GEDDES, N.Y. (WSYR-TV) A man traveled all the way from Marlow, Oklahoma and brought his World War I Mobile Museum to the 2019 Central New York Veterans Parade and Expo on the NYS Fairgrounds on Sunday.
At the expo, Keith Colley, curator of the museum says, “There are men and women here from every background, every branch of our military and they’re all together and united. And then there’s all of these other people who aren’t military here to say thank you.”
The World War I Mobile Museum gives visitors the chance to be grateful.
“We’re able to present this museum to anybody and everybody and give them the opportunity to say thank you for the freedoms that we got today in 2019,” Colley said.
But how did it all start? Four years ago, Colley, who also works as a caregiver, gifted a World War I shovel to one of his patients who fought in the War. Since then, his collection of artifacts has grown, totaling in over 200 artifacts to date.
Each piece tells a different story, but next to each other, they create a bigger picture.
“I think it all comes together as a forgotten war,” Colley said.
The museum serves as a reminder for all of the sacrifices that were made. For those not familiar, especially the younger generations, it’s an introduction to a different slice of history.
Colley says, “The kids are going bonkers over it. They’re writing reports, they’re asking their parents questions about it and before you know it, these kids are so engaged to this, it’s unbelievable.”
As the creator, he said the best part is hearing the stories.
“That’s easy…That is easy. The best part is being able to hear the stories,” Colley said, “I hope I go to my grave doing World War I.”
World War I is one that he’ll never forget, and he hopes this mobile museum helps others remember, too.
If you’re looking to bring the World War I display to you’re hometown, visit Colley’s website, http://www.ww1mobilemuseum.com/.
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