2019 National Memorial Day Concert to honor D-Day Veteran and his story of bravery



PBS’s multi award-winning National Memorial Day Concert returns live from the West Lawn of the U.S. Capitol for a special 30th anniversary broadcast hosted by Tony Award-winner Joe Mantegna. The 30th annual broadcast of the concert airs live on PBS Sunday, May 26, 2019, from 8:00 to 9:30 p.m., before a concert audience of hundreds of thousands, millions more at home, as well as to our troops serving around the world on the American Forces Network.

A 30-year tradition unlike anything else on television, America’s national night of remembrance takes us back to the real meaning of the holiday through personal stories interwoven with musical performances by the National Symphony Orchestra and guest artists. The 2019 anniversary edition of the concert will feature:

75th Anniversary of the D-Day Invasion – featuring a performance by Academy Award-nominated actor Sam Elliott (A STAR IS BORN).

IMAGE: Ry Lambert

Ray Lambert             

The concert will share the remarkable story of 98-year-old Ray Lambert (Elliott), a highly-decorated combat medic who landed on Omaha Beach in the largest amphibious invasion in history and a pivotal step in the Allied march to victory in World War II. As part of the first wave onto shore, Lambert quickly established a treatment area, saving soldiers, dragging them to safety and comforting the dying as best he could, even while being shot twice himself.  He continued his efforts before being seriously wounded. Lambert’s story honors every man who landed on the beaches of Normandy that day.

Other stories include: Vietnam Valor and Brotherhood – brought to life by long-time friends acclaimed actor Dennis Haysbert (24, MAJOR LEAGUE) and Joe Mantegna and A Gold Star Widow’s Journey– portrayed by television series star Jaina Lee Ortiz (STATION 19, ROSEWOOD).

The all-star line-up also includes: distinguished American leader General Colin L. Powell USA (Ret.); Grammy Award-winning legend Patti LaBelle; multi-platinum selling singer, performer and songwriter Gavin DeGraw; Broadway and television star Christopher Jackson (HAMILTON, BULL); multi-Grammy Award-winning bluegrass icon Alison Krauss; SAG and Olivier Award-winning and Grammy Award-nominated actress and singer Amber Riley (GLEE, DREAMGIRLS); multi-platinum-selling country music star Justin Moore; and Patrick Lundy & The Ministers of Music; in performance with the National Symphony Orchestra under the direction of top pops conductor Jack Everly (additional performers to be announced). The 2019 National Memorial Day Concert will share Lambert’s story of bravery and pay tribute to heroes who sacrificed and died in service to our nation and the world.

Author

Gary Hicks

is the Director of VA’s Office of Digital Media Engagement. He is a former managing editor of a daily newspaper and a Veteran of the U.S. Army. Gary’s wife is a senior master sergeant stationed at Joint Base Andrews in Maryland.

Comments

  1. Rodney Yen Hing Wong    

    Hooah and God’s blessings and grace and love be there for all veterans and their families throughout the world serving–past, present and future. Like veterans 99 years young, Pearl Harbor Survivor Mickey Ganitch of Oakland, Calif and 69 years younger Rodney Wong of Berkeley, Calif, continuing to serve and bringing the veterans hope and care in their communities. Their volunteer community service Memorial Day mission this year started in Oakland/Berkeley/Emeryville on Sunday May 19 across America via Amtrak and continues to Washington DC. Highlights include meeting the Cathy Hampton family of Grand Junction, Colorado, a descendant of the medical officer for General George Washington. The family was attending the graduation of son Shamus from the Army Combat Medical school in Harrisonburg, Pennsylvania. Hooah!

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