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Mickey Strand - Veterans Series Mickey Strand - Veterans Series

The Veterans Portrait Series

Mickey is a retired Navy Photographers Mate, Chief Petty Officer, and was the Leading Chief of the Navy's elite Combat Camera Group Pacific. Mickey's current focus is the Veterans Portrait Series, which documents veterans' stories of service. He is focused on our Worlds' Greatest Generation. The veterans of World War II. 

Mickey interviews each Veteran, collecting and writing their service stories, archiving these notable historic figures and their stories for generations to come. Mickey has collected and displayed images and stories from over 100 warriors that at one point, signed the dotted line when our country needed their sacrifice of service most.  Mickey continues to collect Veterans from all services for the Veterans Portrait Series. In 2019 this body of work was displayed at the Palm Beach Photographic Centre Museum from Nov 11, 2019 — to March 1, 2020.

Mickey and the project were in the national spotlight, featured on the Sunday Today Show with Harry Smith Today Show Link to YouTube.  See the Google 360 Virtual walk through from the Palm Beach Museum Exhibit. Enjoy, and thank you for your help with this project. In 2022 Mickey has photographed over 25 more WW2 Veterans and will be hosting a print show in San Diego in November with an open house on Veterans Day.

Featured Veteran

Andree Chappaz
US Army
World War 2

            Andree Chappaz was born in the United States on September 14, 1925. His early years saw his family relocate to France when he was four years old. Andree’s formative years were spent in France, where his father found employment at an aircraft factory near Paris. With the growing turmoil in France and the looming threat of war, the Chappaz family decided to return to the United States on Thanksgiving Day, 1937.
            After graduating high school, Andree pursued his passion for the arts by attending the California School of Fine Arts in San Francisco. His life took an unexpected turn when a military captain arrived to recruit personnel for a headquarters unit, specifically needing graphic artists. Andree eagerly awaited his 18th birthday, which arrived in September 1943, marking his induction into the U.S. Army.
            However, Andree was not assigned to the graphics unit as initially expected; instead, he found himself with the Engineers at March Field. Subsequently, he was transferred to the 1885th Aviation Engineering Battalion. This unit’s primary responsibility was to construct airfields for heavy bombers as the war front advanced, ensuring these bombers remained within range as the front lines shifted from island to island.  
            Andree’s journey took him to Bushnell Army Airfield in Florida, where he underwent rigorous training in tropical conditions. The unit’s destination was Guam, where they were tasked with building three crucial airfields: Hammond Air Field, Anderson Field, and an outlaying landing field. Hammond Air Field, in particular, became the headquarters for the XXI Bomber Command, operating the new B-29 Superfortress, which brought the Japanese homeland into striking distance. Remarkably, this airfield was constructed in just 54 days, with Andree and his fellow soldiers working day and night.
            See Andree's Full story on the WW2 Page. 


Where can I donate?

I have created a way to accept donations to grow the project, use the WWII Veterans Portrait Series
  Go Fund Me.

Where are you located?

I live in the San Diego area but have traveled to many locations to interview and photograph Veterans.

How Long is an Appointment?

Appointments usually last 1 hour. But please free up time for Mickey to set up lights and cameras, hold the interview, and take some photographs for the project.

Do you accept reservations?

Yes is the simple answer to the question.  Each appointment is set up as an individual session. Group sessions have been set up when I visited a senior living facility or many of the California Veterans Homes.

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