541.968.0596 info@mendingtheline.com

Mending the Line

  • TEDx Portland Presentation

     

     

    Tough as nails, gentle as a poet and determined as a badger, 91-year old Frank loves fly-fishing. Even during his World War II service, he paid attentionto the rivers he and his fellow troops crossed in war-torn towns. Since then, he has focused on conservation and fishing. He and his wife of 70+ years, Jeanne, built and were the long-time proprietors of the world-renowned SteamboatInn along the North Umpqua River. Frank was inducted into the Fresh Water Fishing Hall of Fame in 2010 and is featured in the critically acclaimed documentary Mending The Line.

    Event Recap – April 12, 2014 at the Keller Auditorium with 2900+ in attendance marked the 4th installment for TEDxPortland. Committed to ideas worth spreading in the Rose City and beyond, 55+ volunteers, worked year round to organize this one-day event featuring 14 speakers and 4 performances. This year’s theme was PERFECT.

    With special thanks to the UNIVERSITY OF OREGON for presenting partnership, a world class stage design provided by HENRY V, an incredible legacy bound book provided by PREMIER PRESS and to the creative digital craft provided by INSTRUMENT. All of our “Perfect Partners” can be found HERE.

    In the spirit of ideas worth spreading, TEDx is a program of local, self-organized events that bring people together to share a TED-like experience. At a TEDx event, TEDTalks video and live speakers combine to spark deep discussion and connection in a small group. These local, self-organized events are branded TEDx, where x = independently organized TED event. The TED Conference provides general guidance for the TEDx program, but individual TEDx events are self-organized.* (*Subject to certain rules and regulations)

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  • WWII Veteran Returns To Luxembourg for Memorial Day 2013

     

    Memorial Day at the US Military Cemetery in Hamm

    Luxembourg welcomed back an American soldier 69 years after he helped to liberate Luxembourg at Saturday’s Memorial Day service at the American Military Cemetery.

    War veteran Frank Moore was stationed in Hesperange for two months as part of the 83rd infantry division of the 453rd anti-aircraft artillery battalion aged just 21.

    “My husband always loved the Luxembourg people,” Frank’s wife, Jeanne Moore, told wort.lu/en, adding: “Because they gave him a sense of a normal life to come. He’s never forgotten it.”

    Mr Moore, 90, was housed in Hesperange with a Teri Braun, whose welcome was so warm she even prepared a Thanksgiving dinner for her tenant. Currently living in Portland, Oregon, Mr Moore has already once returned to Luxembourg to give thanks. In his latest trip, which will see him travel to Normandy, he wanted to share his memories with his family as part of a TV documentary.

    Mr Moore was one of hundreds of people who gathered at the American Military Cemetery in Hamm on Saturday afternoon for the annual Memorial Day service.

    Opening the speeches US Ambassador Robert A Mandell spoke about the 5,076 soldiers who died in World War II who are remembered at the cemetery.

    “I wonder what they were thinking. Even though they didn’t have Facebook or cell phones or iPods, I feel sure more of them were just like most of our young men and women today, with the same thoughts, fears, cares and loves of life,” he said.

    He went on to thank, on behalf of President Obama, all the people currently serving the US in military operation.

    Infrastructure Minister Claude Wiseler added his thanks in a message that remembered those who “fought shadows” 70 years ago. He talked of the legacy of the US involvement in liberating Luxembourg, which resulted in Luxembourg joining the UN and NATO in order to “give back some of what was given to us.”

    Memorial Day is an American custom, which was established following the end of the Civil War for people to decorate the graves of the fallen. It has since been expanded to remember people who died in conflict from all wars.

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  • Douglas County Couple Marks 70TH Wedding Anniversary

     

    IDLEYLD PARK — Jeanne Maes was 17 years old when she begged her mother to let her get married.

    Her fiance, Frank Moore, then 19, had signed up to serve in the Army during World War II. He would leave in a few days for Fort Knox, Ky., to train with an artillery unit that would participate in D-Day.

    Jeanne’s mother didn’t really approve, but she allowed her young daughter to marry on condition she finish high school after the ceremony.

