The Norman Transcript

Features

November 16, 2012

Kami Day: Storyteller

NORMAN — Dr. Kami Day takes no credit for the book with her name on it. In fact, she really wishes her name weren’t on the book at all.

The book, “100 Stories from Veterans Corner,” is the result of a three-year project designed to collect, compile and share the stories of military veterans, their spouses and other family members. The project started in January 2010, shortly after Day moved to Norman.

“Anyplace I go, I try to find an organization or program that is in need of some people who are willing to devote some hours. I was looking around and I saw Dale (Graham’s) article (Veterans Corner) in the paper looking for volunteers. My father is a veteran. He was a B-52 navigator and he did three tours in Vietnam. He was a career Air Force officer. My son is in the National Guard,” Day said.

So Day started volunteering each Thursday morning at Veterans Corner in Goldsby. She, like the 40 or so other volunteers around her, help process claims from veterans who are seeking the full benefits they are entitled to following their military service.

Not long after her stint of volunteering, Day found out her mission with Veterans Corner was about to take on a whole new level.

“One of his (Graham’s) articles he said, ‘I wish we had some way to preserve and share their stories.’ Because I had experience interviewing and transcribing, I volunteered,” Day said.

Day conducted, transcribed and edited interviews and also incorporated stories brought in by individuals interested in the project. The book includes stories from World War I through the current conflicts in Iraq and Afghanistan and, as much as possible, presents the narrations as the interviewees told them.

“It’s not my book. My name has to be on it. I interviewed, I transcribed, I compiled. I rearranged some things to make sense. I edited. But these are their stories. It’s my book in the fact that I take responsibility for it and I put it together.” Day said.

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