The topic was a departure from what long time businessmen Larry Babb and John Sottile were used to focusing on; yet they thought that it must be done. The matter that they took up was the plight of the disabled American veteran and they knew just what to do.
The two first met in 2000 when Babb who is from Norwood was invited to speak to a film group that Sottile was president of at the time.
It wasn’t long after that they became good friends and decided to combine their skills: Babb with filmmaking and Sottile with media.
Them men became business partners not of one company, but of two: International Film Resources Worldwide and the nonprofit After the Bugles.
International Film Resources Worldwide is a production company that produces a wide range of films and documentaries. International Film Resources Worldwide is helpful to them in carrying out the mission for After the Bugles.
After the Bugles
The name says it all.
After the Bugles was formed in 2007 to prepare documentaries for the American public to help them to understand the plight of the American veteran, Babb said.
“We felt that the public is well aware of what happens when they come home and then every one losses interest,” he said. “That’s where our story starts; after all the fanfare.”
They each speak of the reason After the Bugles was created.
“You get to a point were you say what can I do that is really going to make a difference?” Babb said. “We were really successful and had great careers and since we are experts at filmmaking, that’s what we would do.”
Sottile adds it is an act of patriotism for him.
“Personally we want to have impact on something,” he said. “It would be our contribution in helping people to come to grips with a bigger realm of war.”
After the Bugles has worked with the Disabled American Veterans of Massachusetts since its inception. The charitable group has helped with fundraising efforts, said Dan Stack, Department Adjutant with the Disabled American Veterans of Massachusetts
“To be able to utilize their knowledge has meant the world to me,” he said.
Whatever the need
The first film that After the Bugles, produced through International Film Resources Worldwide, is a face paced, 7-minute video entitled, “No Matter the Need.” The film is a collection of interviews from people within the veteran’s community.
The film itself isn’t trying to raise funds and but it has been useful in informing people about the role of the Disabled American Veterans of Massachusetts, Sottile said.
“This is probably the greatest nation on earth to be a veteran,” he said in the video. “We have laws and regulations that are there to help out … The problem happens to be in getting access to them… that’s where the DAV steps in to help get that access opened up so that the veteran can get the benefit or help that they need.”
Babb and Sottile try to keep that plight in mind through raising public awareness.
“I don’t hear the protests that I think we ought to have,” Sottile said.
Babb adds, “It’s a shame that we send our boys and girls off and they do their duty and when they come back we more or less forget about them and that’s not right.
Others agree with them. Like Norwood’s Director of Veteran’s Service, Ted Mulvehill who has a part in the piece.
“It’s front page news on Saturday. On Sunday, it’s page 12,” he said. “In the meantime you’ve got kids laying in beds in substandard conditions and they don’t deserve that kind of treatment after the work that they have done on behalf of our nation. They should be guaranteed the highest quality of medical care and treatment; end of story.”
Mulvehill said too, that public awareness leads to infuriation. That in turn leads the public to put pressure on the legislature to act. This in turn leads to funding the programs that are needed for the veterans and their families.
It is those families that are the focus of the next project.
Home of the Brave
Babb said After the Bugles has spent the last several months researching its current project: a documentary titled “Home of the Brave.”
The premise he said is about the families of the veteran’s, the people who are affected by the war, the people’s whose plight goes virtually unknown.
“There is really just so much that people have to deal with at the home front and we would like to talk about that,” Sottile said. “The film will show the total cost of the war; the other part of the war. It’s easy for those things to be forgotten, and it should not be forgotten.”
“Home of the Brave,” will bring forth the impact on children when their parent is deployed, perhaps multiple times or has lost a parent in the war, Babb and Sottile said. They added too, that it will talk to the issues that may arise when the veteran comes home to their family whether it is medical, physical or psychological.
The hope is to bring this to a national level.
Mulvehill said he sees first hand how deployment impact families. He commends After the Bugle in its endeavors.
“They are addressing a niche of veterans who are not getting the assistance that they need,” he said. “Anything that the After the Bugles can do to help in assisting the families of veterans is a wonderful thing.”
Babb said After The Bugle will to continue in its efforts in support of the plight of the American soldier and their families.
Norwood resident Cheryl A. MacDonald writes the weekly ‘Our Town’ column for the Norwood Transcript and Bulletin. She can be contacted at email@example.com.