    “It was war time, and I think that’s why she did allow it,” Moore recalled.

    Jeanne may have been young, but she knew what she wanted. Since their first date when she was 15, she knew Frank Moore was the one for her.

    Time has proved her right.

    The two were married New Year’s Day 1943. On Tuesday, Jeanne Moore, 87, and Frank Moore, 89, of Idleyld Park celebrated their 70th anniversary at the Idleyld Lodge, the same place they celebrated their 25th and 50th anniversaries.

    In their seven happy decades together, the Moores raised four children and ran two restaurants. They founded the Steamboat Inn east of Idleyld Park in 1957. Both are well known in Douglas County for their efforts to conserve the wilderness around the North Umpqua River.

    Frank Moore remembers the first time he saw Jeanne was the day he returned to Canby Union High School. He had graduated, but visited the music class one day and sang for the students.

    “This beautiful little redhead was sitting on the left-hand side of the room in front and she smiled at me,” he remembers.

    He was dating a friend of hers at the time, Jeanne recalled. After the friend moved away, Frank Moore came calling at her house.

    “November fifth he walked up on the porch at my house. I opened the door. It never dawned on me he was coming to see me. I took him over to see my Dad,” she said.

    Frank Moore took the opportunity to ask her father if he could take her to a movie.

    The movie itself is long forgotten, but Jeanne Moore remembers Frank Moore held her hand but didn’t kiss her on that first date.

    Two years later, the young couple began their married life separated by the war. Jeanne Moore stayed with her mother and successfully petitioned the school board to allow her to finish high school even though she was married — against the rules at that time. Meanwhile, Frank Moore trained to fire antiaircraft artillery. During the time he trained, they saw each other for only a few weeks.

    Frank Moore shipped out to Europe in February of 1944.

    He recalled his first shipboard meal.

    “The first morning out, they served us boiled codfish, which was rotten. It was awful. On top of that, they gave us boiled eggs and the eggs were rotten,” he said.

    After that, he got to know the kitchen crew well, an interest which may have influenced his post-war career as a restaurant owner.

    Moore spent several months based in England before being deployed to Nazi-occupied France. He was a sergeant in the 453rd automatic weapons battalion.

    When his unit rolled its amphibious vehicles onto the section of Normandy’s coastline code-named Utah Beach during the D-Day invasion in June, communication between the young couple was severed.

    “When we went into the beach then, I think Jeanne had it a lot worse than I did. For three weeks or so they never had any information from us. She had no idea what was going on with me,” he said.

    Frank Moore would go on to fight in the Battle of the Bulge and to help liberate the small village of Savigne Sur Lathan in central France.

    Jeanne graduated from high school and worked at a bakery. She saved $3,000 of her and her husband’s earnings, which they would use to open their first restaurant in Roseburg after the war.

    Jeanne Moore said one of the most romantic moments in their marriage was the day her husband returned home from the war.

    Frank Moore recalled he called his wife from Boston when he returned to America. Then he got lucky and caught an Army Air Force C-47 transport plane to Fort Lewis in Washington and made his way to Canby.

    “She thought I was still in Boston. She wasn’t expecting me for a week,” he said.

    Jeanne’s reaction was strong.

    “She never was much of an athlete, but she jumped up straight in the air four feet and landed in my arms,” he said.

    “It was just a moment you remember for the rest of your life,” Jeanne Moore said.

    After the war, the Moores moved to Roseburg.

    They operated Moore’s Cafe on Cass Avenue for 10 years and then opened the Steamboat Inn as a fishing lodge and restaurant.

    In the early years of their marriage, Frank Moore spent so many afternoons fly fishing that the waitresses at the Moores’ first restaurant once placed this classified ad in the News-Review: “Lost: One owner and manager of Moore’s Cafe. Last seen up the North Umpqua River.”

    Both have worked to preserve the wilderness along their beloved North Umpqua River.

    Jeanne Moore is the chairwoman of the annual Glide Wildflower Show, which features roughly 650 species. Her observations in the Limpy Rock area helped secure its designation as a protected Research Natural Area by the U.S. Forest Service.

