Play Live Radio
Next Up:
Available On Air Stations


Women Train to Become U.S. Marines
Courtesy of Scott Olson via Getty Images
Getty Images North America
Female Marine Corps recruit Kylieanne Fortin, 20, of Williamsport, Maryland goes through close combat training at the United States Marine Corps recruit depot June 23, 2004 in Parris Island, S.C. Marine Corps boot camp, with its combination of strict discipline and exhaustive physical training, is considered the most rigorous of the armed forces recruit training. Congress is currently considering bills that could increase the size of the Marine Corps and the Army to help meet US military demands in Iraq and Afghanistan. Photo by Scott Olson/Getty Images

Encore Sunday, Nov. 6, 2022 from Noon - 4 p.m. on KPBS TV + Wednesday, Nov. 9 - Saturday, Nov. 12 at 4 p.m. on KPBS 2 / On demand now with KPBS Passport!

AMERICAN VETERAN is a four-part series that illuminates the veteran experience with a stunning range of voices from today and across the arc of American history. This multi-platform initiative traces the veteran experience through a broadcast series, podcast, and digital shorts. Every voice featured is a veteran’s.

From the citizen-soldiers returning from the American Revolution to today’s warrior class, they tell a deeply moving story, highlighting personal remembrances, drawing civilian viewers into an unfamiliar culture, and highlighting the evolving relationship between Americans who have served in the military and those who have not.


TV episode narrators are: TV host and former Marine Drew Carey; Iraq War Army veteran Senator Tammy Duckworth; actor, Vietnam War veteran (National Guard) and Native American (Cherokee) activist Wes Studi; and actor, motivational speaker and Army veteran, J. R. Martinez.


Episode 1: “The Crossing” Encore Sunday, Nov. 6 at Noon on KPBS TV + Wednesday, Nov. 9 at 4 p.m. on KPBS 2 - As recruits take the oath to serve, they leave the civilian world to become a soldier, sailor, marine, airman or woman. This is the start of their transformation. Narrated by TV host and former Marine Drew Carey.

AMERICAN VETERAN: Basic Training: Surviving Boot Camp

Episode 2: “The Mission Encore Sunday, Nov. 6 at 1 p.m. on KPBS TV + Thursday, Nov. 10 at 4 p.m. on KPBS 2 - Join host Senator Tammy Duckworth to learn how military life shapes servicemen and women in profound and unexpected ways. Veterans’ personal stories showcase the raw impact of these experiences from D-Day to Afghanistan.

POW Shoshana Johnson’s Story

Episode 3: “The Return” Encore Sunday, Nov. 6 at 2 p.m. on KPBS TV + Friday, Nov. 11 at 4 p.m. on KPBS 2 - Join host Wes Studi to explore the road back to civilian life. For some veterans there are ticker-tape parades; for others, protests, anger and silence. Some recall the confidence they brought home, while others think, “What am I going to do now?”

AMERICAN VETERAN Episode 3: The Return: Preview

Episode 4: “The Reckoning” Encore Sunday, Nov. 6, 2022 at 3 p.m. on KPBS TV + Saturday, Nov. 12 at 4 p.m. on KPBS 2 - Join host J.R. Martinez as veterans reflect on their experiences in the military, the divide between those who have served and those who have not, and the ways veterans and civilians can work together to move America forward.

‘Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell’: A Survivor’s Story

Watch On Your Schedule:

The series is available on demand with KPBS Passport, a benefit for members supporting KPBS at $60 or more yearly, using your computer, smartphone, tablet, Roku, AppleTV, Amazon Fire or Chromecast. Learn how to activate your benefit now.

With the PBS Video App, you can watch your favorite and local station shows. Download it for free on your favorite device. The app allows you to catch up on recent episodes and discover award-winning shows.

Finding a Purpose After Military Service


AMERICAN VETERAN television series is produced by Insignia Films. Stephen Ives and Leah Williams directed the series, which is written by Stephen Ives and Gene Tempest. The series producer is Amanda Pollak. The digital series, “American Veteran: Keep it Close,” is produced by Blue Chalk, producer Mariko Fujinaka and supervising producer Natalie Taylor. The podcast, “American Veteran: Unforgettable Stories,” is a production of Insignia Films for GBH, produced by Curtis Fox with sound design by Ian Coss and production and distribution support from PRX.

Funding for AMERICAN VETERAN is provided by The Wexner Family Charitable Fund, Battelle Memorial Institute, the Corporation for Public Broadcasting, JPMorgan Chase & Co, and Analog Devices.

Explore all national, state and local returns now.