18 and Enlisted


By Sierra Jiminez
News21 / Syracuse University

When He Came Home


By Matthew Nojiri

News21 / Syracuse University

The Marine’s family and friends come to this cemetery just outside of town to think about the kid who loved to wrestle, who spent holidays fishing with his father, who had a smile people still remember.

Someone has placed a toy motorbike on his gravestone. As a teenager, the Marine used to race up these Northeastern Washington trails and dart between trees in a town covered with more forest trails than streets.

All good things must end

All of us with our K Diamond K friends!

Well, last week we packed up and moved out of the K Diamond K bunkhouse, where we had been living for nearly seven weeks. 

Now we're back in Syracuse, working in a windowless, fluorescent-lit room in Newhouse. Don't get me wrong, the computer labs at the university are fantastic, but nothing compares to working in a window-filled room surrounded by beautiful mountainous landscapes.

Capturing the land

Ken Harper shoots a forest road at dusk. Photo by David Miller

Today is our last full day in the woods of Washington state.  In thinking about how much I'll miss this beautiful place, I'm happy that we've spent so much of the last week really appreciating our surroundings. In creating our piece about the land, no seemingly impossible scenario or shot idea has stopped us from getting some beautiful footage.

Timelapse: 24 Hours in the Valley

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In this video watch 24 hours unfold in 60 seconds, shot from the view out the window of the Syracuse News21 Bunkhouse in Republic, WA.

Duct tape and a prayer

Duct taped flip video camera. Photo by: Kelly West

In the meadow

News21 fellow David Miller shoots test video in a meadow. Photo by Kelly West

With just around a week left in Washington state, nothing is slowing down. Along with the veteran articles, photo stories, and infographics that all the teams are working on, a few of us are also collaborating on a piece about the land- what it means to the people, and how it shapes their lives. The land helps answer the question why are these veterans here? which in turn helps answer the question why are we here?

Les and the land



Occasionally, a few of the News21 fellows have posed the question, “Why are we here.”

It’s an important question and a good one to keep in mind as we frame our project. After all, Republic, Washington is more than 2,500 miles away from home.

Veterans are everywhere in this country.  We met with one Vietnam vet who asked us, “Couldn’t you find veterans on the East Coast?”

Story Day this weekend

Poster design by David Miller

This weekend, teams from Syracuse University will be on-hand to record radio-style interviews and we hope that veterans will stop by and share some of their experiences. Please stop by or invite a veteran.

Flier information (posted around the area):

Veterans Story Day

Friday, June 18
Tonasket High School
10 am to 2 pm

Saturday, June 19
Republic Elementary School
10 am to 2 pm

We will make a cd of the interview for the veteran to take home with them.

Questions? Call Kate at 303.946.2483 or email

Racing in Republic

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I can't back down from a handshake.

That's what I kept telling myself as I was thinking of every possible excuse to stay in bed a little longer yesterday morning.

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