News :: 2010 Campaign – Year in Review

January 9, 2011

In 2010, KEEP THE SPIRIT OF ’45 ALIVE successfully launched the first annual Spirit of ’45 Day on August 14, 2010, marking the 65th Anniversary of the end of the Second World War.

Highlights of our 2010 activities included the following:

NYC Mayor Michael Bloomberg was one of dozens of U.S. mayors to issue proclamations supporting National Spirit of '45 Day

The United States Senate and House of Representatives unanimously passed legislation in support of a national “Spirit of ’45 Day” to be observed on the second Sunday of every August.

The joint resolution was launched with the support of a bipartisan coalition of co-sponsors, assembled by our team and by our partners, demonstrating the universal appeal of the message of Keep the Spirit of ’45 Alive.

In addition, California, Maryland and Louisiana passed their own statewide legislation prior to Congress, and New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg and numerous other mayors and city governments across the country issued supporting “Spirit of ’45 Day” proclamations and messages.

National Spirit of '45 Day spokesman Jerry Coleman thanks Tom Brasuell, VP of community affairs Major League Baseball.

Over 200 organizations and individuals in cities across America held Spirit of ’45 Day events and activities across the country on August 14.

These activities included celebratory events in Times Square, NY, educational and commemorative events at museums and public spaces such as the USS Kidd museum in Baton Rouge, LA, receptions and activities at senior homes and centers, to ceremonies at monuments and memorials such as the Punchbowl National Cemetery in Hawaii. In addition, Spirit of ’45 Day was observed at all 15 Major League Baseball games played on that day.

Buglers at a Spirit of '45 Day event in McHenry, IL attended by elected officials and the public.

Hundreds of volunteer buglers played “Taps” at monuments, memorials and other public spaces across the country.

These buglers played to honor the more than 404,000 Americans in uniform who made the ultimate sacrifice during World War II, and to remember those who served who have passed away since the end of the war.

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THE SPIRIT OF ’45 ALIVE! was featured in both the National Memorial Day Parade in Washington DC and the Nation’s Veterans Day Parade in New York City, with teens carrying enlarged images of WWII veterans and pledging to honor their vets by volunteering 100 hours or more in service to help build a better America.

Youth carry images of those who made the ultimate sacrifice in WWII in 2010 National Memorial Day Parade in Washington, DC as part of annual Spirit of '45 public awareness campaign. More than 150 youth marched in the 2010 Veterans Day Parade in New York City to honor the men and women who served in uniform in WWII.

KEEP THE SPIRIT OF ’45 ALIVE!received considerable media attention both prior to and on August 14, with coverage by all major TV broadcast and cable networks and nearly 1500 stories in both the domestic and international print media.

KEEP THE SPIRIT OF ’45 ALIVE! is attracted the support of the senior and assisted living industry who are particularly interested in assuring that the men and women of the WWII generation (who are now passing away at an estimated rate of one every 90 seconds) know that they will forever be remembered. Several hundred senior communities hosted Spirit of ’45 Open Houses on August 14, inviting the public to join them in honoring their WWII era residents.

Several celebrities joined Edith Shain to help support the National Spirit of ’45 Day campaign, including WWII Navy vets Ernest Borgnine and Tony Curtis and Marine vet Hugh O’Brian.  After Edith passed away on June 20, Margaret O’Brien, Academy Award winning movie star of “Meet Me in St. Louis” fame, Broadway icon Carol Channing and Hollywood legend Rhonda Fleming stepped in to help continue her work.  Carol, Rhonda and Margaret co-hosted the Spirit of ’45 Day event held at the California State Veterans home, and Margaret narrated a public service announcement that was shared at Major League Baseball games on August 14. Jimmy Stewart’s daughter Kelly Stewart also attended and spoke movingly of her father’s service as a decorated bomber pilot in WWII.

Edith Shain and Academy Award winning actor and WWII vet Ernest Borgnine. Academy award winning movie star Margaret O'Brien, Broadway legend Carol Channing and Hollywood movie star Rhonda Fleming stepped in after Edith Shain passed away in June, to help promote National Spirit of '45 Day Kelly Stewart, daughter of acclaimed movie star Jimmy Stewart, spoke movingly of her Dad's service.

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