Magazine article Humanities

Minnesota Veterans

Magazine article Humanities

Minnesota Veterans

Article excerpt

Minnesota is the first state in the nation to devote an entire month to honoring veterans and their stories. A bipartisan bill- drafted with help from the Minnesota Humanities Center (MHC) working with several veterans' groups-passed unanimously in both state houses, officially declaring October as Veterans Voices Month. Veterans themselves have led and organized the project from its conception, including Representatives Jerry Newton (D) and Bob Dettmer (R), who worked with MHC to write the legislation.

For too long, says David O'Fallon, president of MHC, a gap of understanding has divided veterans and civilians. All too commonly, he says, veterans are viewed as either "heroes or psychotics." Project officer and veteran, Trista Matascastillo emphasizes the need, not only for veterans' stories to be shared, but for veterans to tell their own stories. She explains that the act of telling one's story, especially one that is frequently misrepresented, can be liberating for veterans. …

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