    Frank Moore has received many awards for his efforts to preserve fish and their habitat in the North Umpqua River watershed. He was inducted into the Fresh Water Fishing Hall of Fame in 2010 and received the International Federation of Fly Fishers Conservationist of the Year Award in 2003. Oregon Wildlife Federation named him Conservationist of the Year in 1969.

    The Moores raised two sons and two daughters.

    Frankie Moore, 65, is an emergency room doctor in Anchorage, Alaska. Dennis Moore, 60, is retired and lives in Glide. Their youngest, daughter Colleen Bechtel, 50, is a fourth-grade teacher in Green.

    The hardest time in their lives was when their other daughter, Linda Moore, a senior at the University of Oregon, was killed in a car crash in 1970.

    “That’s a place where you either pull together or break the marriage. We pulled together,” Jeanne Moore said.

    In 1975, the couple sold the Steamboat Inn and began building the log house they live in now, which is filled with the keepsakes of people who have lived interesting lives.

    The Moores say the best thing in their lives has been each other, but the second best has been the people they have befriended.

    Some were famous, like writer and conservationist Jack Hemingway, the son of Ernest Hemingway and a man so devoted to fishing he called his autobiography “Misadventures of a Fly Fisherman: My Life With and Without Papa.”

    Another fishing friend was Oregon governor Tom McCall. Frank Moore recalled that McCall was so moved by one fish’s struggle for life he told the story of his catching her in rhyme. A picture of McCall fishing is on the wall of the couple’s log home, along with a wealth of other photos and memorabilia.

    Frank Moore credits his wife for his long years, relative youthfulness and successful marriage.

    “She is just about as perfect as any woman or any person could be,” he said.

    Their health isn’t perfect. Frank Moore received a pacemaker three years ago. It probably saved his life, but he said he wouldn’t have had it implanted if his wife hadn’t implored him through tears to see a doctor about his extreme fatigue.

    Jeanne Moore has had two hip replacements, so her husband puts on her socks for her.

    The Moores say they hope to keep living together in their log home for as many years as they can.

    “We’re having a good time. We want to keep it going,” Frank Moore said.

     

    You can reach reporter Carisa Cegavske at 541-957-4213 or ccegavske@nrtoday.com.

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  • Travel Oregon Spot – Oregon Dreamer: Frank Moore

     

     

    Tough as nails, gentle as a poet and determined as a badger, 90-year-old Frank Moore loves to fish. During World War II, he landed along with some 156,000 troops on the beaches of Normandy for the D-Day Allied invasion. Following the war, he returned to Oregon to his new wife Jeanne and his beloved North Umpqua River. Frank and Jeanne have spent the past 70 years living on or near the North Umpqua and have become an integral part of its heritage. Frank’s lifetime accomplishments as a fly fisherman, conservationist and veteran have earned him many awards, including the prestigious Chevalier of the French Legion of Honor and a recent induction into the Fresh Water Fishing Hall of Fame. He has guided and fished with many famous anglers, actors, members of congress and executives. He and Jeanne built and were the long time proprietors of the world-renowned Steamboat Inn located on the banks of their beloved river. Reflecting on his time on the North Umpqua, Moore says, “One of the things that this river does to people is it attracts them, it draws them, and stays in their heart. And what more can you say about a river?”

    ABOUT THE AUTHOR: John Waller
    A native Oregonian, John Waller has dedicated his life to exploring and discovering the natural beauty that the world has to offer. The founder of Uncage the Soul Productions, John has spent more than two decades producing and directing films, from commercial shorts to award-winning adventure documentaries. If he’s not behind the camera or in front of the editing screen, he can be found exploring the Oregon backcountry, summiting a local peak or planning the next globetrotting adventure.

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  • How a 90-Year-Old World War II Veteran Explores His Past Through Fishing

     

    Originally published in Good Magazine by Anna Brones
    I am standing at Frankfurt International Airport in Terminal 2, scanning the arrivals board.

    I’m a little nervous. I’m waiting for Frank Moore, his wife and son, and a film crew to walk out of customs and around the corner. Frank is 90 years old, a World War II veteran, a man of honor. He is coming to Europe to retrace his war days footsteps, but most importantly, to go fishing.

