New PBS TV Series and podcast "American Veteran" features Beacon, NY resident Edie Meeks
"American Veteran," a four-part series, premieres Tuesdays, October 26-November 16 on PBS, PBS.org and the PBS Video app. Each episode is hosted by a veteran: former Marine and TV host Drew Carey; Senator Tammy Duckworth, an Iraq War Army veteran and Purple Heart recipient; Wes Studi, a Vietnam War veteran (National Guard) and Native American (Cherokee) activist; and J. R. Martinez, an Army veteran, actor and motivational speaker. The companion podcast is hosted by veteran and National Book Award-winning author Phil Klay.
The production team, led by Insignia Films, interviewed a diverse group of nearly 50 veterans—young and old, enlisted and officers, men and women, members of the LGBTQ+ community, and those whose service left them with physical disabilities or PTSD. In each episode, veterans reflect on and share their personal experiences in the military, from boot camp to service in war and peacetime to return to civilian life.
For Edie Meeks, the decision to join the Army Nurse Corps and volunteer for a tour in Vietnam was a simple one: she was following her heart. With one younger sibling drafted into the Marines and another who became a war protestor, Meeks loved them both and wanted the best for men like her brothers. So in 1968 she decided to do her part. Beacon resident and veteran Edie Meeks joins us.