Remembering Our Fallen

Remembering Our Fallen . In the gallery September 19-25

A very emotional exhibit, Remembering Our Fallen is on loan from the Strategic Air & Space Museum near Ashland will be on display at the Red Cloud Opera House September 19-25. The exhibit includes photos of the 111 Nebraskans and western Iowans killed during The War on Terror.

“We can never forget those who sacrificed everything for our freedom. We must remember these American Heroes and speak their names when we see their family members,” said Bill Williams, exhibit co-creator.

The photo exhibit that was unveiled at the Strategic Air & Space Museum on November 14, 2010 has been traveling to different communities each week in 2011 and is also scheduled into 2012. Visit for a complete traveling schedule.

The author Willa Cather, who gave her commencement speech from the Red Cloud Opera House stage, was very affected by World War I and the death of her cousin, G.P. Cather. She won a Pulitzer Prize for One of Ours which was inspired by his story and character. While working on that book in 1920, she went to France and found the temporary grave in which GP was buried. She took a picture of that grave and wrote a description of her journey to her Aunt Franc, G.P.'s mother, as well as to her own parents. In addition, she wrote the following moving passage to Aunt Franc (Francis Smith Cather) in a letter on June 12, 1918.

"You remember, I was staying at your house the week in August, 1914, when this terrible war began. I drove over the Campbell one day, and G. P. took a load of wheat over. I was coming back and met him just on the edge of town, and we stopped to chat about the war news. I believe he always wanted to be a soldier. I can see him sitting on his wagon as plainly as if it were yesterday, in the middle of a peaceful country, with thousands of miles of land and sea between him and those far-away armies we were talking about. What would have seemed more improbable than that he should fall, an officer, in France, in one of the greatest battles the world has ever seen. He was restless on a farm; perhaps he was born to throw all his energy into this crisis, and to die among the first and bravest of his country."

The original letter is currently located in the George Cather Ray collection at the UNL Archives and Special Collections.

For more information on the exhibit Remembering Our Fallen or the book One of Ours by Willa Cather go to or call 402.746.2641.