Monologues give veterans voice

by Janet Smith


Come Veterans Day, the Harrisonburg community will have an opportunity to learn more about what life is like for women serving in the Armed Forces – and to honor all veterans’ service.

On Tuesday, Nov. 11, James Madison University is sponsoring a local performance of “In Our Own Voice: Women Veterans Tell Their Story” by playwright Beverly Coyle, a production of the Psychotherapy and Spirituality Institute. The Veterans Day performance in Grafton-Stovall Theatre begins at 7 p.m.

Four JMU students will present the play-in-monologues, drawn from interviews given by women veterans and those still serving in the Armed Forces. A discussion with the audience, led by Melinda Fox, a counselor in JMU’s Counseling Center; Mary Ragan, a licensed clinical social worker, area director at the Psychotherapy and Spirituality Institute and project manager of “In Our Own Voice;” and women veterans follows the play. 

“Attending the program is a way to honor the service of our nation’s veterans,” said Amelia Underwood, an adjunct professor in JMU’s Department of Military Science and Department of Learning, Technology and Leadership Education who is organizing the JMU event.

JMU ROTC cadets Catherine Ambrosich, Pvt. Olivia Azrak and Spc. Katelyn Dills and student veteran Spc. Joanna Richter will present the monologues. Azrak and Dills are also active duty members of the National Guard and Army Reserves, respectively.

Azrak, Dills and Richter also will participate in the discussion session following the play. They will be joined Capt. Diana Cruz, a U.S. Army pilot and an assistant professor of military science at JMU; Lt. Kristen Laraway, U.S. Navy; Capt. Melanie Simms, U.S. Army Medical Corps; and Capt. Whitney Vaughan, U.S. Marine Corps.

“In Our Own Voice” has been performed at venues in the northeast states and at the United States Air Force Academy in Colorado Springs.

Admission to the event at JMU is free and open to the public.

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Nov. 10, 2014

Published: Monday, November 10, 2014

Last Updated: Thursday, October 20, 2016

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