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Arts & Culture

National Memorial Day Concert 2015

This year’s "National Memorial Day Concert" shines a spotlight on Gold Star Children, those who have lost a parent to war. With lives that are forever changed, these children’s experiences will be told through the eyes of Bayleigh (left) and Cameron (right) Dostie, whose father, Shawn, made the ultimate sacrifice while serving in Iraq.
Courtesy of Dostie family
This year’s "National Memorial Day Concert" shines a spotlight on Gold Star Children, those who have lost a parent to war. With lives that are forever changed, these children’s experiences will be told through the eyes of Bayleigh (left) and Cameron (right) Dostie, whose father, Shawn, made the ultimate sacrifice while serving in Iraq.

Airs Sunday, May 24, 2015 at 8 p.m. & 9:30 p.m. on KPBS TV

This Memorial Day weekend, PBS brings viewers an inspiring night of remembrance dedicated to our men and women in uniform, their families at home and all those who have given their lives for our country. The multi award-winning "National Memorial Day Concert" airs live from the West Lawn of the U.S. Capitol, co-hosted by Tony Award-winner Joe Mantegna and Emmy Award-winner Gary Sinise. The broadcast marks the 10th consecutive year that the acclaimed actors, who have dedicated themselves to veterans’ causes and supporting our troops in active service, co-host the event. The "National Memorial Day Concert" will showcase courageous American heroes who have been disabled for life; shine a spotlight on Gold Star Children who have lost a parent to war; and commemorate the 70th anniversary of the end of World War II.

Share Your Memories

Your contributions are a central part of the Memorial Day narrative, honoring the sacrifice of our brave service members in uniform. We encourage you to share your stories on our Wall of Remembrance, where we can grieve together as we pay tribute to the lives and legacies of those we’ve lost.

Help Our Wounded Warriors

These service members and their families are struggling courageously. They should not have to manage alone. Many organizations are making a valiant effort to address their needs. Discover ways you can help. Your caring support can make the difference today and for many years to come.

Quote

“We do not know one promise these men made, one pledge they gave, one word they spoke; but we do know they summed up and perfected, by one supreme act, the highest virtues of men and citizens. For love of country they accepted death, and thus resolved all doubts, and made immortal their patriotism and their virtue.” - James A. Garfield, May 30, 1868 Arlington National Cemetery

The all-star line-up includes distinguished American leader General Colin L. Powell USA (Ret.); seven-time Grammy Award-winner and international superstar Gloria Estefan; acclaimed film and television actress Stefanie Scott ("Insidious: Chapter 3"; "Jem and the Holograms"); THE VOICE season five winner Tessanne Chin; the world’s most prolific classical cross-over artist Katherine Jenkins; and renowned tenor Russell Watson in performance with the National Symphony Orchestra under the direction of top pops conductor Jack Everly (additional performers to be announced). The 26th annual broadcast airs live Sunday, May 24, 2015 on PBS, 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.

The 2015 "National Memorial Day Concert" will feature the following segments:

• There are more than four million disabled American veterans, a visible reminder of the toll of America’s wars through the decades. A new national memorial in Washington, D.C., to pay tribute to these courageous American heroes disabled for life, was dedicated in October 2014. The concert will feature the poignant stories of two veterans from different eras severely injured in war and living with life-altering disabilities.

• Through the eyes of Gold Star Children, those who have lost a parent to war, we learn how their lives are changed forever.

• As the world commemorates the 70th anniversary of the end of World War II, the deadliest war in human history, we honor the sacrifices of America’s “Greatest Generation” and remember the estimated 60 million men, women and children worldwide whose lives were brutally ended in the conflict.

Also participating in the event are the U.S. Joint Chiefs of Staff with The U.S. Army Herald Trumpets, The U.S. Army Chorus, The Soldiers Chorus of the U.S. Army Field Band, The U.S. Navy Band Sea Chanters, The U.S. Air Force Singing Sergeants, the Armed Forces Color Guard and Service Color Teams provided by the Military District of Washington, D.C.

The program is a co-production of Jerry Colbert of Capital Concerts and WETA, Washington, D.C. Executive producer Colbert and producer Michael Colbert have assembled an award-winning production team that features the top Hollywood talent behind some of television’s most prestigious entertainment awards shows. The team includes Emmy award-winning producer Walter C. Miller, whose credits include the Grammy Awards and Country Music Awards; and award-winning director Paul Miller whose credits include Country Music Awards and SATURDAY NIGHT LIVE.

National Memorial Day Concert is on Facebook, and you can follow @MemorialDayPBS on Twitter.

2015 National Memorial Day Concert Featured Highlights

Impressions of a Gold Star childhood.

The story of Gold Star children is shared on the 2015 National Memorial Day Concert. Learn more about their determination to carry on as they face life as a Gold Star family.