Breaking the Silence
Behind the Production
Silenced No More!
In the summer of 2016, Paul pitched an idea to the Oregon Department of Veteran Affairs. With Oregon being the first in the nation to have an LGBTQ Veterans Outreach position, why not create a documentary to help share these stories of struggles to create greater awareness? As a storyteller, Paul knew these stories needed to be documented and shared as a way to help people understand how military policy impacted so many lives.
ODVA agreed and Paul was very excited to set out and create a film. He immediately asked Linda Campbell. Linda shared the same level of excitement, was honored to be asked, and signed on instantly. He had worked with her before and it was her story that inspired him to create this film.
As an experienced storyteller and coach, with lots of experience developing LGBTQ programming, he was eager to start his outreach. But, first, he needed a filmmaker, an important skill he didn’t have. He was referred to Julia Reihs and they hit it off. Julia shared her portfolio of similar work and expressed a strong interest in joining the project.
Their very first interview was with Linda. Through networking, Paul was able to connect with other veterans from the region. He met with each of them one-on-one to learn their stories and see if they would be interested in sharing their experiences on film. The interviews occurred during the summer of 2016 with editing that fall.
With the final draft ready, Paul assembled all the veterans together to see the film with Julia. This was the very first time Linda, Landon, Lindsay, Jerilyn, and Monica met in person. Many, many tears were shed as they watched the film in silence. Even though Paul and Julia had seen the film evolve over many months, they became emotional by seeing the veterans’ reactions to their own and each other’s stories.
When Paul and Julia asked for feedback immediately following the film, the group insisted the video stay as-is, with only minor changes to the initial wording of military policy for clarity.
The film debuted in the fall of 2017 to a packed theater in NW Portland and has been shown dozens of times over the next year. In 2018, ODVA made the film streamable from their website and Paul followed suit.
Sadly, Linda passed away in the spring of 2018. Her courage and bravery lives on through this film. We hope you can make time to experience this film.