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WWII Veteran Remembered, Honored in Award-winning Documentary

More than 60 years after the end of World War II, a documentary about an everyday soldier in that war has won an Emmy from the Chicago/Midwest Chapter of the National Academy of Television Arts and Sciences. The program, "The Greatest Honor," tells the story of John Francis Amn, one of the millions of U.S. soldiers who fought and died to free Europe from Nazi occupation between 1941 and 1945.

The program, produced by John's son Roger, and directed, written, and edited by VOA reporter Kane Farabaugh, received recognition as "Outstanding Achievement for Historical Documentary" at ceremonies held in Chicago November 7th. "One of the motivating factors in gathering the materials for this documentary," said Farabaugh, "was the knowledge that we lose an average of 492 U.S. World War II veterans like John Amn every day."

Amn served in the U.S. 65th Infantry Division, seeing gruesome combat in Germany and ultimately liberating four concentration camps. He seldom talked about his experiences in the war. Farabaugh worked for just a little over 2 years on his own time to complete the project, and interviewed Amn just six weeks before the veteran passed away, at age 90.

Fairbaugh said he was attracted to Amn's story "because not only is it the journey of one Illinois farmer's experience through the war, it is a story of every soldier, sailor, airman, and marine's shared sacrifice." "The Greatest Honor" was produced for WTVP, the Public Broadcasting station in Peoria, Illinois.

Link to The Greatest Honor trailer: