Childhood Fear: WWII to 9/11 Flashbacks
When 9/11 happened ten years ago, I experienced very frightening flashbacks. I recognized the fear as the same fear I felt as a six year old during WWII, living in a prime enemy target area of Southern California. We even wore dog tags to school so our parents could identify our bodies if there was a catastrophic event. My childhood prayers then, every night and morning, were for God to let me live to be 8, or 9 or 10.
The strong fear I felt after World Trade Center attacks led me to wonder how many children of today might be experiencing that sort of fear. When I asked around and wrote friends, I discovered that children in New York City did have similar fears. However, for others, after about 3 months of patriotism, most children and adults lapsed back into regular life. Many people today have never had the unifying experience of working together for a patriotic cause.
I realize that my commitment to patriotism and the support of our troops began early. As a 5 year old tap dancer with a group called “The Meglan Kiddies,” I was assigned to Kay Kaiser’s Big Band which performed at the VA Hospital in Brentwood, California. We came out at the end of his performance to do our dance, and then pass out cigarettes to all the service men sitting in the front rows.
When I was 22, I had been so impacted by the war I traveled to Europe alone to see Normandy Beach and Omaha Beach. The thousands of white crosses took my breath away.
I worked on the Library of Congress Veterans project here in Walnut Creek interviewing WWII Vets who hadn’t been able to talk about their war experiences before. I found many of their stories heart-rending. Then, when I read Tom Brokaw’s book, “The Greatest Generation”, the idea came to me to film a documentary about the children who, like myself are now in our late 60s and 70s (I am 74) and who experienced WWII or were in the war effort. In one way or another, we all worked for the war effort — young and old. Patriotism brought us all together. It was a time of loving our country, respecting our president, and supporting our neighbors.
Documentary: Unveiling WWII Childhoods
My mission now for my 3rd Act is to compile the touching stories of children who lived through the experience of WWII. I am devoting the next 4 years of my life to “my calling” which is what this live event and documentary means to me. I want to take this to a national level to make a difference in our sense of ourselves as Americans.
I began interviewing and filming project last year. I am now in production. I have never made a film before so this is the most challenging project I have ever done.
Patricia Weaver is a life transition specialist for individuals and organizations who want to access their highest and best contributions. Patricia is an entrepreneur with a career spanning over 45 years. As a business woman, artist, designer, consultant, writer, publicist, product spokesperson, fitness consultant and inspirational speaker, Patricia serves as a personal coach to a wide range of active and retired professionals.
Patricia is looking for organizational and corporate support for her project.
If you have ideas, please contact her at: