NEW ORLEANS — The National World War II Museum is unveiling its newest attraction at a red carpet event.
Expressions of America is a first-of-its-kind nighttime, sound and light show using the latest technology and special effects.
Thursday, 20 World War II veterans went down the red carpet to see the premiere of Expressions of America.
They are all 93 and older and were flown to New Orleans compliments of the Gary Sinise Foundation. This exhibit is not like one you're seen curated before.
Bob Hope was called the "one-man-morale machine." The entertainer dedicated much of his nearly 80-year career to bringing laughter and music to American troops on the front lines.
“Each of us have been given some gift or another, and that we can all do, what we can do to help our fellow human beings on this planet get through life and make life a little easier,” said
daughter Linda Hope.
She is at the National World War II Museum for the opening. She says her dad would have loved the show, which is projected 90 feet tall on an outside building wall. It is an immense multimedia light, sound and music show about how the country came together.
“When you watch Bob Hope's performance on this giant screen, that is our building, you almost feel like you're in the audience that you're part of the show,” said Kimberly Guise
Senior Curator and Director for Curatorial Affairs.
Linda remembers her father did not give into his feelings when visiting the war wounded in hospitals, and gave instructions to other celebrities like Phyllis Diller when they went with him.
She said, “And tell them, ‘Do not cry. This is not about you. Stiff upper lip.’”
She says he was guarded with his emotions, kept them to himself, with one notable exception after visiting a hospital.
“And he said, ‘You know, it's rough. It's rough if you had seen all the years that I have, of this pain.’”
Expressions will feature thoughts from letters written from the battle fields to back home. Some will come from the parents of Dr. Shannon Estill Taylor. She was four weeks old when the final letter was returned. Her dad died while serving, just 12 days before the war ended. Father and daughter never got to meet.
To most of us this is a learning experience about history, but
to those World War II veterans watching the show as special guests of honor, they lived it firsthand and could teach us about the war that changed history.
You can find tickets here.
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