University News

Screening of Military Documentary Nov. 10 at WIU

October 26, 2015

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MACOMB, IL – A screening for the documentary "Letters Home to Hero Street" will be held at 6:30 p.m. Tuesday, Nov. 10 in the University Union Sandburg Theatre as part of Military Appreciation Week at Western Illinois University.

The 25-minute film highlights the life of Mexican-American soldier Frank Sandoval. The film outlines the story of the World War II veteran through the letters he sent home to his family in Silvis, IL. Sandoval was one of eight veterans of WWII and the Korean War killed in combat from the same block-and-a-half neighborhood, now called "Hero Street, USA."

Sandoval was just starting his new job at the Rock Island Arsenal in 1942, when he was drafted. During his two years of service, Sandoval sent hundreds of letters to family and friends.

The documentary highlights 130 letters that remain to tell his story as he traveled from Illinois to India. Sandoval was killed on the bank of the Irrawaddy River in Burma in June 1944.

The film was the winner of the Documentary and Audience Award in the 2015 Cedar Rapids Independent Film Festival.

After the film is screened, a panel discussion with the cast and co-producers will be held.

The event is open free to the public and is sponsored by the WIU Council on Student Activity Funds, the WIU departments of Broadcasting, English, History and Political Science, the WIU Foundation and Development Office and the Veterans Resource Center.

For more information about the film, visit or call the WIU Veterans Resource Center at (309) 298-3505 or visit

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