Docuseries looking for local, first-hand WWII accounts

a farmer and tank chat during WWII training is southern, middle Tennessee
An area farmer stops to chat with a tank soldier in 1943. The U.S. Army used Camp Forrest in southern, middle Tennessee as a training base from 1941-46. (Historic Photo Provided)

LOCAL HISTORY | The producers of a World War II docuseries are working on a film project highlighting military operations in Middle Tennessee from 1941 to 1944 during World War II and they are interested in first-hand accounts from Lynchburg residents. Tennessee, and specifically Camp Forrest, served as a critical training site for over 850,000 troops that would then fight in D-Day and the Normandy invasion.

Camp Forrest – located in the wooded areas in Coffee County near where AEDC currently sits – existed as one of the U.S. Army’s largest training bases during WWII. It also served as an active Army post from 1940 to 1946. Camp Forrest served as a training area for infantry, artillery, engineer, signal organizations, and cooks as well as acting as a hospital center and temporary encampment area for troops during maneuvers. Major General George Patton brought his 2nd Armored Division from Fort Benning, Georgia for maneuvers.

“We would love to feature the stories of any surviving soldiers and civilians who witnessed and/or supported these operations to help bring the U.S. to victory,” they said.

Executive Producer Kelly Magill would like to gather as many stories as possible for a 3-hour docuseries, MANEUVERS: War Games in the Heartland to be aired live on national TV in May 2025. To best honor and preserve these unique accounts, they are seeking maneuver or other war-related photos, lifestyle photos, film footage or letters from the above period. Anyone who experienced or remembers the maneuvers, even if they were children then are invited to participate.

A yet-to-be-named celebrity narrator will also work on the project.

Anyone interested in participating or nominating another qualifying person(s) to participate should email Kelly at [email protected] or submit the online form at •

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