    Ahead of us is an adventure that no one can predict: 17 days of exploring wartime haunts with a veteran, taking him back to the rivers he once crossed as a young soldier, today armed not with a weapon but with a fly rod. This is proof that exploring can take place at any age. If you were responsible for making all of that go smoothly, you would be nervous as well.

    In Oregon, Frank is a bit of a legend. In the late ’50s, he and his wife Jeanne started the infamous Steamboat Inn on the North Umpqua River, a haven to fishermen and outdoor enthusiasts alike. He’s a fly fisherman, a conservationist, and an all-around lovable character. He is even decorated with the prestigious French Legion of Honor. When he goes in for a hug, you know you have to brace yourself—this man is no weakling and he embraces you with full force. He has a firm handshake and an infectious smile. He is appreciative, says thank you a lot, can hold a conversation with just about anyone, and immediately makes you feel like you’re a member of his family.

    In 1944, when Frank was 21, he was part of the Allied Invasion of Normandy, landing on Utah Beach on June 7 and continuing to make his way to Cherbourg, down to the decimated village of St. Lo and onto Paris, eventually ending up in Luxembourg and in the Battle of the Bulge.

    Frank recalls a particular moment from that time. He was standing on a bridge in the small village of Pontaubault, just east of the famous tourist destination Mont Saint Michel, looking down to the water when he saw a huge salmon. In the midst of the darkness and destruction that comes in the heat of war, he managed to have a moment of clarity: He wanted a fly rod. He wanted to fish for that salmon.

    Almost 70 years later he returns to fulfill a dream: to fish. That is the topic of the documentary film Mending the Line, as Frank returns to Normandy to live that exact dream and stand in those rivers on the lookout for fish.

    There aren’t a lot of WWII veterans these days—time has taken its toll—and even fewer who are able to travel across the world to suit up in waders and fly cast in a river. That’s one of the many things that makes this story compelling. From the first days of the trip, it is clear that Frank has a sense of adventure and knows how to go with the flow. He’s open to new experiences, and sees the world through eyes of wonder.

    As the days go on, more French words come back to him. He starts greeting me with “bonjour” every morning. He tells a funny story of a French friend coming to visit him in the U.S., bringing a few bottles of wine with him, Frank stashing them in the Steamboat Inn’s walk-in refrigerator for safe keeping. “When dinner came, he asked for his wine and I asked him if he wanted it chilled or not. He looked at me and said ‘Oh no! You never chill a red wine!’ So I went to the cooler and got a bottle of red wine, poured it into a pot and heated it up on the stove. He never noticed.” Frank chuckles. He loves telling this story, especially to Frenchmen.

    Frank is full of stories from his time in the war. Both stories that he shares and those he keeps for himself. The dark moments are hidden away, only shared with his fellow soldiers that stood and fell on the same battlefield. As he stands in the rivers you can see how he might be working through some of those thoughts. With each cast, processing through another moment.

    It’s hard, even impossible to understand what returning to a place where you once fought feels like. But when you’re with Frank, one thing stands out. It’s not a memory of death or destruction—although those are there—it’s an appreciation for life. A celebration of all that 90 years has given him. That appreciation is contagious, even those of us who are younger and have no direct relation to the war.

    “It’s easy to ask ‘why me?’ ” he reminds me. “But you can’t ask why, you just have to live.”

    And live is the one thing that Frank has done, whether it’s on a river in his home state of Oregon or here in the Normandy countryside, on a small creek that winds through rolling green pastures filled with dairy cows.

    I can see that every person that Frank encounters is moved. Whether they speak a few words of English or not. Frank hugs them, kisses them on the cheek and says “mon frère.” He means it. A man that has seen so much, the one thing he has learned is that we are all connected, no matter where we are from or what we do. If I could live my life with half as much intention and passion as he has done, I would be on a good road to happiness.

