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Injured Vet Uses Film To Advocate, Connect With Civilians

Keith Curry wanted to be a career soldier, but injuries he sustained while deployed to Iraq ended that future.

“So,” Curry asked himself, “how can I continue to contribute?”

Curry decided the answer was to make films that would let civilians and veterans see they have some of the same challenges. He moved this year from Lacey, Wash., and used some of his disability money and benefits from the GI bill to attend the San Francisco School of Digital Filmmaking.

His first short film, "Hero," features his son as a toddler whose dad tiptoes out to work before the boy wakes up.

“So [the boy] has taken a Power Ranger figure,” Curry said, “and the son goes throughout his day doing the same things that him and his father would do.” The Power Ranger stands opposite the boy as he plays ball and hide-and-go-seek.

“I wanted to do something that could be really understood and really embraced by the people in the service that go on multiple deployments,” Curry said.

At the same time, Curry said he wanted civilians to have the opportunity to see they have something in common with veterans and soldiers. “We have to go to work,” he said, “and your kids want to be around you.”

Curry hopes filmmaking will be a way he can continue to advocate for veterans’ issues. He calls himself a country boy at heart and says his medical retirement from the army could give him a different future than the one he’s hoping for.

“I can go take my disability and go back to Arkansas and live a pretty decent life,” he said. “But that’s not what it’s about.”