has been decorated with a number of military honors, including the Air Force Cross, the Air Force Distinguished Service Medal, two Air Force Distinguished Flying Crosses, and two Silver Stars. He was shot down on a combat mission over Vietnam in 1965, and for more than seven years he endured savage treatment as a prisoner of war. He shared a cell with Sen. John McCain at the so-called “Hanoi Hilton.” Col. Guarino’s name was on the POW bracelet that Danette wore when she was 12 years old. She says, “I prayed for him every night.” Well, Danette recently contacted a POW organization in an effort to find Col. Guarino. She was overjoyed when she was ultimately able to connect with him, and several friendly email exchanges ensued. The military hero continues to share and serve–at age 89. You can find his most recent book, “Down in Flames,” here. Thank you, Col. Guarino!