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Pappy Boyington

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On February 12, 2010, Conversations with American Heroes at the Watering Hole will feature with former Marine and filmmaker Kevin Gonzalez on his film Pappy Boyington Field: A Campaign to Honor a Hero. Kevin Gonzalez served a four-year enlistment in the Marine Corps, and then graduated from the University of Southern California. He is the writer, producer and director of Pappy Boyington Field: A Campaign to Honor a Hero. Kevin Gonzalez says of the film, “Strap into the cockpit for an inspirational story about duty, honor, and courage. “Pappy Boyington Field” tells the story of the grass-roots effort to honor a WWII Hero in the town of his birth. For many years a controversy brewed over the proposal to add a commemorative name to an airfield in a small town in Idaho. The film follows members of the community who battled against the bureaucracy, and weaves in their stories during the campaign. "Pappy" Boyington was born in Coeur d'Alene, Idaho in 1912, & was awarded the Medal of Honor for his exemplary service during WWII. Personal insights into Pappy Boyington’s life are provided by his son Greg Boyington Jr., as well as actor Robert Conrad who portrayed Pappy in the television series “Baa Baa Black Sheep.” Aerial film footage of the vintage F4U Corsair is showcased, as well as Jet aircraft flown by today's Marine Corps fighter pilots. Additionally, the music of The United States Marine Band “The President’s Own” is featured in the film.” At the outbreak of World War Two, after making his way back from China, he managed to return to the Marine Corps with a Major’s commission. As he was already an experienced fighter pilot with victories against the Japanese, his skills were much needed in the war effort. From Guadalcanal he would eventually assume command of a group of pilots who were not already assigned to a squadron, and they would go on to be known as the “Black Sheep Squadron”.