Troop greeters film to debut

Posted April 08, 2009, at 7:31 p.m.
Last modified March 20, 2011, at 6:38 a.m.

ORONO, Maine — “The Way We Get By,” the award-winning documentary about the Maine Troop Greeters at Bangor International Airport, will have its Maine debut at 7 p.m. today at the Collins Center for the Arts with Gov. John E. Baldacci and U.S. Reps. Michael Michaud and Chellie Pingree in attendance.

The invitation-only premiere, sponsored by MPBN and Bangor Savings Bank, will be shown to an audience largely made up of Maine Army National Guardsmen, their families and the selfless volunteers.

Additional showings for the public will be held at 4:30 and 7:30 p.m. Friday, April 10; and noon Saturday, April 11, at the Collins Center for the Arts.

Tickets to the Friday and Saturday screenings are free to members of the military. To obtain information and purchase or reserve tickets, call 581-1755. Purchased tickets are $7.

The documentary was directed by Old Town native and award-winning filmmaker Aron Gaudet and produced by award-winning television journalist and film producer Gita Pullapilly.

It showcases three senior citizens — Bill Knight, Joan Gaudet and Jerry Mundy — who belong to the Maine Troop Greeters, volunteers who welcome every soldier, sailor and airman as they return from or leave for Iraq and Afghanistan and stop in transit at Bangor International Airport.

A question and answer session will be held after each screening.

“The Way We Get By” has been honored with the Special Jury Award at the South by Southwest Film Festival and the Audience Award at Full Frame Documentary Film Festival in Durham, N.C. At the Cleveland Film Festival, it beat out 28 films to win the Greg Gund Memorial Film Competition, which recognizes films for their social conscience.

Yellow Light Breen of Bangor Savings Bank, which is providing the major financial support for the Maine showings, said, “The Troop Greeters are quiet, homespun heroes in their own right. Their commitment has been ongoing for more than six years, and hundreds of these volunteers have greeted over 850,000 U.S. soldiers, meeting every plane that arrives at Bangor International Airport. ‘The Way We Get By’ is an inspiring and heart-wrenching film that had to be made and which needs to be seen. Bangor Savings Bank is extremely proud to help make that happen.”

To view the trailer and obtain information, visit www.thewaywegetbymovie.com.

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