    And that is the lesson. Exploration isn’t just the physical journey, but also the mental one. Working through emotions, pushing your boundaries, returning to a place of pain and managing to feel joy. Being open to a people and a place and letting them influence you, to sometimes even change you. Because, as Frank reminds us, “You only get out of life what you put into it.”

    Mending the Line is a documentary produced by Uncage the Soul productions. You can learn more about the film online or by following Uncage the Soul on Facebook.

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  • Steve Duin – “Mending the Line”

     

    On the banks of the  North Umpqua last summer, Portland filmmaker John Waller asked Frank Moore the question that many of us wait too long to confront:

    WHAT REMAINS?

    Is there a mission, an obligation, a pilgrimage in your life that is still unfinished?

    Moore is the river’s — and possibly the state’s — most renown angler. He built the Steamboat Inn and continues to renovate a stellar 70-year marriage. At 90, he is rock-solid and steelhead-nimble, and he didn’t stumble over the question.
    You know, Moore told Waller, I’ve long dreamed of returning to Normandy and fishing the streams I crossed when I was 21.

    He was distracted that June. Otherwise engaged with the 453rd Anti-Aircraft Artillery Battalion (Automatic Weapons), which landed at Utah Beach on D-Day plus 1, then marched across France to Luxembourg and the Battle of the Bulge.

    But as his unit was chasing the Germans back to Saint-Malo, Moore remembers glancing down as he bounced across a viaduct in a half-track and spying a 25-pound Atlantic salmon and a fishing rod beached aside the stream.

    There are moments in France, Moore admits, that vanished with the soldiers who fought beside him: “There are a good three weeks where I’ve lost everything.”

    But that salmon remained with him. He hopes to return to the north of France in the next month and match wits with its great, great grandchildren.

    And with Waller’s help — and yours — he just might.

    Waller, the founder of Uncage the Soul Productions, was filming an essay on Moore for Travel Oregon last August when he asked the right question and realized where his camera and this legend truly belong.

    Over the next two weeks, Waller hopes to complete a $50,000 fundraising campaign that will allow him to fly Moore; his wife, Jeanne; their son, Frankie; and a small film crew to France for a 16-day reunion with fish, battlefields and memory.
    “This is the real story,” Waller said. “In a sense, this will bring his life full circle.”

    A glorious circle, that. Born in Carlton, Moore grew up under the tutelage of a father and grandfather who built their own fishing line in the garage out of rayon, linseed oil and varnish.

    He married Jeanne before he deployed with the 453rd, which eventually folded into the 83rd Division for the bloody advance into Luxembourg.

    When he returned from the war, he and Jeanne opened Moore’s Cafe in Roseburg, but he was so often on the North Umpqua that Jeanne once placed a missing-persons ad in the local paper.

    “He’s naturally athletic, the strongest man I’ve ever seen in my life,” said his son, a 66-year-old emergency-room physician in Alaska. “When I was 5 or 6, he would wade out into the river, jumping from rock to rock with me on his shoulders.

    “He’s 90 years old and he could still whip both of us at the same time.”

    And in that glorious competition with the steelhead?

    “He knows the river,” Frankie Moore said. “He has the knack. His eyesight is extraordinary and he has the ability to focus. He can watch the fly in the water 100 feet away and he knows when a fish comes up and misses it.”

    Time and again, that steelhead or brown trout only misses once.

    Since April 10, Waller — who produced the “Finding Portland” time-lapse video and “Beyond the Spill,” a documentary film on the Deepwater Horizon spill — has already raised $20,000 on Indiegogo, a crowd-funding platform.

    He has titled the documentary project “Mending the Line,” which describes the way a fisherman manages his line upstream from his fly, but the experience is meant to reclaim an essential part of Moore’s life, not repair it.

    If the fundraising is successful, the trip will begin with the Memorial Day celebration at the Luxembourg American Military Cemetery in Hamm, where Gen. George S. Patton is buried.

    “That’s going to be more important than anything,” Moore said. “The 83rd took a pounding there. In the first 10 days of combat, around the first of July, they lost 4,800 kids.”

    He and his son will then fish for a week on the rivers and streams of Normandy and Brittany before returning to Utah Beach for the 69th anniversary of Moore’s first landing there.

