As the number of living World War II veterans dwindles, Jean Foley Doyle has made it her mission to ensure their stories are not forgotten. The author and historian’s latest documentary examines World War II history as experienced by Newburyporters, both on the battlefield and the home front.
The documentary’s origins date back to 1995 when Doyle, then a teacher at Newburyport High School, organized an oral history project through which dozens of local veterans were interviewed about their wartime experiences. These interviews serve as the basis for the film along with accounts from the city’s home front. Firsthand accounts are brought to life by contemporary voices but the stories remain unchanged. The soldiers’ own words offer raw and intimate perspectives on experiences at Pearl Harbor, the Philippines, D-Day, the Battle of the Bulge, and Iwo Jima.
Through her film, Doyle strives to honor those who served and survived, and those who never came home. She notes that “it is estimated that 40 million people died worldwide in World War II. The mind cannot comprehend such a figure or a cataclysm of such dimensions. The mind and the heart are, however, capable of understanding 43, the number of Newburyporters lost in the war. They died a long way from the North End and the South End, from Three Roads, and Joppa, from March’s Hill and Break O’Day Hill, from Chain Bridge and Bummer’s Rock, from Mt. Rural and Old Town Hill – a terrible distance from home.”
Village Talks are offered by the Greater Newburyport Village for the enrichment of the community. Village Talks occur every third Wednesday of the month at the Newburyport Senior/Community Center, 331 High St., Newburyport. They are free and open to all.
For more information, please check For more information, check out the Event Calendar at www.greaternewburyportvillage.org, email email@example.com, or call 978.206.1821.
The Greater Newburyport Village is a nonprofit 501 (c) (3) nonprofit membership organization whose mission is to promote living well and independently for a lifetime through community engagement and a network of neighborly support.