Moline Library to Show New Hero Street Films Online Tuesday
In time for Veterans Day, the Moline Public Library will showcase Fourth Wall Films’ two new documentaries Riding the Rails to Hero Street and A Bridge Too Far from Hero Street during an virtual screening event on Tuesday, Nov, 10 from 2 p.m. to 3 p.m. Producers Kelly and Tammy Rundle will take part in an online Q&A following the films.
Registration (at no charge) is required. To sign up, visit the Nov. 10 event on the MPL calendar at molinelibrary.com/events or call 309-524-2470. As of Monday morning, there are 35 seats remaining.
Riding the Rails to Hero Street explores the immigrants’ journey from Mexico to the Quad-Cities segregated communities of Cook’s Point in Davenport, Holy City in Bettendorf, and the Chicago, Rock Island and Pacific Railroad yard in Silvis. Featured interviews include Latino Studies professor Brian Behnken of Iowa State University and Marc Wilson, the author of “Hero Street, U.S.A.”
A Bridge Too Far from Hero Street tells the story of Pvt. William “Willie” Sandoval who was assigned to Co. F, 504 Parachute Infantry Regiment, 82nd Airborne Division and became part of the ill-fated Operation Market Garden plan. The day after his 21st birthday, Willie was one of 20,000 paratroopers who leapt into the sky over German-occupied Holland on September 17, 1944.
Only a block and a half long, Second Street in Silvis lost six young men in World War II and two in the Korean War, more than any other street in America. Hero Street, as it is now known, has provided over 100 service members since Mexican-American immigrants settled there in 1929.
A multi-part documentary series by Emmy-nominated filmmakers Kelly and Tammy Rundle will explore the personal and family sagas behind each of the eight heroes and tell the compelling true story of an ongoing struggle to memorialize Tony Pompa, Frank Sandoval, William Sandoval, Claro Soliz, Peter Masias, Joseph Sandoval, Joseph Gomez and John S. Muños.
The series will combine interviews with family members, friends, veterans, community leaders and historians with vintage photos, film, and archival materials to tell an unforgettable story of American courage, character and perseverance.
The first in the film series was 2015’s “Letters Home to Hero Street,” the Emmy-nominated and award-winning 30-minute documentary produced by WQPT-PBS and Fourth Wall Films with a grant from the Illinois Arts Council, focuses on a young Mexican-American veteran’s
personal view of World War II, as told through the letters and V-Mail (Victory Mail) he sent home to his family on 2nd Street in Silvis.
Frank Sandoval was just beginning a new job at the Rock Island Arsenal when he was drafted by the Army in 1942. He sent dozens of letters to family and friends during the two years he was in the service and the more than 100 letters that remain tell a story of one man’s epic journey from Illinois to India.
Killed on the Irrawaddy River in Burma in June 1944, Frank becomes one of eight veterans of WWII and the Korean War killed in combat from the same block-and-a-half long street — more than any other street in
Letters Home to Hero Street is dedicated to the Hero Street Eight.
The Rundles’ Hero Street proposed 10-part documentary series will explore the personal and family sagas behind each of the eight heroes and tell an unforgettable true story of American courage, character, and perseverance. “Letters Home” is available with lesson plans to teachers nationwide via the PBS Learning Media website.
Fourth Wall Films is an award-winning and regional Emmy-nominated independent film production company formerly located in Los Angeles, and now based in Moline. For more information, visit fourthwallfilms.com.