    “I was hoping they could put this off for a year, so we could make it the 70th,” Moore admits. “But when you get to be 90, you know anything can happen.”

    Far too many of the possibilities are painful, quiet and medicinal. Not this one.

    Precious few veterans of World War II remain — though Moore begs me to mention James Stone and Arnold Ebert, close friends in Roseburg — and fewer still who continue to wade the river and mend their lines.

    When I asked Moore where he thought the French currents would take him, into the well of the past or the sanctuary of familiar waters, he didn’t hesitate or stumble.

    “I’ll find out,” he said.

    With Waller’s help. And yours.

    – Steve Duin

    Frank Moore is “the strongest man I’ve ever seen,” says his son, Frankie. “When I was 5 or 6, he would wade out into the river, jumping from rock to rock with me on his shoulders.” Uncage the Soul Productions

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  • $50,888 Raised in IndieGoGo Campaign!

     

    OUR GOAL WAS ACHIEVED!

    THE INDIEGOGO SUMMARY:

    Mending the Line is a documentary about Frank Moore, a 90-year old WWII veteran and fly-fishing legend, returning to Normandy to fish the rivers he saw as a soldier.

    Tough as nails, gentle as a poet, and determined as a badger, 90-year old Frank Moore loves to fly-fish. A World War II veteran, in 1944 he landed along with some 150,000 other troops on the beaches of Normandy, France for the D-Day Allied invasion. Despite the cacophony of war around him, the avid, young fly fisherman couldn’t help but notice the productive fisheries on the rivers he and his fellow troops crossed as they made their way into occupied France.

    Frank’s lifetime accomplishments as a fly fisherman, conservationist and a veteran have earned him many awards, including the prestigious Chevalier of the French Legion of Honor, and recent induction into the Fresh Water Fishing Hall of Fame. Moore has guided and fished with actors, congressman and executives over his storied angling career. He built and was the long-time proprietor of the world renowned Steamboat Inn along the North Umpqua River. Now, reflecting on his life, he is compelled to return to the rivers of Normandy, this time armed not with a gun, but with a fly rod and reel.

    This documentary project will profile Frank Moore’s inspiring and dynamic life history and follow his return to France to fish the rivers that he crossed so many years ago as a 21-year-old soldier amidst the devastation of war.  There are few veterans in as good health as Frank; far fewer who have the courage and ability to travel back to France to see the war grounds of their past.  In May 2013, the Uncage the Soul Production team will travel to France with Frank and his wife of 70 years, Jeanne, traversing the rivers and World War II landmarks of Normandy. The production team will shadow Frank’s journey, capturing the raw emotion and experience of a lifetime to be found in Frank closing this book he began writing on June 6, 1944.

    An award winning film production studio, Uncage the Soul specializes in outdoor adventure documentary, having produced projects featured at the Banff Mountain Film Festival, Mountainfilm, the Wild and Scenic Film Festival, and broadcast on National Geographic and the Discovery Channel. The team is comprised of world renowned filmmakers and photographers, bringing a unique and beautiful perspective to storytelling.

    With your support, we can all show our appreciation to this venerable veteran and others like him by making this dream of his a reality, documenting not only his lifetime of accomplishments, but also the beauty that lies in the world of fly fishing, allowing a man to confront his past and embrace his passion in a place that he once helped to free.

    What We Need

    A five person production crew will travel with Frank and his wife Jeanne for 15 days starting first at the Luxembourg American Cemetery and Memorial and then onto Normandy, France and ultimately, arriving at Utah Beach, to bring his life full circle.

    Funds raised will cover the raw expenses of flights, travel, transportation, food, and lodging for Frank and his wife Jeanne, and the five person crew.  While a more youthful production crew can minimize travel expenses, it is our expectation that Frank and his wife travel comfortably.

    All production crew is volunteering their time to the project and all post-production work will be assumed by Uncage the Soul Productions.

    Perk Details

    All supporters of the project will receive a digital download of the completed documentary, Frank Moore: Mending the Line.  Please review our tiered donation structure for additional support benefits.

