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New York War Stories Project

NEW YORK GOES TO WAR shares the World War II experience of men and women from the New York metropolitan area through personal stories from the battlefield and the home front. Interviews and images capture the mood of the time, from the familiar strains of the “Make Believe Ballroom” radio program to the common threads that defined life in wartime, no matter where you lived or on what line you fought.

NEW YORK WAR STORIES puts a personal perspective on World War II not found in many history books or Hollywood movies. The documentary features viewer-contributed videos and letters as its centerpiece, with veterans and civilians from all over the tri-state area contributing their memories of what The War meant in their homes and towns to tell the emotional story of one of the most important events in world history.

To download the New York Goes to War press release, click here.
To download the New York War Stories press release, click here.
To download the New York War Stories participants list, click here.

These images may be used editorially only for direct promotion of the NEW YORK WAR STORIES PROJECT. No other rights are granted.
Bill_2007CUTLINE: Bill McBurney, who grew up in Harlem, served in combat a remarkable 183 straight days during World War II and was awarded a Bronze Star.

PHOTO: 800 K (3.2 megs uncompressed) at 300 dpi JPEG at 3.5 X 3.6
CREDIT: WLIW New York
Bill_oldCUTLINE: Bill McBurney of Harlem was a member of the first African American tank battalion to see combat.

PHOTO: 744 K (3.9 megs uncompressed) at 300 dpi JPEG at 3.7 X 4
CREDIT: Courtesy of Bill McBurney/WLIW New York
georgeCUTLINE: On the day Japan's surrender was announced, George Mendonsa, a sailor visiting New York after a month-long furlough, shared a memorable kiss with a pretty stranger in the thrill of a crowded Times Square and claims to be the man in Alfred Eisenstaedt's iconic photograph.

PHOTO: 1.4 M (8.2 megs uncompressed) at 300 dpi JPEG at 7.6 X 9.4
CREDIT: Courtesy of George Mendonsa/WLIW New York
GeorgeFishingCUTLINE: George Mendonsa claims to be the sailor captured in Alfred Eisenstaedt's iconic V-J Day kiss photograph in LIFE magazine.

PHOTO: 1.6 M (11.4 megs uncompressed) at 300 dpi JPEG at 7.8 X 5.6
CREDIT: Courtesy of George Mendonsa/WLIW New York
gloria_beautyCUTLINE: Gloria Medina, a former Miss Puerto Rico in Brooklyn, stood by her sweetheart's side in an army hospital after he was shot in Okinawa and told he would never walk again.

PHOTO: 5.6 MB (2.0 megs uncompressed) at 300 dpi JPEG at 2.2 X 3.5
CREDIT: Courtesy of Manny and Gloria Medina/WLIW New York
greta_2007 CUTLINE: Greta Zimmer claims to be the woman captured in Alfred Eisenstaedt's iconic V-J Day kiss photograph in LIFE magazine.

PHOTO: 999 K (3.4 megs uncompressed) at 300 dpi JPEG at 3.6 X 3.6
CREDIT: WLIW New York
Gretta_oldCUTLINE: On the day Japan's surrender was announced, Greta Zimmer, a young single woman working as a dental hygienist, shared a memorable kiss with a handsome sailor in the thrill of a crowded Times Square and claims to be the woman in Alfred Eisenstaedt's iconic photograph.

PHOTO: 960 K (3.3 megs uncompressed) at 300 dpi JPEG at 3.9 X 3.3
CREDIT: Courtesy of Greta Zimmer/WLIW New York
Jo_oldCUTLINE: Josephine Rachiele of Babylon, Long Island, worked at Republic Aviation as a riveter alongside two of her sisters; the three of them were dubbed "The Home Front Sisters" in the company newspaper.

PHOTO: 1.3 M (9.9 megs uncompressed) at 300 dpi JPEG at 5 X 7.7
CREDIT: Courtesy of Josephine Rachiele/WLIW New York.
Manny_brothers CUTLINE: Manny Medina (bottom row, center) and six of his brothers enlisted in the military; they were the "fighting Medinas of Rio Grande, Puerto Rico and Brooklyn, New York."

