Episode #201- Lauren F. Bruner USS Arizona Memorial Foundation.
We are so happy to welcome back to the show, Mr. Ed McGrath and for the first time Mr. Rich Faulkner. They are joining us to talk about our friend and past guest, the late Mr. Lauren F. Bruner.
Ed McGrath was Lauren Bruner’s best friend over the last 10 years of his life. Together, they wrote Lauren’s #1 Best Selling book at the Pearl Harbor National Memorial, “Second to the Last to Leave,” which was accomplished over a five-year period by visiting Lauren every Thursday morning for three to four years, during which time he opened up about not only his Military career but the Attack on Pearl Harbor and sinking of USS Arizona.
Just before completing the book, they established the nonprofit foundation, the Lauren F. Bruner USS Arizona Memorial Foundation, whose Mission Statement is to help honor the crew and ship USS Arizona for future generations. In addition, the foundation’s goal is to help and honor all Military men and women of all branches of service who served in all wars.
In 2016, Rich Faulkner joined the foundation as its Associate Director to Ed McGrath, and has been involved with the foundation ever since. Rich had also been a proud friend of Lauren Bruner for five years and has been actively involved in the foundation’s projects, including the best-selling “Second to the Last to Leave,” the Arizona Hula, and the upcoming young adult book “Ghost of USS Arizona.”
Since 2015, the foundation has launched a number of projects, not only inspired by Lauren Bruner, but up until his passing, projects that Lauren was actively involved in. These include but are not limited to the Arizona Hula and a new book called “Ghost of USS Arizona” as well as having Lauren’s book Second to the Last to Leave being translated into Japanese.
One of the main goals of the foundation is what is called Lauren’s “Dream Gift to America,” which is a 5-phase project created in order to have each of Arizona’s 1512 crew members portrait drawn by professional portrait artists, as each man looked on the morning of 7 Decmber 1941. This will include a personal biography as well as the dreams of the men who gave their life for our country. This fundraising effort is now underway and can be visited on the foundation’s website USSAZ.ORG.
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