    Supporters at $5000 and up may choose to make their donations through Northwest Documentary, an award-winning regional center for documentary filmmaking, and a registered 501(c)3 organization.  94% of the donated funds will be routed directly to the Frank Moore project.  Contact Uncage the Soul Productions directly at info@uncagethesoul.com to make this tax deductible donation.

    The Impact

    Frank is an extraordinary man, and there could be no more fitting way to bring his life full circle than to help him fulfill this dream.  As documentary filmmakers, we also see the greater truths to his life worth sharing such as love, healing, purpose, beauty.  There is a sense of urgency to bring this project to fruition as Frank just celebrated his 90th birthday and 70th wedding anniversary. While he is in exceptional physical and mental health given his age, there is also that certain inevitability that has claimed all but a handful of our WWII veterans. Supporters of this project will bear witness to Frank’s generational story, and share in his journey as he writes one of the final chapters.

    Other Ways You Can Help

    If you are unable to contribute financially to the project, there are other ways that you can support our project:

    • Airline miles.  This is one of our most significant expenses.  Have a lot of extra miles, or know someone in the airline industry who could help out?
    • Connections in France.  Know anyone in France that could help assist our efforts?
    • Share the Project.  What veteran, outdoor, fly-fishing, or river conservation proponents or organizations do you know who would be interested in Frank Moore: Mending the Line?

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  • The Beauty Of Creating – by Anna Brones

     

    In this world there are creators and consumers. I have always had mentors who told me that it is better to create than to consume, no matter what the creation. Whether it’s words or images, creating something is to give, to provide inspiration, even lessons, to others and to share with the global community. In creating, you are more closely connected with those around you, your work influencing and shaping the thoughts of others.

    But sometimes I have to remind myself that I am a creator. Many of my friends work in the film industry, creating tangible things, and I have been known to doubt my own abilities. This probably happens to any creative, no matter what their field.

    In the last two years, however, a project came along that put those insecurities aside. I have long worked with the talented team at Uncage the Soul in varying capacities. A group of high-energy boys who feel more like brothers than coworkers, I am honored that they believe in me. While I don’t stand behind a camera (yet?) or sit in front editing software, I have always enjoyed the process that comes from conceiving a concept, planning and executing a project. It’s no surprise that I like the role of producer. So when the idea of doing a documentary film about Frank Moore came along, I wanted in.

    Frank Moore is a 91-year-old World War II veteran. A respected fly fisherman. An eloquent man with a lifetime of stories. He’s the kind of man you wish were your grandfather. Spend a few days with him, and you start to feel like he’s your grandfather. He’s a man of vision and wisdom. Mending the Line is a story about Frank and his quest to return to Normandy to fish the rivers he had once crossed as a young soldier in battle. The goal was a trip of a lifetime and a resulting film.

    But Mending the Line is more than a film. It was a team effort to create an experience for a deserving man and his family. Ultimately, the experience of creating the platform for Mending the Line, spending hours on the phone with French fly fishermen and cobbling together a production plan that spanned three countries, didn’t only result in being proud of a film. Certainly, the film is the end product, but what was even more meaningful was knowing that we created an experience for Frank, one that he never dreamed would come to fruition.

    Throughout the process, I have come to know Frank and his wonderful wife, Jeanne. They let the entire production team into their lives, sharing an intimate and touching experience with a group of passionate filmmakers. Sometimes I think that they have given us far more than we gave them.

    That’s the beauty of creating. You learn, you experience, you feel, and if you’re lucky, you touch lives. You become a part of something. It’s not the ownership over the end product that’s important; it’s the satisfaction that you are a part of something bigger. That you give instead of merely take.

    As Frank once said to me, “If you really give love and are not afraid to receive love, there’s a heck of a lot less stress in life.” Just like love, creating is about giving, and, ultimately, it means you receive so much in return.

    —Anna Brones

    In addition to being the producer of Mending the Line (Mountainfilm 2014), Anna Brones is a writer and digital communications specialist. A believer in connecting passionate people to do good, she uses her marketing and production savvy to work on cause-driven issues and amplify stories that deserve to be told.

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