Presented by Katie May Porter and Gregg Porter
Film makers, Katie and Gregg Porter, discussed their process of documenting "We Are American Soldiers" oral histories. They shared their research and how they gathered information about that seldom written chapter in US military history, as well as the challenge of finding photographs and films featuring Chinese American soldiers from that era.
We Are American Soldiers
Since America’s inception, immigrants have shown their gratitude to the country through military service. We Are American Soldiers is a short documentary film which captures the stories of Kwong Y. Yee and other Chinese Americans who served this country during WWII, only to come home and once again face discrimination. It tells one man's story of immigrating to America, being drafted for the war, and serving with the 407th Air Service Squadron - an all Chinese American unit, of the 14th Air Services Group in the China, Burma, India (CBI) theater. As with many soldiers, the friendships he made during the war played an important role throughout his life.
Although the film was not affiliated with the efforts to secure the Congressional Gold Medal, it does help illustrate the extraordinary stories of service and sacrifice represented by this honor. We hope this film plays a small part in raising awareness of their service and help to highlight the roles immigrants have played in our country’s history. Awarding the Congressional Gold Medal is a significant honor recognizing the service of the Chinese American WWII veterans. We believe our story can spark discussion and interest in surviving family members in recognizing the service of their elders.
Gregg Porter served as a combat cameraman in the US Army from 1987 to 1991, producing training and documentary products and continued serving as a civilian producer/director, camera operator and manager for the US Army, Department of Justice, and Department of Defense for 24 more years. During his long career he has produced numerous documentaries including, “Victory Corps”, a historical retrospective of the U.S. Army’s V Corps’ 75 year history. This production was broadcast to a European-wide, US Forces audience on American Forces Network television and won the Army’s, Keith L. Ware Award for Special Television Program. He turned his passion for video production into a production company, Developed Over Coffee (DoC) Productions http://www.developedovercoffee.com specializing in documentary-style internal corporate videos, educational videos, marketing videos, and family legacy videos.