Buzzworthy Wednesday: "The Way We Get By" Documentary

So this is a departure for me. Typically for Buzzworthy Wednesday I am profiling different marketing videos, websites or designs that are really unique and I believe worth a look if you haven’t seen them yet. Sometimes the branding is subtle but this week’s is a complete departure and has absolutely nothing to do with marketing on online branding.

This week I am choosing to profile the documentary “The Way We Get By” about the stories of three senior citizens who are dedicated to greeting the troops being deployed and coming home from Iraq and Afganistan at the Bangor Maine Airport. I felt this was particularly poignant especially since last Wednesday was Veteran’s Day and it is truly a moving piece.

The documentary takes a look into the lives of three senior citizens – Bill Knight, Jerry Mundy and Joan Gaudet who have dedicated their lives to greeting these troops to help them deal with the losses that come with aging and rediscover their reason for living. Greeting these troops day in and day out has brought a renewed purpose to their lives.

Although this is loosely billed as a documentary about the Iraq War, it stays apolitical. It is more universally a search for purpose as these people confront their own mortality in their waning years. The dynamic between the departing soldiers and the greeters is what makes this film so successful. For the seniors their mortality is something they are confronted with every day as they confront health problems and the passing of loved ones but for the soldiers it’s a more nebulous feeling because as they depart they know that some of the people they are flying out with will not return.

So until December 12, 2009, PBS is making the entire documentary available to view on their website. You can also check their television schedule to see when it will be airing again in your area. Watch it…you’ll be as moved as I was and share your thoughts about it below.


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