PHOTO: 800 K (4.57 megs uncompressed) at 300 dpi JPEG at 5 X 3.6
CREDIT: Courtesy of Manny and Gloria Medina/WLIW New York
manny_gloria_scan CUTLINE: Manny and Gloria Medina of Brooklyn share their World War II memories as "The Soldier and His Sweetheart."

PHOTO: 780 K (2.12 megs uncompressed) at 300 dpi JPEG at 3.5 X 2.1
CREDIT: WLIW New York
manny_uniformCUTLINE: Manny Medina, a sergeant in the legendary 69th Infantry Regiment of the New York National Guard, was awarded a Silver Star for his heroism on Saipan.

PHOTO: 1.1 MB (6.14 megs uncompressed) at 300 dpi JPEG at 5 X 4.8
CREDIT: Courtesy of Manny and Gloria Medina/WLIW New York
MannyGloria_weddingCUTLINE: Manny and Gloria Medina had been schoolmates in Brooklyn before the war but romance bloomed when he was home on a furlough and ran into her at a dance. They were married after the war.

PHOTO: 960 K (3.47 megs uncompressed) at 300 dpi JPEG at 3.8 X 3.6
CREDIT: Courtesy of Manny and Gloria Medina/WLIW New York
nycmayorCUTLINE: World War II brought kids from Brooklyn or the Bronx to places they had never even dreamed of, like North Africa.

PHOTO: 336 K (998 k uncompressed) at 300 dpi JPEG at 2.3 X 1.6
nyws_project_imageCUTLINE: Veterans and civilians from all over the tri-state area contribute their memories of what The War meant in their homes and towns.

PHOTO: 3.8 M (8.8 megs uncompressed) at 300 dpi JPEG at 10.25 X 10
POWCUTLINE: Born and raised in Borough Park in Brooklyn, Paul Canin was still in high school when Pearl Harbor was attacked. After graduating, he enlisted in the Army Air Force and was sent to Europe as a radar navigator on a bomber plane.

PHOTO: 1.2 MB (5.2 megs uncompressed) at 300 dpi JPEG at 5.6 X 3.6
CREDIT: Courtesy of Paul Canin/WLIW New York
POW_2007CUTLINE: Paul Canin, formerly of Brooklyn, shares his experience as a Jewish soldier held as a prisoner of war by German soldiers in World War II.

PHOTO: 1.2 MB (4.61 megs uncompressed) at 300 dpi JPEG at 5 X 3.6
CREDIT: WLIW New York
POW_flightsuit CUTLINE: On a bombing raid of an oil refinery on the outskirts of Auschwitz, Paul Canin's plane was shot down and he parachuted out. He was captured by German soldiers and held as a prisoner of war for eight months.

PHOTO: 1.9 MB (4.1 megs uncompressed) at 300 dpi JPEG at 4.5 X 3.5
CREDIT: Courtesy of Paul Canin/WLIW New York
POW_notebookCUTLINE: A talented artist who had enrolled in Cooper Union before enlisting, Paul Canin filled his YMCA-issued diary with pencil sketches of his barracks-mates, and used paints bribed from the guards and a paintbrush made out of his own hair to create dramatic watercolors of the moment his plane was shot down.

PHOTO: 1.3 MB (5.9 megs uncompressed) at 300 dpi JPEG at 6.4 X 3.6
CREDIT: Courtesy of Paul Canin/WLIW New York
theMarineCUTLINE: During World War II, Marine Lieutenant Phil Wood wrote frequent, poignant letters home to his mother and sister in New York. Killed by enemy rifle fire in the Pacific, his letters are read aloud throughout the program.

PHOTO: 486 K (2.1 megs uncompressed) at 300 dpi JPEG at 2.3 X 3.5
CREDIT: Courtesy of Gretchen Wood Williams/WLIW New York